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Most people are probably not ready to travel right now but a few are making plans for 2021 and for those people, we’re starting to see a number of great Business Class fares emerging for travel between Europe and the United States. Coming hot on the heels of the great Business Class fares I discussed yesterday comes a great deal for travel between London and New York courtesy of TAP Air Portugal.
The deals on offer are for flights out of London Heathrow and London Gatwick for arrivals into New York JFK and New York Newark and all flights route through either Lisbon or Porto.
TAP Air Portugal allows travelers a free layover (of up to 5 days) in Portugal but if your aim is to get to/from New York as quickly as possible there are plenty of routings with stopovers of just a few hours.
There are a few key things that you’ll need to know before you search for these fares:
- You’ll find these amazing fares for trips as short as 1-night
- These fares are available from mid-September 2020 through to the end of the current booking period (which is in July 2021).
- These fares can be used over Christmas, New Year and the spring school vacations.
- You may find that some OTAs are offering marginally cheaper fares then TAP but, considering the state of the travel industry right now, booking directly with the airline may be the smarter choice – it’s often a lot easier to process changes when you’ve booked direct rather than through an intermediary.
Here’s an example of a fare that you can book as found on the TAP Air Portugal website…
…and here’s a screenshot from Google Flights giving you an example of just how easy it should be to find a fare for dates that work for you (most months between now and July show availability like this):
Choose Your Flights Carefully
Whether you travel from Heathrow or Gatwick and route via Lisbon or Porto, your short-haul flights between the UK and Portugal will always be on smaller aircraft that have very simple Business Class cabins with 2 recliner seats on either side of a single central aisle. As these flights are only a little over two hours in length, this shouldn’t really matter so what you should focus on instead is getting the best experience possible for the transatlantic portions of your journey.
This where your choice of flights becomes key.
TAP operates a number of different aircraft to New York but only one of these aircraft offers TAP’s newest and best Business Class seat. The aircraft to look out for is TAP’s Airbus A330-900neo.
You’ll find that TAP also operates single-aisle A321neo aircraft between Portugal and New York but even though these aircraft have considerably better Business Class seats that the airline’s short-haul Airbus aircraft, the cabins are nowhere near as comfortable and spacious as the cabin on the A330-900neo.
If you’re using TAP’s webpage to search for flights, you’ll find that the airline has notated which flights offer its very best aircraft:
This is not to say that you’ll have a poor experience if you can’t manage to book the larger aircraft, but the A330-900neo’s Business Class cabin is definitely superior to the cabin offered on the A321.
Where To Credit The Flights
TAP Portugal is a member of the Star Alliance so there’s a wide choice of loyalty programs to which its flights can be credited….but you need to be careful – you get a lot more credit with some programs than you do with others.
To give yourself all the information you need to make the best decision I suggest using the Wheretocredit tool and, just to give you an idea of the kind of options open to you, here are a few examples of what some of the loyalty programs will offer you.
- Aeroplan – 200% of distance flown
- Emirates Skywards – 150% of distance flown
- Miles & More – 200% of distance flown
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer – 125% of distance flown
- United MileagePlus – 125% of distance flown
Crediting these business class flights to one of the programs offering miles at a rate of 200% of the distance flown would see you earn over 17,000 miles and that’s why I would probably credit any flights that I booked to Aeroplan.
TAP Air Portugal is currently offering some fantastic Business Class fares for travel between London and New York and because these fares are available deep into 2021, there’s no need to travel anytime soon if you want to lock in this price.
Before you book, make sure you check the latest Covid-19 rule and regulations that TAP has in place as well as its current rules surrounding cancellations and refunds (details here). Hopefully the worst will be behind us once we get into 2021 but it’s always good to know your rights before handing over your credit card details.