OneWorld Illiterate Traveler - Question

Old Dec 9, 19, 6:34 am
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OneWorld Illiterate Traveler - Question

Hello, AA flyers.

I've flown Delta/Skyteam 99% of the time for the past several years (Diamond and all that). In April next year, my wife and I are going to Bali and Singapore. Due to the travel distance/time, we would like to fly J for lie-flat seats. DL/KE are charging $9k-$10k per person whereas AA/Cathay/JAL are half the price at $4.8k. Below is the itinerary I'm looking at.

Is there a catch here as to why it's so much cheaper? I'm not familiar at all with the OneWorld alliance equipment/service.

Thanks in advance for your insight.

4/10/2020
BNA to LAX AA2202 on 738
LAX to HKG AA193 on 773
HKG to DPS AA8915 on Cathay 773

4/18/2020
SIN to HND AA8488 on JAL 777
HND to DFW AA8478 on JAL 789
DFW to BNA on AA2502 on 738

Last edited by RJPA; Dec 9, 19 at 8:06 am
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Old Dec 9, 19, 7:12 am
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Supply and demand. Theres no obvious "logic" on why specifically x flight is cheaper than y flight.

As for concerns about quality, AA's 77W and CX have excellent seats (same ones) while JL sky suite is also top notch. They blow away anything Skyteam has, IMO.
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Old Dec 9, 19, 7:23 am
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Originally Posted by RJPA View Post
Is there a catch here as to why it's so much cheaper? I'm not familiar at all with the OneWorld alliance equipment/service.
$4-5k is about average for business class to Asia, I would be thinking the opposite, as in why is DL/KE so ridiculously expensive .
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Old Dec 9, 19, 8:02 am
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Also note that the intra-asian routes on the Asian operators, even when flown by wide body aircraft, are not always in lie flat business class, but rather the old "barcalounger" seats. But that would be true for KE, as well as SQ and JL.

In your itinerary, the only true lie flat business class (and all aisle access seating) would be on the American operated flights.
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Old Dec 9, 19, 8:05 am
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Originally Posted by Antarius View Post
Supply and demand. Theres no obvious "logic" on why specifically x flight is cheaper than y flight.

As for concerns about quality, AA's 77W and CX have excellent seats (same ones) while JL sky suite is also top notch. They blow away anything Skyteam has, IMO.
Good to hear on the equipment. I wanted to make sure it wasn't going to be tired, worn-out seats. Thank you for the info.


Originally Posted by JJeffrey View Post
$4-5k is about average for business class to Asia, I would be thinking the opposite, as in why is DL/KE so ridiculously expensive .
Yep, that was on the back of my mind. DL isn't exactly always the reasonably-priced carrier, despite my bias toward them.

Thanks for the correction on KE. Coffee hadn't kicked in yet.
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Old Dec 9, 19, 8:10 am
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Originally Posted by Antarius View Post
Supply and demand. Theres no obvious "logic" on why specifically x flight is cheaper than y flight.

As for concerns about quality, AA's 77W and CX have excellent seats (same ones) while JL sky suite is also top notch. They blow away anything Skyteam has, IMO.
I'll second this-- I'd fly CX J over DL J in a heartbeat, having tried both over the past few years.
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Old Dec 9, 19, 8:21 am
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Originally Posted by RJPA View Post
Good to hear on the equipment. I wanted to make sure it wasn't going to be tired, worn-out seats. Thank you for the info.
Well, unless HKG-DPS is operated by an international long-haul (sometimes it might be), it will likely have the CX regional business class seats. They're basically like the old "angled flat" seats with a hard-backed shell, but they don't recline all that much. I don't mind them, but others do, although 5 hours is probably the limit of sitting in them. If the seat map is 2-2-2 (Airbus) or 2-3-2 (777) these are the seats you'll get. If you see 1-2-1 you'll get flat beds.

