Airlines

Experience An International First Class Flight Without Leaving North America

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A few years ago I first heard about a really great option for folks wanting to experience the thrills of an international First Class cabin without having to cross an ocean or collect 100,000+ miles for a round trip award ticket.

Cathay Pacific offers international First Class on their flight from New York to Vancouver. And the 6 hour flight (westbound) is only 32,500 American Airlines AAdvantage miles each way.

Is it worth the miles and effort for only 6 hours in flight (only 4 hrs eastbound)?

YES! It is not the full Cathay Pacific experience, but it pretty darn awesome!

Cathay Pacific First Class JFK YVR Keri Shawna dining across1. The most comfortable flight to the west coast ever – seats wide enough to comfortably fit two people, that transform into lie flat beds with mattress pads and amazing duvets.

2. Fine dining at 30,000 ft – you’ll get to experience a 5 course meal 6 miles up in the air. While is lacks the usual Cathay Pacific caviar service and hot and cold dessert options due to time constraints, the food is still an amazing experience.

3. Designer PJs – they look cool AND you get to take them with you.

4. Toast your mini vacation with high end champagne and liquors, such as Krug and Johnnie Walker Blue

5. Dozens of movies, entire TV show seasons, and hundreds of albums to entertain.

How to Book

Finding availability for Cathay Pacific First Class is easy. You’ll need a free British Airways Avios account (sign up if you don’t currently have one) and go to Book with Avios.

Cathay Pacific First Class search avios

You most want the westbound flight since that will give you the longest time in the air. Search for JFK to YVR and choose First Class for the dates you’re interested in.

Cathay Pacific First Class Availability search avios

If First Class isn’t available on that date, you can look at adjacent dates. And if there’s no availability keep checking back as inventory can vary.

Once you’ve found available seats for your dates, call American Airlines or US Airways to book. Until US Airways merges with American Airlines you’ll only be able to book round trips with Dividend Miles. Also note that if your starting city is in the US you can only have a 4 hour connection at JFK, so you might need to be flexible on how to get to JFK.

For a US to Vancouver trip you’ll need 32,500 American Airline AAdvantage/US Airways Dividend Miles each way and taxes and fees roundtrip will run about $60. Not bad for a ticket worth $5,000!

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Living for the little (and big things) that make life so fun, especially mistake deals and crazy last minute weekend mileage runs across the world. www.twitter.com/klatravel

5 Comments

  1. daveamtrak

    January 17, 2015 at 1:45 pm

    Thanks for this post. Followed your instructions and booked flight 1/15. Awesome, great experience.

  2. Keri Anderson

    January 19, 2015 at 12:08 pm

    That’s great! So glad you enjoyed it

  3. B

    December 4, 2015 at 3:34 am

    Can you still do this? If so, how? I am not seeing the flight at all using BA Avios booking tool. Also, can you use BA Avios to book this?

    • Keri Anderson

      December 4, 2015 at 4:01 pm

      It is still available! You just have to find dates it’s being offered and search for the JFK-YVR segment. The westbound flight is CX 0889, the eastbound CX0888. You can book via Avios — 50K each way.

  4. B

    December 4, 2015 at 3:34 am

    subscribing 🙂

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