Business Class. What To Look For - What To Avoid
Flying in business class can turn a dreaded 14-hour flight into an experience you might wish lasted a little longer. Characterized by better seating, quality food, and entertainment, this enhanced travel experience can also come with an incredible price tag. It doesn't always have to be so incredibly unaffordable though. To learn how to fly business and first class for substantially less, check out my other post here.
If you are willing to pay the extra cost or want to splurge for a special trip, there are a few things you want to look for and some things to avoid. Not all business class experiences are created equal and what I'm going to cover in this post will help you distinguish the good from the bad.
What To Look For
1. The Type of Airplane:
Many Airlines operate multiple types of planes on the same route. Always look before you book to make sure you're ok with the type of plane you'll be on. For this example, we'll use New York and London, two very popular destinations. Let's say you want to fly in between the two cities for a special anniversary trip and you're willing to spend the extra money to fly in business class. If you do a quick google search, you'll see the many options you have when it comes to choosing the airline you wish to fly on.
Now that you can see all your choices, it's time to figure out what type of plane that airline will be operating. To do this, head to seatguru.com. You'll be asked to put in the airline and either the flight number or destination cities and the date you'll be traveling.
After this, a screen will come up with all flights operated by that airline, (and partner airlines), on that particular day. You can click to view the seat map of that airplane.
I clicked the 6:45 pm flight for this example, operated by a 777-300. This is the seat map that came up.
Now that you've seen what the configuration of the airplane is, do a google search for the airline and type of plane. For this example, I googled "American Airlines 777-300 business class".
If you would've done the same search for British Airways you'd find that their flight from JFK-LHR is operated by a 747 and has a business class that consists of a 2-4-2 configuration. That's eight seats across instead of four on American!
This simple search can help you distinguish which business class flights are worth spending the extra cash, and which ones are not. If you're going to pay to fly business class, check beforehand so you end up flying something like this!
Instead of something like this...