Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Excellent 2-4-1 First and Business Class flights deals from the UK with Lufthansa and SWISS

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SWISS and Lufthansa have launched some EXCELLENT First Class and Business Class ‘2-4-1’ deals.  Unlike some fare deals we write about, these are for departures from the UK so you don’t need to position yourself somewhere in Europe first.

Availability is very good and you can travel until the end of March 2020 – although this misses the Easter weekend as Good Friday 2020 is 10th April.

Even better for those who live outside London, you can also book these deals from UK regional airports.

Swiss Boeing 777

This offer ran last year and was hugely popular with HfP readers.  You won’t earn Avios or BA tier points but you WILL get a very classy travel experience at a fantastic price.  You will also earn a pile of Miles & More or other Star Alliance miles which can be a handy alternative to Avios.

If you have Avios tickets booked to any of these destinations, you should do the maths on whether you should cancel (£35 per person fee, all Avios and cash returned) and book one of these deals instead.

Business Class deals

Here are the Business Class deals.  These are return prices per person from London BUT based on two people travelling.

Some deals are even cheaper than £999 but these are not always operated on long-haul aircraft.

Lufthansa 2-4-1 UK sale

With Lufthansa, you can depart from London, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow or Manchester with a transfer in Germany.  You can book these deals here.

Remember that you need to search for TWO people to see these fares.

  • Abuja £999
  • Addis Ababa £999
  • Almaty £999
  • Amman £499
  • Astana £999
  • Baku £749
  • Beijing £1,499 (£1,349 from Manchester)
  • Beirut £499
  • Bengaluru £999
  • Bogota £1,250
  • Buenos Aires £1,499
  • Chennai £999
  • Delhi £999
  • Dubai £999
  • Hong Kong £999
  • Jeddah £999
  • Johannesburg £1,499
  • Kuwait £999
  • Lagos £999
  • Mumbai £999
  • Nanjing £1,349
  • Port Harcourt £999
  • Rio de Janeiro £1,250
  • Riyadh £999
  • Sao Paulo £1,500
  • Seoul £1,250
  • Shanghai £1,350
  • Tehran £749

Lufthansa is 100% fully flat in long-haul business class, although not everyone is a fan of the current seat layout which means that both of you are sharing a footrest, albeit with a divider.  The A350 cabin is pictured above.  SWISS is better in this regard as the seats are not angled towards your neighbour.

That said …. as these are 2-4-1 deals it is highly likely that your neighbour will be your companion.

Here are your options flying in SWISS Business Class, photo above.  You can see an availability calendar here from London on the SWISS website and availability is very good.  All flights require a transfer in Zurich or Geneva.

  • Bangkok £1,250
  • Beijing £1,500
  • Buenos Aires £1,500
  • Dar es Salaam £999
  • Delhi £999
  • Dubai £999
  • Hong Kong £999
  • Johannesburg £1,499
  • Mumbai £999
  • Nairobi £999
  • Sao Paulo £1,499
  • Shanghai £1,350

First Class deals

Lufthansa’s First Class seat may not look so special, but it is a genuinely special experience, especially for lovers of premium lounges, chauffeur driven plane transfers and caviar.

These are the Lufthansa First Class deals per person, based on two travelling – you can check availability online here:

  • Beijing £1,999 (£1,750 from Manchester)
  • Bogota £2,499
  • Buenos Aires £2,499
  • Bengalaru £1,499
  • Delhi £1,499
  • Dubai £1,499
  • Hong Kong £2,499
  • Johannesburg £2,499
  • Nanjing £1,749
  • Sao Paulo £2,500
  • Shanghai £1,749

Here are the SWISS First Class deals – see London departures on the SWISS website here:

  • Bangkok £2,999
  • Beijing £1,999
  • Buenos Aires £2,499
  • Dar es Salaam £1,499
  • Delhi £1,499
  • Dubai £1,499
  • Hong Kong £2,499
  • Johannesburg £2,499
  • Mumbai £1,499
  • Nairobi £1,499
  • Sao Paulo £2,499
  • Shanghai £1,749

Here are the rules:

  • Book by 19th May via the special links
  • Two people must travel together
  • Travel at ANY point – subject to availability – from 1st June 2019 until 30th March 2020 (until 14th February 2020 for China)
  • Must stay for six days, including a Saturday night, and the maximum stay is three months

Lufthansa is, perhaps, the most civilised First Class experience there is.   Here is the review of my Lufthansa First Class flight from 2017.  And, of course, the First Class Terminal – yes, a whole terminal – in Frankfurt where you get driven to the steps of your plane is something everyone should try once.

SWISS offers an excellent First Class and Business Class service.   We are NOT talking Emirates or Etihad style private suites, by any means, but you get a good quality seat, good food and drink and a very attentive crew.  It is a very civilised experience.

I flew SWISS First Class again last year, although I didn’t review it for the site, and it was as impressive as usual, albeit I put it a notch below Lufthansa First Class as the food is not as outstanding.  I also flew in SWISS Business Class to Dubai last October with my family and it was similarly good, although the seats are showing their age a bit.  Here is an older review of SWISS First Class I did.

