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San José Welcomes Japanese Low-Cost Carrier ZIPAIR

Daniel Ross's image
Daniel Ross
Daniel Ross's image

Daniel Ross

Senior Content Contributor

630 Published Articles 1 Edited Article

Countries Visited: 56U.S. States Visited: 17

Daniel has loved aviation and travel his entire life. He earned a Master of Science in Air Transport Management and has written about travel and aviation in publications like Simple Flying, The Points...

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Konnichiwa, ZIPAIR Tokyo!

The Japanese low-cost airline headquartered in Tokyo — is the newest airline to arrive at San José International Airport (SJC) in California.

The Japanese long-haul, low-cost carrier touched down at SJC inbound from its base at Tokyo Narita (NRT) for the first time on Monday, December 12, 2022.

Let’s take a look at the details of San José’s exciting new route.

ZIPAIR Launches Nonstop Service To San José From Tokyo

California has welcomed the second nonstop ZIPAIR service which will bring more travel opportunities to those living in and around the Silicon Valley area.

ZIPAIR’s decision to serve San José rather than the larger, more populous city of San Francisco which lies just 50 miles up the road is likely to be a well-reasoned one.

As a low-cost airline, San José would have been a less slot-constrained, cheaper option than San Francisco.

ZIPAIR is also the only airline operating nonstop service between Tokyo and San José, which is the closest airport to the Silicon Valley area. This puts the airline in a good position to capture the business of travelers from Japan heading to the area on work trips.

As per the airline’s current available fares, the route will be a seasonal service ending on March 25, 2023.

Until then, return flights between Narita and San José will operate 5 times per week on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays with the following schedule:

  • Depart Tokyo Narita (NRT) 4 p.m. — Arrive San José (SJC) 8:10 a.m.
  • Depart San José (SJC) 10:10 a.m. — Arrive Tokyo Narita (NRT) 2:30 p.m. (+1)

Map of ZIPAIR service between San Jose and Tokyo
Map of ZIPAIR’s new route between San José and Tokyo. Image Credit: Great Circle Mapper.

The cheapest return fares we’re seeing start at $641 which is less than half the cost of a return fare from San Francisco to Tokyo with airlines such as ALL Nippon Airlines, Japan Airlines, and United.

San José joins Los Angeles (LAX) and Honolulu (HNL) as the 3rd U.S. airport with nonstop ZIPAIR service to Tokyo.

The airline operates a very small network of services with the U.S. proving an important market for ZIPAIR given that it accounts for 50% of its entire route network.

The other 3 cities served by ZIPAIR are the Asian capitals of Bangkok (BKK), Singapore (SIN), and Seoul (ICN).

Hot Tip: If flying on such a long journey with a low-cost carrier isn’t for you, then why not consider one of the many ways to fly to Japan using points and miles and fly in a bit of luxury instead?  

Final Thoughts

San José International Airport has a great new nonstop service to the capital city of Japan, courtesy of Japan’s low-cost airline, ZIPAIR.

The fares ZIPAIR offers to Tokyo are a great option for thrifty travelers from California’s Bay Area, as they undercut competitors by more than half the cost.

Daniel Ross's image

About Daniel Ross

Daniel has loved aviation and travel his entire life. He earned a Master of Science in Air Transport Management and has written about travel and aviation in publications like Simple Flying, The Points Guy, and more.


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