All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Virgin Australia are to implement codeshare flights within Japan and Australia, with reciprocal frequent flyer benefits for members.

The airlines are both tipping greater demand for travel to Japan due to economic growth in the regions, as well as “prominent global events” due to take place in Japan this year.

They claim the partnership will allow passengers to connect more seamlessly, and contribute to strengthening the relationship between Australia and Japan by facilitating travel and trade. The commercial partnership is subject to government approval.

The announcement follows the launch of ANA’s service between Narita, Tokyo and Perth, in September last year, and ahead of a frequency boost for flights between Haneda, Tokyo and Sydney this coming summer.

Virgin Australia has also started selling new flights between Haneda and Brisbane.

The initial six codeshare routes within Australia for ANA customers are from Sydney to Brisbane, Melbourne, Cairns, Canberra, Gold Coast and Adelaide. ANA customers will be able to travel on these Virgin Australia services with ANA tickets, having their bags checked all the way through to their destinations and with one booking experience.

Shuichi Fujimura, EVP of ANA, said: “We are thrilled to partner with Virgin Australia, an award-winning airline that shares our uncompromising commitment to delivering the highest quality customer service. This collaborative effort will allow us to meet growing passenger demand in the region by providing greater choice and flexibility through shared resources, and furthering ANA’s commitment to expanding the Japan – Australia network.”

Virgin Australia CCO John MacLeod added: “We are excited to commence our first fights between Brisbane and Tokyo, bringing our famous Virgin Australia service to Japanese guests. Australia is a wonderful destination with some of the world’s best beaches, an outback to explore and lots of unique wildlife, and we are so pleased to make it easier for Japanese tourists to see these amazing sights in our country.”

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