BA sale

Air China’s Business flash sale returns – Asia from £1000, Sydney / Melbourne / Auckland from £1300

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Every year, Air China runs a special weekend sale around 11/11.   All European destinations are included, but from Germany there are always some especially aggressive deals.

I’m not sure why Germany always gets the best offers but, year in and year out, it does.

(There are also some good deals out of London to Asia starting at £1,230.  Australia and New Zealand are less good.  I have summarised them at the bottom of this article.)

How cheap is cheap?

Take a look here and see.

We’re talking, departing Frankfurt, Munich or Dusseldorf in Business Class:

Around the €1,180 level (£1,031):

  • Hong Kong
  • Taipei
  • Bangkok
  • Tokyo
  • Seoul
  • Singapore

Around the €1,350 level (£1,180):

  • Beijing
  • Shanghai
  • Chengdu

Around the €1,500 level (£1,310):

  • Sydney
  • Melbourne
  • Auckland

The last three are, without a doubt, the star deals.  £1,310 in Australasia in Business Class is an outstanding deal.

You must book by 11th November (Sunday).

Travel dates for the Business Class sale are:

  • 11 December 2018 – 3 January 2019
  • 29 January – 8 February 2019
  • 2 April – 21 April, 2019
  • 28 May – 24 June,2019
  • 28 June – 23 August 2019

It is also worth noting that:

“Passengers on international connecting flights with a layover of 4 hours or more can use our transfer lounges free of charge”


“Passengers with an overnight layover between 6 and 24 hours can stay in one of our partner transit hotels free of charge.”

Air China is part of Star Alliance so you could (depending on which booking class the ticket books into) earn miles and status credit with Lufthansa Miles & More or one of the other Star programmes.  Use to find the most generous programme – you are looking for ‘R’ class earning which is typically 125% of miles flown.  

I know very little about Air China, so do some research on what planes are flying which route and what kind of seating if will offer.  A typical Air China business class is pictured below.

Air China business class

Some flights use brand new A350-900 aircraft with this impressive 1-2-1 layout:

Air China A350 business class

Earlier this year reader Joel reviewed the Air China Boeing 777 business class service from Heathrow to Beijing for us – see here.

These deals end on Sunday 11th November.  The Air China Germany site, in English, is here.

If you don’t have a credit card with 0% foreign exchange fees, your best option for paying is American Express Preferred Rewards Gold which offers triple points – 3 per £1 – when you book flight tickets in a foreign currency.  This is because the transaction triggers the ‘double points for airline spend’ and the ‘double points for foreign spend’ bonuses.  Our review of Amex Gold is here.

PS.  Here are the London deals if you don’t fancy a trip to Germany, bookable at  Check the site for the travel dates, which are NOT the same as for the Germany sale.  In Business Class:

£1230 – Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Manila, Ho Chi Minh City, Rangoon, Hanoi

£1243 – Hong Kong, Taipei

£1285 – Tokyo, Osaka, Sapporo, Okinawa, Nagoya, Fukuoka, Hiroshima, Sendai

£1370 – Shanghai, Hangzhou, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Changsha, Chongqing, Xi’An, Wuhan, Kunming, Shenyang, Changchun, Chengdu, Fuzhou, Xiamen

£1695 – Seoul, Pusan, Jeju

£2294 – Auckland

£2334 – Sydney, Melbourne

(Want to earn more Virgin Flying Club miles?  Click here to see our recent articles on Virgin Atlantic and Flying Club and click here for our home page with the latest news on earning and spending other airline and hotel points.)

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  1. rossmacd says:

    The Air China A350 business product is very good, and these deals make it even better. I’ve not flown any other CA aircraft, but the A350 is good.

    • It’s only currently rostered between Beijing and Chengdu at the moment with Milan getting it soon. For the most of it, the sales routes will be on 747, 777 and 330s. So I would book without expecting the A350 and be surprised if it happens. That said, a rare chance to fly the 747-800!!!

