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Comparison between Condor and other airlines Business class flights

Hi all- We are still holding back on a trip to Germany depending on what Putin does in Eastern Europe this summer. I have been browsing different flights. I would appreciate any information ( except airfare) from actual experiences comparing Condor with any other airline flying between LAX and FRA in business class. Condor has non-stop flights on this route which is very appealing to us elderly folks who are tired of the 20 to 30 hour return flights (which normally happens because of missed connections in ORD, JFK, or DFW). Many thanks in advance.

Ken

Posted by
5586 posts

I haven't flown Condor personally, but everything I've heard/read is that their business class is not one of the better ones. Maybe good enough for some. Not a "lay flat" bed, more of a "recliner chair." If you're just looking for a bit more space and comfort, that may fit your bill, but it's not a "luxury" experience as you might find on most other airlines.

Nonstop options from the US west coast to Germany are going to be prety limited. United and Lufthansa are the main players -- their business class seats are going to be a lot nicer than Condor's (but there will be a cost difference for that...).

Posted by
2133 posts

I have flown Condor business class a few times on the Seattle to Frankfurt route. It is not a 180 degree lie flat seat but it is a 170 degree seat. It’s pretty comfortable and I would not hesitate to fly it again. It’s way more comfortable than a recliner seat - for a short person like me it’s pretty much like a bed. My partner is a few inches over 6 feet - he wishes it was about an inch longer but he’s still happy there.

Posted by
310 posts

Hi All-

I now feel somewhat stupid for asking this question. I have never used the search capability of this forum. So I tried using the search capability and it has more information on this subject than I need!!

David and Valerie- thanks for taking the time to provide some information on this subject.

Again, I apologize for asking this dumb question... On the bright side, I did learn how to use the search function!!!

Ken

Posted by
855 posts

Kenneth, this was not a dumb question. This was information gathering, which is what the Forum is for. We have flown Lufthansa from Colorado to Europe and back in business and it was very comfortable. Sorry, have no experience on Condor, but I hope you have a great trip!

Posted by
3030 posts

On YouTube, there are people who seem to spend a substantial amount of their lives flying in business class and posting reviews regarding their experiences. There are many reviews of Condor business class, including west coast to Frankfurt. You can see it and not just hear about it.

Posted by
13090 posts

The search function is not all that user-friendly, so you cannot be faulted for asking!

We have flown business class to Europe for the past 12 years, using miles on British Airways. But one time we ran out of miles so I booked the home bound trip on Condor, since they fly non-stop to Seattle.

Comparing: Condor was fine for a daytime (westbound) flight. As noted, the seats are not true “lie flat’ like beds, but you do have more space than Economy and the seating is 2 together on the window side, not 3 like economy seating. So more private. The boarding process was a bit chaotic, but once we were aboard the service was fine and professional.

For an overnight flight, I prefer the lie-flat seats and slightly better food and more attentive service we have experienced on British Airways. But as I mentioned, we fly with miles; I would not want have wanted to pay the full cost of flying BA in business class on those trips.

Since you are set on flying non-stop to Germany, Condor is likely your best option for business class, price-wise.

But do compare to Lufthansa and United before you commit to Condor..

And check and understand their policy on refundable or flexible tickets. Fully refundable tickets are very expensive, but some airlines are offering a flexible option at little or no extra cost. I have no idea about United, etc., but BA’s “buy with confidence” policy allows you to book ow for flights through August 2022, and cancel for free up to the date of travel. You get a voucher for future flights, not a refund, so it is a “flexible” option.

https://www.britishairways.com/en-us/information/incident/coronavirus/flexible-booking

If you would consider a flight with a plane change in London, you could fly BA ( or American Airlines) in Premium Economy (2 seats not 3 on the window side), more room than regular economy, better food, etc. but not “lie flat”) from LAX to Munich for $2950 pp in July. To that you would add seat selection fees if you want to choose yourself in advance of check-in. I think seat choice in PE is around $149 each. Condor for business class to Germany the same dates is $3440 (other dates may differ) but you would add $220 per person for the “flexible” option. Seat selection is free.

So, total $3100 per person for BA Premium Economy, versus $3660 for Condor Business Class. The main difference would be the amount of seat recline. Overall flight time for the BA flight including the plane change is under 15 hours, versus around 12 hours for the Condor flight with no changes.

Condor prices their flights day by day, with $100 or more difference between flights on adjacent days ( probably depending on how full they are). So if your dates are flexible, you could bring that price down by careful selection. But in any case, you should add the extra $220 pp for the flexible option.

Posted by
218 posts

From my standpoint, United has the best "hard product." The Polaris business class seats are true lie-flat, provide the best privacy, and all seats have direct aisle access. The Polaris seats are not quite as private as Delta One, which even provide a bit of a door, but still very nice. Polaris Business seats are configured 1-2-1. In the center section there is a partition that can be raised between the seats. Caveat: As of this writing, 5 of United's 787-9s are still configured with the pre-Polaris seats. Also, none of United's 767-400s have the "true Polaris" seats. All the United 767-300s are true Polaris, and all the 777-300s.

Lufthansa business class hard product is a bit outdated. The seats are true lie-flat, but are configured 2-2-2, which means the window seats do not have direct access to the aisle. I'm not certain what is involved getting out of those seats if the aisle side is extended flat.

Not all Condor seats have direct aisle access as well, and as noted above, do not lie completely flat.

From what I can tell the BA business class seats are a bit weird (to me). The seats alternate forward- and backward-facing.

Lufthansa may beat United on the "soft product." I've heard they never cut back on-board business services during the last couple years, unlike US domestic carriers. My take is Condor soft product would come in third.

Posted by
1 posts

If Condor flies to your destination, it has loyalty programs as well. For example, the company is always happy to help select alternative flights and choose a convenient route. You can collect miles at Condor and use them on partner flights or take advantage of business flights 20 %. Some credit card holders may have additional benefits, such as free admission to the business lounge. If you don't want to switch carriers, you can find out how convenient direct boarding via charter flights would be for you. But flying across Europe isn't easy either.

Posted by
754 posts

For what it's worth, Condor has announced a new business class seat for their incoming new a330-900 planes, which they begin to receive this fall. It will be a 1-2-1 lie-flat seat, staggered, not herringbone. So superior to many of the flag carriers' offerings on Transatlantic routes.

Posted by
754 posts

Lola- It’s their new livery, but I don’t think the first of those has rolled out yet.

Posted by
13090 posts

Any idea when the new livery is scheduled to roll out? I will keep watch for them at the Seattle airport if I’m there at the right time. The Condor plane should be on the ground here between 4 and 5:35 pm, and we will be at SeaTac around that time in late August, waiting to board our BA flight to London.

Posted by
754 posts

Lola- The new design is already flying on some of their narrow-body fleet. I wouldn't be surprised if they wait for the new a330-900s to debut it on long-haul.