I was in Orlando for a conference and had to get to New York for my New York Abu Dhabi flight in the Etihad First Class Apartment. Much to my surprise, I found an Orlando to Miami to New York Business Class ticket for $94.
I considered flying out the night before but even a cheap hotel near JFK was $225 a night. No, thank you. I was already paying for my room at the Disney Contemporary Resort, so I decided to chance it and fly out that morning.
Positioning to the airport is always a risky proposition when you have an international flight, especially during possible bad weather. Given that it is hurricane season, I was taking a big gamble. But it was a gamble that paid off and I scored a lie-flat business class seat for the price of coach.
The New York to Abu Dhabi flight was leaving at 3 pm. So I had to check-in at 12 pm (three hours in advance). Which limited my options.
Delta and JetBlue had non-stop flights. But without status with either airline, it would mean 2 1/2 hours in the back of the plane. Or I could fly on American where I have Executive Platinum status.
If you have American Airlines Executive Platinum status you can pick your seat in advance, select Main Cabin Extra, and possibly get upgraded to First Class, for free.
My choices were a flight that connected in Charlotte and arrived in New York at 11:05 am. Or a 7:20 am flight that connected in Miami and arrived in New York at 12:19 pm. However, the Miami to New York plane was a 77W, used for international flights.
So I chose the American Airlines flight that connected through New York. The cost of my ticket, $94. Here’s my review of American Airlines Miami to New York Business Class. I’ll cover the Orlando to Miami flight in another blog post.
Airline Lounges at Miami International Airport
After getting off the plane and going to the gate, I didn’t have time to visit either of the American Airlines Admirals Clubs in Miami, American Express Centurion Lounge, nor the Priority Pass lounges on this flight.
There’s an Admirals Club at Gate D-16 and Gate D-30 and an Amex Centurion Lounge at Gate D-12.
You can access the American Airlines Admirals Club lounges if you have a membership or buy a $59 Day Pass.
Pro-tip: You get free Admirals Club membership with the Citi AAdvantage Executive World Elite MasterCard
To get into the Centurion Lounge at Miami you need:
- An American Express Platinum card (personal or business) (free entry)
- An American Express Centurion card (free entry)
- To purchase a Day Pass if you have any other American Express card
A Priority Pass membership is required to get into a Priority Pass lounge.
The 77W has a First Class, Business Class, and coach section for international flights. But the flight was being sold as First Class or coach. With the Business Class seats sold as coach.
The 52 seats in Business Class were in a one-two-one configuration. I choose seat 4D in the mini-cabin. Because it’s quieter and offers more privacy.
The seats are lie-flat just like the 8 First Class seats. The only difference is seat size and width.
The in-flight entertainment (IFE) was a large 15.4-inch touchscreen monitor with movies, TV shows, music, and games.
Miami to New York is a 2 1/2 hour flight so I was able to watch The Boss and the first 30 minutes of Central Intelligence.
There’s an outlet and several USB connections so you can keep all your electronics charged.
Business Class seat but coach price so no food except for the buy on board options. I chose the protein pack which included dry salami, pita chips, spreadable cheese, cookies, and a mint.
Pro-tip: Executive Platinum and ConciergeKey members get a free meal and alcoholic drink when flying in coach.
Why fly in coach when you can enjoy a lie-flat Business Class seat for the same price. Scoring a Business Class ticket from Orlando to Miami to New York for $94 can be done if you pick the right flight.
You’ll enjoy a comfy seat complete with a huge selection of movies, TV shows, games and music all within fingers reach. And you can charge your electronics.
The only downside: the flight is too short.
Stay tuned for a post on which American Airlines flights offer lie-flat Business Class seats for the price of coach.
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