Joining The Mile High Club Part 1: The Economy Flight Experience
We've all been there. Stuck on a full long haul flight, sat in a bad seat, legs crunched up.
The joys of flying economy.
In this 3 part article series, the myths and realities of "Joining The Mile High Club" (no, the legal one) shall be dissected and discussed.
The goal is for all of us together to come away with some extra ideas, tips and techniques to get the best value for money in flight experience that our money can buy.
In part one of the series, I will simply be taking you through the economy flight experience, so that we can start a discussion sharing our own experiences, thoughts and ideas/suggestions on how other BWers can make the most of their flights.
In part 2, where we will discuss our techniques and strategies to bag the better seats in Economy. All without getting arrested for air rage.
And finally in part 3 of the series, we will discuss the myths and realities of everyone's favorite topic - getting flight upgrades.
So let's start the series by recapping the economy experience.
The Joys of Flying Economy
The over botoxed Flight Attendant glances at your ticket, and the fake smile on her face disappears as simultaneously stops looking at you in the eye. (or maybe it's the eyelid droop)
"Just go down the aisle to the very end sir...."
You start walking down the aisle. This plane looks pretty nice... a flight attendant takes a gentleman's jacket. "Wow," you think, "that's some customer service."
1A. 2A. 3A. Nope. Nope. Nope. Not you. The guy in 5A catches your eye. He scans you up and down, while sipping champagne.
The flight attendant comes up behind you. "Further along, sir. You've still got a bit to go," she reminds you. "It's a full flight, so please be patient as the overheads may get a bit full."
10A. You drag your hand luggage past the grey curtain. Seats narrow. Traffic jams. Babies cry. Yep. You're in the right place.
You're in Economy.
All the rows kind of blur into one. 29E. 30E. 31E. Lavatory.
Fantastic. You're right at the back of the plane. And you got a middle seat? But you requested for a window seat! And with a wall right behind you separately the toilets, does that mean you get limited recline and the stench of the other 350 passengers at the same time ?
The little old lady in 31F hands you her bag in your seat. You smile. You help her place her bag into the cabin above. Only then do you realise there is no longer any space for your own.
You shove your luggage under the seat in front of you. It barely fits. You sit down. Your legs smash against the seat in front. But hey, you'll compromise. After all, you did ONLY paid £250 for this 8 hour transatlantic flight. Can't complain. It's a bargain, and it'll be over before you know it.
You put your leg across under the aisle seat. Maybe the aisle seat will be empty. You stretch your foot out in front of you.
Just then, a heavy man trumps down the aisle. He glares at you. You glance around. Nope, he's looking right at you. All the other seats are occupied except the seat next to you.
"Oh no... please," you mutter.
Oh... yes. The flight attendant did say it was a full flight. Remember?
He comes closer. "31D," he wheezes, out of breath, just as you scrunch your legs back into the 30 inches in front of you before he lands on them, as he flops right down next to you.
"Cabin Crew, please prepare for take off," announces the pilot. Yes. The flight is only just beginning.
The above is based on a true story. Names and characters have been modified to protect the innocent.
Post your own experiences below, and other tips/suggestions/advice for other BWers.
The best stuff will be included in Part 2 and 3 of the series, where we will be sharing tips, techniques and strategies that frequent flyers have used to land the best seats available in economy, and the myths and realities of getting flight upgrades. If you have any thoughts on these or want us to research into anything in particular, let us know!