Deal Alert: Business Class to China From $1,994 Round-Trip

Jul 30, 2018

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Airfare deals are typically only available on limited dates. We recommend you use Google Flights to find dates to fly, then book through an online travel agency such as Orbitzor Expedia, which allows you to cancel flights without penalty by 11pm Eastern Time within one day of booking. However, if you’re using The Platinum Card® from American Express, you’ll need to book directly with the airline or through the 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.

American, Delta and Xiamen are offering cheap fares to China’s capital city in business class. With this latest deal, you can fly from a few US cities to Beijing (PEK) from $1,994 round-trip in a lie-flat seat. We’re seeing the cheapest fares from Los Angeles (LAX), but prices from Boston (BOS) and New York (JFK) aren’t that much more. While cheap economy seats to China are pretty common, these discounted business-class fares don’t come around all that often and could be a great idea if you’re looking to close-in on elite status for the year.

There are no tricks needed to find these fares — just pick the dates you want by searching with Google Flights. While these are great deals, it’s still a significant cash outlay. So, it’s particularly important to remember your best options for booking these flights:

  • American Express Platinum Card: book directly with the airline or through Amex Travel portal to get 5x MR points
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve: Book with this card to earn 3x Chase Ultimate Rewards, or redeem points for this purchase at 1.5 cents per point (from 147,300 points round-trip)

Unless you book a flight to a third country, you can’t take advantage of China’s “visa-free transit” policy. So, make sure you get the right visa before traveling or you won’t even be able to get on the plane. TPG recommends using a third-party service like Allied Passport & Visa, and if you mention The Points Guy on your order form, you’ll get a $5 discount.

Airlines: American, Delta, Xiamen
Routes: BOS/JFK/LAX to PEK
Cost: $1,994+ round-trip in business
Dates: September – December 2018
Booking Link: Orbitz, Expedia or directly with the airline
Pay With: The Platinum Card® from American Express (5x on airfare), Chase Sapphire Reserve,  Citi Prestige (5x on airfare plus excellent trip delay insurance) or Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on travel)

Here are a few examples of what you can book:

Los Angeles (LAX) to Beijing (PEK) for $1,994 round-trip on Xiamen: 

Boston (BOS) to Beijing (PEK) for $2,208 round-trip on Delta:

Boston (BOS) to Beijing (PEK) for $2,209 round-trip on American:

New York (JFK) to Beijing (PEK) for $2,618 round-trip on Xiamen:

Maximize Your Purchase

Don’t forget to use a credit card that earns additional points on airfare purchases, such as The Platinum Card® from American Express (5x on flights booked directly with airlines or American Express Travel), Chase Sapphire Reserve, or Citi Prestige (5x on airfare) or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on all travel purchases). Check out this post for more on maximizing airfare purchases.

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