I was searching for return flights from London to Los Angeles in October 2015. Looking at dates such as:
Outbound: London to Los Angeles Saturday October 17th
Return: Los Angeles to London Thursday October 29th
I looked at a premium economy return on BA with the idea of using points to upgrade. But that flight was £1400 (which was too much) and of course there weren’t any points upgrades available. Even if I had been able to upgrade with points, the passenger duty would have increased and the flight would have been even more.
Business returns were around £2700 on BA and Virgin.
I’d read before about how airlines discount fares from other European cities. So I tried:
Outbound: Dublin to Los Angeles Saturday October 17th
Return: Los Angeles to Dublin Thursday October 29th
I was offered a business return for £1278. This was BA business Dublin to London Heathrow and Virgin Upper Class London Heathrow to Los Angeles – the same flights on the return.
That means I would be flying on the same Virgin Upper Class seat as I would if I paid £2700.
Here is the search I made on Google Flights: https://www.google.co.uk/flights/#search;f=DUB;t=LAX;d=2015-10-17;r=2015-10-29;sc=b
The downside is that the journey has to start and, officially, end in Dublin. RyanAir charge £50 for a London to Dublin flight. And as the Dublin-London flight is at 11:35 in the morning, it would be a good idea to fly the day before and stay overnight. Buy hey – who doesn’t want a night out in Dublin?! Airport Hotel rates are around £100 per night.
I did some other searches:
Dublin to New York in July £800 business non-stop https://www.google.co.uk/flights/#search;f=DUB;t=JFK,EWR,LGA;d=2015-07-16;r=2015-07-23;sc=b compared to the flight from London which was £1900.
Dublin to Orlando same dates in July £1000 in business https://www.google.co.uk/flights/#search;f=DUB;t=MCO,SFB;d=2015-07-16;r=2015-07-23;sc=b compared to £1600 from London.
Dublin to Orlando first week of September £380 in economy https://www.google.co.uk/flights/#search;f=DUB;t=MCO,SFB;d=2015-09-03;r=2015-09-10 flying on the same flight that from London would cost £600.
So next time you are looking for a flight, try putting Dublin in as the departure point and see what you are offered.