A taste of Japanese culture: ANA Xiamen celebrates Tanabata Festival

Updated: 2015-07-16
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The Tanabata Festival, based on a Chinese tradition and folktale, is also known as "The Star Festival" and is celebrated in summer in Japan every year. According to the folktale, the princess “Orihime” and the Cow Herder “Hikoboshi” are allowed to cross the Milky Way to meet once a year on Tanabata Day. In Japan, Tanabata is celebrated by writing a wish on a colorful piece of paper called Tanzaku. The Tanzaku is then hung on branches of a bamboo tree to celebrate the reunion of Orihime and Hikoboshi.


On July 6, ANA Xiamen brought the Tanabata festivities to Gaoqi International Airport by holding a "make a wish” event for ANA passengers at Terminal 3



On July 6, ANA Xiamen brought the Tanabata festivities to Gaoqi International Airport by holding a "make a wish” event for ANA passengers at Terminal 3. For this event, ANA prepared their own original Tanzaku in different colors. The passengers were asked to write their wishes on the Tanzaku and hang them on potted Bamboo trees. All the Tanzaku will be sent to the famous Orihime Shrine in Ashikaga City, Japan.


Passengers also took photos with the ANA staff that was clad in traditional Chinese costume.


This is the seventh consecutive year that ANA Xiamen has held the Tanabata event. WOX visited the event and interviewed Mr. Matsuo Shinichi, the ANA Xiamen Office's operations manager.


Mr. Matsuo Shinichi, the ANA Xiamen Office's operations manager.


Q: Could you please introduce ANA and its business in Xiamen?
A: ANA is now the largest airline in Japan by revenues and passengers. Founded in 1952 with only 2 small helicopters, ANA flies today on 73 international routes and 120 domestic routes. The ANA group has 35,000 employees and a fleet of 240 aircrafts. ANA was voted Airline of the Year for 2013 by Air Transport World Magazine, and in 2015 was awarded five stars for the third consecutive year by the world's leading airline and airport review site, SKYTRAX.

ANA flies to Japan from 10 destinations in China, including a direct flight every day from Xiamen to Tokyo. The flight NH936 departs from Xiamen Gaoqi International Airport at 2:10 p.m. and arrives in Tokyo’s Narita International Airport at 7:15 p.m.

ANA and our alliance partners’ network also offer flights from Xiamen to a variety of destinations in Asia, Europe, and North and South America.

Q: Can you tell us how you ensure safety of operations?
A: ANA group has behavior guidelines called ANA’s Way. All of our employees always keep it in mind. The first of these guidelines is "safety," so we always regard safety as our number one priority, because it is the foundation of our business.

Our Xiamen branch strictly complies with ANA’s safety operation policies. We also offer special lectures and trainings to equip our employees with in-depth knowledge of flight safety procedures. Our efficient working procedures ensure we can quickly discover problems and apply corrective action promptly.

Q: How do you do to keep flights on time?
A: We believe it's also very important to keep flights on time. All of our customers have their schedules. So keeping flights on time is critical for our customers' schedules.

ANA has very strict and detailed work flow management for before flights takeoff and after arrival. The working process is divided into over 30 steps conducted by different staff groups including the mechanical team, the flight attendants, and the pilots. Each step only takes a few minutes.

ANA ranked sixth in the world in on-time performance in 2014. According to our data report this May, 87.2 percent of our international flights departed on time and 83.1 percent arrived on time.

In Xiamen, sometimes flights must wait for a long time due to heavy air traffic congestion. We always appreciate our customers’ cooperation and prompt boarding so that we can get into an earlier departure sequence and minimize delays.

Q: What makes ANA stands out from other airlines?
A: ANA is dedicated to delivering the spirit of Japanese hospitality to our passengers, and always paying attention to small details. While giving top priority to safe operation of airlines, we are trying to satisfy our customers by constantly improving the quality of our services.

As a five-star airline, ANA offers various kinds of in-flight meals to meet the demands of passengers, including vegetarian diets and halal food. Passengers can enjoy a variety of menus, including of food from the country of departure, in addition to ANA’s traditional Japanese menu, during their tour.

In many destinations, ANA has cooperated with many local businesses to offer special benefits for ANA Mileage Club Card holders. In Xiamen, ANA has cooperated with a lot of popular restaurants, SPAs, and fitness centers. Recently, ANA finalized a new contract with two more shops. ANA Mileage Club members can now enjoy exclusive discounts or special benefits in these places.

For more information we have described these special deals on ANA's web site (URL: ). Anyone can join the ANA Mileage Club easily.

ANA is also trying to bring our passengers a taste of Japan with a variety of cultural activities. For example, this is the seventh time that ANA Xiamen has held the Tanabata event. We hope our passengers, especially those who are traveling to Japan, can get an experience of Japan's unique culture before their trip.



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