Historically airlines have waited until the New Year and sometimes as late as spring before offering their lowest Business Class fares to Europe. In this annual game of “chicken” travelers waiting for the possibility of securing the lowest fares are offset against the risk of no availability on their preferred dates of travel by the time the sale fares are introduced. The twist this year, which may well be more than just a flash sale technique is for American Airlines to offer substantially discounted fares with a 10 day minimum stay at the destination.
While ten days may be too long for a vacation for many travelers, the savings offered are considerable….as of this morning, a Business Class ticket on American Airlines from JFK to DUB for travel in July is pricing at just under $2,000 including all taxes. From LAX the fare only increases to $2,200.
The requirements are fairly straightforward;
- Flights on American Airlines equipment only – i.e. no code shares
- 10 minimum stay
- Tickets purchased at least 60 days in advance
- Open jaw permitted – i.e you can fly into one airport and return home from another
Ordinarily sales have ticketed deadlines clearly stated, in this instance there is no deadline which strong suggests this may be a new Business Class pricing formula being tested. Only time will tell if other carriers embrace the idea.