Flying in Style: From Economy to Business Class

From Business Class Bliss to Economy Enigma How my First Taste of Luxury Changed Everything

Flying business class has potentially changed my view of economy flights.

VoiceAngel’s reporter in JetBlue’s Mint business class. VoiceAngel’s reporter in JetBlue’s Mint business class. – Jordan Parker Erb/Insider

I’ve always been a scrappy traveler, willing to go the extra mile (or the extra dollar) to save a few bucks. Economy class has been my faithful companion throughout my entire travel history. But all of that changed this summer when I had the opportunity of a lifetime: my first-ever business-class trip. And oh boy, was it a game-changer.

Let me set the stage. It was JetBlue’s inaugural flight from New York City to Paris, and I snagged a seat in their luxurious Mint business class. From the moment I stepped on board, I was wrapped in a blanket of opulence. The amenities were on a completely different level compared to what I was used to. We’re talking multi-course meals that would make Gordon Ramsay weep, heavenly desserts that tantalized my taste buds, and seats that laid flat—yes, you heard that right, flat. It was a flying experience fit for royalty.

There was plenty of room to stretch out in the Mint suite. There was plenty of room to stretch out in the Mint suite. – Jordan Parker Erb/Insider

Fast forward to my return journey, which was, alas, in economy class. As I made my way to the back of the plane, I couldn’t help but glance longingly at those lucky first-class travelers sipping champagne and reclining in their lie-flat seats. The stark contrast hit me like a ton of economy-class peanuts. How on earth was I supposed to go back to the cramped quarters of economy after experiencing the lap of luxury?

Now, you’d think that flying business class was a once-in-a-lifetime treat, reserved for special occasions or work-related travel. But no, my friends, it managed to ruin my perception of budget travel altogether. Those blissful moments of peaceful and horizontal slumber during the overnight flight to Paris left an indelible mark on my soul. The lavish food and top-notch amenities spoiled me rotten. I had tasted the good life, and now the economy seat felt like a torturous punishment.

I fear that every future flight will pale in comparison. Even the familiar stench of airplane toilets doesn’t hold a candle to the memory of coziness and fabulousness that business class bestowed upon me. It’s like sipping fine wine and then being forced to go back to Two-Buck Chuck. It’s a cruel world, my friends.

Perhaps the solution lies in cultivating an attitude of gratitude. I must remind myself that traveling, regardless of the seat, is a privilege. Even if I find myself nestled in the last row, I’ll find solace in knowing that I had a taste of the high life—literally, the high-altitude life. So, as I settle into my rigid economy seat, I’ll do it with a heart full of gratitude and a longing for the next business-class adventure, whenever that may be.

Now, excuse me while I daydream about my next flight in fancy, lie-flat seats. A girl can dream, right?