What’s ensued is a golden age of flying … for those who can afford it. In November, Singapore Airlines Ltd. and Emirates Airline both unveiled all-new first-class suites, tricked-out with such extravagant amenities as in-suite minibars and Mercedes Benz-inspired interiors. A round-trip ticket from Dubai to Geneva in Emirates’ new suites can cost upward of $8,000—and that’s on the affordable end of the spectrum. These airlines aren’t alone: Quieter, gradual enhancements on such airlines as Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. and Société Air France SA have resulted in truly premium experiences, with improvements ranging from more personal storage space to latest-generation entertainment screens and touchscreen seat controls.
What’s ensued is a golden age of flying … for those who can afford it. In November, Singapore Airlines Ltd. and Emirates Airline both unveiled all-new first-class suites, tricked-out with such extravagant amenities as in-suite minibars and Mercedes Benz-inspired interiors. A round-trip ticket from Dubai to Geneva in Emirates’ new suites can cost upward of $8,000—and that’s on the affordable end of the spectrum. These airlines aren’t alone: Quieter, gradual enhancements on such airlines as Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. and Société Air France SA have resulted in truly premium experiences, with improvements ranging from more personal storage space to latest-generation entertainment screens and touchscreen seat controls.

If you use various air carriers, you should tie your credit card to a point accumulating program. Such programs as Chase Ultimate Rewards, American Express Membership Rewards, Starwood Preferred Guest and many others enable you to transfer points from different airliners. The credit card options have gainful earning structures even despite the barriers of some air carriers to accumulate miles.
All those people collecting points are not part of some fringe movement of travel lunatics. Other than paying for it, points are the only sure fire way of getting an upgrade, and booking it long enough in advance that you can get excited for your trip for months. Here’s a list of airlines that let you upgrade international plane tickets, and how many points you’ll need. It’s super important to remember that earning points doesn’t require travel. You can earn points from your daily latte spend, amongst many other things. When it comes to using them…
If you use various air carriers, you should tie your credit card to a point accumulating program. Such programs as Chase Ultimate Rewards, American Express Membership Rewards, Starwood Preferred Guest and many others enable you to transfer points from different airliners. The credit card options have gainful earning structures even despite the barriers of some air carriers to accumulate miles.
Last updated on Thursday 01/03/2019 at 05:00 AM, the fares mentioned below are for Round Trip flight tickets and inclusive of fuel surcharges, service fee and taxes. Based on historical data, these fares are subject to change without prior notice and cannot be guaranteed at the time of booking. Kindly go through our terms and conditions before booking.

Upgrades really do happen, and when they do, they’re better than anyone ever imagines. Sometimes its the double beep at the gate to let the agent know your seat has changed, or it’s an email the night before letting you know that all has worked out, but however it happens it’s the best. If you want to be one of those people so happy on the plane, they actually smile in their photos, there are a few flight upgrade tips that actually work, and you should be using them.
Ask your travel agent. My own travel agent has a relationship with certain airlines that let her book her customers into preferred seats that are not released to everyone (usually toward the front of the plane, in exit rows and the like). She can also see upgrade availability fairly quickly, and many agents can add comments to your reservation that increase your chances of being chosen for an upgrade. Ask about these the next time you talk to your travel agent.

There are various upgrades you can purchase right at the airport which will cost substantially less than a full first class ticket. Careful planning is another good way to pay less for a flight. Tickets purchased well in advance always turn out to be cheaper than those booked right before the flight date. If you want to spend less on a great travel experience prepare to be very flexible with flight dates and destinations as airfares may differ quite a lot depending on the day of the week and the airport from which you depart.

