According to reports in the Japanese business newspaper Nikkei (which is a credible source, it now owns the Financial Times), British Airways is about to announce a 4x weekly service to Osaka.
This would be a good result if true. Tokyo is generally a decent route for Avios availability but you will struggle during the peak cherry blossom season. There are currently no Avios Club World seats available between 23rd February and 3rd April for example.
Osaka is very convenient for Kyoto. If you were only planning a short trip to Japan, taking in Tokyo and Kyoto, flying through Osaka would not be too bad. The best option would be to fly into Tokyo and out of Osaka after visiting Kyoto.
(Here is my Conrad Tokyo review, here is Anika’s ANA InterContinental Tokyo review and here is my The Ritz-Carlton Kyoto – which is amazing – review.)
Nikkei reports that services are due to start with the global Summer timetable change, which is 31st March.
If true, getting an Avios seat during the first few days should let you catch the cherry blossom. The season usually runs from the last week of March into the first week of April.
That said … it varies. Nature is awkward like that. We took a family holiday in Tokyo over Easter last year and caught it perfectly. Cherry blossom season was running late (we flew on 8th April) and were told all the hotels had been sold out two weeks before, with nothing to see. We got very lucky.
The photo above is one that Anika took when she was also in Tokyo last year doing our review of ANA business class – she flew in on 6th April.
Anyway …. nothing is confirmed yet. I’ll let you know if / when a BA press release turns up. The Nikkei article is here.
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