Review: Japan Airlines (787-900) Premium Economy Class – Dallas to Tokyo

Introduction:  Flying to Japan to Ride the Shinkansen
Review: Japan Airlines (787-900) Premium Economy Class – Dallas to Tokyo
Review: NAA Dayroom – Narita International Airport
Review: Japan Airlines – (787-800) Economy Class – Tokyo to Bangkok
Review: Aloft Hotel – Bangkok
Review: Singapore Airlines (A330) Business Class – Bangkok to Singapore
Review: Singapore Airlines (777-300) Business Class – Singapore to Tokyo
Review: Nozomi Shinkansen – Tokyo to Fukuoka
Review: Hilton Seahawk – Fukuoka
Day Trip to Uminonakamichi Island
Review: All Nippon Airways Lounge – Fukuoka
Review: All Nippon Airlines (767-300) Business Class – Fukuoka to Okinawa
Review: All Nippon Airlines Business Class Lounge – Fukuoka International Airport
Review: All Nippon Airlines (737-800) Economy Class – Okinawa to Nagoya
Review: All Nippon Airlines (Bombadier Dash 8) Economy Class – Nagoya to Tokyo
Review: 9 Hour Capsule Hotel – Narita International Airport
Review: IASS Lounge – Narita International Airport
Review: TEI Lounge – Narita International Airport
Review: Japan Airlines (787-900) Economy Class – Tokyo to Dallas

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 at Narita

JL11
DFW – NRT
Departure: 1220
Arrival:  1600 (+1 Day)
Flight Time: 13hrs 40min
Seat: 21C
787-900
July 5, 2019

I was running a little behind when I arrived at the Remote North parking at DFW. The lateness was compounded when the bus for my terminal left as I walked up to the main building. I needed to be at the terminal in less than 20 minutes, so I ordered an Uber.

The Uber got me to Terminal D a few minutes prior to the counter closing.  I was actually the last person to check in for the flight. The check in counter was to the left after I entered the building.  I was able to quickly check a bag and upgrade to Premium Economy. The upgrade only cost me $350 USD.  This allowed me to have more room and improved food for the 14 hour flight to Tokyo.  The total booking for this itinerary was nearly $1,700 USD.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL Check-in at DFW
JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL Check-in at DFW

I was through security just a few minutes later. With about 20 minutes to spare, I made my way down to The Club at Dallas/Fort Worth for a drink.

Boarding was scheduled to begin at 1150, which seemed a bit odd for a 1220 scheduled departure.  I made my way to the gate at noon because I wanted to be one of the last people to board.  As I approached the gate, one of the agents screamed at me to hurry because the flight was waiting for me.  I told her that she needed to calm down because we still had 20 minutes before departure.  She then proceeded to say that she did not not know when the flight was scheduled to depart, she only screamed at me because her boss told her to do so. SMH.

I was escorted to the airplane door by a Flight Service agent.  A flight attendant welcomed me aboard Japan Airlines and pointed me right to the Premium Economy cabin. I passed through the Business Class cabin on the way to my seat.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Business Class
JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Business Class Seat

My seat was on the aisle in the last row of Premium Economy.  There were 35 seats in Premium Economy in a 2-3-2 configuration.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL Premium Economy
JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL Premium Economy Seat
JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Cabin

At the seat was a small blanket, pillow, slippers, headphones, and an amenity kit.  I was already happy about the upgrade purchase.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Amenity Kit

The seat was spacious. I was able to completely extend my legs without touching the seat in front of me.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Legroom

There was a huge inflight entertainment screen.  It was responsive and had a clear display.  The controls were on the center armrest.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy IFE
JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Flight Map
JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Seat Controls

To the left (if in window seat) and right (if in aisle seat) was a pullout hanger. The tray table folded down from seat in front. There was a cup holder to use if I did not have a need for the entire tray.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Tray Table

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

There was a footrest at the bottom of the seat.  This came in handy when reclining the seat. I hoped the seat would be lie flat, but a new it was unlikely because I was in economy. The controls for the recline feature were on the center console separating the seats (pictured above).

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Footrest

I found the phone holder and individual lamp at the seat to be a nice touch.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Reading Lamp

We pushed back from the gate eight minutes prior to schedule departure. I could appreciate this but I did not like the gate agent raising her voice at me. I mean, why would there be a problem if I was at the gate 20 minutes prior to departure?  Anyway, enough about the stressed out agent.

