ACT FAST: Sub-$1,500 Business Class Fares To Europe This Summer

It appears as if several Star Alliance airlines (Air Canada, Austrian, Brussels, Lufthansa, United, etc.) are offering sub-$1,500 business class fares for travel to Europe this summer.

The markets where this seems to be valid are all over the place, as I’ve found these fares out of Atlanta, Detroit, San Diego, Seattle, and Tampa, and for travel to lots of points in Europe, including Amsterdam, Florence, Milan, Paris, Pisa, Rome, etc.

The base fare here is only $500 roundtrip, with the rest being taxes and fuel surcharges. In all the markets where I’ve found this fare it’s the lowest available, even cheaper than the lowest economy class fare.

The fares are valid for travel between June 27 and August 30, 2014. There’s a 60 day advance purchase requirement, and you have to stay a minimum of a Sunday night.

Cheap-Business-Class-Fares

Availability is wide open. I’d recommend using ITA Matrix to search for availability, since it can show you a month worth of pricing and availability at a time.

Cheap-Business-Class-Fares-2

For example, Seattle to Rome roundtrip in Air Canada business class is $1,473.

Cheap-Business-Class-Fares-1

So if you’re going to Europe this summer book now, because this is a hell of a deal — business class for less than you’d otherwise pay for economy!

(Tip of the hat to Biggles209 in the Good Deal Premium Fare thread on FlyerTalk)

Comments

  1. I’m seeing the same prices out of MSP; for instance $1443 MSP-Stockholm in August on Lufthansa, AC, etc.

  2. Where are you seeing those prices? I checked JFK-VIE, and saw the normal business fare (approx. $2500)

  3. doesn’t look like this works out of NYC either july august everything is around 2400 not bad tho…but not 500! Damn!

  4. @Susannah

    @2.5k JFK-VIE is a regular biz class fare? maybe on LOT… it’s still a decent deal considering how much coach goes for over the summer.

  5. Lucky,

    I’m trying to get to Prague at the end of August – anything you can help me find from LAX/SAN Diego, etc.? Or even to a close country and I’ll get a cheap intra europe flight to connect? Thanks

  6. Lucky,

    Safer to buy through Orbitz/kayak etc or directly through the airline? I was going to go through a shopping portal for extra miles…

  7. @ pointie — Can’t hurt to book through Orbitz since I find their 24 hour refund policy is pretty straightforward.

  8. Great fare. Got SEA-MXP down to $1287 on AC using a few YQ tricks. Still working on getting it lower though.

  9. Just booked SNA->EWR->FCO, VCE->MUC->ORD-SNA for $1484 on UA.com from 7/21 -> 7/30 and can now cancel one of my award flights at this fare. ITA site doesn’t show anything close to this fare. Thank you for the lead.

  10. I found several out of CMH to AMS, BUD, and CDG. Too bad we already booked our summer flights using points…

  11. Been pounding away using ITA matrix for flts from SEA to anywhere in Europe. Nothing coming up in Jun/Jul/Aug anywhere near the 1.5K price. Lowest is mid 2000s Iceland Air.
    Pricing could have been a glitch and they have caught it. Or, it coulda been a worm left by USAir as a goodbye present.

  12. MKE-AMS with a stopover in ORD is $1500 for the July 4th weekend. Ironically, I live in Chicago which would cost $3400 for the same flight to AMS if I were to originate in ORD. I suppose I could just hop on the train up to MKE…

  13. Steve, go SEA-FCO/MXP, I just booked my friend two tickets SEA-YYZ-MXP for $1600CAD per person, should be ~$1400USD.

    I saw some on United as well.

  14. Very surprised this didn’t pick up more steam on the blogs, etc. (maybe that’s good). Btw, if you tried to (or are still trying) to book on Ortbiz, don’t. All the screens said I had biz class until I received the email confirmation and then it was suddenly economy. The strange thing is Orbitz let me select my business class seats. Recommendation: book directly with the airline (United, AC, etc.). Awesome prices! Thanks Lucky..

  15. @Steve – The city pairs that work from Seattle are the Skyteam hubs or at least Skyteam focus cities. ITA is showing fares for most of July and August under $1,500 for CDG and FCO for example – from Seattle.

    NCE is $1,577 for all of July from Seattle, AMS is under $1,500 for every day in July except Sundays and Mondays.

    Skyteam is also sort of counterattacking the Star Alliance routes, SEA to FRA or MUC is $2,000 in business in July, as long as you fly Delta.

  16. I hope this Star/Skyteam war opens on a new front tomorrow morning with Star/OneWorld going at it.

  17. Ben, do you know if booking through Orbitz using a Chase Explorer card (through UR portal) will get coded as a United purchase (and therefore receive the 2x miles? Or does it make mores sense to purchase directly through United to get 2x vs Chase Sapphire via UR/Orbitz?

  18. Awesome! Got flights to Florence in Austrian on the way over the pond and Swiss on the way back. Gonna head to the Palio in Siena and check another one off the bucket list!

  19. Just a friendly reminder here that certain airlines like OS do NOT award Mileage Plus miles for P class fares, so do check and verify what the mileage awards levels of each ticket is in its respective frequent flyer program. For example, Mileage Plus has odd accruals where Austrian(OS)P class fares earn no PQMS & RDMs, Lufthansa P fares only earn 100 percent PQMs, yet Swiss P fares earn 150 percent RDMs & PQMs.

  20. SFO doesn’t fare at $1560, but San Jose does (admittedly mostly with double connections).

  21. Thanks for the tip! Got in on the deal out of SJC to FCO, VCE return for less than the economy cost out of SFO.

  22. @Li is right!
    HNL to FCO going through YVR, YYZ is 9197 miles, or 150% of miles travelling on Aeroplan.
    Roundtrip that makes it 27,500 miles round trip!

