First class seats worse than Amtrak: wry reason from Online Travel Review

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While better than coach, they [first-class seats] are worse than every non-airline seat you have ever sat in.  Of course I prefer flying up front to flying in coach, I’m not a fool.  But I’m not sure I understand the level of obsession people have with it considering that while it’s better than coach, even a trip on Amtrak is more comfortable than flying in first class.

So quips Jared Blank of Online Travel Review, in an interview with Daraius of Million Mile Secrets.

First Class, United 747

The newspapers alone are worth $1,000, photo by Alan Light

There is an overwhelming amount of travel content on the web, but in the short time Daraius has been blogging, Million Mile Secrets has been immeasurably useful to its fast-growing reader base, providing enthusiastic and detailed ‘how-to’ guides for earning miles, especially useful to beginners as context for the stream of expert tips and hot offers streaming from the longer-established points and miles bloggers.

Online Travel Review is new to The Rapid Traveler, but another resource that he wishes he knew about long ago. Jared’s wry humor (headlines like “Star Alliance Decides Not to Inflict Air India on Its Travelers“) and sensible perspective speak to a broad segment of travelers that want to be smart about travel, promotions, and earning, but are not obsessed with first-class (and pictures of first-class meals). The positive and everyman perspective is a refreshing delight.

Jared’s whimsical Q&A post “I Am Going to Respectfully Disagree with Those Who Have a First Class Seat Fetish” is a treat, including:

Q: Yes, you a–
A: No I’m not. I’m just saying that the other stuff has no value. A glass of champagne on takeoff? A pair of airline pajamas? A buffet in the lounge? Do those things really have any value? You could put a dollar amount on the totality of the premium cabin experience (outside of the ability to sleep) and it would come to less than $100.

His new series “You’ve Gotta Start Somewhere: An Introduction to Earning Miles (Even Without Flying)” is a great introduction to those dipping their toe into the miles and points subculture.

For The Rapid Traveler, two or three flights in coach are always better than one up front. The Rapid Traveler’s goal is to see the world and burning points on premium travel means seeing less. Even with credit card bonuses, the miles well is only so deep. Flights and hotels are a means to an end for The Rapid Traveler, and anyway, a fifteen-hour flight feels awful regardless. The Rapid Traveler’s five cent first class upgrade is a potent sleeping pill.

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