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Airfare deals are typically only available on limited dates. We recommend that you use Google Flights to find dates to fly, then book through an online travel agency, such as Orbitz or Expedia, which allows you to cancel flights without penalty by 11pm Eastern Time within one day of booking. However, if you’re using the American Express Platinum Card, you’ll need to book directly with the airline or through Amex Travel portal to get 5x MR points. Remember: Fares may disappear quickly, so book right away and take advantage of Orbitz or Expedia’s courtesy cancellation if you’re unable to get the time away from work or family.
Edit 5:30pm 6/12: This deal appears to be no longer available. TPG readers have reported that some Virgin Atlantic premium economy tickets booked via Expedia are actually booking into “Economy Delight” (the carrier’s extra legroom economy class product). When we contacted Virgin Atlantic, an agent confirmed that fare code “W,” ticketed by Delta but booked through Expedia, would indeed book into “Economy Delight” — not actual Premium Economy. Expedia allows you to cancel flights without penalty by 11pm Eastern Time the next day.
If you’ve been waiting to get to London and want to fly in (relative) style, now may be the time. Non-stop flights in Virgin Atlantic’s premium economy to London are currently available from a handful of US cities starting at $800 round-trip. The cheap fares are available from September 2018 through April 2019, but exact availability depends on where you’re originating from.
To book one of these discounted fares use Google Flights to find dates your preferred dates, then book through an online travel agency, such as Expedia since you won’t find these fares directly with the airline. You’ll see that Delta (which doesn’t offer a true premium economy product to London) is the airline listed for all of the discounted fares, but if you look closely, you’ll see that most of the Delta flights are actually operated by Virgin Atlantic with a true premium economy product — which TPG’s Reviews Editor, Nick Ellis, went as far as calling his preferred way of getting between NYC and London.
If you’re looking to visit other parts of Europe, we recently shared a deal which offered premium economy flights from the East Coast to cities like Barcelona and Milan from $789 round-trip and some of those fares are still valid.
Airline(s): Virgin Atlantic
Route: BOS/LAX/MIA/JFK/SEA/SFO to LHR
Cost: $800+ round-trip in premium economy
Dates: September 2018 – April 2019
Booking Link: Orbitz or Expedia
Pay With: The Platinum Card® from American Express (5x on airfare), Chase Sapphire Reserve, Citi Prestige (3x on airfare) or Chase Sapphire Preferred (2x on travel)
Here are a few examples of what you can book:
New York (JFK) to London (LHR) for $800 round-trip in November on Delta (operated by Virgin Atlantic) via Expedia:
Seattle (SEA) to London (LHR) for $895 round-trip in April on Delta (operated by Virgin Atlantic) via Expedia:
Los Angeles (LAX) to London (LHR) for $908 round-trip in October on Delta (operated by Virgin Atlantic) via Expedia:
San Francisco (SFO) to London (LHR) for $920 round-trip in December on Delta (operated by Virgin Atlantic) via Expedia:
Maximize Your Purchase
Don’t forget to use a credit card that earns additional points on airfare purchases, such as the American Express Platinum Card (5x on flights booked directly with airlines or American Express Travel), Chase Sapphire Reserve, or Citi Prestige (3x on airfare) or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on all travel purchases). Check out this post for more on maximizing airfare purchases.
Featured image by Luca Micheli via Unsplash.
With some great bonus categories, the American Express Gold Card has a lot going for it. The card offers 4x points at US restaurants, at US supermarkets (up to $25,000; then 1x), and 3x points on flights booked directly with airlines or through amextravel.com. It is currently offering a welcome bonus of 35,000 bonus points after you spend $2,000 in the first three months.
- Earn 35,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $2,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
- Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. restaurants. Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X).
- Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
- Earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with The Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Shake Shack, and Ruth's Chris Steak House. This is an annual savings of up to $120. Enrollment required.
- $100 Airline Fee Credit: up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year for incidental fees at one selected qualifying airline.
- Choose to carry a balance with interest on eligible charges of $100 or more.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- Annual Fee is $250.
- Terms apply.
- See Rates & Fees