Every year, Air China runs a special sale around 11/11 to celebrate Single’s Day. All European destinations are usually included, but from Germany there are always some especially aggressive deals.
(Before you ask: “Singles Day or Guanggun Jie is a shopping holiday popular among young Chinese people that celebrate their pride in being single. The date, November 11th, was chosen because the number “1” resembles an individual who is alone. The holiday has also become a popular date to celebrate relationships, with over 4,000 couples being married in Beijing on this date in 2011, compared to an average of 700 a day.”)
I’m not sure why Germany always gets the best offers but, year in and year out, it does. Last year there were some ex-London deals as well, albeit for £300+ more than flying from Germany, but I could not find any advance publicity for these.
How cheap is cheap?
Take a look here and see.
In terms of fares, we’re talking, departing Frankfurt, Munich or Dusseldorf in Business Class:
Around the €1,118 level (£965):
- Hong Kong
- Ho Chi Minh City
- Kuala Lumpur
Around the €1,566 level (£1,350):
Around the €1,477 level (£1,275):
The last four are, without a doubt, the star deals. £1,275 to Australasia in Business Class is an outstanding deal.
You must book by 13th November (Wednesday). As I am writing this on Sunday before the tickets go on sale on Monday, I can’t say how good or bad the availability is. It won’t last long, however.
Travel dates for the Business Class sale are (OUTBOUND):
- 13th December – 12th January
- 18th January – 28th January
- 27th March – 12th April
- 28th June – 23rd August
You cannot travel INBOUND between 18th January – 27th January.
You will note that, as usual with Air China sales, Christmas is NOT excluded.
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 wheretocredit.com to find the most generous programme – you are probably 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.
Some flights use brand new A350-900 aircraft with this impressive 1-2-1 layout:
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.
These deals end on 13th November.