Secrets of Flying First Class: The best way to get an upgrade is to be ‘better looking’

Travel: Air hostess gives advice on vouchers offered by airlines

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Flying first class may be a dream for many, but few can afford to make it come true. With some popular routes selling suites at “up to £30,000 for a return”, most Britons can only imagine what first class travel is like.

On the two-part programme Secrets of Flying First Class, viewers were taken inside the exclusive first-class cabin for a look.

Because “anything is possible at 40,000ft”, Channel 5 viewers were told of Michelin-level meals, luxury airport lounges and free-flowing champagne. 

While the luxury is staggering, the price tag is even more so. 

The true dream, of course, would be to fly first class without having to pay for it.

So, does the free upgrade exist?

The show asked the question to a range of people, from air hostesses to first class flyers, and the answers was a resounding yes.

It is possible to get upgraded, but the “best way to get upgraded is to pay for it”.

To be part of the lucky few who do not have to pay for it, one person suggested bribery: “You’ll either get arrested or you get an upgrade”.

However, the real insider knowledge was: “People upgrade passengers when they are better looking, I don’t know why that is.”

But not only extremely good-looking passengers get to turn left when boarding.

Some just simply splash out the cash, and they get the luxury treatment for their investment.

Apparently, some people believe “economy seating is such a struggle” and first-class “makes your life much easier”.

Viewers learnt about the first-class experience, from the limousine driving passengers to the airport to the exquisite airport lounges.

Unbelievably, “people will pick their airlines because of the lounge as well”, and airlines like Singapore offer a lounge “even above first class”.

While most Britons will probably find airports an unpleasant but necessary part of travel, first-class passengers “go to airports much earlier just to enjoy the lounges”.

With massages, all you can eat and drink, spas and top-notch service, who could blame them?

On the plane, first-class passengers have six times more space than in economy, with big TV screens, beds and privacy. 

This is why most airlines do not call their first-class areas seats, but suites.

Even with a personal domain for the duration of his flight, one passenger still had a complaint, proving that there was always something that could be improved.

He said: “It is very difficult to adjust the seat”.

To give viewers a lounging for a first-class seat, the show took them through a mouth-watering segment on the Michelin quality dining available.

Being able to eat “whatever you want whenever you want” and being served caviar and champagne for breakfast in bed were some of the experiences that economy passengers could not even imagine happened just around the corner from their cramped seats.

On Etihad, passengers are even treated to personal chefing.

To finish off the show, the best first-class suites were announced.

Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, Emirates and Etihad were named as offering the best experiences.

For the top airline to fly first-class, Britons will have to wait until the second part of the programme to find out.
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