There may be 5,436 miles between them, but getting from Los Angeles to Tokyo is now easier and faster than ever. Five airlines offer direct flights between the two cities, operating a number of flights throughout the day.
Direct flights operate from Los Angeles to Tokyo 22 times a week, with an average of three flights per day. All flights depart from Los Angeles International (LAX), the fifth largest airport in the United States. Tokyo offers two airport choices – New Tokyo Airport (NRT) and Tokyo International (HDN). Tokyo International Airport is the more centrally located of the two, located 12 miles from the city centre but flights tend to be slightly longer, at 11 hours 40 minutes. New Tokyo Airport is located just outside Tokyo, 41 miles from the city centre. If you’re considering making the trip, we’ve analysed the best direct flight options below taking into consideration price, duration, flight amenities and carbon footprint.
Singapore Airlines offers the cheapest base rate overall for direct flights from Los Angeles to Tokyo. At the time of writing, the airline is running a reduced service at four days a week, but from November 1 flights will return to daily operation. Flights arrive at NRT, which is further from the city centre but easy enough to get to on the 60-minute JR Narita Express train ride. The flight uses Boeing 777–300 and generates around 1.61 t CO2 per passenger, making it one of the least environmentally friendly options. Passengers can choose from four ticket prices, ranging from Economy Class to First Class. The cheapest tickets include one checked bag and hand luggage, a meal and an option to select extra legroom and forward zone seats. In First Class, passengers can enjoy an extra-large leather seat, a private space with sculpted headrest and mood lighting.
Flights depart at 14:45 and arrive at 19:30+1. Prices from $435. Book at SingaporeAir.com
Delta operates the cheapest base rate for direct flights from Los Angeles to Tokyo HDN airport. It also offers the earliest flight time, making it the best option for those looking to have a full afternoon in the city following the flight. Flights operate daily, with an average flight time of 11 hours 50 minutes. This flight uses the Airbus A330-900 Neo, the newest addition to the Delta fleet. It’s more fuel-efficient than ever, generating around 921 kg CO2 per passenger. Well-heeled travellers can choose to travel in one of the swish Delta One Suites too. This is the best flight option for those looking to travel to HDN, rather than NRT for an affordable price. It’s also best for those looking to fly earlier in the day – and more sustainably too.
Flights depart at 09:50 and arrive at 14:40+1. Prices from $510. Book at Delta.com
United Airlines frequently offers the second-most affordable rates to Tokyo, with one direct daily flight to NRT and one direct daily flight to HDN airport. There is no price differece between the two flights and both average 11 hours 50 minutes. Both flights are also sold by ANA. Flights use the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, one of the newest and most renowned planes in service today. There are three ticket prices to choose from: Economy, Premium Economy and Business Class. With the most restricted Economy ticket, you’ll get two checked bags, an option to choose your seat and a meal. Business Class offers a roomier, lie-flat seat and a separate check-in experience. Both flights generate around 936 kg CO2 per passenger. It’s a good option for those looking for an affordable flight, but not one for luxury travellers since it is the only flight that doesn’t offer first class.
Flights to NRT depart from LAX at 10:40 and arrive at 15:30+1 daily. HDN depart from LAX at 12:15 and arrive at 17:10+1 daily. Prices from $515. Book at United.com.
Japan Airlines also operates two direct flights per day, at the same prices as United Airlines. Both flights depart late morning; the earlier flight arrives at NRT and the later flight into HDN. Both flights are also sold by American Airlines too. Flights use the Boeing 787-8 Sky Suite. There are six classes of travel, ranging from Economy to First Class. This plane offers slimmer seats and better legroom with expanded seat pitch, making it one of the most comfortable journeys if you’ve chosen the cheapest ticket price. Inflight dining is markedly impressive and if you pay for Premium Economy you can enjoy a glass of champagne too. First Class travellers get their own booth, organic cotton pyjamas and toiletries. It’s the best option for those willing to pay a little more for comfort, but those looking to reduce their carbon footprint should stick with United Airlines, since these flights generate 1.44t CO2 .
Flights to NRT depart from LAX at 12:50 and arrive at 16:45+1. Flights to HDN depart from LAX at 12:30 and arrive at 17:30+1. Prices start at $515. Book at jal.co.jp.
All Nippon Airways (ANA)
ANA offers the most expensive direct flight but it also offers the most flight options. The airline operates two flights per day to HND and one flight per day to NRT. It’s also certified as a 5-Star Airline for the quality of its airport and onboard product and staff services, so you really pay for what you get. However, flights generate a gas-guzzling 1.75–2.4t CO2 per person on the Boeing 777-300. ANA offers a more elite service for Business and First class travellers than any other airline, so if you’re looking for swish service and amentieis, ANA is the best option for you. You’ll also benefit from a wider range of flight times, including a midnight flight that gives you a whole day in Tokyo after the journey.
Flights to NRT depart from LAX at 11:30 and arrive at 15:30+1. Flights to HDN depart from LAX at 00:05 and arrive at 05:30+1 or 15:35 and arrive at 21:00. Prices from $550. Book at Ana.co.jp.