Whenever I think of Turkish Airlines, I think “amazing in the sky” and “not so amazing on the ground”. Istanbul Airport is terrible, end of story. Overcrowded, dirty, and awful for connections. Furthermore, the Turkish Airlines Business Class Lounge in Istanbul is incredibly big that it gives me anxiety since you can get lost in it. While the lounge does have amazing food, it is constantly overcrowded and it is practically impossible to find a place to sit.
The ground experience with Turkish Airlines isn’t pleasant – however, the experience in the sky is. The flight attendants are among the nicest I’ve ever experienced, the food is incredibly delicious, and while every seat doesn’t feature direct aisle access, they are lie-flat in a 2-3-2 configuration on their B777s. Turkish Airlines is one of the few airlines in the world that release a ton of award space in Business Class on virtually all routes, so it is super easy to book Business Class for the whole family on one flight. Not only that, Aeroplan doesn’t impose fuel surcharges on Turkish – so using AMEX (or Chase) points is a fantastic deal.
Turkish Airlines Business Class is also attainable using cash – the airline frequently has great deals across the world. At the moment, you can fly 50 hours in Turkish Airlines Business Class for ~$1600 USD from Asia to North America – more specifically, from Manila to Houston via Istanbul, round-trip.
This fantastic deal books into Business “J” Class, meaning that you should earn at least 100% with most Star Alliance frequent flyer programmes. The total mileage for this trip is around 24k, so you should earn at least those redeemable and elite qualifying miles. Some Star Alliance programmes award more than 100% for “J” Class on Turkish Airlines and therefore you might even earn up to 200%.
Most dates on the calendar offer this price and therefore if you’re anywhere in Asia, I would take advantage of this deal. Positioning to Manila from most Asian cities isn’t expensive. On the other side, Houston is in the centre of the U.S., so it isn’t hard to fly elsewhere from there either – which makes this fare much more attractive as the positioning costs aren’t that high from Asia and then later within America.
Be sure to check out some of the awesome Travel Rewards Credit Cards, Hotel Rewards Credit Cards, and Point Rewards Credit Cards that are available and will earn you lots of miles and great travel benefits!