And we thought we had class. Turns out that there is much more luxe within luxe when it comes to air travel. Now we know it is a different kettle of fish to be in a private jet. But to pay US$38,000 one way for 3-room suite flying from New York to Mumbai…And more recently, from Sydney to Abu Dhabi where you can actually take a shower (read here).
Come to think of it, its like turning full circle. In a separate post, we had shared that it used to cost a lot for an air ticket, flying being the preserve of the elite in the 1960s and before. There is so much material on the web showing how passengers of those days dined and drank in lounge like settings onboard as they flew across the world.
Come to think of it, flying has been “proletariatized” (perhaps democratized) over the course of the last 40+ years. The seeming right to freedom of travel used to be a privilege! Are we suggesting that we tolerate the injustice of class differentiation? Kind of.
The case for doing so : it simply makes economic sense.
As airlines search for innovative ways to generate more revenue, we see fees for almost everything. Soon they might charge for the air we breathe onboard. While these fees do add up (some say US$6 billon annually in the US alone), the carriers make far, far more with the cash cows (read here) that have expense accounts to throw money away. We have heard from airline executives that it is the business/first class seats that truly generate profits, if they can it filled.
It’s just a business. Nothing personal.
We want the airlines to turn a profit, so long as it ain’t us plebs that are the main contributors. Let the rich pay as much as they want. That’s where the money is for the carriers. And let them continue to subsidize our cheaper fares.