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Best Business Class Product to Europe

Best Business Class Product to Europe

Old Mar 15, 2024, 3:00 pm
  #1  
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Best Business Class Product to Europe

Good evening,

This is such a huge forum, I may be posting this in the wrong location, my apologies if so. Please feel free to point me in the right direction!

I am flying to Barcelona from Orlando this summer. I planned on flying Air France, since I heard so many wonderful things about their business class products, but it seems every flight is really a Delta or KLM plane. So now I figured I would look at all my options. Any recommendations for a great business class product to fly to Spain? Obviously, routes and cost will play into my decision, but, I very rarely splurge on myself, and would love to have a great experience if possible!
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Old Mar 15, 2024, 3:22 pm
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Welcome to Flyertalk.

There are lots of great products that can get you to Barcelona. There are no direct flights from Barcelona to Orlando and vice versa, so you'll need to connect somewhere.

Do you have any preferences for what's important to you with a business class product? Do you prefer the quickest possible flight? The biggest bed? The best quality food? Excellent lounges? An easy airport in which to stopover? The cheapest option? Some insight into your priorities might help narrow down your options.
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Old Mar 15, 2024, 7:25 pm
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I like AF business class, but not enough (more than other airlines) to justify an extra connection.

Between MCO and BCN, single connection options include the US3, BA, EI, and maybe IB, all of which have pros and cons. For me, price would be an important factor (e.g. if DL is more expensive than the others, cross it off your list), and I would consider a second connection, especially if I wanted to try to visit another city on the same trip.
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Old Mar 16, 2024, 1:13 am
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Emirates.
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Old Mar 16, 2024, 3:41 am
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Originally Posted by guv1976
Emirates.
+1

Although way out of the way as well, I'd throw in TK and QR through Istanbul and Doha. Both great lounges, fantastic J class products both with great food and service. Also, nice long flights.

If it's a once or twice in a lifetime splurge that's how I'd route myself.

Last edited by RetiredATLATC; Mar 16, 2024 at 6:46 am
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Old Mar 16, 2024, 5:39 am
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Originally Posted by steveholt
Welcome to Flyertalk.

There are lots of great products that can get you to Barcelona. There are no direct flights from Barcelona to Orlando and vice versa, so you'll need to connect somewhere.

Do you have any preferences for what's important to you with a business class product? Do you prefer the quickest possible flight? The biggest bed? The best quality food? Excellent lounges? An easy airport in which to stopover? The cheapest option? Some insight into your priorities might help narrow down your options.

I would say that while price is a factor, I dont mind paying for good experience. However, I will not will not pay $1k more for Delta when AF has the same route, essentially.

Length of flight is not really a concern, though I prefer one connection rather than two. I really just want a nice experience - 1:2:1 set-up (I am a single flyer, so would prefer not to be seated next to someone), good food, and more of a pod/private seat with lie down option.

American seems to have nice offering, although I cant speak to the food or comfort. I was hoping to fly Air France, but it seems most of their operators are Delta flights, anyway.

In terms of connection, Ive been looking primarily at Atlanta, Miami, and JFK. While I would love the opportunity to stop over in Paris to experience the city for a day, I am a single flyer, so dealing with luggage and such by myself for a day stopover may be challenging. Im flying to Barcelona to meet friends for a week at an Airbnb. So my flight there/back is not under a tight schedule.

Access to a club/lounge while I wait in the airport would be great, but it doesnt have to be exceptionally luxurious, just decent.
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Old Mar 16, 2024, 10:44 am
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Originally Posted by RetiredATLATC
+1

Although way out of the way as well, I'd throw in TK and QR through Istanbul and Doha. Both great lounges, fantastic J class products both with great food and service. Also, nice long flights.
Yes, but Emirates serves MCO; neither TK nor QR does.
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Old Mar 16, 2024, 11:06 am
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Originally Posted by guv1976
Yes, but Emirates serves MCO; neither TK nor QR does.
When you mentioned EK, I assumed you were suggesting one of their fifth freedom routes from NYC (neither of which go to BCN though)?
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Old Mar 16, 2024, 11:22 am
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Originally Posted by moondog
When you mentioned EK, I assumed you were suggesting one of their fifth freedom routes from NYC (neither of which go to BCN though)?
​​​​​​
No, I was suggesting a connection (more likely, a multi-city booking) via DXB.

However, I see that Emirates does fly MEX-BCN nonstop. But getting from MCO to MEX could be problematic, as only AM and Volaris fly that route.
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Old Mar 17, 2024, 10:10 am
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Indiana1975 If you've browsed these boards, you'll realize some here have incredibly specific likes & dislikes compared to more typical flight passengers. I know I'm a frequent flyer compared to most people in the world, or even in the USA, but I feel like I barely travel in FlyerTalk company.

I mention that because, if you usually fly coach (Y class) or even domestic first (F) class, you will probably find most international business class (J) products very nice and all will probably feel like a splurge to you.

I'm the type who prioritizes comfortable connections, and single stops at that. Will I have to exit security to change planes? (Deal breaker for me, unless I'm stopping overnight.) How much walking is required at a connection? Does a particular airport have a reputation for being friendly/easy to navigate/well sign-posted, or do even experienced passengers (pax) complain about it?

Some people (the very tall, or larger folks) really prioritize the physical seat itself. All lie flat seats are better than mere recliners, but some have a narrow footwell, require facing backwards, more/less storage for items en route, etc. Again, compared to sitting in Y, all are extravagant and spacious, but there are noticeable differences between products.

In flight experience matters to others. Does an airline serve champagne or merely "sparkling wine"? How robust is the in flight entertainment (IFE) system? Is WiFi reliable with sufficient bandwidth for work?

If you describe what bothers you on your worst flights, or what you most look forward to imagining flying in J for this trip, and perhaps list 2-3 flights you're considering (after doing a quick Google Flights search and picking what you like best by schedule/stop/etc.), you will get much more tailored advice on this forum.
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Old Mar 17, 2024, 1:59 pm
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Originally Posted by guv1976
​​​​​​
No, I was suggesting a connection (more likely, a multi-city booking) via DXB.

However, I see that Emirates does fly MEX-BCN nonstop. But getting from MCO to MEX could be problematic, as only AM and Volaris fly that route.
The MEX thing has potential of being a decent catch because it is still a single connection, and you can often save a lot of money by starting Transatlantics in Mexico, the Caribbean, or Central America.

Unfortunately, EK is currently selling MEX-BCN at a premium, so you need to monkey with it on the front or back end to bring it down to earth.
Add the positioning flight issue to this and we're actually almost as bad off as flying to BCN via DXB... something most normal people would regard as bonkers squared.

As such, the LCD remains American, Delta, United, BA, and maybe LH, AF, KL. None of these are mind-blowing, of course, but I'd probably be happy which whatever one ends up presenting the best value. For me, adding another connection would require a vastly superior experience and/or a fare that is considerably below average.
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Old Mar 17, 2024, 2:06 pm
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The summer Olympics will be in Paris this year so the OP should consider that pricing through Paris will be quite expensive if the OP plans travel during that time.
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