Flights are expensive in general these days, and some airlines have been dropping the ball in the way they treat their customers. On the other hand, there are airlines out there that are determined to create the most luxurious travel experience possible, and they certainly know who their preferred clientele is. Even if you don’t make it on to one of these flights at some point, it’s fun to explore the ludicrously wealthy lifestyles of the upper class.
1. $15 000: Los Angeles to Melbourne
Qantas First Class knows how to send its passengers out in style as made apparent by their first-class pricing. While a typical trip from LA isn’t usually cheap at around $2 000, if you want to tack on an extra digit, you’ll unlock access to a speedy check in and full-service lounge while you await your flight. Once on board, you’ll have your own private (but spacious), nook with television monitor, swivel chair, pajama set, and an amazing service staff who will serve you top-notch dining options and drinks throughout your flight, and even make up your bed for you, which is equipped with a privacy divider.
2. $20 000: New York to Singapore
Virgin Atlantic Upper Class has some competition due to the number of extravagant flights available out of New York to the same destinations, but they’ve still done an incredible job on this steeply priced package. Feel free to show up early to spend time at JFK in their clubhouse, which includes a wellness spa, signature cocktails and 5-star dining. It’s also got an entertainment zone if you fancy a game of pool. You can nap in one of the relaxation pods before you board, then jump in the shower, hand your luggage to an attendee, and pop onto the plane worry free. Once on board you can continue your experience with generous reclining leather seats and curated meals, drinks, and snacks.
3. $26 500: Hong Kong to New York
Cathay Pacific First Class offers too many amenities to even count on this strikingly expensive flight from Hong Kong to New York. Beginning at the airport where spending time in the first-class lounge means access to handcrafted coffee beverages and house-made pastries, two bars, or a private self-service buffet. If you would rather tuck away and get some work done there are workstations available on the lower floor, along with 24 private showers if you’d like to freshen up. During your flight you’ll have access to some of the widest, softest seats in the sky, complete with a touch screen controller that you can use to enjoy an in-flight chair massage. Your seating area can also be transformed into a full-service workstation. All of this while enjoying the best of the best in terms of cuisine, aesthetics, and service.
4. $43 500: New York to Hong Kong
Lufthansa First Class. Upon arrival to the airport, check into the prestigious Lufthansa first-class lounge, where you can enjoy your own private bottle-service, a cigar lounge, full ala carte meals and buffet. Or, opt to go take a nap in one of the private rooms available. Once your personal assistant organizes your ride to the aircraft in a limousine, take a seat in one of the fully adjustable plush armchairs (you can even control the width) and relax with a complimentary pair of Bose-brand noise-cancelling headphones. Once it’s time to savour one of the high-quality meals available, choose from a plethora of options on your private, and comprehensive, entertainment system.
5. $64 000: New York to Abu Dhabi
Etihad Airways Residence has gone out its way to far surpass any previous standard of upper-class travel. You could say that it’s a matter of opinion, but you’d be wrong. As a matter of fact, the price tag turned out to be a little too high for most, leading Etihad to scale back the number of flights that run on one of these vessels over the years (there is currently only one from New York to leave daily). The lounges are gorgeous with the architecture mimicking the flashy city of Abu Dhabi, with lots of pastels and huge windows. There is a small TV room, prayer room, a top shelf bar, and private washroom suites equipped with showers – but the plane is when things get seriously plushy. You’ll have your own private 3-room residence, including a bedroom with an ensuite bathroom, complete with a shower and heated floors. The bed itself is a double with soft Italian sheets. You will also have access to your own private entertainment room, containing a couch and large screen television. There’s an option to customize your meals through the onboard chef and you will never be left for want with your private butler. You even have your own mini bar. Talk about glamourous.
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