Passengers who frequent Japanese destinations such as Osaka, Kyoto and Nagoya will be familiar with the Japan Airlines domestic Sakura Lounge in Terminal 2 at Tokyo's Narita Airport: JAL's sole domestic facility for all eligible frequent flyers and connecting business class and first class travellers.
Inside the decor looks much the same as any of JAL's local lounges with the expected business amenities of free WiFi and easy access to power points, but when it comes to food and dining there's less to be impressed by.
Location & Impressions
After clearing security in the domestic zone of Narita's Terminal 2, take the escalator and look for this somewhat subtle door: Once inside the lounge is broken up into several different 'rooms', each with very similar seating... ... and some with places to hang your jackets and coats:
- Japan Airlines business class and first class passengers connecting to or from an international flight
- Jetstar Japan passengers booked on a JL flight number when connecting to or from an international JAL business class or first class flight
- Qantas Gold, Platinum and Platinum One frequent flyers prior to JAL domestic flights (no access with Jetstar Japan, unless connecting as above)
- Japan Airlines Mileage Bank (JMB) Sapphire and Diamond and Japan Global Club (JGC) members of all tiers prior to Japan Airlines flights
- JAL Mileage Bank Crystal members redeeming 1,000 miles for a lounge coupon
- All other Oneworld Sapphire and Oneworld Emerald members prior to Japan Airlines domestic flights
We'll start by saying that if you were expecting food like you'd get in the Qantas Clubs in Australia or even the American Airlines Admirals Clubs in the USA, you'll be disappointed.
Instead, the only food here consisted of a few sandwiches in the fridge, muffins and packets of chips...... although the beverage side of things was slightly more promising with a Scotch Whisky (Chivas Regal 12yo), saké... ... beer from an automated pouring machine, fruit juice, tea, coffee and soft drink: As for any hot food or something more substantial, you'll find it for sale out in the terminal.
While lacking on the food, JAL puts its best food forward in catering to productive business travellers with power points near almost every seat – most aside the cocktail shelves... ... some next to the seats... ... and others directly in front at the working benches, with a handy array of mobile phone charging cables provided in case you've forgotten to pack your own:
The Sakura Lounge also offers usable WiFi plus TVs, but these were kept on mute during our visit with Japanese language captions enabled instead. All that's missing are convenient USB power outlets which many modern lounges now provide, although with ample AC power points and mobile phone chargers at the ready, you'll shouldn't have much difficulty in topping up your battery.
Alongside the powered solo seats are plenty of comfy chairs facing each other for couples and colleagues travelling together and wanting to unwind with a refreshment... ... and if you head to the far right corner of the lounge, this row of chairs has much more space for your bags, bits and pieces – and of course, with cocktail tables: Two massage chairs are also available which we found adequate but not so good as we'd use them again... ... while plenty of windows throughout the lounge welcome natural light throughout the day.
Visiting Japan on business? Also read:
- Road test: Japan's ANA Crowne Plaza hotels for business travellers
- Travel tip: the JR rail pass for business travellers
- Review: Japan Airlines first class lounge, Tokyo Narita
- Japan: to catch the plane or the bullet train?
- Travelling to Tokyo? Grab a Suica or Pasmo travel card!
- Review: Japan Airlines Sky Suite business class, Sydney-Tokyo
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