On March 17, Japan Airlines made a historic flight with the first non-stop operation between Japan and Miami International Airport (MIA). This service was chartered for the World Baseball Classic 2023 (WBC).
Flight JL 8800 was operated on a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner registered with the registration JA869J, which took off from Haneda Airport (HND) at 02:53 local time and landed at Miami International Airport (MIA) at 02:53, after 13 hours and 2 minutes.
This charter service was boarded by more than 100 passengers, including players and staff of Japan’s national baseball team. Major League Baseball employees, media and some enthusiastic fans waited in the early morning hours to welcome the Japanese team.
Miami-Dade County officials were enthusiastic about the arrival of Japan Airlines’ first flight from Tokyo to Florida’s top airport for international passenger traffic.
“It was wonderful to welcome our first non-stop flight from Japan to Miami-Dade County, and to see the Japan Airlines aircraft parked at MIA, enjoying the Miami sunshine. The MIA team continues to explore the possibility of nonstop service from Japan and other Asian markets to Miami,” said Daniella Levine Cava, Mayor of Miami-Dade County.
As we advanced, Miami-Dade County was in negotiations to offer a nonstop connection between Tokyo and Miami, thus stimulating business and tourism between Asia and Florida.
“While there are no imminent plans for direct flights to Asia, I am delighted that hosting the World Baseball Classic has given us an idea of what it would be like for our two regions to be connected by nonstop air service,” added Levine Cava.
The return flight (JL8801) with the players and team personnel took off from Miami Airport (MIA) at 11:23 local time on March 22 bound for Narita Airport (NRT) in Tokyo.
See also: Authorities negotiate to establish Miami-Tokio non-stop flights
Cover photo credit: Gianfranco Abrusci, instagram: miamispotter.