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How to Find Affordable Business-Class Airfare to Europe, Asia, and South America

by Wendy Perrin | June 22, 2019

Question:

Wendy, we’d like your help finding a reliable airline ticket consolidator for a July trip to Hong Kong for five of us. We need two business-class and three economy tickets on the same plane. Thank you for any guidance you can give us. —Bonnie

Answer:

Bonnie, for business-class consolidator airline tickets, you might try Blake Fleetwood of Cook Travel, a boutique consolidator with 35 years of experience and a high level of personalized service. Blake negotiates low fares with all the major airlines to just about every international destination, mostly in business or first class; his best deals are to Europe, Asia, and South America. Look to Blake when you have some flexibility in your travel dates, so that his team can peruse the options to find you the best deal.

Blake’s business-class fares save you between 10% and 40%, depending on how far ahead you’re buying them (three to four months is ideal, though you can sometimes find great deals at the last minute) and the time of year you’re flying. Business-class fares are relatively low during holidays such as Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s, and Easter. They’re relatively high from September through November and March through May, since those are the two peak times of year for business travel.

Blake’s team is available 24 hours a day, and they have an emergency hotline if your flights go awry en route. Beware of less reputable consolidators that may be reselling frequent-flier tickets; if you can’t earn miles on a ticket, that’s a likely sign that it’s fraudulent. Another bonus: Blake’s business- and first-class fares are almost always refundable, though sometimes minus a penalty of about $500 per ticket.

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7 Comments

  1. roza rozenfeld

    Wendy, I sent an email to Al Thomas thru your link as I needed 2 business class tickets from Sydney, Australia to Newark, NJ 2 weeks ago. I never received even an answer.
    Based on my experience with him, I don’t think he is such a reliable source.

  2. Judy K

    Wendy,
    I just wanted to let you know that I recently used Al Thomas (whose name I found on your website) for 3 business tickets to Russia in May 2018. He found a great deal and I purchased the tickets last Friday morning. Al was very clear that there would be $1000 cancellation fee per ticket. Unfortunately, later that evening I discovered that I had given Al the wrong date for the return flight. It was completely my fault. I was in panic mode thinking about my $3000 error. It was after hours but I left panicked emails and a voicemail messages for Al assuming that he wouldn’t get the message until Monday and I would have to pay the cancellation fees. Come Saturday morning I had voicemail and email messages from Al not to worry and he would take care of everything. And he did. He went above and beyond and took care of the problem including rebooking. Just wanted to let you know. Also, I am not a shill. I am in the process of booking my 2 second trip with one of your WOW agents so you should have a record of me. In any event, I just wanted to let you know.

  3. Mari C

    Wendy, do you have any other recommendations for business class ticket discounts? I tried Al, but maybe he’s become very busy. I got one email from him, but needed a slight adjustment. Haven’t received anything back since, and it’s been two weeks (I wrote polite email, and left voice message as well….) I wasn’t even able to reach someone on the phone at the office, just voice meail.. Really not sure what is going on and I’d really like to book this ticket ASAP so I have to give up on him.

    I tried a few other Biz class Discounters, but frankly so many of them seemed fishy……I just need a solid recommendation on who to trust. I’ve read too many scary stories about being being stranded somewhere due to an invalid ticket from a consolidator/ticket discounter.

    Thanks!

  4. colleeen

    Wendy, do you know if his fares are mileage-earning eligible? I thought consolidators aren’t.

    Also, would a $$ flight in business class be eligible for F upgrade using miles?

    I didn’t see either of these at his site.

    Thanks!

    1. Wendy Perrin

      All of Al’s fares earn mileage. As for an upgrade to the next class, that depends on the airline. Usually bulk tickets do not allow an upgrade. Also, most airlines no longer offer a first-class cabin. But where first class is available, Al probably offers discounted first-class fares too.

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