The safety video was then played.  It had Japanese and English subtitles.  There was a welcome aboard announcement as we were rolling onto the runway.  Talk about efficient. The takeoff was smooth with a steep climb. I loved the view from my window.  It was especially nice since I did not have a seat mate.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 lining up for departure at DFW
JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Views leaving DFW

A flight attendant came by with newspapers 15 minutes after takeoff. I took a Wall Street Journal to browse.  This may have been my only time reading the paper.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

Menus were distributed a few minutes later. I found it odd that the purser announced the food offerings to the passengers but still issued menus.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Menu

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

Warm towels soon followed.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

The drink cart was rolled out 30 minutes into flight. I found that to be very impressive. I requested beer and sake to start and it was accompanied by rice crackers and salami. Rice crackers are one of my favorite snacks.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Snacks

The pilot provided his welcome announcement during the drink service. It was almost an hour after departure.  He gave us the flight time and thanked us for allowing him and his partners to fly us to Tokyo. 👀  The welcome announcement is usually made during boarding.

I made a quick run to check out the lavatory, it was just behind my seat. There were four between the Premium Economy and Economy cabins. I used the lavatory closest to the outside of the aircraft because it was bigger. The lavatory contained a changing station, bench, and toothbrushes. The floor even had a faux tile look.  The bidet was a cool touch as well.  See what I did there?  LOL.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Economy Lavatory

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to TokyoJAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Toilet Controls

After returning to my seat, I purchased the 24 hour WiFi plan for $18.80 USD (random price alert). The WiFi worked over the continental United States but did not work the rest of the flight.  This was a rip off, even worse than United Airlines’ transcon WiFi.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

Lunch was served 65 minutes into the flight. The options were hashed beef or teriyaki salmon…um, give me the salmon. The meal was served on a single tray. In addition to salmon, the tray included a side salad, fruit, potato salad, and cold noodles.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Premium Economy Meal

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

The entire entree was delicious.  The cold noodles, no matter where I have them, are always tasty.  The only recommendation I would have is to make the salmon portion bigger (because I am fat). Ice cream was delivered 20 minutes after the entree. The flight attendant did not ask if I wanted it, she simply put it on the tray. The ice cream was hard as a brick so I let it thaw prior to eating. It was good as well but I only had a few scoops.

After the meal, I tried to get some sleep but could not because the cabin lighting was so bright. I ordered more sake to assist in my quest to sleep. The flight attendant asked if I needed anything else and I requested the lights be lowered and the windows darkened (because it was a 787). She quickly took care of it. It was also at this point that the purser came to my seat to tell me she was worried about my health because I had a few drinks. She informed me of the dangers of consuming alcohol.  It was not needed, but I appreciated the genuine concern she had for me.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Sake

I was finally able to nap for a few hours. When I awoke, there was a pastry on the center console. I do not know when it was placed there, but I was grateful because it was delicious. It tasted like a creme brulee.  It was easily one of the best pastries I have ever eaten.  I wanted some water but I did not ask the flight attendants since I was put in timeout earlier. LOL.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
More snacks

At this point, we were a little more than five hours Tokyo. I decided to edit some pictures for the Central America Trip Report.

The lights were turned on with a little less than three hours to go to Tokyo. Warm towels kicked off the service. The entree, which was the only choice, consisted of salmon fried rice.  I am a fan of salmon, but would prefer to not eat it twice on the same flight.  There was also yogurt, cheese and crackers and two pieces of fruit. I only ate the salmon rice and cheese because I was not terribly hungry.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL Premium Economy Arrival Snack

The service was complete in less than 30 minutes. I appreciated this because it allowed me to get back to work. We began our descent 25 minutes prior to landing. The seatbelt sign illuminated throughout the cabin and another displayed on seatback monitors.

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo

JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
Views Landing at Narita
JAL Premium Economy 787-900 Dallas to Tokyo
JAL 787-900 Landing at Narita

We had a rough landing at 1441 local, at least we were over an hour early. It was just a touch harder than my Skydive Spaceland Dallas landing. LOL. After a 15 minute taxi, we arrived at Terminal 2.

Final Word

After the stress with the gate agent, the flight ended up being a relaxing experience.  The upgrade to Premium Economy was the key.  The flight attendants were really nice and were always there when I needed something…whether it be more drinks or some sound advice.  I would definitely take this flight again.

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4 thoughts on “Review: Japan Airlines (787-900) Premium Economy Class – Dallas to Tokyo

  1. Nice to see you enjoyed your JAL experience – thoughtful health advice included!

    Some Premium Economy seats are worth the upgrade. JAL’s is one of them, especially right now as it was only a few months back they upgraded it substantially.

    1. The health advice was the icing on the cake. The upgrade was nice as well. Thanks for reading.

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