And then I'd check the configuration on JL NRT-SIN, they also don't always use lie-flats on regional routes (and NRT-SIN is a long regional route!), but I think "worst case" it will be an angled flat. But they also have some 1-2-1 lie flats in a higher-density configuration that are a little on the tight side. But their best 777 product looks like a 2-3-2 configuration on the seat map so don't just go by that - maybe check the JAL website?

In general, CX and JL are top-class airlines, although personally I don't love the CX business class catering (mostly my issue is with the main courses). AA on LAX-HKG will probably pleasantly surprise you, they have a great lounge for international business class, and it's a great seat. The CX lounges in HKG are great too. And at HND, you can check out both the CX and JL lounge (even though you're flying JL), which I'd do if you have time.
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Old Dec 9, 19, 8:21 am
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Originally Posted by Infinite1K View Post
Also note that the intra-asian routes on the Asian operators, even when flown by wide body aircraft, are not always in lie flat business class, but rather the old "barcalounger" seats. But that would be true for KE, as well as SQ and JL.

In your itinerary, the only true lie flat business class (and all aisle access seating) would be on the American operated flights.
The JAL 789 (HND-DFW) is also true lie flat with all aisle access.
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Old Dec 9, 19, 8:27 am
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Originally Posted by RJPA View Post
Hello, AA flyers.

I've flown Delta/Skyteam 99% of the time for the past several years (Diamond and all that). In April next year, my wife and I are going to Bali and Singapore. Due to the travel distance/time, we would like to fly J for lie-flat seats. DL/KE are charging $9k-$10k per person whereas AA/Cathay/JAL are half the price at $4.8k. Below is the itinerary I'm looking at.

Is there a catch here as to why it's so much cheaper? I'm not familiar at all with the OneWorld alliance equipment/service.

Thanks in advance for your insight.

4/10/2020
BNA to LAX AA2202 on 738
LAX to HKG AA193 on 773
HKG to DPS AA8915 on Cathay 773

4/18/2020
SIN to HND AA8488 on JAL 777
HND to DFW AA8478 on JAL 789
DFW to BNA on AA2502 on 738
As a person who flies often to Bali in biz class, I would keep an eye out on the flyertalk premium flyer deals ... many of the Chinese airlines and Turkish offer pretty good deals from time to time. If you leave x-Europe, you can find QR from Europe to Bali for €1600 (x-OSL, ARN, FCO, MXP seem to work well) r/t as well as deals on other airlines. Another trick is to fly to KUL, SIN or even BKK where deals abound and you can get to Bali pretty cheaply.

The Skyteam fare seems excessive .. possibly the stop in SIN, the oneworld fare seems about right for x-USA without a deal but with a bit of work you can do much better.

Good luck.
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Old Dec 9, 19, 8:35 am
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Originally Posted by ijgordon View Post
Well, unless HKG-DPS is operated by an international long-haul (sometimes it might be), it will likely have the CX regional business class seats. They're basically like the old "angled flat" seats with a hard-backed shell, but they don't recline all that much. I don't mind them, but others do, although 5 hours is probably the limit of sitting in them. If the seat map is 2-2-2 (Airbus) or 2-3-2 (777) these are the seats you'll get. If you see 1-2-1 you'll get flat beds.

And then I'd check the configuration on JL NRT-SIN, they also don't always use lie-flats on regional routes (and NRT-SIN is a long regional route!), but I think "worst case" it will be an angled flat. But they also have some 1-2-1 lie flats in a higher-density configuration that are a little on the tight side. But their best 777 product looks like a 2-3-2 configuration on the seat map so don't just go by that - maybe check the JAL website?

In general, CX and JL are top-class airlines, although personally I don't love the CX business class catering (mostly my issue is with the main courses). AA on LAX-HKG will probably pleasantly surprise you, they have a great lounge for international business class, and it's a great seat. The CX lounges in HKG are great too. And at HND, you can check out both the CX and JL lounge (even though you're flying JL), which I'd do if you have time.
Yeah, good call. Infinite1K also mentioned this above. So I looked up the exact equipment on seatguru for those flights. All JL and CX planes have the angle-flat, a.k.a. barcaloungers. But still better than economy so not a deal-breaker.

