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Trip Report: Swiss A330-300 Business Class JFK-ZRH

I paid for this fare after seeing it pop up on The Flight Deal as a fare attack by Star Alliance on Skyteam hubs. It cost me $1,487 R/T for Business Class on Swiss and the routing was JFK-ZRH-VCE-ZHR-EWR.

Now, when I see fare deals like this, I’m always torn between being totally impulsive and trying to think it through. This deal was on a multitude of Star Alliance partners, so I wanted to pick one that A). I’d never flown before and 2.) that would credit well to United.

Why United? They have a non-stop flight from EWR-MEM (only one of two – the other is Delta from LGA-MEM) and those flights can be either dirt cheap or prohibitively expensive. I knew I wanted to go see my Mom in the near future, and thought I could use the miles I’d earn from this booking to book the most expensive leg of a round-trip ticket, which is exactly what ended up happening.

Screenshot 2015-01-25 10.46.05

I earned 12,493 miles from these flights – 7 miles short of a free domestic one-way

The flight to go see my Mom for Christmas was pricing out at around $450 each way on United – yes, over $900 round-trip.

I redeemed all the miles earned on these Swiss flights for a Christmas trip to visit my Mom on United and got a value of ~4 cents per mile, which is awesome. I also picked up a REDbird card while I was down there. And I got to go to Venice for my birthday – thanks to this fare.

Free flight to Memphis

Free flight to Memphis

Anyway, that’s the story behind the booking, back to Swiss business class.

The flight

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Booked: Venice in August

This year is shaping up to be very Europe-y. So far, I have Paris in June (on British Airways), Germany in Oktober (on Lufthansa), and now, Venice sandwiched in between the two in August (on Swiss).

I got in on the fare war that Star Alliance carriers were having at Delta hubs, and was able to book the new business class on Swiss round-trip for a hair under $1,500. Not nothing, but a good deal since it was only $40 more than regular ol’ economy. Plus, it’s my birthday trip: I’ll be turning 30 in Italy this year!

I’m glad I booked when I did because now, fares are around $5,000 for the same itinerary.

I'd much rather pay a third of that

I’d much rather pay less than a third of that!

This is good because:

  • It’s Star Alliance. I slipped into a Oneworld zone last year with mostly LAN and American metal
  • It’s on Swiss. I really want to see and try new products
  • It’s not SkyTeam. The only member I’m interested in at this point is Korean. Screw Delta, Air France, KLM, and Alitalia
  • I’ve never been to Italy, and can’t wait to see Venice
  • It’s my birthday trip, so will feel super special to be in a beautiful new place 🙂

Buying this ticket was NOT the most financially responsible thing I’ve ever done, but whatever. I was able to click through the FIA/Fidelity portal to get 3 points a dollar back + points for using a mileage-earning credit card, so around $75 back right off the bat. It will also give me new things to explore and write about (and I’m still not caught up with everything).

Last year was all about the Southern Hemisphere, with Easter Island, Santiago, Australia, Fiji, and New Zealand. This year is looking to be about Western Europe. So funny how these themes seem to crop up each year.

Did anyone else get on this deal? I’d love to hear about all the itineraries people were able to construct!

 

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