Discounted Business Class

Oct 14th, 2010, 02:51 PM
  #1  
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Discounted Business Class

I am getting tired of being packed into coach on international flights. Does anyone have a feel for when or if business class ticket are ever discounted? Or is demand so high that they do not have to do that?
fmpden is offline  
Oct 14th, 2010, 02:58 PM
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My experience is that demand is high. We always upgrade on British Air with FF miles and always have to do so far in advance of a trip ( 10/11 months). I never bother on a flight of less than 4 hours. However, business and first are always full whenever I walk through.
historytraveler is offline  
Oct 14th, 2010, 03:48 PM
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Yes, they can sometimes discounted. For example, Continental has for the past 5-6 year (at least) business fares to Europe for about $2,000 r/t during summer, Thanksgiving and Christmas.
rkkwan is offline  
Oct 14th, 2010, 03:58 PM
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Many good airlines offer discounted business class. Typically, these require a 28- or even 50-day advance purchase, though some require only 14 days, and many have similar restrictions as discounted economy tickets.

Lufthansa and BA are just two of the airlines that offer these fares. The discounted business fares are usually about 35-45% of the regular business fares.
DonTopaz is offline  
Oct 14th, 2010, 05:50 PM
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Please let us know as to how to find these discounted fares. I just checked with the BA website for the months of November through to January and the cheapest fare DEN to LHR for Business Class was $4226 not including taxes. Orbitz has a similar fare for January dates at $3807 plus taxes totaling $4508.
historytraveler is offline  
Oct 14th, 2010, 05:51 PM
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So, are these deep discounted biz class fares available on the airline website or someplace else?? I'd love to see some price examples.
simpsonc510 is offline  
Oct 14th, 2010, 06:23 PM
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DEN-LHR on Continental during Thanksgiving. Many dates avaialble leaving from 11/21 and later; return 11/26, 11/27, 11/30 or 12/1. $2,168 + tax = $2,465.70. That's direct from continental.com.

For Christmas, same route. Depart 12/20 or later. Return many dates. $2,568 + tax = $2,865.70.

You get domestic first class to Den to IAH/EWR. Then new flat-bed from either IAH-EWR to LHR.
rkkwan is offline  
Oct 14th, 2010, 06:42 PM
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Using the 30-day search on ITA - http://matrix.itasoftware.com/search.htm - for Dec. 15 - Jan. 15, for example, I can see RTs at $2670 on American (via Chicago) for numerous days. Amsterdam on United/Continental is even cheaper (probably due to not having to pay UK APD).

BA gets away with murder on DEN-LHR and PHX-LHR because of lack of competition in nonstop markets.

As mentioned, these are "I" or "Z" fares which carry similar restrictions to discounted coach tickets, e.g. advance purchase, minimum stay, fees to change etc.

In addition, most carriers typically have business class sales in the summer peak periods, since those are relatively slack times for actual business travelers (as opposed to leisure pax) so they sell off the surplus seats at a discount.
Gardyloo is offline  
Oct 14th, 2010, 08:12 PM
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Dosn't United have a non-stop from DEN to LHR? Not that I'll ever fly United again but thought they came into that market a few years ago.
historytraveler is offline  
Oct 14th, 2010, 11:51 PM
  #10  
 
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Demand is high across the board and demand for business class has really perked up. Given this, I would think you would be hard-pressed to get biz for much less than $2500 with much regularity, unless you live in some of the most competitive markets (such as NYC). Depending upon your mileage balance, you could play the upgrade game, but full planes = fewer upgrades, and we've seen a spike in coach fares, too, which will impact you, as well. Sorry.
travelgourmet is offline  
Oct 15th, 2010, 04:23 AM
  #11  
 
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The deeply discounted business class fares will still be considerably more expensive than discounted economy fares -- you're not going to see a business class fare that's, say, economy plus 10% or 20%.

Before the discounted business class fares began a few years ago, the only business class fares that you could get (unless your company had a special arrangement with an airline) were typically around $6-8000 rt (or more) between the US and Europe. Now it's fairly easy to find fares that are half of that.
DonTopaz is offline  
Oct 16th, 2010, 11:02 PM
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Not sure about discounted but I have found there being a range of about 3000 for my recent trip from Australia to the Middle East. I get my ideas for what I will pay from bestflights.com.au They have a section that shows you all the specials for business/first.

