Part 1: Booking Emirates' Business Class For ~$400 (Or Less Than 30,000 Chase UR)

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Sunday tends to be a slow day concerning ‘reader engagement’ so I thought it would be a great time to discuss a topic that should spark a bit of excitement…Emirates Business/First Class.

This won’t be a long post but I want to post this gem and give you a glimpse into the type of articles that I will be posting soon.

THE BACKGROUND

Every article that I post on this site is part of big puzzle. You may have received my daily email, glanced at the titles of the 1 – 5 articles that I posted from the day before and asked yourself “why do I care about Emirates adding a 5th freedom between Singapore and Penang? I don’t live in Singapore!!” You may have taken it a bit further and deleted the email thinking it didn’t apply to you. And that’s ok.

CONNECTING THE DOTS

Many of you know that I am planning a TRIP AROUND THE WORLD that starts in a few weeks. I’ve spent a “healthy” amount of time selecting which airline products that I want to review (although that’s changing by the day given the coronavirus outbreak).

Emirates has been on my list of products to review for a long time. Although, I have flown on Emirates (albeit in economy) numerous times, I was extremely excited when Chase added Emirates Airlines as a transfer partner during the summer of 2019.

Given the portfolio of cards earning Ultimate Rewards points and how easy it is to rack up Chase points, I knew it would be no-time before I was experiencing their product.

While I enjoy flying Emirates and I love racking up Chase points, there’s a huge catch. The Skywards program (the loyalty program for Emirates) has high redemption rates, and they also impose steep surcharges on many flights.

For example, if you wanted to book an award ticket from New York (JFK) to Dubai (DXB) one-way, you’d pay 100,000 miles and more than $800 in surcharges and taxes for a business class seat. Yikes!

TRICKS ARE FOR KIDS ADULTS

Recently, I booked the Singapore First Class Suites between London (LHR) and Singapore (SIN). I have a few days between arriving in Singapore to travel to Japan for my ANA First Class flight between Tokyo and New York so I need to connect the dots.

It’s extremely rare that I purchase business class tickets but business class tickets can be waaayyy cheaper in other countries than they are in the states. So as I was shopping for flights using points and/or cash, I noticed very “reasonably-priced” business class flight between Bangkok and Hong Kong on Emirates A380.

A one-way business class ticket costs $419 (USD) every day of the week (via the Chase portal). Depending on your personal finances, that may not fall under the ‘reasonable tab’ but this is the ideal situation if you have Chase Ultimate Rewards points.

Instead of figuring out award space, you can redeem a total of 33,451 Ultimate Rewards points at 1.25x using my Chase Sapphire Preferred to purchase the flight outright.

It gets even better if you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve because you’ll only redeem 27,933 ($419 divided by 1.5x). That’s right, Emirates business class for less than 30,000.

EMIRATES’ CHAUFFEUR BENEFIT

Unfortunately, this route is not eligible for the complimentary Chauffeur-drive benefit to/from the airport but the flight is on the A380 which means I will have the chance to experience the on-board shower.

FINAL STAMP

It’s definitely a quick flight at 3 hour and 5 minutes. Is it worth the splurge? What do you think?

The marvel of being upstairs on the double decker A380 is a dream for me and it’s redemptions like these that remind me to never underestimate the possibilities of buying business class flights with points and in this case accruing Alaska Airline miles.

It’s unfortunate that if I do book it, I won’t be able to get the chauffeur car ride but whatevs.

If you’re confused about everything I just said, stay tuned for Part 2 where I’ll go into more detail.

What do you think? Should I go for it? What would you do? Are you interested in an Emirates review?

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