ANA to launch new airline with Australia in its sights

The new airline, based on ANA's current Air Japan charter service, could fly its Boeing 787s to Australia.

By David Flynn, October 27 2020
ANA to launch new airline with Australia in its sights

Japan's ANA says it will launch an all-new airline in response to a travel landscape drastically reshaped by Covid-19.

The yet-to-be-named "third airline brand" will be positioned between premium sibling ANA and the low-cost carrier Peach, with each of the three designed to "match the values of the 'new normal' during and post COVID- 19", ANA said.

ANA described the hybrid as a low-cost operation which would fly an all-Boeing 787 fleet offering two classes – presumably led by a business or premium class – of "300+ seats" all up.

(ANA's current Boeing 787-8 and 787-9 fleet is mostly in a three-class layout, with the exception of domestic versions of each type which have just two classes totalling 335-395 seats.)

The airline's focus would be "Asian growth markets" where it would target "demand for low-cost, medium-distance flights to destinations in Southeast Asia and Oceania."

The airline will be built on the foundation of Air Japan, which is currently ANA's charter arm and draws from ANA's own fleet.

"By using the current Air Japan entity as the foundation, the brand will be capable of responding to sudden changes in demand and begin operations quickly after its establishment," ANA outlined.

ANA expects the new entrant to begin flying "around fiscal 2022"; the Japanese 2022 financial year runs from 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2023.

It's not known if this airline will, like ANA, be a full member of Star Alliance offering recognition and perks for frequent flyers; become a Star Alliance Connecting Partner under the sponsorship of ANA; or not be affiliated with Star Alliance at all.

Meanwhile, Peach will eye an expansion to "medium-distance international routes" with new Airbus A321LR jets.

ANA also revealed plans to retire a total of 35 aircraft in 2020, up from the more modest seven previously earmarked, with 22 of these to be "Boeing 777 models".


David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

15 Aug 2018

Total posts 26

I smell forcing staff onto rotten contracts. 

Very interesting move by ANA, seems like this is their version of SQ's Scoot and JAL's new ZipAir. As long as the business or premium seats are comfortable enough this could do very well for them on routes to Australia and New Zealand.

17 Jun 2020

Total posts 247

In a Covid Normal world I could see this doing very well to places like Cairns. Allow the Japanese market to fly to Australia without having to fly Jetstar would be a win for tourism.


17 Jan 2018

Total posts 88

I suspect Australia will be a low priority. SEA much more diverse, culturally rich and welcoming. 


17 Jan 2018

Total posts 88

Oh and far cheaper.

22 Jan 2018

Total posts 92

Kind of sounds redundant to me, they could’ve just used Peach with a few extra perques 

05 Mar 2015

Total posts 335

Sort of, I wonder how they will differentiate the new airline from Peach? Peach is only single-class and short-range, the new airline two-class and medium range, but to some extent this is how Jetstar works. It certainly seems odd to have this new airline sitting sort of between ANA and Peach while also being a two-class LCC.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 Feb 2015

Total posts 117

Seems rather bizarre that they would be starting a “new” airline now when a lot of other carriers like Cathay are absorbing there secondary brands into the main player...  

Etihad - Etihad Guest

19 Mar 2018

Total posts 72

Look at how Taipei Taoyuan was maturing as an ANA destination.

It went from ANA to Taipei Taoyuan and Taipei Songshan, to StarFlyer from Fukuoka Kokura and Nagoya; AirDO from Hakodate and Kushiro, Peach from Osaka Kansai, Tokyo Haneda and Tokyo Narita. This should give us a clue about what they're thinking.

I understand that StarFlyer brand is appealing in Korea in particular, and China, which is where they're naturally going to point the airline towards. I understand that ANA is not in full control of Peach, and their Hong Kong shareholders don't want Peach to serve SIN, presumably because their Hong Kong investor is actually Cathay Pacific in disguise. I also understand that ANA has found that the Peach brand primarily appeals to only women and gay men in their existing markets, which is why they kept Vanilla Air as the "boys brand" LCC. However, they discovered from SQ that Scoot was the actual boys brand LCC.

From AviationWire JP, it's known that ANA is targetting SIN specifically. After the United States, Singapore is the biggest tourist market to Japan by value expenditure per capita. Singapore is typically the first tourist market to recover, in part due to a willing, passionate willingness to volunteer in relief efforts (I suspect the Japanese community here also contributes to numbers). However, they know that nobody's going to connect to domestic flight or to some high-speed train, they need to do it nonstop. The numbers are there, the passengers are there, they just need the right product, the brand recognition is there, they just need the right product.

Re Cathay Pacific, I don't think they've a strategy yet. They'll need to strategize, quick. Now that HNA is almost done fixing their mainland carriers, they're about to turn to HX.

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