Review: ANA Business Class 787-9 (HND-MNL)

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ANA flight details

Airline : ANA – All Nippon Airways
Flight No : NH869
Departure City : Tokyo – Haneda (HND)
Arrival City : Manila – Ninoy Aquino (MNL)
Equipment : Boeing 787-9 (JA890A)
Blocked Time : 4h45m
Seat No: 2K

ANA or All Nippon Airways is Japan’s largest carrier, operating a mixed fleet of Airbus A320s, A321s, A380s, Boeing 737s, 767s, 777s, and 787s. Founded in 1952 as a domestic carrier, the airline has since overtook flag carrier, Japan Airlines, in terms of size and destinations served. ANA’s operations are centred around the carrier’s two hubs in Tokyo – Haneda and Narita. Whilst Haneda is chiefly a domestic base for the airline, it is also a premium hub for select high-revenue international flights for ANA.

This review is a continuation of my trip flying ANA from Jakarta to Manila, via Tokyo. I have explained a detail about the booking process, the seats, and the inflight entertainment in the previous installment, so I’ll just gloss over those in this review.


ANA operates two lounges in Tokyo Haneda International Airport Terminal 3 for its Business Class passengers. During my roughly 3-hour layover, I had the chance to visit both lounges, although I was unable to cover the main lounge due to its overcrowding. As such, I’ve only reviewed the ANA Lounge Satellite Haneda, in my previous instalment.

ANA Lounge Satellite


With about 15 minutes to spare before boarding time, I headed to Gate 148, from where NH869 would be departing. The gate is located in the far North Wing of Haneda Airport, past all duty-free shops of the central section. In this area, the boarding gates are located one storey down, similar to the arrangement at Saigon Tan Son Nhat Airport and Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport.

Gate 148 at Haneda Airport

In the boarding lounge, there are rows of seats lined along the gates, with enough to cover the number of passengers boarding this flight. In addition to a toilet facility, there is also a corner of the boarding lounge with a vending machine selling drinks. I’d note that most passengers on this flight were Filipino travellers going home, which makes sense given that this flight took place on a Sunday.

View from Gate 148
Japan Airlines Boeing 767-300 viewed from Gate 148

Already set up by the boarding gate are distinct queueing lines for the five boarding groups on this flight. A few minutes before the printed boarding time of 09.15 on my boarding pass, a queue started to form along these lines, which is standard in Japan. Shortly after I joined the Group 2 queue, preboarding started for passengers requiring special assistance. This was followed five minutes later at 09.20 by the general boarding sequence starting from Group 1 for ANA Diamond Service members.

Boarding sequence for ANA flights

Our flight today is operated by JA890A, a Boeing 787-9 delivered new to ANA in 2016. When I finally got to the door of the aircraft, I was greeted and shown to my seat by a flight attendant, who directed me to the aisle of my seat.

ANA Boeing 787-9 Business Class Cabin

Since this flight is operated by the same type of aircraft as the flight to Haneda, I will just gloss over the details of the cabin. To cut things short, the Business Class cabin features the airline’s signature ANA Staggered configuration – the Business Class seat offered on most long-haul flights. There are 40 seats spread between 11 rows in a 1-2-1 configuration. There are eight rows, totalling 30 seats in the main cabin between doors 1 and 2, complemented by the remaining 10 seats in the cabin behind.

ANA Boeing 787-9 Business Class cabin

To rehash from my previous review, the seats alternate between those closer to the aisle and those shielded from the aisle by the side table. Since the seats closer to the aisle do not feature any meaningful benefit, I would recommend selecting those away from the aisle. This way, you wouldn’t be disturbed as easily by the foot traffic from people passing by.

ANA Boeing 787-9 Business Class cabin


On this flight to Manila, I was seated in seat 2K, a Business Class seat located away from the aisle on the right-hand side of the aircraft. Upon boarding, already waiting on the seat was a thin knitted blanket, alongside a lighter and smaller pillow compared to the ones offered on my last flight.

ANA Boeing 787-9 Business Class seat

In addition, also provided were identical slippers and the same flimsy Panasonic-branded headphones offered on my previous flight. Furthermore, the menu card for this flight was already left waiting on the table by the side of the seat.

ANA Boeing 787-9 Business Class seat

Departure from Haneda

After I settled into my seat, the flight attendant servicing my aisle approached me to introduce herself. Before taking my meal orders for the flight, she also offered to take and hang my jacket in the closet by the galley. Pleasantly enough, she was much warmer and friendlier than the crew on my last flight, and smiled throughout any interaction.

ANA Boeing 787-9 Business Class cabin

The doors were closed at 10.00, about 40 minutes after the general boarding sequence was initiated. At this time, the mood lighting was switched on and the purser welcomed us on board and announced our flight time of four hours. This was followed by the safety video, which played as pushed back and taxied to the runway. Curiously, most English general announcements on this flight were automated, which I was not expecting.

Terminal 3 at Haneda Airport
Traffic at Haneda Airport

As we taxied, we passed by the international-only Terminal 3, which was lined by a bunch of ANA and Japan Airlines wide-body jets, alongside the A330s of China Southern and EVA Air. Since we were heading to the far away Runway 05, our taxi was a very long one. At 10.20, we finally made it to the runway, from which we took off and ascended into the skies. Manila, here we come!

Takeoff from Haneda Airport

Inflight Entertainment

This flight featured an identical ANA SKY Channel inflight entertainment system as on my last flight. To rehash from that review, there were a total of 110 movies to be viewed on the 18-inch monitor. This was complemented by three live TV channels, which featured NHK, Sport 24, and CNN. A paid WiFi service was also available on this flight.

