After so many flights in my life, I think I can officially speak about how the class system on a plane oddly reflects how classes of the world are divided. Most of us are in coach, and only those who can afford it have access to things such as guaranteed comfort and top-notch attendant care are seated in the front, divided from the rest of us by a curtain.
If I included all those who can’t afford to fly in the first place, well, that demonstrates my point — as the majority of people can’t afford to fly in first or business class seats, the majority of the world couldn’t afford to fly at all considering 80% of the world lives off of less than $10 a day.
If I applied this logic to a flight, those in coach represent the 80% who cannot afford the luxuries of the comfort upgrades. I got a glimpse of that life before — once I was placed in a comfort plus seat by chance, but that’s about as far as my knowledge goes.
My inspiration to write this came when I asked a flight attendant for a blanket on my flight to Miami. I was wearing a knee-length dress and knew sleeping would be hard without one as I didn’t get an ounce of sleep the night before. She told me no, and that they didn’t have anymore and they were reserved for the upper-class passengers. Lucky for me, I brought a long skirt and threw it over my dress, using it as a substitute blanket.
The night before when I checked in, the plane offered me a breakfast upgrade for $113 dollars. What? Quite reflective of upper-class spending and the ability to afford things that while are nice, are way out of their own price range. But hey, if you have $113 to blow for breakfast on a two-hour flight, then why not?
This article is not to say in any way that those in coach are deprived in the ways the majority of the world’s people are. Of course not. Our deprivation is relative — meaning that while I feel my needs are not being met, such as the blanket I requested, I’m still okay without it. I just find that after flying so many times, it’s interesting to observe how the class system reflects itself in the sky when it comes to those who can afford the travel.
Most of us are in coach, a few are in the comfort zone, and only some get the special privilege of business or first-class.