I have never flown in intercontinental First Classes, but in my opinion is the answer: No! I would never pay money to fly First Class because it is way too expensive! Would I upgrade to First with miles? Maybe.
I am always willing to pay more for Business Class on intercontinental flights because there is a huge difference compared to Economy, for example: You have more legroom, you have better seats, you get better meals, you get more miles, you have better entertainment features, etc. You simply arrive way more relaxed when you are flying in Business, I noticed that every time!
I am already glad when I have a huge seat, a big PTV, and big legroom like in Business Class, I simply don't need more than that. I remember that I flew in BA's Club World Class in 2002 and I seriously asked myself why BA still has a First Class, I was more than satisfied with Club World.
I don't need caviar and lobster in the plane despite I like this stuff, I also don't need a special assistant like in LH's new First Class Terminal, I am still able to clear immigration by myself, the same for my luggage, hell, I wouldn't even feel comfortable when some jerk takes my luggage and my passport and walks away with it.
Ok, when it is not your money but your parent's or your company's, then go for First, otherwise I wouldn't recommend it.
ANCFlyer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 8125 times:
I don't fly "Y". Domestically, it isn't outrageously expensive . . . international it is prohibitively expensive . . .
Domestically, I'll pay for "F". International - it's a mileage upgrade. It balances out.
Last flight was on UA from ANC-DEN-DSM . . . I can't imagine sitting in the back of a UIA A319 for 6 hours chugging along to DEN, and then hopping on a CRJ for three more hours in Y to DSM. The difference in ticket price was about $550US ($1335 F vs $785 Y). Absolutely worth it to me . . . .
Benefit 1: No wait at checkin - go to the "F" line.
Benefit 2: No wait for the TSA idiots - go to the priority line.
Benefit 3: Wider Seat
Benefit 4: Decent Snack or a Meal
Benefit 5: Free Drinkies.
Benefit 6: IFE
Benefit 7: Less people using the F lav so it doesn't almost instantly become a pig sty.
Benefit 8: More overhead space.
Benefit 9: First on the plane.
Benefit 10: First off the plane.
Benefit 11: Priorty Baggage (ok, that's bullshit - but it's supposed to be that way).
Benefit 12: Priority on reticketing for cancellations, etc.
Benefit 13: Better onboard service (usually), with 1 FA for 8-10 seats, usually 2 FAs for 10-24 seats.
Benefit 14: "F" arrives same time "Y" arrives.
Each of those, in their own way, makes paying for F worth it every time for me.
Jhooper From United States of America, joined Dec 2001, 6210 posts, RR: 11
Reply 4, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 8120 times:
It depends on you. If money's no object, then go for it! If you're barely able to pay your bills, then probably not. If your budget is tight, then your buyer's remorse might negate any benefit realized from better service. I'd personally never pay full price for domestic first class; it's really not that much better than coach. But for long hauls, it can make all the difference in the world. Still, full-fare First is pretty much priced out of my reach given my socioeconomic status; I would strongly consider trying to upgrade using miles, good looks, etc..
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Planemanofnz From New Zealand, joined Sep 2005, 1676 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 8115 times:
First Class is not worth the extra money for most of us. However for a selected few, it is a pleasure which incorparates luxuries which in the end do help for a more stress free trip. If I was flying on Emirates (345/77W/772), and I had the money, I would rather pay for First Class then to travel on the Emirates Business Class because of the bed in first class which business class doesn't have. If I was travelling on SQ or MH or even TG's new aircraft, that would be a different story. Because they all have flat beds in business I would probably just settle for 2nd best as all I want is to be able to lie down flat completely. Lufthansa is another example of a luxurious first class, with it's own first class terminal in Frankfurt, which I am sure would have caught the eye of a few rich german business-people.
At the end of the day, is there even a market for First Class? The answer is yes, and airlines like MH and TG have proven this to us when they recently revamped their products and decided to invest in new seats for first class. However, this first class market is very limited, so limited in fact that alot of airlines just do-away with the first class name itself to squeeze in more seats into the already tight-filled wide-body aircraft.
So, at the end of the day, Business Class with flat beds is worth the money to me, but First Class isn't.
Crdaus From Australia, joined Jan 2006, 142 posts, RR: 2
Reply 6, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 8084 times:
I have been travelling 1st class on international flights for years because of the legroom and flat bed seats. As I am 6'2", I need as much leg room as possible. Also, I find it imposssible to sleep if the seat does not go flat. Otherwise it is not worth the extra for the other bits and pieces such as food, alchohol, priority handling, lounges, etc. because in most cases they are little better than what is available in business class. I think the airlines have been more focussed on their business class offerings than 1st class in recent years. In fact, I just flew with LA in business from SCL to EZE, and with IB from GIG to MAD, and was so impressed with the comfort of the seats that I will probably not fly 1st class again unless it is on points or if the route is serviced by airlines with only flat bed seats in 1st, e.g. QF, CX, etc.