Cathay Pacific to Japan

jack_frost

Hard Yards
Jul 25, 2016
19
7
53
Brisbane, Queensland
Hi guys, long time lurker, occasional participator.

I'm currently looking at booking some flights with Cathay Pacific to Japan for some mates of mine. The itinerary looks like this:

Brisbane to Tokyo Narita - 29th January
- Leave Brisbane 00:45 Arrive HKG 07:25
- Leave HKG 09:05 Arrive TYO 14:05

Tokyo Narita to Brisbane - 16th February
- Leave Tokyo Narita 16:15 Arrive HKG 20:35
- Leave HKG 21:25 Arrive BNE 8:05 (+1)

I have a couple questions surrounding this flight. The connection times in Hong Kong seem very very short with not a lot of room for error, is that usual or should flight connections that short be avoided? Additionally, would it be possible to get from Hakuba to a 4:15pm flight from Narita in one day or would that be cutting it too fine?

Really appreciate the community here by the way, have loved watching everyone get along so well.
 

Sandy

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Those connections in Hong Kong look ok. It's just as case of going from one gate to another. (your bags will be checked all the way through from Brisbane to Narita.
It should be doable from Hakuba to Narita. There are 6:30am bus and 8:20am buses, Hakuba (Happo bus terminal) to Nagano:
http://www.alpico.co.jp/en/transportation/detail.php?id=13

Catch Shinkansen from Nagano, will get you to Narita by 1pm, taking the 8:20am bus from Happo.
 
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Tanuki

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Bearer of bad anecdotes here.

We booked Cathay for two reasons, reputation and to visit HK on the way to Japan.

Our flight left Melbourne 3hrs late (after boarding) then circled HK for 1.5 hrs (long story) Then the HK-New Chitose flight left HK 45 mins late and sat at the Chitose terminal for 1.5 hrs. Not a joke.

Overall the Cathay crews were great and I'm sure it was an anomaly, but if were to book with them again I'd do some more research. We've flown to Japan four times with Jetstar, Air Malaysia , JAL & Cathay. Cathay and Jetstar on par for delays.

The other issue is for your flight your probably adding 2-3 hours extra air time rather than a direct flight. I'd take JAL every time from now on.
 
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jack_frost

Hard Yards
Jul 25, 2016
19
7
53
Brisbane, Queensland
Thanks Sandy, appreciate the help. Would you recommend bus to Nagano, shink to Tokyo then bus to Narita? Or train to Narita?

Interesting comment Tanuki, unfortunately the best I've managed to coerce a bunch of poor uni students into is the next cheapest flights after Jetstar. I'm hoping the reputation of Cathay holds strong for us. I know that there is another thread, and I know Cathay have their sale on at the moment (I think?) but is there any other chances of a sale popping up between now and then we might be able to get a different carrier for the same prices?
 

Tanuki

Part of the Furniture
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Thanks Sandy, appreciate the help. Would you recommend bus to Nagano, shink to Tokyo then bus to Narita? Or train to Narita?

Interesting comment Tanuki, unfortunately the best I've managed to coerce a bunch of poor uni students into is the next cheapest flights after Jetstar. I'm hoping the reputation of Cathay holds strong for us. I know that there is another thread, and I know Cathay have their sale on at the moment (I think?) but is there any other chances of a sale popping up between now and then we might be able to get a different carrier for the same prices?
I reckon their good reputation is warranted, we just had a couple of sequential bad experiences. If I was visiting HK again, which I'd love to do, I'd definitely consider Cathay
 

Sandy

Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room
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Thanks Sandy, appreciate the help. Would you recommend bus to Nagano, shink to Tokyo then bus to Narita? Or train to Narita?

Interesting comment Tanuki, unfortunately the best I've managed to coerce a bunch of poor uni students into is the next cheapest flights after Jetstar. I'm hoping the reputation of Cathay holds strong for us. I know that there is another thread, and I know Cathay have their sale on at the moment (I think?) but is there any other chances of a sale popping up between now and then we might be able to get a different carrier for the same prices?


If you don't know where the Keisei station is, it's less confusing for a first time to just go to Tokyo station and the Narita express.
Makes about 5 min difference and 300yen.
 

Stevski

Hard Yards
Jun 20, 2009
14
14
53
From one lurker to another, and this one a frequent traveller to Hong Kong, I would recommend allowing more than 50 minutes for your connection. I regularly experience delays of up to an hour in or out of there.

