Business class is obviously the ideal way to fly, but for most of us, it’s completely unaffordable.
However, sometimes, you’ll get lucky and manage to snag a great deal that makes a flight only a little more expensive than coach (or you can get a seat for free or cheap by using frequent flyer miles).
By using Google flights and searching multiple dates, nearby airports, or routes, you might be able to stumble on a deal. There are also a handful of blogs and services that highlight the best premium cabin sales, including a new Premium Plus subscription service from Dollar Flight Club.
I went to Europe for vacation this fall, and started in Germany. When I was looking for flights, I serendipitously learned about an unannounced sale on Delta and its partners that brought business class tickets between New York and Berlin below $1,900.
Plus, because I have an Amex Platinum credit card, I could save a few hundred more by booking through Amex’s International Airline Program, a benefit that offers discounts on premium tickets with certain airlines.
While that was still more than I would normally spend, I decided to go for it because of one other benefit: I was close to requalifying for my frequent flyer status with Delta, and by flying in business class, I’d earn 50% more qualifying miles on the flight. The value I’ll get from the status benefits made it worth spending a bit more up front for this flight.
I booked my outbound flight on Italian airline Alitalia. Although the airline has been on the brink of bankruptcy for a long time, and is still in a tenuous financial situation, I’d heard good things about the on-board experience in both business class and economy.
My flight from New York left at around 5:00 p.m., and I’m happy to say that the experience lived up to the airline’s reputation.
Keep on reading to see what it was like.