ANA SKY Channel entertainment

Lunch Service

A full 20 minutes after takeoff, the seatbelt signs were finally turned off. At this time, the cabin crew started going around the cabin to prepare for the lunch service on this flight. 10 minutes later, the flight attendant on my aisle began setting up the tray tables with tablecloths. On this flight, there was a choice of either having a Japanese meal or a Western one. Since I had the Japanese meal on my previous flight, I decided to mix things up and get a Western meal. For reference, the inflight food and drinks menu was as follows.

Inflight meal menu
Inflight beverage list

After the tablecloths were distributed, an aperitif service followed five minutes later, featuring my pre-requested drink of cold green tea and packaged rice crackers. Since the main meal is served on a single tray, this was a good way to lengthen the meal service on this daytime flight.

Aperitif service of cold green tea and rice crackers
Rice cracker packet contents

On Japan Airlines, I consistently find the Western-style meal to be quite mediocre at best and disappointing at worst. I had hoped it would be better on ANA, though alas, there was no exception to this trend.

Western Meal

The Western meal is served on a single tray, consisting of a starter, a piece of bread, and dessert in addition to the main course. Sadly, the Western meals on ANA might objectively be worse than Japan Airlines, especially on account of the mediocre bread (something that is very good on JAL).

ANA Business Class Western meal

To be specific, the meal’s starter consisted of a dry slice of roast beef on a bed of avocado salad. This was served topped with savoury jelly, alongside baby corn, baby tomatoes, and pickled gingerflower. Although this starter was not great, at least it was presented nicely.

Roast Beef and Avocado Salad starter

The same cannot be said about the presentation of the main course, which looked quite offensive, in my opinion. This dish would be the Greenland Halibut Meuniere Grenoble Style. Although I’m ordinarily a fan of Halibut, the fish in this meal was bland and oddly harder than expected. Between the overwhelming acidic taste of the lemon and oily sauce and the wrinkled-up fish, this was not a good dish.

Greenland Halibut Meuniere Grenoble Style

Despite the overall disappointing Western meal, the dessert was good, at the very least. Served on the side is a cup of Citrus Mango, which is a soft mango pudding topped with cream and lemon jelly. After picking around the unpleasant main course, this dessert was a nice palate cleanser to get rid of the fishy taste.

Citrus Mango dessert

Although the catering was not good, I did appreciate that the flight attendant on my aisle proactively offered drink top-ups and proactively cleared the trays. Upon seeing that I had not finished most of my meal, she also offered me extra rice cracker snacks, which was a nice touch!


Identical to my previous flight, ANA’s Boeing 787-9s are equipped with three lavatories in Business Class for a total of 40 passengers. As is standard on the two major Japanese airlines, the toilet is thoughtfully equipped with a bidet.

ANA Boeing 787 Business Class lavatory

Much like the previous flight, there were also toothbrushes, packets of mouthwash, and a face and body sheet on offer. In particular, I found the face and body sheet especially useful to freshen up, after being unable to secure a shower slot at the ANA Lounge in Haneda.


As hinted by my positive impressions of the crew throughout this review, the service on this flight was much better compared to the flight to Tokyo. In addition to being polite and courteous, the flight attendants were actively friendly and warm in providing service. While I appreciated the abundance of smiles from the crew, I also very much appreciated how proactive they were in offering drink top-ups and clearing plates.

Arrival in Manila

About 40 minutes before landing, the purser announced the details of our arrival in Manila. Specifically, we were expected to land at Ninoy Aquino International Airport at 13.20, 10 minutes before our scheduled arrival time. She also noted that the ANA duty-free shopping service would be closed momentarily. 20 minutes before our estimated arrival time, the seatbelt signs were lit and the cabin was prepared for landing.

View of the wing shortly before our approach

On approach, we were treated to some spectacular views of Manila and the Makati skyline. Despite the cloudy weather, it is quite extraordinary to see the enormous metropolis of Manila from this perspective.

View on approach to Ninoy Aquino Airport
View of Makati on our approach

We finally landed at Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport at 13.10 local time, a full 20 minutes before our scheduled time of arrival. We had a smooth touchdown on Runway 24, which is the longer of the two runways at Ninoy Aquino Airport. As we cleared the runway, we passed by a few interesting planes, including both a Korean Air Boeing 777-300ER and an Airbus A380.

EVA Air Boeing 777-300ER at Ninoy Aquino Airport
Korean Air A380 at Ninoy Aquino Airport
Korean Air Boeing 777-300ER at Ninoy Aquino Airport
Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 1
Cebu Pacific A330-300 landing at Ninoy Aquino Airport
Gulf Air Boeing 787-9 at Ninoy Aquino Airport

Despite arriving early, we had to wait for traffic to clear for about 10 minutes for the Gulf Air Boeing 787-9 to clear our stand in Terminal 3. When we finally taxied to our gate, the purser thanked us for flying with ANA and welcomed us to Manila.


Despite the relatively questionable food that was served, I left this flight with a more positive impression of ANA’s Business Class. Whilst the great entertainment and mediocre seats are identical to the previous flight, I was pleasantly surprised by the much friendlier crew that serviced this flight. Thus, it is easy to say that ANA provides a relatively good and competitive product that I’d love to fly again. Despite that, I still stand by previous sentiments of not being compelled to say that they have the best product in Japan.

Read more from this trip!

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