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How Many Of You Fly First Class Or Business?  
User currently offlineAlitalia777 From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 501 posts, RR: 0
Posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 4387 times:

Hello everyone,
How many of you guys fly first class or business class as your normal class of service? Not to be rude or anything, but how can you afford it? I notice so many pictures taken from people who were seated in first or business class. Is it for business? Please don't be offended. Thanks.


34 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
User currently offlineAA 777 From United States of America, joined exactly 14 years ago today! , 814 posts, RR: 11
Reply 1, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 4372 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Becuase my mom works for AA I fly First whenever it is open. How people actually pay for it is beyond me!

AA 777

CRJ-700 FO
User currently offlineAnsett767 From Australia, joined May 1999, 1021 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 4373 times:

Yeah, most people flying first or Biz class are business men or women whose seat was paid for by the company. I think around 80-90% on a poll I read once somewhere? Could tihs be right? - seems to me to be true...

Otherwise, there are some non rev passengers...

The rest are rich travellers. As a student I have only ever travelled on Biz class when my parents paid for me to.... so yeah.....

User currently offlineB-HXB From New Zealand, joined Jan 2001, 745 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 4367 times:

The important thing to remember is that quite often the fare you end up paying for F/J is significantly lower than airlines quote on their website.

User currently offlineThumper From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 550 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 4366 times:

The times I fly First Class or Biz I usually upgrade with my skymiles!

User currently offlineTbird From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 851 posts, RR: 18
Reply 5, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 4349 times:


I've flown F Class 17 times, as to how I afford it? I always upgraded when I checked in. Before TWA was mergered with AA I always flew TWA and they had a great upgrade policy. If there were seats in First you could upgrade for a small fee. The max I ever paid one way to upgrade was $250 to London, it was well worth it in my opinion. Most of the time however I do fly coach.


User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 51
Reply 6, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 4337 times:

I too fly coach the majority of the time, but depending on the circumstances of the flight, I get upgrades either through my own miles and upgrade certificates, or if Im traveling just with my father on US, I get automatically upgraded as his "companion" as he is Chairman's Preferred with US and that is one of the benefits...free companion upgrades...


Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
User currently offlineCedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 8657 posts, RR: 53
Reply 7, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 4334 times:

I always fly Economy when I'm paying, Business when someone else is. Except when I escorted my gran back to Sydney after my Mum's funeral in England (sorry it's so depressing), cos my gran was already flying in Business Class (on Emirates) there was no point in flying back with her 20 rows away, so I flew in J out of my own pocket. Btw I found Emirates Business Class service quite underwhelming considering their great reputation. It was a 1980s Business Class product (and I noticed that the seating in Economy was 3-4-3 on a 777 - how come they keep winning all those awards?).

Now I'm booked to go LHR - SYD for Xmas, and again Economy would be my choice but I'm going with my sister and she has a 3 year old and a 3 month old and she doesn't want to be crammed into 61H, J and K for 24 hours with the li'l ones. So (get this) we found return tickets on Qantas First Class that were half the British Airways Club World (do they still call it that?) fare (BA J is £5000, QF special offer on F is £3500, normally about £7000). £3500 is the most I've paid for a plane ticket by far (Emirates J class at the beginning of the year was £1100 LHR-SYD rtn) but I may as well: (a) I've had a shitty year so I deserve it, (b) but I've worked really hard so I deserve it, and (c) I can help my sis with the kids. But if I was travelling alone or with partner etc on my tab it'd be 61K for me. Which is fine. Under normal circumstances it's almost impossible to justify J or F as a matter of course unless you're stupidly rich (I'm not).

fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
User currently offlineCmk10 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 513 posts, RR: 3
Reply 8, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 4327 times:

If I'm flying AA with my dad, maybe 30% of the time he upgrades me. If I'm by myself or on any other airline, 90% of the time im at the back of the bus.
DC-10's Forever

"Traveling light is the only way to fly" - Eric Clapton
User currently offlineArtsyman From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 4748 posts, RR: 32
Reply 9, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 4311 times:

I fly BusinessFirst about 95% of the time, which I suppose is around 3-4 longhauls per month, but it is all Non revenue travel on Continental


User currently offlineTadex From Vatican City, joined Sep 2002, 91 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 4280 times:

"Not to be rude or anything, but how can you afford it?" How do you want to know how much people earn here. i.e.: I fly F and if that doesn´t exist than C.