One time recently I had a two hour connection which still was not enough and I watched my connecting flight to Sydney leave without me causing me to miss my daughter's 5th birthday. It was the last flight to Sydney too.
 
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Heinz

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Those connections in Hong Kong do look very tight to me. I've never flown that way myself so can't comment specifically, but my experience with tight connections is that they will generally ensure that you transfer ok, but skis regularly do not, so I prefer to allow a bit longer as I have filled way too many lost/delayed baggage forms for my skis (though some were for reasons other than tight connections like weather).
 
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LMB

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I reckon their good reputation is warranted, we just had a couple of sequential bad experiences. If I was visiting HK again, which I'd love to do, I'd definitely consider Cathay
We are still flying Cathay TO Japan with the short connections this time despite a few bad experiences also. However if we are delayed it's no big drama, I just have to contact the hire car company to let them know the new arrival time/day.

I totally understand mechanical issues, medical emergencies and weather issues causing problems and just roll with it. However Cathay seem to have been habitually late in recent years with no obvious reason; and they're routinely overbooking which shits me no end! They're still a decent choice.
 

jack_frost

Hard Yards
Jul 25, 2016
19
7
53
Brisbane, Queensland
Again, appreciate all the help, makes booking the first ski trip much easier.

The only other options to fly these days would turn a 14 hour flight into a 20 hour flight, which sounds less appealing than Jetstar. I'd assume that Cathay wouldn't advertise these flights if they couldn't get passengers from one flight to another, so you'd think that it should be ok. LMB, have you flown a route similar to this with connection times before? I can't see other flights in that price range that don't have flight times upwards of 20 hours with connections.
 

PerthBoarder

Hard Yards
Feb 10, 2015
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I've flown Cathay on similar short layover but from Perth. Overall pretty good experience, but as we were delayed out of Perth our bags were not transferred to the onward flight. Bags arrived the next day. Since then I always go with a 4 hour layover but that's a personal choice. IMHO if you choose the short layover be prepared, pack a carry on with change of clothes etc so if you are delayed it's no big drama.
 

Heinz

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Are you taking skis/board? If so perhaps allow for possibility of those being delayed and hiring on the first day.
 

LMB

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Yep. From Perth but I estimate I've done that route upwards of 20 times (in one direction or another.

Most times no drama.

Re routed through another Japanese city after missing the HK connection. Arrived 5 hours later than planned, one extra (internal) flight.

Cut it close about 5 times.

Bags didn't make it once (delivered to our apartment that night)

Re routed through Sydney (to Perth) after missing connection once. They were rude and overbook on that instance - it was the most recent flight on that route in late March.

PB and offspring have been held up by snow. One lad almost got to Sapporo and they turned back - tried again the next day. Twice they've had to overnight in Sapporo due to snowstorms. Tokyo much less of a problem there!

My tip. Plan for a delay, hope for the best, pack a change of clothes, extra medication etc in your carry on and be prepared to laugh off any and all delays. Most of all HAVE FUN!
 

jack_frost

Hard Yards
Jul 25, 2016
19
7
53
Brisbane, Queensland
Yep. From Perth but I estimate I've done that route upwards of 20 times (in one direction or another.

Most times no drama.

Re routed through another Japanese city after missing the HK connection. Arrived 5 hours later than planned, one extra (internal) flight.

Cut it close about 5 times.

Bags didn't make it once (delivered to our apartment that night)

Re routed through Sydney (to Perth) after missing connection once. They were rude and overbook on that instance - it was the most recent flight on that route in late March.

PB and offspring have been held up by snow. One lad almost got to Sapporo and they turned back - tried again the next day. Twice they've had to overnight in Sapporo due to snowstorms. Tokyo much less of a problem there!

My tip. Plan for a delay, hope for the best, pack a change of clothes, extra medication etc in your carry on and be prepared to laugh off any and all delays. Most of all HAVE FUN!

Nothing a few beers can't solve!
 
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Heinz

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We aren't travelling with skis/board so don't have the extra bag to worry about luckily. I like PerthBoarder's idea of taking a spare change of clothes with us.

ok then, chances are you'll be fine in that case (although change of clothes is still a good idea). It is always oversized luggage that is most likely to miss out.
 
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Stevski

Hard Yards
Jun 20, 2009
14
14
53
My abovementioned experience was with CX and I had no checked baggage. I arrived 20 minutes before my SYD flight was to depart and they refused to allow me to connect. I literally watched the SYD flight depart in front of my eyes.

