50,000 Free Domestic Flights in Japan Summer 2020

(Tourists only need apply)

Sacred Mount Fujisan — photo by Aaron Paulson

(Just to say, I have no connection to the airline involved and am not promoting their product or getting compensated by them in any way — I don’t even have their mileage card! Or, because I live here, even qualify for the contest. But the opportunity for . little off-beat, adventurous travel sounds like the real deal — and I’d sure be interested if i were traveling to Japan between July and September of 2020).

Not the kind of story I normally write about, but I know many of you are excited about the upcoming Summer Olympics Games, and a chance for a little — free — off-the-beaten-path travel is just adding natto to the rice bowl, so to speak.

It sounds too good to be true, but according to the official JAL website the headline checks out: JAL is giving away 50,000 free flights this summer to international visitors.

In conjunction with the Japan National Tourist Organization’s (JNTO) “Your Japan 2020,” Japan Airlines (JAL) is giving away 50,000 free flights to four “mystery” destinations from Tokyo and Osaka during the Summer Olympics.

The flights will be scheduled from July 1st to September 30, which means Olympics-goers can add a little serendipitous adventure before or after the Games.

To add to the sense of adventure, the destinations won’t be announced until later, but will apparently be less-well known destinations than main cities Osaka and Tokyo.

If I had to guess/wish, in no particular order I would nominate Sapporo or perhaps Asahikawa on the northernmost, frontier island of Hokkaido (great for hiking); Naha for Okinawa and access to the southern islands; Kyoto seems unlikely, but Fukuoka on the northern part of Kyushu island has a reputation for being worth a visit; and maybe Nagasaki on Kyushu’s wet …continue reading