User currently offlineTadex From Vatican City, joined Sep 2002, 91 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 4275 times:

I meant to write "then" instead of "than".

User currently offlineAfitch7881 From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 820 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 4244 times:

I fly first class 90% of the time. Reason is I am a Silver Elite on Northwest. That allows me to fly unlimted amounts of first class with free upgrades from coach. Most of you know how this works so I wont go in depth. I had a long streak of flying first class snap on my last trip. Flying BDL-MSP-PHX, I was in coach on both flights. O well, it does spoil you when you fly first class all the time however.

I typically fly about 35K miles a year, usually all between PHX and BDL.


User currently offlineThadocta From Australia, joined Aug 2001, 397 posts, RR: 2
Reply 13, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 4236 times:

In general, very few passengers in North America pay to fly in J of (what is laughingly described as ) F. Upgrades are way way way too easy to come across in the third world.

I travel in J in Australia (which is often better than what some third world carriers like UA and AA call 'F') a fair bit, and I pay for about half of it. And the cost is often about 4X what I could get on a cheap web-deal.

How do I afford it? Simple, I work.


User currently offlineMhz From United Arab Emirates, joined Apr 2002, 92 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 4219 times:

I have to fly First because of my size and my back problem. the airlines I had been with are MH, BA, SQ, EK. Seat wise SQ & BA among the best, followed by MH while EK not worth paying for. Service wise where they really look after you, the best is MH then SQ. BA service is ok nothing extra, EK I might add again, not worth paying for!

User currently offlineBOEING747400 From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 319 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 4158 times:

There are no free lunches here! The only way out is simply being a millionaire or billionaire. Other than that, there's upgrades but you have to purchase many tickets for the mileage required or the employer pays for you on business travel (especially if you're a CEO or MD). It's a pity that airlines tend to charge 4-5 times as much for F/J compared to Y. I love F and wish I could travel on it as much as I like but nothing comes easy.

User currently offlineViveAF From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2001, 198 posts, RR: 8
Reply 16, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 4103 times:

The account handled by my section in the travel agency has a strict policy on classes. For European journeys everyone including the top dogs have to travel economy unless they are accompanying customers when business class is used. For long haul the criteria is : less than 8 hours flight time and total trip more than 4 days they fly economy or premium economy, more than eight hours or a trip of less than 4 days business class can be used.

Strange thing is that with our own negotiated, or nett rate, fares we can almost always offer a long haul business class with the likes of KL/LH/AF etc which is as good or better than the direct flights ex UK with BA/VS etc in economy.... But company policy still holds and they fly `down the back` !

Many of the travellers do use their own upgrade certificates though and this is allowed although they have to make those arrangements themselves... And the current offer BA have for a free one-way upgrade from J to F, or even Concorde on the JFK route, has been very well used - I`ve booked more Concorde sectors in the last couple of months than ever !

Got so say that the occasional upgrade I`ve had myself from Y to C (never F yet....) has been very welcome, but it does spoil you !

User currently offlineAlaskaMVP From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 150 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4086 times:

I think some people here are missing the point of first class. I doubt too many of domestic first class seats are actually sold at first class prices (though certainly any airline employees can correct me). The reason first class fares are so high is to ensure that airlines have high availability for frequent fliers (FFs).

Think like an airline. Frequent fliers are typically business travelers who not only fly alot, they typically pay extremely high coach fares because they can't reserve in advance, and need flexible reservations. This means that keeping a frequent flier flying your airline can easily be worth tens of thousands of dollars a year in revenue. So putting your FF's in first class as often as possible is how you earn their loyalty. You would rather put an FF paying $500 for coach in first than an infrequent flier paying $600, because the FF is going to come back again and again and again, all at your top coach fares. So you jack first class fares up to 4 times coach (or more) to "discourage" the infrequent traveler from taking your first class inventory from your best customers, or at least ensuring you make a whopping profit on it if they do.

