Thursday, September 18, 2008

Travel Tips for Business Class Passengers

I've been traveling on Business Class for company-related trips since I started working for Emerson. The first time was last March, a week after I joined the company, when I was sent to the corporate office in the US to "immerse" myself with the team. Today will be my second time, and I'm traveling again to the US for a planning conference and a minor training on Oracle stuff.

During my college days, my family and I also went to the States to visit our relatives there, and we were on a tight budget so we traveled via Economy class. It wasn't grand, but the airline (Philippine Airlines) provided the basic necessities so we were satisfied. They served lunch/dinner/breakfast, and they provided us with personal hygiene kits and blankets for a comfortable 16-hour trip. For me, it was okay.

However, when I was sent to the US with a Business Class seat, I was overwhelmed. Cathay Pacific provides extra-pampering services to the priority passengers, just as if you were a king/queen. They serve excellent food, and extravagant to boot, and they provide wider, more comfy seats, and a lot of entertainment options. Not only that, the lounges during the stop-over/connecting flights are extremely generous with food, drinks, and entertainment. It's like staying at a hotel for a few hours while waiting for your flight.

And so during travel for the first time with a business class seat, I ended up with a bad stomach, a bigger tummy, and a lot of inconvenience on the airplane. Why? Simply because I ate too much. After all, I wanted to try everything they are serving at the lounges, and I ate up all the food that the airline crew had to offer (appetizers, main course, dessert, snacks - yep, i never leave my plate un-empty). I kept telling myself that I need to finish my food because I just have to experience EVERYTHING that a business class seat has to offer. Wrong choice haha.

So now that I'm traveling again, I've learned my lesson. Here are a few things to note when you have a business class seat:

1. If your flight is early in the morning, it is absolutely OKAY to skip breakfast. You will be served with a complete, healthy meal during your trip.

2. If your flight is near lunchtime or dinnertime, don't bother eating lunch or dinner anymore because, again, you will be served a complete meal. If you're thinking you might not like the food, the airlines always serves two dishes, so you can choose which one you like.

3. If you're too hungry to wait for your flight, there's always free food at the lounge. In HK Lounge, for example, they have this noodle bar where you can order noodles for free. But please note that if you stuff yourself too much, then it is absolutely okay to NOT finish your in-flight meal. Don't be a glutton, eat only what you can.

4. Be careful of what you eat/drink. Improper combination of what you take in can also upset your stomach.

5. Finally, do not be afraid to take a dump at the comfort rooms. I actually prefer airport restrooms over the aircraft toilets because of the space. Airport restrooms are well maintained, especially the ones located inside the lounge. Don't be afraid to dirty it a little. :)

So there, 5 things you need to remember when traveling. Oh and of course don't forget your Passport, Ticket and/or Boarding pass, and of course your credit card or cash.

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