Earlier I discussed the difference between Tokyo’s Haneda and Narita airports. The big change at Haneda (and the reason why I flew half way across the world) is the new international terminal.
The new terminal is quite impressive. When you first walk in you notice the high, waving ceilings and impressive open space. There isn’t a heck a lot of color, but don’t worry, we will get there. After you go up to the first level, you are transported to a whole new world. It seems like you might be walking down an old-schoolÂ JapaneseÂ street with plenty of shopping and food options.
Everything before security was crazy. There were thousands of people from around the area that decided to come to the new terminal to check it out. Lines came out of everyÂ restaurantÂ (even coffee shops) and it took hours to get a table. Thank goodness that Japan always has plenty of vending machines (photo).
After going through security things got very quiet (photo). Since most flights won’t start until the 31st, there weren’t too many wandering around. Just because there weren’t many passengers yet didn’t mean there wasn’t much to do. There were plenty of duty-free shopping options and of course food. There is an ANA lounge for Star Alliance members (which I will blog about in the future) and a JAL lounge for One World. If you are unable to get access to either, no worries. The terminal has a pay-per-visit lounge for everyone else. For about $12 you get get access to the public lounge and for another $12 you are able to take a shower. Not a bad deal at all.
This is a lot to fit into a terminal that only has ten gates. Although there aren’t many gates, the terminal needs to handle a lot of passengers since there will be quite a few large aircraft flying from it. One of the gates is designed to be able to handle the largest airliner, the Airbus A380.
The new terminal is very exciting. Not only for providing international flights for Haneda Airport, but for also just being plain cool. I hope to be able to visit the new terminal again in the future.