My employer will only pay for coach tickets, but since I fly a great deal (25,000 miles since July) I am upgraded to first class for free most of the time. How? On the west coast I typically fly Alaska and they upgrade me since I'm an MVP (soon to be MPV Gold). They have a little system that is similar to the other airlines I think illustrates how First Class inventory is managed to maximize FF loyalty and hence profitability.

More than 2 days before flight - First class fares are about 4-6 times higher than coach, or a free upgrade from coach if you are an Alaska MVP Gold (meaning you fly at least 35,000 miles per year on their mostly short hops).

1-2 days before flight - First class fare is still 4X-6X, but if you are an MVP (15,000 miles per year), they'll upgrade you for free.

Day of travel - Aha, first class hasn't sold out, and all the FFs have been upgraded. Now the airline will try to get something for the first class seats before it's too late. Anyone can upgrade for $50 per segment, so for example there is no reason to buy a first class fare at the counter before your flight, just buy coach and pay the $50..

Of course I'm over simplifying, there are many wrinkles to this, you can also use miles to upgrade or coupons given to you if you use the Alaska credit card, but it all comes back to rewarding loyalty, if you have lots of miles they'll open first class for you.

So next time you walk through the first class cabin, don't think you are in the company of a group of "millionares or billionaires". In reality they are a sad bunch of mostly middle class schlubs, in jobs requiring them to fly constantly, away from their families, eating strange food in strange cities while sleeping in strange beds. Their plush seats are courtesy of an airline that is the one familar and friendly place on their exhausting and lonely trips, with a staff that will work very hard to ensure the FF's always feel welcome and comfortable. That's one reason why cabin crew try to greet first class passsengers by name, but in many cases I'm sure it also because they've seen same poor soul on their flight every week for the last year Smile

User currently offlineSeiple From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 4068 times:

It depends on the circumstances.....

As an elite on American, I earn some upgrade certificates (500-milers) but typically purchase sets of them to put in upgrade requests under special circumstances (such as booked up flight in coach where I'm only able to reserve a middle seat, or traveling with a friend and upgrade both of us like I did on my last F trip). Almost all of my travel is short-haul (of my 15 airline flights in the last month, all have been two hours or under). I used to be elite with TWA, and that yielded unlimited domestic upgrades. Prior to that, upgrading for a small fee was possible on TWA (example: OMA-STL-ORD was $30 to upgrade).

Last weekend I wasn't feeling well on my journey and upgraded myself by paying the $40 to sit in BusinessElite on JFK-ATL so that I could lay down and actually get some rest.

All depends on the circumstances, but I have no problems sitting in coach for two hours.

User currently offlineTonyBurr From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 1111 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days ago) and read 4036 times:

When I travel domestic I fly economy, unless I can upgrade with coupons. WHen I travel to Europe I try to book economy and upgrade to C. Several times a year I do Round the World trips and usually fly F. Flying on the Round the World in F can be less money then flying To say South Africa in C. When you do several trips in one trip ( by going around the world) it is actually less money for the company (no I do not pay for it myself). EVen though I am a
1 K on UA I have never been called up for a free upgrade, so I kind of envy those FF whose airlines recognize them.

It may seem like an extravegence, but remember this. Often a business person has to fly say from New York to Tokyo, arrive and go into a meeting the next day or even that day. It takes the body a long time to reuperate from a 18 hour economy seat. The executive is able to be better prepared for the meeting, get more work done and be more efficient at work if he/she arrives refreshed and relaxed. I have flown from New York to Tokyo for an afternoon meeting, one night over, and back the next day. If I am hitting Europe, Africa, Asia and say Australia in one trip, your body needs some help.

I was flew New York to London on BA in F. Another guy on the flight had a meeting at Heathrow, and then was catching the afternoon flight to San Francisco. He NEEDED First!!!!

Some business people have flown the concorde for a meeting and gone back the same day. It is part of business.

Cedarjet I would love to know where u got the lesser pruce for DF inF? U use a consolidator?

