ANA offering tour to say goodbye to Boeing 747


ANA Sales Co., the travel agency arm of All Nippon Airways, started selling on Monday a tour to the United States that will give customers an opportunity to bid farewell to the venerable Boeing 747.

With ANA scheduled to retire its entire fleet of 747s by the end of March, participants will spend time with the last jumbo jet at Tupelo Regional Airport in Mississippi, where the aircraft will be scrapped.

For the five-day tour from April 16, travelers will take a flight on a different plane and reach the airport in time to greet the arrival of ANA’s last 747.

Customers will be allowed to write messages on the aircraft’s fuselage and experience the dismantling of passenger seats in a three-hour program. They will also listen to maintenance staff discuss the aircraft’s history.

The tour is priced at ¥348,000 for economy class and ¥838,000 for business. Participation will be limited to 30 to 40 customers.

ANA, now under the wing of ANA Holdings Inc., introduced the Boeing 747 in 1979. With 300 to 550 seats, the aircraft played a key role in mass transportation on domestic and international routes. But aging and low fuel efficiency prompted ANA to decommission the aircraft.

Japan Airlines, which adopted the Boeing 747 in 1970, retired its fleet in March 2011.