CX did finally put me in a downtown hotel (airport hotels were full so I was told) at 2am at their expense for three or so hours only for me to turn around and leave at 530am for the 8am departure the next day. They did sort of look after me, but not my idea of fun.

I believe the minimum connection time in HKG is around 50 minutes. So long as your connection is legal, CX will look after you. Once you're on the plane, it's one of the better carriers.

I still can't help but feel the Friday evening flight I was booked on was oversold and a large number of us who missed the connection made for a convenient solution.
 
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Thommo79

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Jun 25, 2016
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Brisbane/Toowoomba
Hi guys, long time lurker, occasional participator.

I'm currently looking at booking some flights with Cathay Pacific to Japan for some mates of mine. The itinerary looks like this:

Brisbane to Tokyo Narita - 29th January
- Leave Brisbane 00:45 Arrive HKG 07:25
- Leave HKG 09:05 Arrive TYO 14:05

Tokyo Narita to Brisbane - 16th February
- Leave Tokyo Narita 16:15 Arrive HKG 20:35
- Leave HKG 21:25 Arrive BNE 8:05 (+1)

I have a couple questions surrounding this flight. The connection times in Hong Kong seem very very short with not a lot of room for error, is that usual or should flight connections that short be avoided? Additionally, would it be possible to get from Hakuba to a 4:15pm flight from Narita in one day or would that be cutting it too fine?

Really appreciate the community here by the way, have loved watching everyone get along so well.

Did you consider the Thai Airways flight out of Brisbane on the same day? $777 return is a pretty good deal if you ask me. An you land at Narita at 0615 or go the Haneda flight and arrive at 0655 and you'll definitely get to Hakuba in one day. Where as you may run a bit thin to make the journey in one day if you are delayed or miss the connection in Hong Kong.

I fly with Thai Airways a fair bit and I always find them very good. You get a B788 out of BNE and currently they are flying an A380 into Narita so the flight should be very comfy...

Just an alternative suggestion, connections are good also...
 

Zimboo

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Aug 28, 2014
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Hi guys, long time lurker, occasional participator.

I'm currently looking at booking some flights with Cathay Pacific to Japan for some mates of mine. The itinerary looks like this:

Brisbane to Tokyo Narita - 29th January
- Leave Brisbane 00:45 Arrive HKG 07:25
- Leave HKG 09:05 Arrive TYO 14:05

Tokyo Narita to Brisbane - 16th February
- Leave Tokyo Narita 16:15 Arrive HKG 20:35
- Leave HKG 21:25 Arrive BNE 8:05 (+1)

I have a couple questions surrounding this flight. The connection times in Hong Kong seem very very short with not a lot of room for error, is that usual or should flight connections that short be avoided? Additionally, would it be possible to get from Hakuba to a 4:15pm flight from Narita in one day or would that be cutting it too fine?

Really appreciate the community here by the way, have loved watching everyone get along so well.
Check to see if they have a later connection (later than 9.05), pretty sure they have another flight an hour later at 10.00. You may wish to stay with the 9.05 connection, but it's good to know your options if your connection is delayed for reasons beyond your control.
 
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LMB

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I still can't help but feel the Friday evening flight I was booked on was oversold and a large number of us who missed the connection made for a convenient solution.
Guaranteed!

That's why we ended up going through Sydney- it was not fun and we were split up through the plane. We requested a lay over to go on the same Perth flight the next day - finally one staff member admitted that not only was our original flight overbooked, so were the next 2 days of HK to Perth flights - the next day's flight by 6 people....I don't think we were supposed to be told.

I still haven't got my QFF status credits and points from ANY of the 4 legs yet! From March. I have lodged a missing points request. (Oh the ****ers!! Denied! Apparently the flights were too cheap to qualify. They were cheap, but we've never encountered that issue before! Damn it! That's 200 status points I had counted on....mighty hard to renew Platinum now!)
 
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Zimboo

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Did you consider the Thai Airways flight out of Brisbane on the same day? $777 return is a pretty good deal if you ask me. An you land at Narita at 0615 or go the Haneda flight and arrive at 0655 and you'll definitely get to Hakuba in one day. Where as you may run a bit thin to make the journey in one day if you are delayed or miss the connection in Hong Kong.

I fly with Thai Airways a fair bit and I always find them very good. You get a B788 out of BNE and currently they are flying an A380 into Narita so the flight should be very comfy...

