Monday, January 9, 2012

Cheap Flights Australia to Japan

Ok this isn't "Free flights to Japan" but it is some good news if you live in Australia and want to visit Japan.

AUD$254 (incl baggage) one way is a very cheap flight from Gold Coast (Australia) to Japan, and recently it's been happening more frequently.  The secret is timing - when to buy.

Having flown to or from Japan more times than I can count on all my fingers and toes, I'm always on the lookout for cheap flights.  Now, Jetstar didn't ask me to say this (I'm just sharing info for the benefit of everyone) but Jetstar generally has much cheaper flights available than any other airline, for flights between Gold Coast, Australia, and Japan.  What I really look for, though, are the Japan sales, which are either around half the regular ticket price, or two-for-one sales.

Over the years I've had my eye on these sales and they seem to have a pattern.  (Except for 2011, after the March 11 disaster.)  Heads up.  In previous years, I generally saw Jetstar Japan sales in March, May, June, September and November, for flights in March, April, June, September, October, November.

In 2011, after the March 11 disaster, Jetstar had Japan sales every month, approximately one month apart, from May to October.  The flight period for each of these sales was generally the following month or the following two months.

In general, flights that aren't in August, Golden Week (A Japanese holiday week in May) or Australian School holidays will generally appear as sale fares, on sale about 1-3 months prior to the flight.  Sometimes there are exceptions to this rule, such as in 2011, and also part of the Australian school holidays in June-July or September-October are sometimes included in last minute sales.

There's just one issue I've had with Jetstar occasionally that doesn't happen so often with Qantas or Jal (and pay several hundred dollars more) which I should warn you about.  Occasionally, when passenger numbers are too low, they will cancel and combine flights, for example, a direct nine-hour flight from Gold Coast to Narita may end up being a twelve hour trip with a stopover in Cairns.  Other than this sort of thing (which for the most part won't happen) I've had an excellent time flying with Jetstar, and saved a lot of money.

I recommend Japan in the first week of April, for the beautiful Sakura blossoming season.  Sakura only bloom for about two weeks, for most of the Kanto-Chubu-Kansai area (Kyoto, Tokyo etc) they begin in the last week of march and are beginning to wane in the second week of April.  

The month of November is also particularly beautiful, being the season of Koyo, meaning red Autumn leaves.  Koyo is much more predictable than Sakura, as the red-leaf season lasts for much longer than the delicate cherry blossom petals.

In both Sakura and Koyo season, famous Buddhist temples and sightseeing places will have about a week when they open at night with light-up of the featured sakura or red-leafed trees.  These are both spectacular sights and something not to be missed if you can time your trip to coincide with these events.

Here is an example of a Jetstar sale on now:
It's been extended until Monday 16 January 2011 at midnight.
Link for more info:    Jetstar Japan Sale
Sale on now until midngiht (23:59 AEDT) Wednesday 11Monday 16January 2012, unless sold out prior. Sale may be extended.
International routesTravel periodsOne-way Sale fare AUD^
CairnsOsaka13 Jan - 28 Mar 2012$199
CairnsTokyo (Narita)17 Jan - 28 Mar 2012$199
Gold CoastOsaka14 Jan - 28 Mar 2012$219
Gold CoastTokyo (Narita)11 Jan - 28 Mar 2012$219
SydneyOsaka1 Feb - 28 Mar 2012$318
Via Cairns
Melbourne (Tullamarine)Osaka14 Feb - 28 Mar 2012$331
Via Cairns
Melbourne (Tullamarine)Tokyo (Narita)14 Feb - 28 Mar 2012$331
Via Cairns
Sale fares are one way, checked baggage not included^. You can choose from 15kg to 40kg checked baggage for an additional $28- $70 per passenger per fare. Fares may not be available on all flights and days.


  1. Hiya, I came to your blog because I was looking for a recipe for corn potage! I'm actually from Australia too, but I currently live in Japan. :) Haha, I was just looking at jetstar the other day, to buy tickets so my mum can visit Japan. I agree, the prices are really cheap right now. I last went to visit Sydney about a year ago and prices were around 700 one way!

    Anyway, I really like your blog. I'm going to try out your recipe soon. Keep up the great posts! ^.^

  2. @Somni Hi Somni☆ I'm so glad you like my blog, and I hope you enjoy your corn potage!

    Good luck in getting cheaper flights next time, I've had to buy more expensive flights sometimes too (especially if I have to fly in August!)
    I get the Jetstar advertising emails to make sure I know when the sales are on. It seems that the ticket prices can be totally different when buying from Australia and Japan, depending on which country they're holding a sale in. It seems the non-sale prices are a bit cheaper from the Australian side, though.
    Thanks for your comment!☆

  3. Find us some flights from the US!

    1. haha, sorry... maybe you should write to jetstar and ask them to start a LA to Narita flight! I heard that they just started domestic flights in Japan.

  4. I decided to use your recommendation and bought tickets to Japan for the first week of April, during the beautiful cherry blossom season. My dream is to see how Sakura blooms. I will only be in Kyoto for about two weeks. Friends advised me to rent a car in order to move comfortably and see as much of this country as possible.