JAL Ups Domestic Flights Amid Earthquake And Bullet Train Suspensions

Japan Airlines (JAL) will continue to perform additional services to various parts of Tohoku and increase the size of its aircraft from February 22nd. These decisions are based on the fact that the Tohoku-Hokkaido Shinkansen rail line has been partially suspended due to the earthquake that occurred off the coast of Fukushima Prefecture on February 13th.

Japan Airlines Boeing 737-800
More than 180 people have been injured after a mighty earthquake struck off the coast of Fukushima. Photo: Getty Images

Making revisions

The high-speed Shinkansen rail line is expected to operate again from the 24th of this month. Therefore, the flag carrier of Japan will conduct extra flights until the 24th of February and upsize until the 27th of February. Moreover, there will an evaluation on continuing these moves depending on demand.

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According to Aviation Wire, extra flights will operate on four routes, which are Haneda-Sendai, Hanamaki, Yamagata Line, and Aomori Line.

  • Between Haneda and Sendai, there will be three round trips each day on the 22nd and 23rd. These flights will be performed by a Boeing 737-800.
  • Haneda to Hanamaki will have two round trips on the 22nd and 24th. These will be operated by an E190.
  • Between Haneda and Yamagata, there will be two round trips each day on the 22nd and 24th and three round trips on the 23rd. An E190 will also operate these flights.
  • The Haneda-Aomori route will see two round trips on the 23rd and one round trip on the 24th. A Boeing 737-800 will be used here.

Moreover, during the period from 22nd to 27th, capacity will be increased on four routes, which are Haneda-Aomori and Misawa, Itami-Sendai, and Sendai-Sapporo (New Chitose).

Japan Airlines Boeing 737-800 Aircraft
The airline will be putting its Boeing 737 aircraft to good use. Photo: Simple Flying.

Changes across the board

This move comes amid a restructuring within the whole company. The carrier shared this week that in order to respond to the rapid changes taking place in the aviation industry, it must act quickly to deliver and meet the needs of diversified its customer segment.

“In addition to focusing on digitalization to maximize efficiency within the company, the carrier aims to build a new sustainable business foundation that can endure the post-COVID era outside of the current full-service-carrier, cargo, LCC business model. As a result, the JAL Group today announced several revisions to its corporate structure, which includes the reorganization of the current route marketing division and introducing a new business model focusing on finance, retail and merchandising,” JAL said in a press release seen by Simple Flying.

“The company will restructure its current Managing Division for Route Marketing and Passenger Sales and introduce four new divisions with key specific roles: Route Marketing, Passengers Sales and Marketing, Customer Experience and the Mileage and Lifestyle Business Division.”

In response to the earthquake, JAL has been operating extra domestic flights since February 14th. Photo: Getty Images

Taking action

Altogether, JAL is evidently being proactive with its approach on a local and broader level. The carrier will undoubtedly be hoping for a better environmental and social climate as the year progresses.

Simple Flying reached out to Japan Airlines for comment on its flight schedule. We will update the article with any further announcements from the carrier.

What are your thoughts about Japan Airlines’ domestic flight schedule for the next few months? Do you feel boosting the number of flights is a good move by the airline? Let us know what you think of the situation in the comment section.