Faux First-Class: How to Fly Premium for a Lot Less

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Faux First-Class: How to Fly Premium for a Lot Less

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Faux First-Class: How to Fly Premium for a Lot Less



Illustration:

Studio Warburton

FLIERS desperate to escape coach-class misery on domestic trips lack good options. These days, it can cost you an extra $70 one-way just to sit on the aisle. But several smaller U.S. carriers are hawking their own take on first class for a lot less than what you’d spend with a mainstream airline. These seats are typically scarce, so book well ahead to make that next packed-to-the-gills flight more bearable.

JetBlue: On many cross-country and Caribbean flights, this normally one-class airline tempts fliers with Mint, an upscale business section with enclosed pods, lie-flat beds and chef-curated eats. Relatively speaking, it still drains pockets—round-trip fares between New York and Los Angeles recently hovered around $1,700—but you’d pay about 40% more for a similar seat on a big competitor. jetblue.com

Spirit Airlines: Notorious for its formula of low fares and sly fees (larger carry-ons cost up to $35), the Fort Lauderdale-based upstart also has the tightest seating in coach—a knee-knocking 28-inch pitch. For an additional fee that’s typically $35 to $42 one-way, book a “Big Front Seat.” It’s 20 inches wide (versus 17.7 inches), provides much more legroom, and there’s no middle seat to contend with. spirit.com

Virgin America: Richard Branson’s U.S. airline venture will be absorbed into its new owner, Alaska Air, by 2019, but there’s still time to try its premium cabin, with wide, white-leather seats that recline (though not fully flat). Sample round-trip fare: about $700 from Dallas to San Francisco. virginamerica.com

By | 2018-02-08T15:44:54+00:00 February 8th, 2018|0 Comments

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