Air travel can be surprisingly cheap nowadays. But what if you don’t care how much it costs as long as you have the most luxurious experience money can buy? Here’s the lowdown on how high you can go with airline tickets, and what your dollars will get you.
19. New York to Abu Dhabi with Etihad
The Residence, which Etihad Airways calls “an apartment in the sky,” is the airline’s truly exclusive way of flying. And it’ll cost you more than $30,000 for a return flight from New York to Abu Dhabi. The three-room Residence has space for two and comes with its very own butler as well as an in-flight chef. The private living room, meanwhile, has a retractable ottoman, a drinks cabinet and a 32-inch TV.
18. New York to Hong Kong with Korean Air
A first-class return flight from New York to Hong Kong on Korean Air costs a cool $16,000, or thereabouts. That buys travelers space on a Boeing 747-8 that comes with a fully private suite – of which there are just six, exclusively for first-class passengers. In addition, if flyers get thirsty, they can quaff a glass or two of Perrier-Jouët champagne.
17. Los Angeles to Seoul with Asiana Airlines
Asiana’s First Suite Class offers travelers a generous helping of luxury for a return fare from Los Angeles to Seoul of around $16,000. Suites comes with two sliding doors to guarantee privacy, and a full-size bed and 32-inch TV. And when it comes to dining, passengers can choose gourmet Korean dishes or premium Italian cuisine.
16. Paris to Tokyo with Air France
For a taste of French luxury, hop on a flight from Paris to Tokyo with Air France. In fact, traveling in La Premiere class costs close to $10,000 for a return ticket. On board, luxuriously upholstered seats transform into full-size beds with a futon mattresses. Lavish extras that make the difference, meanwhile, include upscale designer toiletries and personal lounge wear.
15. Bangkok to London with Thai Airways
A Thai Airways return flight from London to Bangkok can cost $6,500 in Royal First Plus class. And when passengers board, they’ll be shown to their suite and offered a glass of chilled champagne to get them in the mood for their flight. Then it’s just a case of relaxing on the full-length bed and whiling away the time feasting on caviar and enjoying movies on a 23-inch screen.
14. Hong Kong to New York with Cathay Pacific
Travelers pay up to around $30,000 for a first-class return flight from Hong Kong to New York with Cathay Pacific. For that, they get a luxurious leather chair that even offers massages. They also receive a full bed with luxury cotton bedding, and – just to add that personal touch – one of the on-board staff will be happy to turn their bed down for them.
13. Singapore to London with Singapore Airlines
A Singapore Airlines return ticket from Singapore to London flying Suite class can cost almost $14,000. But in exchange, passengers get a private suite with a leather and wood trim, which is reminiscent of a luxury yacht cabin, and a separate bed. Oh, and a 23-inch TV. When it comes to dining, travelers can choose from dishes like roast rack of lamb, confit of duck leg and seared black cod.
12. London to Muscat with Oman Air
Booking a return flight from London to Muscat, Oman’s capital, can cost more than $7,000 in Oman Air’s first class. If your budget stretches to this, you’ll be sharing some outstanding pampering with just five others in the exclusive first-class cabin, which features massaging seats. And when it comes to food, you’ll get started with Oman Air’s premium caviar service before moving on to some fine dining and Arabic dishes.
11. Los Angeles to Paris with Japan Airlines
The ticket price for a return first-class trip from Los Angeles to Paris on Japan Airlines can cost in excess of $13,000, so let’s hope you’ll have enough cash left over to enjoy the French capital. During the flight, you can enjoy a wide range of entertainment on a 23-inch TV. The well-upholstered chairs, meanwhile, can turn into a comfy bed – and there’s a privacy shutter when it’s time for some shut-eye.
10. New York to Dubai with Emirates
Flying first class with Emirates from New York to Dubai costs around $36,000, but this price buys a whole lot of luxury. Private suites, for example, come with Bvlgari toiletry kits and their own minibars. If passengers want to socialize, though, there’s the onboard lounge bar. Meanwhile, if they’re in the mood to relax, there’s an exclusive spa shower to enjoy.
9. Jakarta to London with Garuda Airways
Flying with the Indonesian national airline Garuda Airways from the country’s capital, Jakarta, to London can command a price of more than $14,600 for a first-class return. However, for the outlay passengers get a seat that converts into a bed, a sliding privacy door, their own wardrobe and a 23.5-inch touchscreen to enjoy a huge selection of movies and TV shows.
8. London to Tokyo with British Airways
A first-class return ticket from London to Tokyo can cost almost $17,000 on British Airways. Passengers, however, get to fly in a Boeing 787 Dreamliner, which has one of the most stylish interiors in the world of first-class flights. Additionally, travelers will be greeted with a glass of Laurent-Perrier Grand Siecle champagne, and they’ll will be able to follow this up with a selection of fine wines to go with their in-flight meals.
7. Los Angeles to London with American Airlines
A first-class return flight from Los Angeles to London with American Airlines can cost anything up to $30,000. If you can sleep after spending that amount of money, your seat is able to convert into a bed. But if you’re not sleepy, you can choose from 600 movies and TV shows to keep your mind off the sky-high ticket price.
6. Los Angeles to Sydney with Qantas
Take off from Los Angeles for the exciting city of Sydney aboard a first-class Qantas flight and it can cost more than $20,000. The luxurious armchairs passengers sit in convert into beds, and there’s also an ottoman which gives space for a partner. When it comes to dining, travelers can enjoy a tasting menu with no fewer than eight courses.
5. Tokyo to Chicago with ANA
If flyers catch a first-class return flight from Tokyo to Chicago with Japanese carrier ANA (All Nippon Airways), their ticket could well cost in excess of $18,000. Seats, though, are set in a partitioned section which gives them the feel and privacy of a suite. Menu choices, meanwhile, include traditional Japanese dishes, which are accompanied by sake or shochu, a Japanese spirit.
4. New York to Bangkok with Lufthansa
Travel first class with German airline Lufthansa from New York to Bangkok and a return ticket might cost as much as $11,000. For that, passengers don’t just get a sumptuously comfortable seat, they also receive a separate bed to help them see off jet lag. When it comes to dining, travelers can look forward to the dedicated caviar and champagne cart to get them started.
3. New York to Zurich with Swiss International Airlines
A first-class return trip from New York to Zurich with Swiss International Airlines can cost $13,000. However, in exchange passengers get an exceedingly comfortable armchair which they can turn into a bed in moments, and they can close their privacy screens to create their own suite. This includes a 32-inch TV for travelers’ viewing pleasure.
2. London to Hong Kong with Virgin Atlantic
Richard Branson’s Virgin Atlantic charges more than $7,800 to fly return in an Upper Class Suite from London to Hong Kong. For that, passengers board a Boeing 787 Dreamliner, in which they’ll get a good night’s sleep in the privacy of their own suite. However, if passengers are in the mood to mingle, there’s the convivial atmosphere of the Upper Class Bar at their disposal.
1. Delhi to Toronto with Jet Airways
Taking a first-class return flight from Delhi to Toronto with Indian airline Jet Airways can cost in excess of $6,800. For this, passengers have their own suite with sliding doors, while the special night-sky lighting should put them in the mood for slumber. Before that, though, they can enjoy a fine-dining five-course meal with a glass or two of champagne – Bollinger La Grande Année, no less.