Just an alternative suggestion, connections are good also...
Brisbane / Bangkok and or Brisbane / Hong Kong is about the same flight time as Brisbane / Tokyo....direct.
So both Cathay and Thai must be a pretty long flights all up to Tokyo?
 

LMB

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Brisbane / Bangkok and or Brisbane / Hong Kong is about the same flight time as Brisbane / Tokyo....direct.
So both Cathay and Thai must be a pretty long flights all up to Tokyo?
Quickest option from somewhere like Perth or Adelaide where there are no direct flights to Tokyo.
 
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blowfin

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Brisbane to Tokyo Narita - 29th January
- Leave Brisbane 00:45 Arrive HKG 07:25
- Leave HKG 09:05 Arrive TYO 14:05

100 minutes should be plenty of time, just don't stuff around in the airport while getting to your departure gate. I've done similar transfers with Cathay going to Tokyo and Vancouver from Perth (and vice versa). The only thing that's messed me around was being delayed 90 minutes leaving Perth, which caused me to miss a connection to Vancouver. They tried to put me on another Cathay flight around 6 hours later, but I pleaded my case with them (people were waiting for me in Van) and managed to get on a much earlier AirNZ flight.
 

Zimboo

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Quickest option from somewhere like Perth or Adelaide where there are no direct flights to Tokyo.
No doubts, but Bris Vegas has da options!!!!! LOL
I'm on the Kangaroo for $930 direct in Feb.
 
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Thommo79

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Jun 25, 2016
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Brisbane / Bangkok and or Brisbane / Hong Kong is about the same flight time as Brisbane / Tokyo....direct.
So both Cathay and Thai must be a pretty long flights all up to Tokyo?

The Thai flight is about 17hr 15min flight which includes a 3hr transit in Bangkok

A similar Singapore flight is about 16hr 40min flight which includes a 2hr transit.

I'm traveling with a family of four in January. I couldn't afford to fly direct with QF at that time of year, I think it added an additional 2.5k to the flight costs.
 
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LM

Hard Yards
Sep 26, 2005
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Hi guys, long time lurker, occasional participator.

I'm currently looking at booking some flights with Cathay Pacific to Japan for some mates of mine. The itinerary looks like this:

Brisbane to Tokyo Narita - 29th January
- Leave Brisbane 00:45 Arrive HKG 07:25
- Leave HKG 09:05 Arrive TYO 14:05

Tokyo Narita to Brisbane - 16th February
- Leave Tokyo Narita 16:15 Arrive HKG 20:35
- Leave HKG 21:25 Arrive BNE 8:05 (+1)

I have a couple questions surrounding this flight. The connection times in Hong Kong seem very very short with not a lot of room for error, is that usual or should flight connections that short be avoided? Additionally, would it be possible to get from Hakuba to a 4:15pm flight from Narita in one day or would that be cutting it too fine?

Really appreciate the community here by the way, have loved watching everyone get along so well.
Hi There
I have flown to Japan with JAL, Jetstar, Malaysian, Korean Air, Qantas and Cathay
Have to say Cathay was the best. However don't pay for leaving your skis\snowboard at the airport if you do a stopover in HK(which I highly recommend). We paid for 48 hours storage of ski bags and it cost $A325!
 
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Sandy

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Hi There
I have flown to Japan with JAL, Jetstar, Malaysian, Korean Air, Qantas and Cathay
Have to say Cathay was the best. However don't pay for leaving your skis\snowboard at the airport if you do a stopover in HK(which I highly recommend). We paid for 48 hours storage of ski bags and it cost $A325!

One other thing you can do. If you arrive early morning, and catch an evening flight out, you can go into Hong Kong for the day. Make sure your baggage is checked all the way through to Japan, and you have your forward boarding pass, so just take your carry on. Go out through customs, and make sure that you get back with maybe 1.5 hours to spare.
 
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Born2ski

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One other thing you can do. If you arrive early morning, and catch an evening flight out, you can go into Hong Kong for the day. Make sure your baggage is checked all the way through to Japan, and you have your forward boarding pass, so just take your carry on. Go out through customs, and make sure that you get back with maybe 1.5 hours to spare.
Yes we did that last year flying Cathay from Brisbane to Hong Kong. Arrived early morning, spent the day sightseeing and then flew out later in the afternoon on a JAL flight to Tokyo. Flights were all booked on a JAL ticket.
 
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