Jacqui Gal

Adventures of a Vegemite Knish Princess

Up and away (and out of control!)

11 March 2008

Since moving to the U.S. from Australia. Long-haul travel has simply become a part of my life.

Okay, who am I kidding? Traveling to far-flung destinations has been a part of my life since as far back as I can remember. But I’ve been doing it alone (or with friends) since I was 14.

It wasn’t until I moved here that I realized — for a lot of people, if something is quite far away, it’s a reason not to go there. Being an Australian, this was something I found really hard to grasp at first.

New Yorkers are incredulous when I tell them that, yes, I’ll happily hop a plane for 19 hours (at least) to reach my hometown. And that furthermore, it’s not even that bad.

“Look. You get on the plane, they feed you. You have a drink, watch a movie or two. Sleep. They feed you again. You flip through some magazines, or read a book. And you’re done. It’s not hard,” I used to say.

That was until I suffered a nightmare trip (both out and inbound) when traveling to Sydney. I was plagued by a chain of horrible delays and missed connections on one leg. And spent the other as the lucky passenger who sits in the middle seat of a five-person row, in the middle of the plane. (Yes. For 19 hours, ANY time I wanted to get up, to pee, to stretch, to not be sitting next to the people I was sitting next to, I had to scamper over TWO people, on either side)

You try not to imagine how the travelers in First are faring.

Now, as though that weren’t enough, the New York Times

Apparently, those old flat beds and champagne toasts aren’t enough. Now, a “handful of airlines” — our dear Qantas among them — are “working on the premise that there are no limits on pampering the prestige class”.

Singapore Airlines was the first with super-first-class seating, suites it has called the “class beyond first.” A flier who has purchased one of those suites gets a cabin within a cabin, entered through double sliding doors.

In airlines that offer this class, fliers will find leather seats with electronic massage; a full-size bed (some convert into doubles) made up with Givenchy duvets and cushions; 23-inch plasma flat-screen TVs; and on-demand dining.

What is there left to say?


It’s my understanding you can spend up to 19 hours just getting through security at some US airports…

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