Airlines Make First Class Even More Exclusive for Max Les Miz Effect

Illustration for article titled Airlines Make First Class Even More Exclusive for Max Les Miz Effect

It's hard on the ultra-rich when they're forced to fly commercial. In consideration of their delicate sensibilities, airlines are increasingly pampering first and business-class passengers on international flights. The new hotness: Keeping them far, far away from the wretched, seething crowds of coach.

The AP reports on the experience of flying first-class, which often runs $15,000 for a ticket:

"First class has become a way for a traveler to have an almost private jet-like experience," says Henry Harteveldt, an airline analyst with Hudson Crossing. Airlines "will do everything but sing a lullaby."


That includes all manner of catering. In the U.S., American and United often offer "private rooms" where the creme de la creme can check in faster; some airlines will shuttle Richie Rich to tight connections via luxury cars. If you're flying fancy out of Heathrow (which already feels like a top-tier mall), two and a half Gs gets you access to a lounge "designed for the royal family and heads of state." Emirates Airlines designed a new Dubai concourse so business and first-class passengers are literally on another level than the dirty-faced denizens of coach.

Lufthansa passengers in Frankfurt get their own terminal, with a cigar lounge. Oh, and: "The private restrooms come with their own rubber ducky — an exclusive plastic souvenir for the international jet set." Because the 1% are a bunch of damn babies.

One more reason you could be forgiven for whistling "Can You Hear the People Sing" as you board a plane.

Photo via AP Images.

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Molly with the Mediocre Hair

I got bumped up to first class one time, and they didn't even have Champagne. WHAT'S THE POINT.