At first I thought this was a mistake fare, but after doing some research it appears to be a legitimate fare.
Thanksgiving is one of the slowest travel periods between the US and Europe, so it’s not unusual for the airlines to have fare sales, especially in premium cabins, given the lack of business travel between the US and Europe the week of Thanksgiving.
First, it appears that many airlines have fare business class sales from various points in the US to Europe for the week of November 20. For example, from New York to Munich I see base fares of $860 roundtrip in business class, plus taxes and fees, for an all-in cost of $1,600. Tagging on flights to somewhere warmer (like Barcelona) doesn’t cost that much extra.
That’s a great fare, given that I usually don’t see them dip a whole lot below $1,800 all-in. But it’s not unheard of.
What’s a first for me is the Lufthansa first class fare sale. New York to Munich roundtrip in first class, for example, is $1,720 base, and about $2,400 all-in with taxes.
The major restriction for these fares seems to be that outbound travel has to occur between November 20 and November 25, with a minimum stay of three days and maximum stay of ten days.
The business class fares books into “Z” class, while the first class fare books into “A” class.
There are fare sales out of other airports as well, though the fares aren’t quite as good as out of New York. But still, first class from the west coast is only about 50% more expensive, which is still very reasonable.
I’m sure the next logical question is “well, can I get into Airbus 380 first class on this fare?” Sadly the answer seems to be no. Lufthansa doesn’t fly the Airbus 380 to New York that time of year. The only destination they serve it with is Miami. While there’s a decent first class fare out of Miami, they have blocked out all of the “A” space (first class code needed for this fare), so there’s no way to book it.
This fare can be booked through Orbitz, Expedia, etc. If you want to help out a friend of mine who’s a travel agent, he can book it for you. You don’t pay anything extra for booking through him, he’ll walk you through finding the best fare available, and ultimately if you need to make a change you deal with him instead of an outsourced call center. Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can put you in touch (and no, I’m not getting anything out of making this recommendation).
(Tip of the hat to Steven)