Many First Class carriers also have high-end electronic entertainment systems with large screens that offer movies, games, TV shows and music on demand. You will also experience express check-in and boarding through a dedicated area. Some first class airlines provide a pre-boarding lounge that offer amenities such as food, drinks and internet access.
Want people to think you’re filthy rich when you travel, without needing to actually innovate or disrupt an industry? Enter: flight deals. Every once in a while, crazy opportunities come along where you can book business class for less than you’d pay for economy. Don’t believe us? In the last two months, you could’ve flown business class from Los Angeles to Asia for $560 round trip; or Qatar Airways business class from Europe to Maldives or Malaysia for £700 round trip. That’s just recently! Here’s how to never miss a flight deal, and get in on the action for yourself.
Upgrades really do happen, and when they do, they’re better than anyone ever imagines. Sometimes its the double beep at the gate to let the agent know your seat has changed, or it’s an email the night before letting you know that all has worked out, but however it happens it’s the best. If you want to be one of those people so happy on the plane, they actually smile in their photos, there are a few flight upgrade tips that actually work, and you should be using them.
Have high hopes of an upgrade? Unless you’re part of that airline’s loyalty program, odds are not in your favour. Although it’s not strictly necessary to be in an airline’s Frequent Flyer program, you’ve got a much better chance of having those three magical letters: SFU (Suitable For Upgrade) beside your name if you’re a regular card-carrying passenger. The best thing you can do to maximize the benefits of a frequent flyer program is to choose one program and use it exclusively. Benefits continue to increase the more you travel and, in addition to earning points, regular travellers can attain a higher ‘status’. This can come with added benefits such as lounge access, upgrade credits, and priority service levels.

There are often only a few cheap first-class fares per flight. Instead of flying round trip on a single airline, you may find better prices by flying one way with one airline and returning with another. (On domestic flights, it’s now rare that one-way trips cost more than half of a round trip.) On some domestic routes, first-class fares can be as little as $100 more than coach seats.

In first class, I don’t want the little glasses of Champagne. I want a cup of tea. But the cups are tiny, so it goes cold, and I can’t stand cold tea, it’s an absolute pet peeve. So I bring a large mug on long-haul flights; it’s not fancy, but it has a photo of my village in the Cotswolds on it. I’m a mug fetishist: I normally fly Virgin, and they’re so into tea their mugs are the best—the biggest, out of anyone’s—but they’re still not big enough for me.


Over the past years, first class travel has been undergoing unprecedented improvements, as more airlines upgrade their “upper decks” to meet the growing expectations of the most discerning flyers. At the same time, a growing number of carriers choose aggressive pricing strategies, offering volume discounts and wholesale first class airfares through select consolidators with results-proven distribution channels.
If it’s your first time flying first class, you're in for a treat. Sit back, relax and leave it to the cabin crew to make your first class travel experience one to remember. Just like us, they’re travel experts, ensuring your trip will be awesome beyond your widlest dreams. Treat yourself to first class treatment today and enjoy a taste of luxury with lastminute.com.
But Matrix can show you the discounted fares too (as many frequent fliers and travel hackers know). Matrix, as we've mentioned before, is the Google-owned software that powers the most popular travel search engines, as well as many airlines and travel agents' tools. To find the discounted fares, all you have to do is choose "Business class or higher" in the search box. The Y-Up fares are rolled into the search results and show the seats as first class.
If you don't have access to a service such as Flight Alerts, check in with the airlines 24 hours prior to departure. If an upgrade is still unavailable at this point, check in online at the airline's Web site. Most airlines establish a waitlist for upgrades at the airport. Priority is usually given to those who have checked-in the earliest and with online check-in available 24 hours prior to departure; this will greatly increase your chances of getting that elusive upgrade.

For international trips, book a cheap coach ticket to a gateway before spending more for international business class. For example, fares to Europe from the Midwest or East Coast can be as much as $1,000 cheaper than similar itineraries from the West Coast. New York tends to have the most frequent discounted business- and first-class fares to Europe, so if you can get there economically, you can then fly the rest of the way up front.


Joe also recounts that Air France emailed him a couple of times on the day of departure offering a cheap (not free) upgrade. “I’ve twice missed this because I didn’t check my emails close enough to departure. One of these times I had even called the airline to ask if they had any deals and they said no! So keep checking your emails even up to a couple of hours before you fly.”
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