That said, there's a good chance these billionaires have splurged on some of the paid privileges listed below, all of which can make a trip that much more enjoyable, productive and, in some cases, more economical.
Love the legroom
It can be hard to justify the cost difference between economy and business class seating, with the roomier, plusher option typically costing about twice as much. (First class, meanwhile, costs at least twice as much again.) But when business class sits empty, it's often possible to pay cash for an upgrade — if you can't finagle one for free, of course. These bump-ups cost as little as $25 on short domestic flights, and can be sought at check-in or at the gate. (Some airlines let passengers pay for these online or by phone as little as 24 hours before a flight.)
Another option, available when you book tickets with carriers like JetBlue, Delta and United, is to pay a few bucks for a few extra inches of legroom at the front of the economy cabin or in exit rows. And if money's no object, well, there's always Emirates' first-class cabins (pictured above), where Bulgari amenity kits meet skin-hydrating loungewear.
Lounge at the airport
Airport and airline lounge amenities can include free snacks and refreshments, plush seats, TV, free Wi-Fi, business centres, and in some cases showers, beds and even spas. Indeed, some lounges are the stuff of business-travel lore, like Lufthansa's First Class Lounge in Frankfurt Airport, where the bar serves 80 different whiskey labels and departing passengers are chauffeured by Mercedes or Porsche limousines to their aircraft. Then there's the Cathay Pacific lounge in Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, which is renowned for its delectable tapas.
If you can't get into a lounge for free — with a business or first-class ticket, the requisite frequent-flyer status, or a friend who has access — an entrance fee in the $30-$60 range may be the best money you ever spent, especially if you're stuck on the ground for longer than usual. If shelling out for access becomes a regular occurrence, consider acquiring a credit card that grants it (more on this below), or joining a program like Priority Pass, which covers more than 1000 lounges in hundreds of cities for an annual membership fee that starts at about $120.
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