SkyTeam Fare War Continues: Philadelphia To Europe ~$1,700 In Business Class This Summer

As both Ben and I mentionedĀ on multiple occasions last week, it’s a good time to buy a business class ticket to Europe for travel this summer, particularly if you want to fly to Dublin.

While Ben likes to tout how “~$1,500 business class tickets” are available to Dublin, the fine print, of course, is that not only do you have to fly American or British Airways in business class, which is essentially a step up from Spirit, but:

  • You have to enroll in the AARP (which, as has been often noted, doesn’t require proof of senior citizen status) and use a discount code for $400 off
  • You have to have the British Airways Signature Visa card and use a specific promo code to get a 10% off discount

What this really means is that the fares are closer to $2,100. šŸ™‚

However, as I noted last week, SkyTeam appears to be targeting certain American Airlines and US Airways hub cities in a remarkable, and as of now one-sided, fare war on destinations in Central Europe.

The fare war is still in effect from Charlotte, Dallas and Philadelphia largely to destinations in Germany, Switzerland, and Austria.

Better yet, the prices have gotten eye-poppingly low. Not quite ~$1,450 from the West Coast to Europe in business class low, but still a deal worth jumping on if you want to maintain or attain Delta status, or even status on Alaska.

Fares from Philadelphia to Europe in roundtrip business class are as low as $1,712 this summer on Delta.

That’sĀ actually $1,712, not “$1,712 with three asterisks meaning you have to apply for a credit card, pretend you’re 80 years old, donate a kidney, enter a YouTube contest and sing the French national anthem by heart on KBEN-FM’s morning show.”

Philadelphia to Stuttgart in Delta One from $1,712
Philadelphia to Stuttgart in Delta One from $1,712

The ~$1,700 fares are good from Philadelphia to Stuttgart, Geneva, Dusseldorf, Cologne, Frankfurt, Nuremburg, Berlin, Vienna, Bremen and Hamburg.

Philadelphia to Geneva for $1,728 roundtrip on Delta and Air France in business class
Philadelphia to Geneva for $1,716 roundtrip on Delta and Air France in business class

More broadly speaking, fares from Charlotte and Dallas, and fares from Charlotte, Dallas and Philadelphia to cities like Amsterdam, Brussels, Luxembourg, Copenhagen, Madrid, Lisbon and Paris range between $1,850 and $2,100, which are still very good deals.

Dallas to Brussels this summer for $1,857 roundtrip in Delta business class
Dallas to Brussels this summer for $1,857 roundtrip in Delta business class

Note that these flights are on Delta’s lie-flat international business class with renowned food and delightful service,Ā not in American’s angled flat business class where you can “enjoy” a hockey puck with Chef Boy-Ar-Dee tomato sauce and a glass of alcoholic vinegar for dinner.

Now, some might say Delta’s the better option here at ~$1,700, but Ben’s got his American Airlines blinders on and prefers to highlight the ~$2,100 business class fares to Dublin on oneworld instead.

Bottom Line

If you live in the Mid-Atlantic and want to fly to Europe later this summerĀ in business class, these deals are hard to beat, and potentially worth a drive or train ride to Philadelphia from other markets like New York, Baltimore or Washington.

Great fares are also available from Charlotte and Dallas to certain European cities on Delta. If you can position yourself to one of these gateway cities, this is a fantastic way of racking up valuable MQMs and flying to Europe in high season on flatbed seats.


  1. Cheap fares for mileage run/elite re-qualification are good.

    Cheap fares for mileage run/elite re-qualification on flights with hard and soft product that isn’t substandard is GREAT šŸ™‚

  2. DL has had seasonal service from PHL to CDG for many years now. They took over for AF as part of the joint venture, as DL’s 757s are better suited for the thinner demand. My only transatlantic op-up on DL was flying this route back from CDG a few years ago.

