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Business class for honeymoon from Seattle to Paris

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Nov 6th, 2015, 12:56 PM
  #1
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Business class for honeymoon from Seattle to Paris

Hello!

For our honeymoon to Paris in mid-January, my fiance is really looking forward to flying from Seattle to Paris in business class. The price of the tickets ~$4,500 each seat kind of blew my socks off and I'm not keen on spending nearly $10k for flights alone. As I'm the more "fiscally conservative" one in the couple, I'm wondering if anyone has any tips for getting cheaper business class international tickets in this type of situation?

Personally, I'd rather spend that $$ on great experiences in the city itself rather than on seats, but it's a once in a lifetime trip for us, so we're looking to see if this is possible.

In my searches, I've found Iceland Air Saga class tickets for ~$2,400 a seat, but honestly they look like glorified business class domestic seats. She wasn't too thrilled with videos she's seen of those.

I've also heard that some airlines can upgrade couples on their honeymoon. Conversely, I've also seen just as many posts online that the airlines often see so many people trying this, it's no longer a guaranteed thing.

Any tips as to how to book some discounted seats?

Thanks,
Jason
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Nov 6th, 2015, 02:35 PM
  #2
 
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The "couples upgrade" urban myth is just that. Ain't gonna happen.

Some options:

1. Business class flights out of Vancouver are around US$1000 cheaper than from Seattle.

2. Through Nov. 13, American Airlines is having a sale on purchased frequent flyer miles. You need 50,000 miles each way for business class from the US to Europe, so 100,000 miles per person. With the sale, you can buy 110,000 miles for $2124 plus excise tax and a $30 fee, so call it $2300 per person. https://buymiles.aa.com/en/buygift

There's lots of business class availability to Paris during January using AA miles. Many (but not all) itineraries involve using British Airways planes for all or part of the trip, which will add up to several hundred dollars to the bottom line due to BA's notorious fuel surcharges. However if you shop carefully on aa.com, you can find itineraries that only use American planes, reducing the final out of pocket costs hugely.

You can put the award flights on hold while you buy the miles, so you don't run the risks of having miles you can't spend, or flights you can't book.
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Nov 6th, 2015, 02:55 PM
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Oops, forgot, one more.

Somebody on Flyertalk mentioned that American Airlines-bundled "vacations" - air plus hotel or air plus car - ended up costing less per person than airfare alone if you paid the regular airfare price. https://www.aavacations.com/default.asp

So I looked at Paris in January with a week's stay and, for a pretty decent 4-star hotel in central Paris, the price came out at around $6000 for two, i.e. three grand per person, including business class airfare and the hotel.

The hotel alone was around $250 per night, so subtracting 7 x $250 ($1750) from the total made the amount for the airfare to be something like $2200 per person. Not too shabby, and as opposed to the "buying miles" approach, you'd earn FF miles rather than spending them, in fact you'd earn something like 16,000 or 17,000 frequent flyer miles in the process, enough for a one-way award flight somewhere in the US later.

Anyway, might be worth having a look.

Oh, and by the way, congratulations!
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Nov 6th, 2015, 05:00 PM
  #4
 
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Fly coach. Spend half the money you save in better hotel/rooms. Both of you should be happier.
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Nov 6th, 2015, 07:17 PM
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Finally, some positive proof of my long-held theory that couples should take the honeymoon before getting married. The real test is living in a country where you cannot speak the language. You and possible mate are squabbling over how to even get to the real test. Do not invest in confetti and cakes. Go by yourself.
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Nov 9th, 2015, 06:13 AM
  #6
 
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ITA Matrix is showing me Business class fares in January starting at $2600 each on Iceland Air. So maybe check out Iceland Air?
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Nov 9th, 2015, 06:18 AM
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Icelander's business class is more like domestic first class or premium economy. Recliners with 40" pitch. Not even angled lie-flat, let alone flat bed that most airlines are offering Trans-Atlantic.
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Nov 9th, 2015, 06:31 AM
  #8
 
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Good to know.

In that event, I would look at booking an economy ticket on Air Canada. Air Canada has THE BEST economy service of any North American carrier and their seats are so much better. I see tickets for $1100 each.
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Nov 9th, 2015, 08:09 AM
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Not if your AC flight is on their 777 with 3-4-3 seating. And having flown AC across the Pacific few times in the last few years, I fail to see how they're better than AA or even UA (certain flights). To me, they're as bad as the US big 3, if not worse.
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Nov 9th, 2015, 08:29 AM
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Seats are 1.5 to 2 inches wider than US domeastic carriers

Food quality is better (order a kosher or halal meal)

IFE is better

USB ports in the seats



I fly AC at least 4 times a year between the US and Europe and it has always been better than US carriers. And Lufthansa
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Nov 9th, 2015, 10:38 AM
  #11
 
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The OP has not returned to either of his threads (this one or an earlier one on the Europe forum) -- I sure hope he isn't waiting for an e-mail from Fodors. We lose a lot of newbies that way.
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Nov 9th, 2015, 02:04 PM
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I concur.
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Nov 9th, 2015, 08:14 PM
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I know this is getting off topic, but just want to state something about AC's European service.

1. AC (main brand) does use their high-density 777-300ER on two European routes: YVR-LHR and YUL-CDG. These have 3-4-3 seating with 17" wide seats.

2. AC's 787s are all 3-3-3 with 17.3" seats. They are used on certain YYZ-LHR and YYZ-CDG flights.

3. Many secondary and seasonal routes are flown in the AC Rouge brand, including destinations like DUB and BCN, and routes like YUL-FCO. They use 280-seat 767-300s with only 30" pitch.

So, choose your flights wisely if you want a wide/comfortable seat.
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Nov 10th, 2015, 12:05 AM
  #14
 
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Avoid AC Rouge if you can.
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