Posted November 13th, 2017, 07:43 PM
Last edited by mking8288; November 13th, 2017 at 08:01 PM
thank you for the information on the airlines you fly. What do the initials CA and FA mean?
CA is the airline short code for "Air China" (whereas AC is Air Canada, and, CX is for Cathy Pacific ... KE is for Korean Air, and LH is for Lufthansa)
Now that we know you are snowbirds ?? leaving from a Florida (int'l) airport - and with common gateway airports and connections, I fully understanding what you are referring to, as being grueling for being in the air ... tradeoffs between 1 stop and longer time in-flight and 2 stops (or more) and maybe shorter time in the air but more transfers inside connection airports for boarding & making the next one.
I strongly suggest giving your business and plans to a local travel agency/agent familiar with Asia and can come up with optimal flights, routing and competitive fares ... with one of the better, if not highly rated airlines - let them do the hard work for you, maybe work in a complimentary overnight stopover somewhere and free airport/hotel transfers, and to get you into BKK (that's official Bangkok, Thailand's airport code) ... whether this is connected to a cruise or not, or just a land-based / river tour.
Will you be returning also via BKK or is this a one-way, coming home to the US via another Asia city/airport ??
US's air traffic (FAA) systems aren't the best and I would not recommend flying out to the West Coast for a stop going outbound to BKK, reasons - among others - is that it will most definitely be a polar routing flight, up over the "top" of the world - over Canada airspace, across/near the North Pole/Alaska and down coming south again - over Soviet/China down to BKK. Absolutely not a fun way to deal with TSA at LAX and/or SFO (Los Angeles or San Francisco) again for airport security in addition to home airport in FL, and/or be overnighting in an airport hotel to make the next day connection.
You are better off doing this half way around the world first, fly 2/3 of the way across the globe to the first gateway city in Asia - rest, maybe a 1/2 day sightseeing (optional) with an airport hotel - although, jetlag will still be wrecking your body clock, more or less. For example, flying CA, CX or KE from Texas or Atlanta, or even JFK or EWR (in NY) ... a 3 hour nonstop - then, on a wide-bodied jumbo jet into Asia, 12 hours for Seoul, SK but it's 15 hours into Hong Kong, Beijing is about 13 hours or less - depending on jetstream and wind on the route.
When you are flying business class, you have free & complimentary access to airline's club lounges - both Cathy & Korean Air has excellent business class lounge, with free shower facilities for arriving & in-transit passengers, etc. Air China aren't quite up there, far from but trying hard, with club & lounge services & their offerings - but, fares can sometimes be surprising good for being in J or B class.
The other routing are via Europe, but the flights will still be up north before across the North Atlantic, sometimes near polar - skirting Canada's eastern coastal and then down to ... maybe Munich, Germany if using LH or London if via BA (British Airways) as a fairly long nonstop - 11 to 13 or 14 hours + ... from MIA (Miami - I haven't look at the details to see who's doing what, just a generalized idea, so you can visualize your options). Then, it's another - long, non-stop from the European city's airport direct into Bangkok, 10 to 12 hours, could be more.
Thus, when you add up the actual flight times involved, airport connecting waiting times and transit, easily 25 to 30 hours (and, more - if there are delays in transit or a connection is missed.) Good thing is that, as paying business class passengers - airlines involved will take care of any routing issues for you first. Still, make sure you have travel insurance for the trip - needless to say, even if that's the "basic" included free from your AE Gold or credit card issuer's coverage.
There are expertise here on CC, among those in the travel industry who can offer more tips, helps & ideas - if you don't mind, please list more specifics like months of travel, etc. and folks can work up some suggestions ... which you can then take to your local TA as a template or framework, and, let them work a little to "earn" your money and their commissions for the booking.
(P.S. I'm in full agreement with poster above, especially flying business on routes like this - and, having the benefits of lie-flat beds, to just get the flying part done ASAP - the body clock is going to be disrupted from multiple time-zone changes, can be worst with en-route stopover. Get there first, adjust to the new clock and give yourself & spouse 2 or 3 days to transition, recover & then enjoy what's waiting for you ... outside the hotel and/or join the local tour/cruise, etc. The flight routin g options out of Florida aren't pretty or good, no matter which way you look - planes don't fly, really, in a straight line across. But, my oldest SIL, 65 years old then - flown nonstop New York to Los Angeles, immediately connect nonstop to Sydney & back ... alone, in coach, about 22 hours end-to-end, no stopover - and still laughed about it. Next Spring, Singarpore & Hanoi on her bucket list ... probably a combo of business & economy plus for comfort.