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And you can upgrade to First for peanuts, er Avios!

If you follow air travel deals, you’ll know that business class deals out of the USA are about as rare as mentally stable reality TV stars. Europe sees constant bargains to the USA, but for whatever reason the same hardly ever transpires in reverse. Today, you’re just a few clicks and one clever trick away from a cracking good flight deal, taking you to the heart of Europe and back for $1500, or less.

The Flight Deals To Europe

British Airways and Oneworld has published an attractive fare for travel from New York to Berlin, Brussels or Luxembourg, which basically puts you a one hour connecting flight away from all the rest of Europe. The deal comes in at $1692 if you search online, but if you spend $12, you can instantly take $200 off that price tag and then you can go even further We’ll spill all the beans in a bit. Prague is available for $1800 using the same discount.

AARP is the key. Years back, AARP rebranded and no longer has an age requirement or virtually any barrier for entry, which means you’re $12 away from joining. When you join, you’ll be eligible for great discounts on British Airways flights, including $200 off every business class fare from the USA. That means $1692 drops to $1492 instantly. Before joining AARP, read the rest of the article to make sure the deal works for you.

Hot travel tip: These deals can be upgraded to first class for 18,000 points one way, which means you could experience the upper deck of a 747 in business class and the nose of a 747 in first class on one round trip!

The Dates You Can Travel

This fare is exciting because it is wide open for travel in all of 2019 and into 2020. To take advantage, you’ll need to fly on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday and stay for at least six nights. Of course, you can stay much longer as well if you want.

That means you can explore the joys of Europe in July, August, September, October, November, December, January, February, March and April. If you have flexibility, late September is a lovely time to visit, when most travellers are back to work and or school, leading to lower hotel prices and fewer crowds. March is also fantastic for the same reason. But then again… winter markets are iconic too.

How To Book These British Airways Deals

The best thing to do is to search the British Airways website first, right here to ensure you have something you can use. If you find a New York to Berlin deal you can use (NYC-TXL), you’ll then want to join AARP to instantly take advantage of the $200 savings.

Joining AARP is instant, and you simply navigate to the “Member Discounts” page to click over to British Airways. Note: you must click through the AARP site to take $200 off. At the booking page, you’ll have the option of taking a further discount by using some Avios Points or a promo code.

If you’re a Chase Visa card holder, you can enter CHASEBA10 in the promo code field to drop the price down to $1395, which is a real steal!

If you’re “thinking about this one”, don’t think for too long. These deals rarely last more than a day or two, so it’d be surprising if it’s still there on Monday morning. Europe awaits and Berlin is such a great city to explore, but it really is the perfect place to launch trips elsewhere into Italy, Eastern Europe, France, the UK and beyond! Enjoy…

OH, And First Class Upgrades

Upgrading to first is really easy! Upgrades require roughly 18,000 Avios per person, each way, but paying 36,000 points and $1395 for a return First Class ticket is amazing. And yes, you can upgrade just one way as well, if you prefer. Here’s a super handy upgrade guide showing exactly how to lock in your upgrade with ease. You’ll just want to confirm space before you book, if you can. Cheers!

HT: OMAAT via Premium-Flights.com

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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11 Comments

      1. It’s the difference in J and F YQ. I’ve always been charged when doing this ex US in the past – but if they’ve Changed this then it would be even better

  1. I’ve seen some comments that using the AARP discount prevents you from upgrading with Avios – do you know if that is true or not? Thanks for posting about the deal.

  2. You cannot upgrade J to F when using the AARP discount (I tried online and by phone). When you correctly reflect this fact, the $200 taxes + 22,500 Avios ach way for upgrading, the higher mileage earning rate for F over J (see AS earning rates), and the longer stay requirements for the J fare, you are better off just buying F for about $3,000. This really isn’t the deal the bloggers are advertising if you want to fly F. If you want to fly J on BA, then this is a good deal, but for $1,600 not $1,400.

  3. @ Gilbert — What you do you mean “you don’t believe that to be true in practice”? It is a fact — the increased fuel surcharge for F over J is $200 each way. You must pay ot to BA when upgrading, unless you know a special trick.

    1. You can. Some agents (particularly in India) misinterpret the rules. An agent in the UK should always be able to process the upgrade. Even if you HUCB a couple times without success, just keep trying different numbers. There is nothing per the t&c’s which restrict it. Fare rules apply to all tickets, and all these book into upgrade eligible classes. Particularly in regard to the Europe>US segment, there’s never any additional APD and therefore it would be astounding if you paid more than $35 to upgrade.

      1. @ Gilbert — OK, I buy that HUCA may work (it often does), but the r/t YQ is $1,506 for F and $1,106 for J. That is $400 r/t, and I don’t believe you (or even a stupid phone agent) can avoid this. That is the exact up-charge offered to me online ($200 one way) when I tried to upgrade with Avios yesterday.

        Also, ignore my last bit about $1,600 vs $1,400, as this was a pre-coffee, pre-contact lens, in-bed, typing-on-phone comment. As you state, the J fare should be ~$1,400 with the two discounts applied. I ended up cancelling my J booking and buying F from my home airport (ATL) rather than JFK. Taking all the factors above into account plus the positioning cost, ~$2,900 for F was a better deal for me.

    1. Doesn’t sound right? Try again using the AARP link to BA? Berlin at least on the return was key for finding these fares, I tried Budapest as well (I tried virtually every city) and there were good fares there as well.

  4. I was able to book JFK-TXL return for 1500 and YYZ-FCO-TXL-JFK for 2000 both in October…, all business class..was never able to use the CHASEBA10 but I will at least try to have it applied with a phone call before 24 hour free cancellation period is over.

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