How we scored JAL First Class seats for the price of Business Class!

Despite travel constantly evolving to these unprecedented times, there are some rare and lucky “anomalies” that happened that we wouldn’t even dare dream of in our recent travels. And for our second segment NRT-BKK flight, something extraordinary happened (again)

To rewind a bit, I noticed an aircraft change in our itinerary couple weeks before leading up to this trip. Japan Airlines swapped their usual intra-Asia Boeing 777-200ER plane to their long-haul Boeing 777-300ER plane

At first glance this may seem like a small change, but in reality this had huge implications since our flight originally only sold “Business”, “Premium Eco”, and “Economy” cabins to passengers. And as you can see with the Boeing 777-300ER… the first two rows is technically a First Class cabin. Couple thoughts immediately ran through my mind.

So… what happens to the first two rows then? Will they just remain empty? Orrrrr is it actually possible to snag one of these seats?

I jumped to my desktop to see if the first two rows were confirmable. Lo and behold, the golden seats were available for the taking!

Upon boarding, we couldn’t believe our eyes…

We got First Class seats… for Business Class price!

The seat is sooo big that you can practically fit two of us in one seat.

The only catch is that the drinks and food catering is still based off the “Business Class” menu, but at this point it’s really hard to complain 😉

Most importantly, Chloe can sleep even more!

which in turn makes mommy finally have a lot more time to catch up on her Netflix K-drama series binge…

ahn-yo ha-say-yo… happy wife… happy life!

During Chloe’s sleep, the First Class flight attendants even surprised her with a small red gift bag next to her. It was cute and much appreciated.

Overall, this was one of the most epic intra-Asia flights in recent memory. It’s just so rare to have a long-haul plane fly this route and to stack it on top of that… get automatically bumped into First Class! Upon landing, we did not want to leave…

What an extraordinary one-off opportunity — Maximize Memories with Travel 🙂


  1. It is so nice when travel comes with an unexpected surprise like this. Often the surprises aren’t so good. I was in business class on a Japan Airlines 777-300ER from BKK to HND. The load was very light and no one was in first class. The flight attendants invited us to move to first class. I had seat 1K. Service was business class, but I enjoyed to first class seat. Congratulations on getting this unique upgrade. Looks like your family enjoyed it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. @salsaworldtraveler Thanks for sharing! Always nice to hear reader travel stories 🙂

      We’re theorizing that Japan used their long-haul planes on the BKK flight due to the country recent reopening & the Songkran holiday

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I went to Japan Airline website to pick my seats for my BKK-HND-LAX. To my surprise I saw the 1st class seats available and they allow to pick those seats for my BKK-HND. At first I thought it was an error. But I found out that Jal do not sell 1st class on this route. Then I came across your website, now I understand why it happened. Hopefully, they do not change the aircraft later. My trip is in June 2023. Thank you for sharing.


  3. Back in 1988, I was a avionics technician for a local FAA repair station. I mainly worked on Continental Airline 727and DC-9 aircraft, when they would land for inspection, ceiling tiles would be hanging from the aisles, trash everywhere Totally disgusting. I got to work on a older JAL 727 once. When I boarded the aircraft it looked like it just left the factory I have never been so impressed with a company or the people that flew on their aircraft. I worked on Continental, American, TWA, nothing compared to JAL!!!


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