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posted: 10/6/2012 7:33 AM

Low-cost flying arrives in luxury-loving Japan

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  • Passengers use self-service check-in kiosks to board the first flight by Peach Aviation at Kansai Airport in Osaka, Japan. Japan has a reputation for loving expensive things like overpriced real estate, gourmet melons and luxury brands. But the nation is finally discovering the joy of flying cheap, with the arrival this year of three low-cost carriers. The takeoff of AirAsia Japan, Peach Aviation and Jetstar Japan could change lifestyles.

      Passengers use self-service check-in kiosks to board the first flight by Peach Aviation at Kansai Airport in Osaka, Japan. Japan has a reputation for loving expensive things like overpriced real estate, gourmet melons and luxury brands. But the nation is finally discovering the joy of flying cheap, with the arrival this year of three low-cost carriers. The takeoff of AirAsia Japan, Peach Aviation and Jetstar Japan could change lifestyles.
    Associated Press/March 2012

  • AirAsia Japan President Kazuyuki Iwakata smiles during an interview in Tokyo. "It's not that the meals on standard fares were ever free. The charge was just part of the ticket price," Iwakata told The Associated Press. "With us, people pay only for what they need." As a marketing ploy, AirAsia Japan, which started operations in August, offered tickets for just 5 yen (5 cents) to the first 10,000 people. They quickly sold out.

      AirAsia Japan President Kazuyuki Iwakata smiles during an interview in Tokyo. "It's not that the meals on standard fares were ever free. The charge was just part of the ticket price," Iwakata told The Associated Press. "With us, people pay only for what they need." As a marketing ploy, AirAsia Japan, which started operations in August, offered tickets for just 5 yen (5 cents) to the first 10,000 people. They quickly sold out.
    ASSOCIATED PRESS/September 2012

  • In this combination of three undated photos, planes of Japan's low-cost airlines, from top, AirAsia Japan, Peach Aviation and Jetstar, are shown in Japan.

      In this combination of three undated photos, planes of Japan's low-cost airlines, from top, AirAsia Japan, Peach Aviation and Jetstar, are shown in Japan.
    Associated Press photo illustration

 
Associated Press

Japan has a reputation for loving expensive things like overpriced real estate, gourmet melons and luxury brands. but the nation is finally discovering the joy of flying cheap, with the arrival this year of three low-cost carriers. twenty-two-year-old graduate student chie kodama recently used jetstar for an urban-planning research trip to okinawa, and was surprised at how the planes were "normal," like any other airline's. "and it is so cheap you forgive any shortcomings," she said

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