User currently offlineSushka From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 4784 posts, RR: 13
Reply 20, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days ago) and read 4025 times:

When my sister was still working as a F/A for NWA I flew frequently first class.
Other than that, whenever my family and I fly on a flight that is over five hours we get upgrades.

Pershoyu Spravoyu Litaki!
User currently offlineVermeer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 447 posts, RR: 4
Reply 21, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days ago) and read 4026 times:

I an one of the few here...
I pay for all my J intercontinental sectors. Usually 6/7 times a year, across the atlantic and the pacific.
It is my way of rewarding myself from hard work and because I love it. My holiday starts with that treat and if I work I need the tranquillity and the room before I go to work. I am 32 and it is 5 years I fly J. Usually on LH ( which, by the way, has a VERY strict upgrade policy) where I got reliable, dependable service in the air and on the ground. Not many free upgrades, for all the passengers, a very democratic if hard rule for all of us. And I like it that way. Occasionally I have been bumped up to First ( because the plane is really full or because my beloved ladies in the lounge have pity!)
I am not a billionaire, and many times I thought that with that money I could have bought quite many things...do I regret it? not at all.
Call me romantic but travelling for me still has a meaning, I want to do it in a certain way, not for the others but for myself. And it is the same if I travel by train or by sea. I always look for the more understated, discreet and less crowded way. I work with people ( a lot of them) all the time.
On MY time, I don't want to hassle with hordes of people, I don't want to be bothered and I pay for all my services because I know that they come, but at a price. I can change all my plans in complete freedom, exactly what I need.

User currently offlineFlyingbronco05 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 3841 posts, RR: 2
Reply 22, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days ago) and read 4014 times:

Because my mom AND dad work for AA, its obvious where I sit Big grin

First class all the way!

Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
User currently offline9V-SPK From Hong Kong, joined Aug 2001, 1646 posts, RR: 5
Reply 23, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 4010 times:

Like most of the others because my dad works in the airline company so I get to fly First or Business. Before all my flights are only First but nowadays due to the fact that I study overseas I also fly a lot of Economy but quite often I get upgraded if the flight is nearly or already full.

However flying which class doesn't mean that much to me, at least I get to fly!

Best Regards

User currently offlineAirbus Lover From Malaysia, joined Apr 2000, 3248 posts, RR: 9
Reply 24, posted (13 years 6 months 3 weeks 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 3976 times:

I fly business most of the times and once in a while in First, not to show off or anything but on most flights it is paid by my dad's company and a few times by my dad himself... Other times, like recently when my dad has to pay for the tix, I was on economy. So in all my flying I have done 5 economy flights so far (only), that is why I think I am lucky... Out of those 5, 2 were award tickets....

25 2cn : For me, I fly in First/Biz all the time since my dad works for Delta and has tons of senority.. we tend to get the last two seats in first alot of tim
26 Traveler : Hello guys, I aslways fly business class on CSA Czech airlines. It is simply great. Excellent food and service. On November 21, I will fly business cl
27 TonyBurr : I use to think that only FF flew F class but now I think it is full of airline employees and their families. Do you get the upgrades when u make the r
28 Elwood64151 : It depends on the airline you fly. I used to work for NJ, so I upgraded, usually free, sometimes for $25, all the time. I worked for AirTran for a sho
29 Thadocta : I fly in J on QF a lot - most of it is paid for, some of them I use upgrade credits to upgrade, or I upgrade in the lounge. But upgrades with QF are e
30 Seat2A : I've logged over a million miles in First Class but I've only paid for full fare First Class three times in my life. As much as I enjoy the enhanced s
31 9V-SVA : I have been flying in First/Raffles for the past 3 years or so because I have a family member who works for the airline in question and we normally go
32 Spk : I always fly Business class for business and pleasure. I fly First class from time to time when upgrades are available or when I can find a good fare.
33 Brons2 : I am 6'7" and I always asked to be upgraded from the cramped Coach seating, sometimes it works. Continental seems to be nice about it.
34 TxAgKuwait : Havr flown up front just once in a lifetime of flying that dates back to 1956. That's a lot of flights...right now I am averaging probably 8-10 trips
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