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jen
27th July 2009, 23:05
My OH and I are planning to take our grown up sons to LA hopefully at the beginning of next July when our youngest graduates from uni. We would like to take them club class. Now with BA we would probably buy a world traveller plus then use miles to upgrade to club. We are farely flexible about dates and also may well combine with LA with Las Vegas or San Francisco depending on availability. If only two seats available then we may consider purchasing two seats throught the BA hotline. Or we could use a 241, but we may save it for the far east for just my OH and I!
But I am also mindful of the Diamond club, but it is too early to check the availabilty, does anyone know if they release 4 seats on the flights? If so then I would have to get busy applying for BMI credit cards! Also with BMI being taken over soon, I assume as long as I had my reward flights booked then if the diamond club is no more it would not be an issue. Another question is do they have flat beds on the airlines you would book these flights on.

Raffles
28th July 2009, 22:48
1. With BMI, you will end up redeeming on another Star Alliance carrier as BMI no longer flies to the US - play with the online timetable at staralliance.com for this July to get a feel for who to use. Generally the European airlines are far higher standards than the US ones.

2. Four reward seats can be done on most routes if you book far enough in advance (you can book from 11 months out). I got 4 First Class seats on Lufthansa out of a cabin of just 16 three weeks ago. 4 in Business is usually not an issue on Lufthansa, not sure about other carriers.

3. Lufthansa is sloping flat beds in Business, as is Swiss. They are flat but slope to the floor at 170 degrees. This is worse than the BA beds which are fully flat. Many of the US airlines do not yet have beds in Business Class which is why they are best avoided unless you can be 100% sure what you will get.

4. Yes, once you've booked with BMI miles you are safe from anything LH may do to the scheme!

5. BA - yes, you could, for 100,000 BA Miles, buy 4 WTP tickets and upgrade them, as long as their were 4 upgradable seats available (this requires 4 Club World BA Miles seats to be available).

None of these options are bad. However, for a 12 hour flight, the fully flat BA bed WILL make a difference. BA has plenty of options too - flying in or out (mixed if necessary) from LA, SFO, Pheonix and Vegas.

Definitely get the BMI credit cards, though - you can book something for yourselves if necessary. Or send your kids on Star Alliance and yourselves on BA, mixing and matching - they'll be fine on their own!

jen
28th July 2009, 23:15
Thanks Raffles for your helpful post.
At the moment there is loads of availbility for june and july on BA, but I am going to get a large glass of wine and have a good look at the online timetable at staralliance.com and actually have a look at the ANA tool to check availabilty. Have never looked at it before as it sounds very complicated compared to the simplicity of the current BA search tool!

jen
29th August 2009, 12:34
Just to update, change of plan! Decided to to a trip to New York and Boston instead, just managed to book 4 returns in WTP and upgrade them to Business with miles for a really good price!
If anyone else looking the ba sale is showing some good prices at the moment.