SO EXCITED: Garuda Indonesia First Class Is BOOKED!

Filed Under: Garuda Indonesia, Travel

I feel like I’ve had the opportunity to review almost all of the world’s best first class products. Last year I even created a list of what I consider to be the world’s six best first class products.

However, for a long time there has been one airline I’ve heard great things about that I really felt I needed to fly. That airline is Garuda Indonesia.

Indonesian aviation has come a long way over the past few decades, from being among the most unsafe markets out there. Garuda Indonesia is perhaps the pride of all the improvements that have been made, as they’re now a Skytrax 5-star airline, and their new 777s look fantastic.

The catch is that there’s no good way to redeem partner miles for Garuda first class (you can only redeem through their own program, which is a Citi ThankYou transfer partner, though redemption rates are expensive). As a result I’ve been monitoring constantly for the best Garuda Indonesia first class fares, and have managed to find some decent values.

I’ve nearly pulled the trigger on booking Garuda Indonesia a few times, though up until now I haven’t.

Well, yesterday I wrote about Garuda Indonesia’s Black Friday sale, which was too good of an offer to not take advantage of.


They’re selling roundtrip first class from London to Jakarta for ~$2,500 including all taxes and fees, which is pretty incredible for a 14 hour flight outbound and a 17 hour flight return.


I was initially just going to book this for travel next year so that I can look forward to it, but then decided I might as well go soon, so I can get this product reviewed as soon as possible.

So in a couple of weeks I’ll be headed to Jakarta on Garuda Indonesia, and I’m very excited about it!

Thanks to you guys for the motivation to get this booked, as so many people had been asking for a review of the product.

After flying Garuda Indonesia first class I think I can make a definitive list of the world’s best first class products.

I’ve heard that Garuda Indonesia has cut back the quality of their first class product a bit, though I’m curious to see firsthand.

Anyone else taking advantage of Garuda’s fantastic first & business class fare sale?

  1. I got Business London-Melbourne for £1080 return which is the best deal I have EVER seen on this route or from any European country as a matter of fact! Does any one know if Garuda offers complimentary limo or layover hotel to business passengers?

  2. Hi Lucky
    I have also booked LHR to CGK one-way F for mid-Dec! My alternative would be SV F via RUH!! So GA should win hands down although I am thereby passing the chance to try SV’s newest First Suite, whose hard product seems to have been copied from GA.
    So much looking forward to trying out GA F for all the reasons you have mentioned – but also to reading your trip review soon!

  3. Great, all you have to do is fly JFK-CAI-BOM on Egyptair and BOM-LHR on Air India’s 787 to position there, and get back on Aer Lingus via Dublin. Or maybe Meridiana via Palermo.

  4. How are you going to london? You can try air lingus vía dublin tap Portugal vía lisbon meridiana vía Palermo or direct with air new zeland yo can also go via south america latam Los angeles Santiago and aerolineas argentinas from Buenos Aires to madrid barcelona or rome

  5. Even if Garuda has cut back a bit on their service in First Class, it is still pretty spectacular based on the most recent trip report posted over on Flyertalk. And that poster is one I definitely trust when it comes to judging luxury travel.

  6. Very exciting! Ben is probably already aware that SFO777 recently flew LHR-CGK on Garuda and thought it was spectacular.

    @Lucky –

    Jakarta rivals Bangkok & Hong Kong in terms of the number of outstanding luxury hotels. I love the Dharmawangsa, though it’s probably not available with points.

  7. “I don’t have any more longhaul travel planned for the year and I’m looking forward to the break”, he said.

    “I can quit anytime I want”, he said.

    (watches him slaps wrist repeatedly to bring the veins up)

  8. They have made some progress. At least it has been a few years since one of their pilots murdered a passenger ( Jakarta-Singapore-Amsterdam) by poisoning his orange juice. He’s out of jail now, maybe back flying.
    Also a while since the crash in Japan , during which most of the cabin crew fled the wreckage leaving the passengers to fend for themselves.
    It will be interesting to see if the changes are more than cosmetic.

  9. Hey Ben how can you do a list of the world’s best F classes without having flown AF 77W F? SFO777 who I think you would agree is one of the top 5 airline reviewers in the world (along with yourself, Sam Chui, and I guess TPG in no particular order) has flown it many times and consistently says it is the world’s best F class.

  10. Maybe you could turn this into your annual trip to Bali by flying a ULCC from CGK-DPS but, if not it is still great

  11. I have just booked LHR to MEL via CGK in Business Class for £1080 RETURN.

    I have a family wedding in Melbourne and have been looking for the perfect deal.

    Now I just need recommendations on where to stay during the 14hr overnight layover in Jakarta on the return leg.

    Also, because I primarily fly and collect miles with one world partners , Mostly BA. I am unsure who to credit my miles from Garuda Indonesia to maximise their worth ?

    London Tash

  12. Book CGK-LOP-CGK on Batik Air business class – it is cheap. And stay at one of the luxury hotels in Lombok for a couple of days at least. My wife and I stayed at Puri Mas pool villa last month and it was out of this world.

  13. How about Polaris over to CDG, CDG-BEY on AF 77W in F (rather cheap, but full service), MEA A330 BEY-LHR to pick up this?

  14. I just flew LHR-CGK last month. I would still choose JL or CX F over J for inflight. However, ground service at LHR blew all other airlines away. Further, the first class email with requests really benefitted me as well. It was a solid experience.

  15. @ David — Any chance you could share details on the LHR ground experience, and also what kind of requests you made with the first class email?

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