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Toronto to Buenos Aires in January
I posted a similar question as a guest a while back and received a good reply but I would like to resend it with some addtions…
My wife and I are planning to take our 2 small children (4 & 2) and their grandfather to Buenos Aires in January.
We collect points with BA Avios and Aeroplan.
The best options to Buenos Aires are Air Canada via Santiago or AA/US via Miami. Both require 95,000 points for Business Class. (Aeroplan will devalue in December so there is some urgency here)
My 1st question: which offers the best business class experience – seats, family friendly configuration, service, lounges, etc? In other words which loyalty program should we focus on rapidly accumulating points (spending and card applications)? I have close to the required amount in my Avios account but we would need quite a lot in our Aeroplan accounts. Currently the AmEx Aeroplan Reserve card offers a 60,000 sign up bonus!
The 2nd and arguably more important question: is it poor business class etiquette to bring 2 small children along? During such a long flight, any lie flat seat will offer the best chance a restless toddler, booked as a lap passenger (controversial, I know) and parent, will sleep most of the way. Sitting in economy would be intolerable with him!
Thanks in advance.
[USER=336]@RPinYYZ[/USER] – welcome!
Want to make sure we understand what you’re requesting as far as award seats. As I understand it you’re looking for 4 business class (or better) award seats and you’re planning to let the 2 y/o be a lap child?
Just want to be sure you understand that many airlines charge 10% of the paid price of the seat for lap children. Boarding Area blogger Mommy Points had a big post on this last year: [URL]http://mommypoints.boardingarea.com/2014/03/10/guide-to-booking-award-travel-with-lap-infants/[/URL]
Hopefully others can chime in on the hard & soft products and lounge experience. It’s perfectly fine to bring a child into the lounge – some lounges even have play areas.
Hi, thanks for your reply and the link!
To clarify, yes we would need 4 business class award tickets including one ‘infant’ lap ticket. We will return 2 days before his second birthday.
I was aware of the extra charges for lap infants but since these tickets will be reward redemptions the extra fees aren’t cost prohibitive. Aeroplan charges $100 or 10000 points for the infant ticket, Avios charges 10%, so 9500. Not terrible.
[USER=336]@RPinYYZ[/USER] – found this review of the return trip. Maybe it’ll help:
I flew this same flight (but only to SCL) a few years ago. I believe it still the same 77W that flies this route. It was a very comfortable flight with the timing out of Toronto pretty decent since the time zones don’t change too much (overnight flight). Air Canada J is probably a little dated now.
In my experience, Aeroplan to Argentina in January is typically hard to get as it is high season. To boot you are looking for four seats in J (normally I see two and not more) so I would find it very difficult to score though perhaps not impossible.
Perhaps AA might give you more flexible options.