SWISS and Lufthansa are both part of Lufthansa’s Miles & More loyalty scheme, although you can of course credit your flight to any other Star Alliance programme.

How to book

For SWISS, you can book here.

For Lufthansa:

all of the Business Class deals for London, Edinburgh, Birmingham, Glasgow and Manchester can be found here

and all of the First Class deals are here

If you are looking for the best credit card to pay with, American Express Preferred Rewards Gold offers double points on airline spend.  This means that you would earn 2 Membership Rewards points per £1 spent.  Our review of Amex Gold is here.

There are some genuinely excellent deals here especially if you live outside London and especially because of the long travel period.  Take a serious look.


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (February 2023)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 21st February 2023, the sign-up bonus on the British Airways Premium Plus American Express card is increased to 35,000 Avios from 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

35,000 Avios (ONLY to 21st February) and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and unbeatable travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (157)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Optimus Prime says:

    Is a 1-hour stopover in Zurich long enough? I guess you have to clear immigration on both inbound and outbound journeys?

    • Rob says:

      Yes. The minimum connecting time is 40 minutes I think. We did it last October in under an hour with no issues, all the luggage was fine. This isn’t Heathrow, it’s Switzerland ….

      • Optimus Prime says:

        Thanks, Rob.

      • RussellH says:

        More to the point, it is **German** Switzerland.
        When I was living in eastern Switzwerland I was a bit surprised at how long it took some insurance documents to come through from head office in Lausanne. The manager of the local office explained that it was because head office was in “Welsh-Land” (French-speaking Switzerland) and they did not know how to work properly “over there”!!

        • Concerto says:

          Totally right. My permit in canton Vaud took over 6 months to be delivered.

      • Roger* says:

        Well, yes. Generally OK.

        OTOH, we connected to the first ZRH-LHR after arriving from JNB. Transfer from E to B gate using Careport (disabled facility) across the tarmac to waiting plane very quick. We arrived on time at LHR, our baggage 2 hours later …

    • John says:

      No immigration or security on outbound, security on return.

  • gavin says:

    Can’t find any dates at all for ICN

  • Robert says:

    Can’t get anything at the offer prices for Mumbai or Delhi out of Edinburgh with either airline in first or biz. Would even take London at a push. Disappointing, people must’ve been really jumping on this offer for the availability to go so soon.

  • Lloyd says:

    I can’t make this work on Lufthansa’s website at all. Trying to get MAN-HKG but it won’t price with the special fare, I’m just told to try different dates regardless of what I give it. No issues on the Swiss website as the availability calender is great.

    • Lady London says:

      Try ita matrix or its popular version (since Google swallowed it) it’s called “Google flights”.

  • Clive says:

    I managed 3 in Business to HKG 27/3 – 17/4 for £2906

  • fadi says:

    “Lufthansa is 100% fully flat in business class” really? LHR – AMM via FRA??

    • Lady London says:

      Hum. I think there’s flat, and then there’s Lufthansa flat.

      However I think they’ve finally dumped the 85% sloping seats I went to Dubai (LH) and back (LX lumpy) and back in. Perhaps they are all fully flat now?

      You will just have to go First then to make sure. 🙂

  • MKB says:

    Well that’s my Star Alliance Gold (c/o Aegean) taken care of until Nov 2021 by booking BHX-ZRH-BOM return on Swiss in first class next year. Enough tier points just from one trip!

    I did the same this year, going to DAR on Swiss, and I can’t speak highly enough of their first-class. Both food and service were far superior to what I’ve experienced in first on Emirates, Etihad and Lufthansa, and marginally better than JAL. (I’ve not yet tried Qatar.)

    I am vegetarian, so my view of the food offering is often vastly different to that of carnivores. For example, on the four long-haul first-class flights I’ve done with Lufthansa, the food has been quite poor. (Turkish business class VLML was far superior to Lufthansa’s.) Of course, none of these is anywhere near as bad as the VLML offerings in BA or AA first.

    • David says:

      Have you also flown 4 Aegean flights or are you earning 48k just from this trip?

      • MKB says:

        You only need 24000 pts to renew Gold. (Or 12000 plus 4 Aegean).

    • John says:

      Hmm I do the same as you, last year it was TK J to BKK for £990 (headline fare something like 1100 but stopped in IST to reduce the APD by £130) and roundtrip to Romania to use the upgrade vouchers.

      Can’t justify F for 2499 to HKG when J is 999. I just hope A3 doesn’t change the award chart to 0 miles for LX P in the meantime…

  • meta says:

    I’ve played around a bit and it looks like only outbound needs to be flown until 31st March. You can fly back until mid-April. I’m still mulling over whether I should cancel BA F out and Singapore Suites back and go business for next year’s Japan trip and save Krisflyer miles and Avios for another day. I guess I’m most worried about hard expiry and devaluations…

    • John says:

      Just go twice

      • meta says:

        I wish I had that many holidays, but I am using half of my annual leave!

    • Lady London says:

      Why not keep the Suites? i gather they’re pretty hard to get…

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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