On Straight To The Points, I share great business and first class award flight opportunities via my private Award Alerts newsletter. Today, I wanted to share my most recent alert with the God Save The Points audience as we know business class to/from Europe is very popular.
To receive alerts about premium cabin award space for 4+ people, make sure you sign up for Award Alerts. Right now, these alerts are focused on awards to/from the U.S. and Canada.
Now, let’s get into it!
SWISS Business Class For 4
Return space is even better and available directly to the U.S.
Straight to the points:
Routes: Montreal (YUL)-Zurich (ZRH)
Operating airline: SWISS
Class of service: Business class
Dates: November – December 2019
Seats available: 4
Cabin layout: 1-2-1/2-2-1 (there’s a mix)
Book with (per person, one-way):
- Air Canada Aeroplan – 55,000 miles
- ANA Mileage Club – 88,000 miles (round-trip only)
- Asiana Club – 40,000 miles
- Avianca LifeMiles – 63,000 miles
- EVA Infinity MileageLands – 65,000
- Miles & More – 52,500 miles
- Singapore KrisFlyer – 65,000 miles
- United MileagePlus – 70,000 miles
Taxes (per person):
- One-way from YUL: $45.70
- Round-trip from YUL: $80.70
- Programs if you want to avoid surcharges:
Bank transfer partners:
- Amex Membership Rewards – Aeroplan, ANA, Avianca, Singapore
- Capital One – Aeroplan, Avianca, EVA, Singapore
- Chase Ultimate Rewards – Singapore, United
- Citi ThankYou Points – Avianca, EVA, Singapore
If you want to read more about the SWISS business class experience, check out Gib’s complete review.
It’s a solid overall product from the food to the service. If you can get one of the throne seats, it’s even better as you’ll have plenty of space — the armrests are like small tables.
If you’re looking for a European holiday, I wouldn’t hesitate to book this especially when you can get 4 people on the same flight!
Now, I know most of you probably don’t think about flying out of Montreal (YUL) when flying to Europe, but I was seeing a number of connecting flights from the U.S. Even if you have to book a separate positioning flight, it might be worth it since an award on SWISS can easily be booked without surcharges.
Here are the dates that work for 4 people out of Montreal:
November: 5, 6, 9, 10, 12, 13, 17, 19, 20, 22-26, 29, 30
December: 1-4, 6-10, 13-17, 18, 22, 24
Return space is a bit better as you can find plenty of dates to Montreal as well as some space to Chicago and New York:
November: 5, 6, 8, 12-15, 19-22, 24,26-29
December: 1-18, 21-24
Zurich-New York JFK/Newark(some dates have space to both airports)
November: 2, 5, 6, 8-10, 12-14 16, 19-21, 23, 26-28, 30
December: 2-5, 7-12, 14, 14-19, 24
November: 6, 7, 12-14, 19-21, 26-29
December: 3, 4, 10-12, 17-19, 24, 25
Best Ways To Book SWISS Business Class
My favorite way to book is with 55,000 Aeroplan miles per person. Aeroplan is a transfer partner of Amex Membership Rewards and the new Capital One program. Not only is it easy to acquire Aeroplan miles, but the rate is the best out there and you won’t pay surcharges.
Keep in mind that while Amex transfers to Aeroplan are 1:1, Capital One transfers are 2:1.5.
If you don’t have enough Amex Membership Rewards points or Capital One miles but have some Citi ThankYou Points, you can transfer from all three to Avianca LifeMiles which also does not impose surcharges. Transfers from Amex and Citi are 1:1 while Cap One is again 2:1.5.
Amex is currently running a 15% transfer bonus to Avianca LifeMiles which means.
LifeMiles has a competitive rate at 63,000 miles but the program doesn’t always see the same award space as other Star Alliance partners. Additionally, the site is prone to screw-ups. I’m not saying don’t use LifeMiles, it can be a very useful program. Just know that it can be a headache if things don’t go as planned.
Finally, we have United. While United doesn’t impose surcharges, its rate of 70,000 miles is decent and it’s easy to earn miles as its a transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards.
How To Book
If you don’t know the exact dates you want to fly, keep things simple and use United’s calendar search option.
- Run a flexible date search for your ideal month of travel on United
- If booking with another Star Alliance partner, confirm space by searching with the respective program
- LifeMiles often has issues so don’t be surprised if it doesn’t show space — if you’re brave, you can try talking with one of their phone agents
- Transfer points (if necessary)
- Log into your account
- Run the search again
- Complete the booking
If you know the exact dates you want to travel, go ahead and search with the program you plan to use. Keep in mind that Miles & More requires you to have at least 7,000 miles in your account to run a search online.
I’m always excited to find 4 business class seats to Europe and finding it on SWISS makes it just that little bit better. If you’re able to book, make sure you take plenty of pictures of the Alps to brag to your friends.
Let me know in the comments if book one or if there’s a particular destination you’d like me to include in a future Award Alert.