Fare Play: 3 Ways to Win the Game of Affordable Business Class Travel


Priority boarding and an immediate adult libation in hand. Bigger seats with more leg room. Closer access to the lavatory as well as the exit when it’s time to deplane. Let’s face it: taking a plane ride to another part of the globe (whether for business or leisure) is a much more comfortable experience when you’re flying business or first class—especially if your final destination is outside the contiguous United States.

The only inconvenience about being seated outside of the ridiculously small parameters of coach class, however, is the pretty penny airline companies like to panhandle from their passengers. The good news? Over the last year and a half (at least), business and first class travel has become significantly less invasive on your wallet… so much so that travel bloggers like George Hobica proudly profess on internet publications that their upgraded flight accommodations are only minutely more than economy tickets (Hobica claims he flew from New York JFK to Boston in first class on American for $140 each way in early 2014), or are often the exact same price as refundable coach fares.

While tickets for business and first class airfare previously mirrored the average American’s monthly mortgage payment in the past, prices continue to remain lower today—and that’s something all aspiring jetsetters should be taking advantage of.

Learn 3 wise ways to find an affordable business class flight

Here are three other ways we voyagers can vigorously win the game of affordable business travel:

1. Be a rebel—Go against the flow.
A recent publication from the International Business Times reports anti-coach cabin commuters are more likely to be offered a difficult-to-decline upgrade or land a significantly less expensive business class fare if you book your trip during times when Corporate Americans aren’t going anywhere. Saturday and Sunday morning flights typically tend to have a lighter load of “professional passengers,” which is an opportune time to secure a budget-friendly upgrade or a business class bargain. Holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas are also delightful for departing at a discounted rate.

2. Join a Mile-High Club (and by that we don’t mean in an airplane restroom).
Signing up for a credit card or enrolling in a particular airline’s incentive program that offers mileage perks is a remarkable route for racking up points toward a more affordable flight upgrade down the road. Whether you’re charging your weekly Happy Hour bar tab or simply buying extra miles upon checking in your luggage, you’ll quickly (without even realizing it) accumulate enough points to escape economy seating eternally.

3. Similar to watching exotic dancers… keep your eyes out for the “triple Ds.”
Although it initially sounded inappropriate, by “triple Ds” we are truthfully talking about destination, date & discounts. First, identify where it is you are planning to go (your destination). Then, keep in mind a rough time frame of when you anticipate leaving town (dates). Finally, be on the lookout for alerts from your favorite airline companies, notifying you of slashed ticket prices and promotional offers (your most important “D…” the discounts!). These types of announcements can usually be found in your email inbox and several of your most frequently perused social media news feeds like Facebook and Twitter.

So there you have it: Avoiding another treacherous trip in coach class can be just as feasible as it is affordable. By following these three tightwad traveling tips and capitalizing on recent reduced fares for upgraded travel, you may never have to undergo an ugly experience in economy class (or pay a pretty penny to do so) ever again.