Thanks for the info on the lounges. Didn't even think about those since I usually go to SkyClub/Centurion.
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Old Dec 9, 19, 8:52 am
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Originally Posted by RJPA View Post
Yeah, good call. Infinite1K also mentioned this above. So I looked up the exact equipment on seatguru for those flights. All JL and CX planes have the angle-flat, a.k.a. barcaloungers. But still better than economy so not a deal-breaker.

Thanks for the info on the lounges. Didn't even think about those since I usually go to SkyClub/Centurion.
Seatguru is beyond worthless, forget about whatever you see there.

HKG-DPS will most likely be regional business class as mentioned above, but perfectly comfortable for a 4 hr daytime flight like this. Always a chance you could have a long haul aircraft subbed in between now and then so watch your reservation.

And the JL website will tell you exactly what config you have. The 772's on HND-SIN and NRT-SIN are the Sky Suite III config (as of today through March), 1-2-1 fully lay flat.

https://www.jal.co.jp/en/inter/servi...skysuite3.html

https://www.jal.co.jp/en/inter/servi...skysuite3.html
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Old Dec 9, 19, 9:13 am
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Originally Posted by ijgordon View Post
In general, CX and JL are top-class airlines, although personally I don't love the CX business class catering (mostly my issue is with the main courses). AA on LAX-HKG will probably pleasantly surprise you, they have a great lounge for international business class, and it's a great seat. The CX lounges in HKG are great too. And at HND, you can check out both the CX and JL lounge (even though you're flying JL), which I'd do if you have time.
I have yet to fly JL from LAX-NRT/HND yet (or CX, but I have reasons why I refuse to fly their airline), but I've flown AA from LAX-HKG and LAX-NRT several times. Their newer seats on their 787 and even the 777 are comfortable layflats and the window seats are private. Only issue on the AA 787 is the lack of window control during the flight, where the FAs decide when they are open/closed.The FA service leaves something to be desired, but otherwise I would fly AA J if I weren't flying ANA F.
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Old Dec 9, 19, 10:19 am
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As the equipment has been well covered already, I would like to also point out that when you're flying J on OW with long haul international segments, you'll have access to numerous business class lounges during the trip.

The AA Admiral's Club @ BNA
AA's Flagship and the OW Business Class lounges @ LAX
Multiple CX Business Class and the QF Business class lounges @ HKG
BA and QF Business Class lounges @ SIN (except if you have a really early flight, then contract Dnata - not very good)
JL and CX Business Class lounges @ HND
AA's Flagship Lounge @ DFW

That's a lot of opportunities for enjoying some champagne in my book (in addition to the ones on the flights, of course)!
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Old Dec 9, 19, 10:56 am
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Originally Posted by RJPA View Post
Good to hear on the equipment. I wanted to make sure it wasn't going to be tired, worn-out seats. Thank you for the info.




Yep, that was on the back of my mind. DL isn't exactly always the reasonably-priced carrier, despite my bias toward them.

Thanks for the correction on KE. Coffee hadn't kicked in yet.
Demand for biz tickets on BNA-DPS is almost certainly not very high and DL doesn't really feel the need to compete on the route. If you do a Google Flights search, you will see the cheapest DL fares on this route are ZNX3ZNDD fares which are around $8000 roundtrip and require Mon-Thu travel. If you check out of larger markets like CHI, WAS, NYC, DFW, SEA, LAX, etc., you will see that DL has D1 fares in the $5K - $6K range roundtrip to DPS (since DL does not serve DPS, these generally involve connecting in ICN to KE metal). DL partner China Eastern has biz fares from around $3.1K roundtrip from JFK and $2.8K from LAX/SFO.

Last edited by xliioper; Dec 9, 19 at 11:20 am
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Old Dec 9, 19, 11:05 am
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And to think I opened this expecting to find someone asking about experiences transiting a OneWorld hub without being able to read...
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