With first-class air travel reaching enormous amounts in regards to cost, what are the airlines doing for their first-class passengers in exchange for such hefty dues? For one, they are upping the ante when it comes to the onboard first-class dinging experience. As we all know, airfare has sky rocketed recently as the average first-class round trip flight is around $13,000. Yes, a much more comfy seat and more leg room may be worth the price, but airlines are beginning to do away with those pre-determined menus and beginning to go so far as to hiring their very own on-board chefs.
Yes, you heard it correctly. With several airlines, your very own first-class chef is available on your flight. Of course, much of this sort of activity is being done on more foreign flights, but it seems to be quite a popular trend these days. The number one and number two rated best on-board meals currently go to Gulf Air and Cathay Pacific (Gulf Air being the airline with the personal chef aboard, of course.) While this all may be a bit ‘overdone’, like a fresh egg made to order at Cathay Pacific, it really only costs the airlines about $30-50 per traveler. This all seems like a pretty good deal for the airline, as well as the traveler. That is, if this is what they expect out of a $13,000 flight. But it does not end here.
Airlines, such as Singapore Airlines is providing first-class travelers heir choice of beverage, including champagne including Dom Perignon upon boarding the flight. This pleasant experience in accented with a lovely serving of world famous caviar with travelers’ meals. While all of this seems a bit overdone, one may begin to wonder if it is really a bit over the top. In the United States, many of us have not experienced such pleasantries on our flights. We are pretty lucky if we get a free box of snacks, like Southwest Airlines has been so kind as to provide on several flights. Are airlines going to be jockeying for such positions in the future in the US as they have been on foreign airlines? If so, then how far? Today it sounds as if our airlines are really having some trouble dealing with things such as oil prices and rising costs in order to do business.
It is actually a very interesting point in time in regards to the airlines as competition is heating up as well as airfare prices. How high will they go? Who knows? What I wonder about is if the first-class upgrades will really propel the airlines into better profits, ultimately cost them more money, or if they actually have more money than we think? All I know is this is getting very interesting; however, not interesting enough to raise prices for airfare even more just to suit the personal chefs on board. So, what will happen next with the airlines seems to be headed towards raising the bar in terms of quality of experience. But, how will this affect everyone? Hopefully, it will allow airlines to pick themselves up across the board and provide a pleasant flying experience for everyone in the air.