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Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

Geneva, Switzerland
Destination Expert
for Geneva, Liechtenstein, Air Travel
posts: 3,429
reviews: 301
Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

Countless threads are dealing with this question: should I pay the extra for premium economy or for business class. There is no straight forward answer. As an analogy, the same problem exists for hotels: should I go in a two stars or a four stars? So to make your decision, you should consider a number of factors:

- the seat (in business class, cradle? lie-flat? fully-flat? - in premium eco, extra seat width and pitch). Check the airlines' website and http://www.seatguru.com.

- the experience: check reviews on websites such as http://www.businesstraveller.com/discussion or http://www.airlinequality.com/ (keeping in mind Skytrax is selective in the reviews they are publishing).

- pre- and post-flights amenities: lounge access, fast-lanes, transportation, ...

Then only, you'll be able to decide whether the extra services are worth the extra money. Keep in mind this is only for a few hours, but of course a good business class service is great experience.

Aberdeen, Scotland
posts: 903
reviews: 211
1. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

For us its a no-brainer, we fly PE as my partner is extremely tall and can't sit in economy for flights of more than 3 hours.

I wouldn't do it though for European flights, just Transatlantic.

We're giving business a shot this year as it was only £250 more than going PE.

Edited: 6:18 am, March 18, 2013
Bathurst
posts: 6
reviews: 150
2. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

Absolutely!!! We have just started to utilise Premium Economy for our holiday trips. It makes a big difference to your "resting" (I dont think anyone sleeps on a flight!) time. the extra leg room is great and I enjoy having my meals served using regular crockery etc.

Aberdeen, Scotland
posts: 903
reviews: 211
3. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

Although some airlines are better at PE than others we have found!

London, United...
posts: 16,421
reviews: 23
4. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

The bottom line is the bigger the seat and the larger the leg room, the more comfortable you are. If you can afford it, it's worth it, if not, it's just a few hours discomfort in economy.

southern england
posts: 211
reviews: 31
5. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

Have flown economy to AUS several times , can't see how paying almost double for a few extra inches of leg room is a good deal.

New Delhi, India
posts: 938
reviews: 23
6. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

I wouldn't fly PE ...I just don't get the value proposition. I'd do economy (with extra leg room seats for a supplement, if that is required) or BC with all the bells and whistles. However, some folks here seem to favor PE ...different folks and all that!

Liverpool, UK
posts: 10,183
reviews: 24
7. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

I think it's worth it but those considering flying a premium class for the first time should be aware that once you've experienced a better class of travel it can feel worse if you then have to go backwards to economy.

If you've never travelled in a premium cabin you don't know what you've missed but once you've done it then.....

Also do not assume that the offerings across all airlines are the same - there can be significant differences even on the same route such as a larger cradle seat or a flat bed which might not be reflected in the price, as ever do your research.

Frankln Park PA
posts: 1,122
reviews: 1
8. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

TomC97 hit the nail on the head! I will pay, and you might think I am crazy, double the price of economy to fly premium economy class transatlantic. I am able to sleep on a plane (I know many people cannot) and an overnight flight in Premium economy means that I hit the ground running when I land in Europe and am not a zombie on the first day of vacation. While some would beg to differ, I would rather choose less expensive hotels to make the travel budget work with a premium economy fare in the mix. And like TomC97 said, I have been bitten by the "bug" and won't go back to economy. And do your research on the airline sites, seatsguru and as many travel forums as possible. There are many people out there with a wealth of information and first hand industry knowledge.

Ho Chi Minh City
posts: 2
reviews: 68
9. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

If you are in the position to book you tickets long time in advance it might be a great opportunity to book the premium classes, without paying too much extra. Bit on business trips it is often last minute, and premium class tickets are often 2-3 times the price.

I use miles to upgrade every 1 out of 3 flights to business. That works fine for me. And I limit economy travel to only a few airlines...

Hong Kong, China
posts: 2,263
reviews: 130
10. Re: Premium travel classes: is it worth paying the extra?

the more I travel premium, the more my tolerance for economy dissipates. I just can't do economy night flights anymore, for example. I like being able to set my own meal times and the generally quieter cabin makes it easier to rest/sleep in that glorious flat bed.