  2. Bit late with this one Rob 🙁
    Recieved the email today, the 11th.
    Better than recieving it on the 12th I guess 🙂

    • The article was on the website yesterday afternoon; it was a ‘flash’ news/urgent one and Rob doesn’t normally send this by email until the next day. That’s why it is good to check the website throughout the day for these and comments.

      • You can also follow HfP on Twitter and get the notification immediately.

      • I REALLY don’t like doing extra emails during the day – perhaps 2-3 per year at most. Begins to annoy people. It is also quite complex – the current email system is fully automatic and doing an extra one involves setting up the whole thing manually. We only do it for VERY time sensitive British Airways / Avios deals or for anything else which is both hugely generous and limited in numbers.

        What IS happening is that I am dropping in more articles during the day now if the deal is time limited, which gives onsite readers a heads-up over those on the email list. Best way to avoid missing these is to pop in during the afternoon to see if anything new has turned up.

        HEADS UP – there is a good deal tomorrow which is embargoed until the company tell us otherwise. The article is written, it will be dropped 5 minutes after we are allowed to publish but the email list won’t see it until Tuesday.

        • “Best way to avoid missing these is to pop in during the afternoon to see if anything new has turned up” and generate more online clicks and more revenue for HfP? 🙂

          • More page views = a bigger increase in the ad rates next time we put them up!

            Although quick visits do drag down the ‘average time on site’ score which people also focus on ….

            If we were really bothered we’d just email extracts and not full posts to make people click through. It would add 40% to our page views overnight based on usual email open rate.

      • I often think the comments are often a source for hidden gems. That makes people come to the website AND stay here for a while.

        P.s. – from now on i’ll just leave the page open for a bit at work, just to do my bit.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Set up twitter alerts for HFP posts you’ll get them as soon as they hit the website rather than try on emails in the morning

  3. The 5.40pm LHR-PEK flight is scheduled to go to an A350 from February, which makes the Heathrow deals much more attractive after that point.

    If you’re targeting the German deals, Frankfurt was gets one to Shanghai from December on the 7pm flight too.

  4. Is availability on the Germany to Aus/NZ business class fares super limited? I can find R class availability but the best fare I can find in R class is around Euro 2300 (same fare both within and outside the travel dates for this promotion).

    I flew Air China earlier this year out of CDG. The food is fine as long as you like real (not tourist) Chinese food but there were a few hiccups in cabin service – our family of 4 received 3 different menus for 1 meal!

  5. Dawn Pearson says:

    I’ve put in loads of dates but cheapest is E4500

  6. Many thanks for this Rob.
    Picked up Tokyo for £1286 in biz ex LHR and they are flexible too!
    I get to try the A350 on the way out, 777 on the way back according to the current schedule.

  7. So if your connection is less than four hours you can’t use the lounge?

    • I could be completely wrong but I thought that lounge was for all connecting pax as opposed to the business class lounge.
      Happy to be corrected.

  8. I am flying Air China next week in Bus Class. for the first time. London – Beijing – Hong Kong.
    return a week later. Hope the connections in Beijing are not as bad as some people say.

  9. Whilst in the process of booking at €1496.89 DUS to SYD I was filing in the form and everything disappeared and the prices have now reverted…GUTTED and your email said “ends Sunday” it was 23h03 UK time! I WANT TO CRY!

  10. The Air China deal is extremely cheap, from London to China, at around GBP 360 return incl taxes. The OZ deal is also great but I have not tried. Since there is free transit hotel provided that I will probably book the transit hotel for OZ deals and stay in Beijing for a night for an initial recovery of jetlag.

    I took the China deal last year and the journey was ok. Transit if fine as it is at the same terminal (as there are three terminals at Beijing Airport). Passport control is really quick and efficient however from international to domestic, it is a bit messy and the security check was very lengthy. E-channel passport check can be used which is exactly the same as London Heathrow Airport.

    In general, it is OK. Not brilliant though. The London-Beijing leg is code share with Virgin so I also got Virgin miles for Air China flight on the London Beijing leg.

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