Saturday, November 15, 2014

First class soul trapped in the body of a coach traveler - that's me!

I used to fly Economy everywhere, all the time. Sure, it wasn't great, but it was the only reality I knew and I had absolutely nothing to compare it with, so I could handle it. Then, I married a pilot, which means lots of amazing benefits, and I got to experience Business and First class luxury travel. 

Dream come true? More like a nightmare! 

I have crossed a very dangerous line, one with very serious consequences. Now  that I have slept in those fully-flat beds, that I have tried the five-star gourmet meals, that I have been spoiled and pampered to the max, how can I ever go back to basic, standard coach? 

To make matters worse, Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has gone ahead and raised the bar even further. Guests traveling in 'The Residence', will have their own double bedroom, living room and en-suite shower room, all wi-fi enabled, a Savoy Academy-trained personal butler to attend to their every single need and an in-flight chef to create custom menus. Plus, a super VIP service from the moment of reservation until the end of their stay with Etihad, including chauffeur, private check-in and lounge. 

When I first heard about this I thought people wouldn't be interested. Or perhaps it was just me trying to convince myself to stay as far away from it as possible - I might be tempted to try it out and get addicted (although, realistically speaking, this ticket is so expensive that staff discounts probably won't be enough to make this happen for me). 

But I guess people did like the idea and, most importantly, do have the money to pay for it. The first ten flights of 'The Residence', between Abu Dhabi and London, in Etihad's new Airbus A380, are already sold out. And that's USD 20,000 each.

Well, it's late. I'd better stop dreaming about my apartment in the sky and get back to reality. I will have to eventually. After all, if it wasn't for all the perks of being married to a pilot, there was no way I could afford any of this. And the perks won't last forever...

Want a tour of 'The Residence'? Click HERE and Dannii Minogue, Etihad Airways' Guest Ambassador, will show you around.

Picture credit: Etihad Airways

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