Scandinavian carrier SAS has brought back its excellent fares from London, Birmingham and Manchester to the United States.
Whilst you will need to transit in Oslo, Copenhagen or Stockholm, these fares still represent excellent value for money if you want to try out a different carrier and perhaps see a bit of Scandinavia on the way.
A key benefit is that no Saturday night stay is required. As long as you are away for three nights, you can get these fares.
If you ARE planning to stay over for a Saturday night then make sure you check other airlines first, especially JetBlue, as you may find a similar deal on a direct service.
You can travel between November 2023 and May 2024.
Availability is excellent, even over the Christmas and New Year periods.
Your ticket is refundable for a fee of €250, it seems – but check the T&C.
Here are the fares:
From London Heathrow:
- New York (Newark or JFK) – £1,227
- Boston – £1,237
- Washington – £1,287
- Chicago – £1,337
- Los Angeles – £1,510
- San Francisco – £1,607
- Miami – £1,577
In theory similar deals are available from Birmingham and Manchester, although I found it harder to find dates and you may have a long layover.
Here’s an example for London to New York proving that you do NOT need to stay over a Saturday night. This is a Monday to Thursday trip in November for £1,227:
What’s the seating like?
I’ve never flown SAS long haul.
Here’s is a One Mile At A Time review of the new A350 seat which looks very good. Check the aircraft type you will get before booking. I would have inserted some images but the SAS website doesn’t seem to have any!
Note that SAS operates a ‘one class’ service on the connection from London so there is no dedicated Business Class cabin. I assume your ticket would book into SAS Plus which would get you a seat at the front of the aircraft and a meal or snack plus drinks. You do not get a blocked middle seat.
Lounge access is definitely included (where SAS offers it)
These tickets are ‘SAS Business Smart’. SAS has now fixed its website to confirm that lounge access is included – it used to say otherwise, although this was not the case in practice.
There is no difference except ticket flexibility between ‘Business Smart’ and the pricier ‘Business Pro’ – even the luggage allowance is identical, both in terms of pieces and weight.
However, as per the comments below, SAS does not pay for lounge access on any ticket type at some of its airports, including the UK ones outside Heathrow.
Some options have long connections, even overnight
Look very closely at the timing of your flights, as some require overnight connections in Oslo, Copenhagen or Stockholm.
Of course, you may like this idea. A long daytime connection may also be positive if you wanted to spend a few hours in any of these cities.
You will also see options which require TWO connections in Scandinavia. This would be too much for me, but ….
You can, I understand, also add a free stopover in Scandinavia but I assume this involves booking by phone.
Where can I credit my flight?
SAS is a member of Star Alliance, so you can credit to any member programme.
SAS has its own EuroBonus scheme but rewards tend to be expensive in terms of miles. One upside is that EuroBonus is an American Express Membership Rewards partner which allows you to top up your account to get to a redemption.
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer is another possibility which is also an American Express partner, and of course you have other options such as Lufthansa Miles & More.
This HfP article looks at which Star Alliance programme may be best for you. This HfP article looks at how to top up your Star Alliance account with a UK credit card.
Note that, whilst SAS is a partner with Etihad Guest, you only earn miles if your flight has an EY flight number. This won’t be the case as you are not booking via Etihad and connecting to/from an Etihad service.
SAS is also a partner with Virgin Flying Club – click here. Oddly, Virgin Flying Club is NOT an option in the dropdown ‘Frequent Flyer Programme’ menu when you book on the SAS website. Readers told us last time that you should leave a frequent flyer number out of your booking and retroclaim the miles via Virgin Atlantic.
How should you pay for your flight?
TIckets are priced in Sterling. Your best option would be American Express Preferred Rewards Gold which earns 2 Membership Rewards points per £1 when you spend on airline websites.
You can book on the SAS site here.
Hat-tip to Luxury Flight Club.