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Travel from Los Angeles or Chicago to Tokyo, Japan for $435 roundtrip on major carriers from March through May 2016. Dozens of other cities have roundtrips in the $500s or $600s.


  1. When are the $435 fares?
  2. Mileage Earning
  3. Why Japan?
  4. Best Credit Card to Buy the Ticket

$435 Roundtrips from Los Angeles and Chicago to Tokyo

Search on ITA Matrix by calendar of lowest fares for acceptable trip lengths. Use Tokyo code “TYO” to bring up Narita and Haneda airport results.

Screen Shot 2016-03-04 at 3.47.20 PMThere are $435 roundtrips available between March and May for Chicago and Los Angeles to Tokyo routes.

Screen Shot 2016-03-04 at 3.49.04 PMScreen Shot 2016-03-04 at 3.51.43 PMHover over a date with $435 roundtrips. Select the number of nights you’d like the roundtrip to be.Screen Shot 2015-12-30 at 10.04.19 PM

You cannot book on ITA Matrix. Instead note the dates and search on your favorite booking site.

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Mileage Earning

Delta has revenue-based earning of miles, so you’ll earn a measly 2,175 Delta miles for these roundtrips, more if you have status. These are V class fares. Look into crediting them to a partner to earn more miles.

Some of the fares are also sold by United, which also has a revenue-based program through which you would earn 2,175 miles.

Consider crediting to partners to get more miles.

Why Japan?

I was just there in December and was really surprised how much I enjoyed it. With the dollar at 114 yen, it was also surprisingly affordable. I spent no more money than I would in an American city. Train travel is rapid and frequent throughout the country. I’d like to go back in a warmer month and enjoy more of the natural beauty.

Best Way to Buy the Ticket

Buy your ticket with the Citi Prestige® Card, since it comes with a $250 Air Travel Credit every calendar year that will offset part of the purchase of this ticket, leaving you only $185 out of pocket.

Even if you’ve already used your $250 credit for this year, the card offers 3x on all airfare purchases.

See my review of the Citi Prestige Card which explains its many benefits like its annual $250 Air Travel Credit, 40,000 point sign up bonus, and access to the American Airlines Admirals Clubs and Priority Pass lounges, 3x points per dollar on air travel and hotels.

My second choice would be the Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard®, which comes with 40,000 bonus Arrival miles after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.

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You could redeem 43,500 Arrival miles to get a free $435 ticket on any airline. You’d still earn Delta or United miles on the flights, and you’d even get 2,175 Arrival miles back upon redemption. More on redeeming Arrival miles.

Hat Tip The Flight Deal