  3. just purchased tickets yesterday on BA for $2100 DEN-ARN for early june. since there is a domestic leg on aa I wasn’t able to get the addt’l 10% off from the BA chase card – however could have been as low as $1900.

    Same fare was avail to CPH.

    Pretty good for Denver TATL in biz.

  4. You recommend Delta business class on a 757 over BA business class? BA’s lounge with free champagne at PHL is going to outdo Delta every day of the week and that’s just to start.

  5. I like the good-humored nature of the post but getting AARP discount through BA is dead simple šŸ™‚

  6. Lucky! Help!

    I’m freaking out. I bought the LifeMiles just now, but when I tried to redeem online, it didn’t work. The website tells me to email LifeMile Support. Does their website always do that or it’s occasionally down?


  7. @ Makalo — It’s just occasionally down, and there are some airlines where that seems to happen every so often. Which airline were you trying to redeem on?

  8. Hi Lucky,

    I’m going to redeem Air China, from MEL to PEK roundtrip. It starts a new route from Melbourne to Beijing on June 1st.


  9. Some unsolicited advice: Snark is only effective when in moderate doses. Too much of it and it gets juvenile and repetitive.

  10. Nick – I don’t think you understand how blogging works. Lucky only advertises the other sales because he can add a referral link for the BA card in every post. You need some referral links in this post otherwise it’s a compete waste.

    I’m being totally sarcastic btw – thanks for letting us know about the deal šŸ™‚

  11. Is there any Star Alliance carrier getting in on this action? I want to make Gold again this year, and I’ve been waiting on pulling the trigger on trips to Berlin and Stockholm this summer, but I haven’t seen mention of sub-$2K r/t business fares on any Star Alliance carriers yet. šŸ™ Here’s hoping I’m wrong and just missed something.

  12. Ben, what do think about Google Flights? If you prefer the Matrix Airfare Search then why? Thanks in advance!

  13. @31583: I can’t speak for Ben, but Matrix is more “technical,” if that makes sense, and shows a great calendar of airfares, but on the flip side it’s an extremely buggy site that often spits out error messages. Google Flights processes searches much faster and shows low fares on a map, but it’s harder to do multi-city searches on Google Flights.

  14. @Eric W.: I didn’t see any Star Alliance flights under $2,000 roundtrip in business last time I checked, but there are some decent deals between $2,000 and $2,500.

    For instance, you can book Philadelphia to Paris in business class for about $2,120 roundtrip either via Lufthansa and Frankfurt, Air Canada and Toronto, or United nonstop from Newark (with your “connection” being the Amtrak leg from PHL-EWR booked as part of the ticket).

  15. @Ed: Well, that really depends on where and how you intend to redeem them. I don’t know that there’s much value in crediting your flying to Air France/KLM’s Flying Blue, but I find that AmEx Membership Rewards transfers to Flying Blue can be incredibly helpful for securing transatlantic business class flights, since the availability of reward flights for Flying Blue members is substantially larger than what’s made available to other programs such as SkyMiles. The award redemption rate is about the same AND you have to pay a few hundred dollars in fees, but personally I find the widespread award availability to be a huge plus in Flying Blue’s favor.

  16. @stephan: I happen to really like the lie-flat seats on Delta’s 757s. You won’t get all-aisle access, but you will get the newest flatbed seats with much larger IFE screens than on some of Delta’s older widebodies.

  17. @Nick, thanks for your reply! I think I’m just going to go with LH’s premium economy then, since I can’t find any r/t J fares out of BOS under $3K. I have a sneaking suspicion that PE will prove to be good enough for a flight under nine hours.

  18. @Eric W.: I am seeing $2,048 for roundtrip on United business class from PHL to Stockholm via EWR and Amtrak in July and onward. If you can position yourself to Philadelphia, this is a fantastic option, especially as you can dump the Amtrak leg on the way back and just take the train or another flight from EWR straight into BOS. You’ll end up well under $3K all in, I’d imagine.

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