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Deal alert: Flights to Budapest from Los Angeles and other cities as low as $536 round-trip

July 05, 2022
5 min read
the Budapest Parliament at night
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Budapest isn't one of those cities that turns up very often in fare sales, so we wanted to highlight this rare occurrence.

There's a slew of round-trip flights from Los Angeles to Hungary's capital city available at a steep discount. We also found some quality sale fares out of Newark and Chicago as well.

Just as with most of the discount deals we mention, this sale involves economy fares. That means you'll have to pay extra to check luggage.

Checking a bag will cost you around $75 each way, so keep that in mind as you choose your itinerary. The best availability for this sale is for travel between November 2022 and March 2023. Some flights include the Thanksgiving holiday, but Christmas and New Year's Eve are excluded.

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Thanks to Scott’s Cheap Flights for first alerting us to this deal. Its Premium membership is available for $49 per year, while the Elite tier option is available for $199 per year. The latter offers access to deals on premium economy, business- and first-class tickets.

As always, be as flexible with your travel plans as possible, as it'll typically help you find better prices.

Deal basics

Airlines: Air France, Brussels Airlines, American Airlines, British Airways, Delta Air Lines, KLM, Lufthansa, Swiss and United Airlines.
Routes: Chicago, Los Angeles and Newark to Budapest.
How to book: Search Google Flights and book directly with the airline.
Travel dates: Best availability from November 2022 through March 2023.

St. Stephen's Basilica in Budapest, Hungary. (Photo by Vladislav Zolotov/Getty Images)

Related: 10 things no one tells you about ... Budapest

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Sample flights

You can book a ticket on KLM in early November from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Budapest Airport (BUD) for just $549 round-trip. There's a brief layover in Amsterdam each way and as noted above a checked bag will cost you $75 each way. Still, that's a nice price for this route.

(Screenshot from Google Flights)

Air France has the same route available in December for just $546. This is an excellent price for a December trip from the West Coast to Hungary.

(Screenshot from Google Flights)

We found lots of availability at this price in January and February. Here's another Air France offering for early February for a round-trip ticket between L.A. and Budapest.

(Screenshot from Google Flights)

If you prefer to travel in March, you can find even cheaper prices. Swiss has flights from LAX to Budapest at that time for only $536 round-trip.

(Screenshot from Google Flights)

While the bulk of this deal involves flights that depart out of Los Angeles, we found some other cities with discounted fares to Hungary. For example, you can fly Swiss out of Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) in March for only $536 round-trip.

(Screenshot from Google Flights)

We'll end with a fantastic bargain we found out of Chicago. You can book a round-trip ticket from O'Hare International Airport (ORD) to Budapest on Lufthansa in early December for only $568. This ticket would typically cost more than $1,000, so this is a steep discount.

(Screenshot from Google Flights)

Maximize your purchase

Pay with: The Platinum Card® from American Express for 5 points per dollar on airfare booked directly with the airline or through American Express Travel (on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year), the Citi Prestige® Card for 5 points per dollar on airfare, the Citi Premier® Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve for 3 points per dollar on air travel, the American Express® Gold Card for 3 points per dollar on airfare when booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel, or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card for 2 points per dollar on travel.

The information for the Citi Prestige Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Bottom line

We rarely come across fare deals to Budapest, and this is a solid one. If you've been wanting to visit this historic city, now may be the time to do it.

Featured image by Getty Images/iStockphoto
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Sometimes it's worth a large investment to reap the benefits of a great credit card. That's exactly the case with the Amex Platinum card. In exchange for the annual fee, you'll unlock access to the Amex Membership Rewards program that let you access airline and hotel transfer partners, along with new lifestyle and travel credits. This card is also incredibly rewarding for travel purchases, helping you rack up a ton of Membership Rewards points for your next award trip.

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  • This card comes with a long list of benefits, including access to Centurion Lounges, complimentary elite status with Hilton and Marriott, at least $500 in assorted annual statement credits and so much more. (Enrollment required for select benefits.)
  • The Amex Platinum comes with access to a premium concierge service that can help you with everything from booking hard-to-get reservations to finding destination guides to help you plan out your next getaway.

Cons

  • The high annual fee is only worth it if you’re taking full advantage of the card’s benefits. Seldom travelers may not get enough value to warrant the cost.
  • Outside of the current welcome bonus, you’re only earning higher rewards on specific airfare and hotel purchases, so it’s not a great card for other spending categories.
  • The annual airline fee statement credit can be complicated to take advantage of compared to the broader travel credits offered by competing premium cards.
  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum Card®, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
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  • Get $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings, which requires a minimum two-night stay, through American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Audible, Disney+, The Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The New York Times. Enrollment required.
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  • American Express has expanded The Centurion® Network to include 40+ Centurion Lounge and Studio locations worldwide. There are even more places your Platinum Card® can get you complimentary entry and exclusive perks.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one select qualifying airline.
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  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
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Apply for The Platinum Card® from American Express
at American Express's secure site
Terms & restrictions apply. See rates & fees
Best luxury travel rewards card
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

5XEarn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
5XEarn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

    Earn 80,000 Points
  • Annual Fee

    $695
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

Sometimes it's worth a large investment to reap the benefits of a great credit card. That's exactly the case with the Amex Platinum card. In exchange for the annual fee, you'll unlock access to the Amex Membership Rewards program that let you access airline and hotel transfer partners, along with new lifestyle and travel credits. This card is also incredibly rewarding for travel purchases, helping you rack up a ton of Membership Rewards points for your next award trip.

Pros

  • The current welcome offer on this card is quite lucrative. TPG values it at $1,600.
  • This card comes with a long list of benefits, including access to Centurion Lounges, complimentary elite status with Hilton and Marriott, at least $500 in assorted annual statement credits and so much more. (Enrollment required for select benefits.)
  • The Amex Platinum comes with access to a premium concierge service that can help you with everything from booking hard-to-get reservations to finding destination guides to help you plan out your next getaway.

Cons

  • The high annual fee is only worth it if you’re taking full advantage of the card’s benefits. Seldom travelers may not get enough value to warrant the cost.
  • Outside of the current welcome bonus, you’re only earning higher rewards on specific airfare and hotel purchases, so it’s not a great card for other spending categories.
  • The annual airline fee statement credit can be complicated to take advantage of compared to the broader travel credits offered by competing premium cards.
  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum Card®, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • Get $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings, which requires a minimum two-night stay, through American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Audible, Disney+, The Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The New York Times. Enrollment required.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Cover the cost of a $12.95 monthly Walmart+ membership with a statement credit after you pay for Walmart+ each month with your Platinum Card. Cost includes $12.95 plus applicable local sales tax. Plus Ups are excluded.
  • American Express has expanded The Centurion® Network to include 40+ Centurion Lounge and Studio locations worldwide. There are even more places your Platinum Card® can get you complimentary entry and exclusive perks.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one select qualifying airline.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only.
  • Get up to $300 back per calendar year on the Equinox+ digital fitness app, or eligible Equinox club memberships when you pay with your Platinum Card. Enrollment required. Learn more.
  • Breeze through security with CLEAR® lanes available at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your membership when you use your Card. Learn more.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees