Business Class - International

Jun 2nd, 2015, 04:29 PM
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Business Class - International

I am about to book my first, Business Class (capitalized!) multi-city trip. From TUS-UIO, LIM-TUS.
Three questions:

Since the first leg, or two, seems to be short haul, they have the seats located in coach, until the longer flight, which is then business class. Is this then worth the money to pay for Business Class?

Any thoughts on UAL vs AA for this trip?

Lastly, any benefit to using miles to upgrade from Business Class fare to First?

Thank you
service1010 is offline  
Jun 2nd, 2015, 08:29 PM
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On international business class itineraries, the airlines will put you in first class on domestic connections, if first class is available on the connecting flights.

From TUS AA will probably have to route you through Dallas and Miami in at least one direction, probably increasing the price compared to United, which will probably send you via Houston in both directions. Otherwise, not much in it.

First class isn't offered by either AA or UA on itineraries to northern South America; the front cabin on their planes is sold as business class on those routes, so upgrading is moot.
Gardyloo is online now  
Jun 3rd, 2015, 04:38 AM
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Looks like there are some advantages and disadvantages with each (AA vs UA).

AA flies to Quito only from Miami, and there are no AA non-stops from Tucson to Miami, so you'll have to change planes twice. However, AA offers an angled flat-bed seat from Miami to Quito. United flies to Quito from Houston, so it's just a single plane change from Tucson. But it looks like the United plane from Houston to Quito is a 737 with standard domestic seating, which means that the business class is much, much less comfortable than the seating on AA's plane from Miami.

Coming back from Lima, the situation is much netter. Using AA, the best choice is taking LAN (true flat-bed seat) to LAX and connecting to AA's non-stop to Tucson. With UA, you'll again change in Houston, but it's a true flat-bed seat from Lima to Houston.

So the major difference is getting to Quito: AA will take longer but more comfortable; UA is quicker but with much less space/comfort.
DonTopaz is online now  
Jun 3rd, 2015, 05:17 AM
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Good to know Gardyloo! I used a search engine to check for business class (not a/l) and coach this was reflected: 1st leg coach, 2nd leg coach, 3rd leg BC. So, I am thrilled this is not correct. I am booking (too) early, so I feel like there will be seats available in 1st class at the time. Interesting about how they sell BC! So glad for your help

PS Not sure how to mark my reply under your post....
service1010 is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2015, 05:20 AM
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Mr Topaz - Lots of great info. Thank you. I guess I will let price dictate if it's a significant change. Otherwise, I will select AA. Just curious - does the scenario change if I fly from PHX? It's a 5 hr drive from home, but maybe worth it?

Also, if I take LAN/AA return, will the fact that it's 2 different carriers affect baggage transfer or speed of customs?

Appreciate your help
service1010 is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2015, 06:04 AM
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LAN and AA are partners, so there's no problem at all. In fact, AA has a codeshare on the LAN flight, so your ticket would very likely list the flight with an AA flight number. Leaving from PHX saves you 1 hop on AA on the way to Quito and gives you a few more scheduling options. I have no idea if it affects the price. Doesn't seem like very many benefits in exchange for an extra 5 hours each way of driving, but my priorities aren't necessarily yours.
DonTopaz is online now  
Jun 3rd, 2015, 08:00 AM
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Thank you!
service1010 is offline  
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