I agree with you, I've given up being squashed into economy... ah the perks of first class service with Qatar in Doha!!
MissGreen is offline  
Oct 21st, 2010, 05:06 PM
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I've seen BA flights from NYC to Spain for about $2500 (looked in October for flights Jan-May). I've seen Continental flights for about the same price.

Another option is to fly premium economy: airlines with PE include British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Thai Airways, Eva, and Air New Zealand (I think there are a few more but those are just the ones I can remember off the top of my head).
frogoutofwater is offline  
Oct 29th, 2010, 02:33 PM
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Don't know if it's a good deal or not, but I got an email from Delta saying they're having a Business Elite sale currently, must depart by Dec. 15.
Leely2 is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2010, 05:39 PM
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We've gotten too old & creaky to fly coach internationally. Below are some business class bargains we have discovered. As you will notice, some airlines fly only to/from specific cities, not necessarily the cities we want. For those bargains, we schedule hopper flights. For instance from our residence in Indianapolis, we often get a less than $200pp RT for a flight to & from NYC. The hopper flights in Europe are cheap. Once we flew from London to Rome for $10pp total on RyanAir. Sometimes we will stay in the European city where we land for a day or two & enjoy the city & give ourselves a break from the long flight. In NYC, can arrive early a.m., go in & enjoy the city, & return to the airport for the p.m. int'l flight.

Be sure to sign up for email notification on the following suggestions. One of below (forget which one) sends an unbelievable business air bargain email at the end of each month & the sale only lasts for 5 hours.

Europa - NYC to Madrid $1418 RT most of the time; little more for other cities w/connection in Madrid.

FlyOpenSkies.com - $765 @way NYC to Paris.

FlyBMI.com - frequently runs sales & often don't penalize for one way fares.

CookTravel.net, 800-435-8776 (business/1st class only) - sign up for emails & get really good business bargain rates notifications, & give them a call for quote info. They are a legitimate compnay, but if you don't want to book thru them, go directly to the airline site & key in the same dates/places. Today's email advised me of business flights to Europe from USA - American $586 @ way; Lufthansa $710 @ way; United $851 @way; to Italy on Alitalia or Delta $1500 RT; BA Traveler Plus $983 RT; Delta $1300 RT to Barcelona; LA to Auckland $3994 RT. All of these have date restrictions. So it would be almost impossible to find them on own without knowing what dates to use.

Don't know if this works for you, but hubby & I started doing transatlantic cruises. The big liners go to Europe in the spring & return to US in the fall; usually 12-14 days w/port stops. Cunard's QM2 goes back & forth frequently. We have cruised for 14 days in a balcony cabin for as little as $800pp; inside much cheaper of course. QM2 cruises across the Atlantic (NYC to Southampton, ENg) in 6 days. Often we take one cruiseline over or return, & then QM2 the other way. Or, book one way on one of the above airlines w/ a hopper flight to the city they require. Or, find a bargain RT ticket & just throw away the 2nd leg - or call the airline & ask for a credit on future flight for the unused portion - even on non-refundables they usually give a credit.

Hope this helps & good luck. Julie
Now if I could just find some cheaper business class from USA to/from Singapore & Beijine - $4200pp is the best I've been able to do - YIKES!
JulieAgain is offline  
Nov 16th, 2010, 02:36 AM
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Great info thanks!
ekscrunchy is offline  
Nov 16th, 2010, 05:17 AM
  #17  
DRJ
 
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FWIW, Openskies currently has a real deal:

From IAD to ORY from now through March, using the code washp800 you get roundtrip Dulles-Orly for &1,000 all in.

Got mine last week.
DRJ is offline  
Nov 16th, 2010, 08:17 AM
  #18  
 
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By the way, those OpenSkies prices that people are quoting are for "Biz Seat", not "Biz Bed". Biz Seat, which I've flown, is roomier than Premium Economy and domestic First but not as spacious as trans-Atlantic business class seats, and the seats do NOT convert to lie-flat beds. The seats are wide (similar to American domestic First) and the seat pitch is about 52" and recline is about 140 degrees. So you have lots of leg room but not enough room to lie down.
frogoutofwater is offline  
Nov 18th, 2010, 11:38 AM
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Does anyone know what the food and service are like on OpenSkies in their Biz Seat cabin? AF is running a sale on their Premium Voyageur product. I just wonder how it compares to OpenSkies Biz Seat. I almost always fly cattle class, but have also enjoyed business every once in a great while. I am curious how the various PE products stack up, never having experienced them.
Leely2 is offline  

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