  23. Got our honeymoon trip booked BOS-YYZ-FCO / FCO-EWR-BOS in July! on UA. The outbound, however, is operated by Air Canada. I was able to do seat assignment on the UA website but for the returning portion only. I called United and the rep said I’d have to have AC do the seat assignment for me for the flights operated by AC. The rep at AC, however, told me that since I booked with UA, I’d have to get my seat assignment from UA. Does anyone have a solution to this for me? Thank you in advance!

  24. There is a reverse war happening with OW/*A in economy. Fares from Scandinavia (places like Oslo) to SFO in September/October for £300 which is about $500!

  25. once you find it on ITA/Matrix – how do you then specifically book it using a booking site? especially something like the open jaw @Justin booked – Seeing $1300 for WAS-ATH//IST-WAS on DL/AF? Can someone please instruct?

  26. I see I could do a stop over in YYZ if I fly on United, I have never booked a stop over. can someone advise how to do that?

  27. I was able to use the booking engine of a major cruise line for 4 customers – SNA/EWR/FCO-VCE/MUC/ORD/SNA – $1481 all in – plus they get $300 air credit on their cruise – so under $1200 per person – thanks Lucky!!!!!

  28. actually – sorry for the multiple comments – I could do the stopover if I fly Air Canada – can someone advise on how to book?

  29. @Donna-have you tried using the Multiple Destinations option on United.com and plug in the dates and times that are close to what you found on your other site?

  30. Using ITA Matrix to search tons of city pairs but not coming up with anything June/July. Any luck still or is this dead?

  31. TL – I’m surprised you found BOS-FCO in July. I spent time last time and could not get anything out of the northeast for late August. If anyone has tips for BOS/MHT/BDL/PVD and so on, that would be great. Thanks.

  32. It looks like the fares are back up in the 3K range for SJC to AMS. They were around $1,400 this morning. Should have acted faster 🙁

  33. Lucky – Thank you for the suggestion. I called AC and the recording said the wait time was between 45 minutes and 1 hour 3 minutes, so I gave that up. I booked through Amex travel (to get the extra points, of course), so I called Amex to help me get the seats I wanted. The lovely Amex agent took my seat preference and called me back within the hour and told me she was able to get the seats for me 🙂

    Nun – My dates are 6/30-7/10. I saw plenty of availability around these dates when I looked last night. Pretty much every flight I looked at, it said 2 – 4 seats left at this price. With origin in BOS, the transits that were shown are YYZ, EWR, IAD, MUC. Anyhow I think the deal is dead now. The lowest price I see now is around $3,500.

  34. Snagged SAN-LAX-FRA-FCO and back both ways on the Lufthansa 747-8i. Unfortunately that only earns 100% on UA, but worth it for the LH 748 I think…

    What sucks is I’m traveling with a friend on a different PNR and Lufthansa is not letting us choose seats… we really want two seats together on the upper deck (or at least two seats together period). Any tips for getting seat assignments in advance? Maybe some way to match to LH Gold from my United 1K or US Airways Platinum status?

  35. Got $1557 r/t Baltimore-Paris CDG July 24th – August 3 at midnight :). Saw $1450 BWI-AMS for July 21st-August 4th this morning, was back up to $3k+ by 2pm.

  36. Booked a trip to Milan: SJC-DEN-FRA-MXP | MXP-EWR-DEN-SLC- Business Class for $1474 last night thanks to Lucky’s post. Same itinerary is pulling up $3795 today. Really appreciate it.

  37. @Ben Hughes Looks like you hit the jackpot. I didn’t see any 747-8 flights come up in my search yesterday.

  38. Got SJC-DEN-YUL-CDG, CDG-EWR-DEN-SJC for $1530 approx. in Business (AC/UA combinations). Thanks for the awesome tip!

    Question – originally had all legs on UA, but wanted to go via YUL since they fly the 777-300 ER from YUL-CDG and the YUL maple leaf lounge beats any United Club hands-on. As far as mileage accrual goes though, would it have been better to keep all flights on UA (operated by UA), rather than have a segment on AC? Or probably doesn’t matter much?

  39. Yesterday booked EWR-ARN, CPH-EWR in Business for $1349 on DL/AF and KLM/DL. Prices in the morning were $1850 then around 2:30 the price dropped to $1349 for the same itinerary. The fare was gone by around 5:00.

  40. April 3rd – just booked seattle to rome and back, mix of first class and business, for $1660 Canadian. So still available as of thursday for some flights.

    Bellissimo!

    Thanks Lucky and Biggles209 – most appreciated!

  41. @ Laurie Schack — I saw the fare from Tampa, but that’s as far South as I saw. Unfortunately the fare is dead now.

  42. Thank you Lucky. Are you saying that the fare war is completely over? Is it a waste of time to keep looking? It would be perfect for me this summer, since my dates are flexible for a trip to Paris and Normandy.

  43. Haven’t had any luck NYC to London. Everything is approx. 3500 R/T. Any help of suggestions appreciated.

  44. Has anyone seen any cheap fare’s from SFO to Florence Italy, then SNN to SFO.

    or SFO to LHR and Rome to SFO

  45. Tokyo to Amsterdam 8/4 ~ 8/25 business class, or better.

    Can anyone help?

    I’ve used ITA Matrix but noticed you cannot purchase off of that website.

    Thanks!

  46. I gave up on London but snagged Newark to Munich on Delta for around $1800 return. I grabbed it the minute I saw it and it was gone shortly thereafter.

  47. I’m looking for Business class from Seattle To Rome FCO 8/19-8/29. The matrix does not show the seating class, only fares, which match those in economy.

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