All Nippon Airways, or ANA, is a Japanese airline in the powerful Star Alliance, which includes North American carriers United and Air Canada. Don’t confuse ANA’s versatile award program, Mileage Club, with the similarly named Mileage Bank offered by the other major Japanese airline, JAL.
ANA’s powerful award search tool shows availability on all Star Alliance partner airlines. It’s so useful that many frequent flyers use it to search for flights even when they’re booking through another airline.
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Though ANA Mileage Clubs Japanese base makes it seem less than useful for a North American frequent flyer, its great redemption rates, numerous partners, and easy-to-use online booking tool make it a must for anyone looking to maximize their points and miles.
|MILEAGE CLUB||STAR ALLIANCE||MILES|
|POINTS TRANSFER PARTNERS
SPG (STARWOOD PREFERRED)
LOT Polish Airlines
|South African Airways
- Haneda Airport (Tokyo)
- Narita International Airport (Tokyo)
- Itami Airport (Osaka)
- Kansai International Airport (Osaka)
ANA operates two different award charts, one for itineraries only utilizing ANA planes and another for partner airlines. Both charts are zone-based.
The best redemptions are mostly found on ANA-operated flights. But there are a few bright spots when flying on partners.
For example, you can fly roundtrip between the U.S. and Europe for a reasonable, but not outstanding, 55,000 miles in economy. Business class, on the other hand, is a bargain at just 88,000 miles.
Those redemptions can get even better since ANA lumps all of Russia into its Europe zone. If you ever wanted to explore parts of Siberia, you can get there relatively cheap with Mileage Club miles.
- Up to three stopovers
- Up to 12 segments per award
- One open jaw permitted at beginning or end of itinerary
- No last-minute booking fees
- High fuel surcharges on some ANA and partner flights
- No one-way awards
- Miles are only valid for 36 months after they are earned
- Miles earned on partner flights can be less than 100% depending on fare class
- Only one stopover in Japan permitted if itinerary originates overseas
- No stopovers in Japan permitted for tickets originating in Japan
Flying on ANA-operated flights typically gets you the best redemptions. The airline offers different fares on its own metal for the low, regular and high seasons. The dates differ by region and can be found here: ANA’s website. The off-season redemptions are often an exceptional bargain.
You can get a round-trip flight to Sydney, Australia, from the U.S. for as little as 60,000 miles in the low season, 70,000 in the regular season and 75,000 during the high season. That itinerary also includes a free stopover in Tokyo.
Round-trip economy flights between Japan and the U.S. are an incredible deal at only 40,000 miles roundtrip during the off season. Regular and high season economy flights are 50,000 and 55,000 miles, respectively. Business is only 75,000 miles for low, 85,000 for regular and 90,000 for the high season.
Though it may be tempting to use ANA to book an around-the-world Star Alliance itinerary, you’ll find better redemptions, more stopovers and open jaws, and lower fees on other Star Alliance partners, most notably Aeroplan.
ANA does not process upgrades with miles, but rather with upgrade points. Those are linked to premium points acquired by flying ANA. The number of points it takes for an upgrade is determined by the flight’s zones and your original booking class.
Each subsequent level includes the perks of the previous level unless stated otherwise.
- Bronze: Star Alliance Silver status, 40% bonus miles the first year and 50% bonus miles second and following continuous years, bronze service desk access, premium economy check-in in Tokyo, free checked bags, access to ANA lounge with 1,000 miles or two upgrade points
- Platinum: Star Alliance Gold status, 90% bonus miles the first year and 100% bonus miles second and following continuous years, platinum service desk, priority check-in, priority baggage handling, free premium economy upgrades, priority security screening, priority boarding
- Diamond: 115% bonus miles the first year and 125% bonus miles second and following continuous years, miles do not expire, diamond service desk, award ticket reservations available two weeks in advance of general public, ANA suite check-in lane usage, suite-level airport concierge service, one option benefit such as dinner for two at a Michelin-starred restaurant
ANA does have one co-branded credit card available in the U.S., but if you want to use a credit card to transfer to ANA miles, it is probably not your best option.
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The ANA Card U.S.A. earns one mile per dollar, even on ANA purchases, carries an annual fee of $70, and only comes with a 5,000-mile Welcome Bonus that does not go up during promotional periods. The cards primary benefits are 10% off duty-free and in-flight purchases.