Whine Wednesdays: Now Everyone Can Fly ……… In Business Class!


This week’s Whine Wednesday topic could also be Fabulous Fridays depending what approach I take. People dressing inadequately while traveling or business class fares become sometimes cheaper than economy and thus making them affordable to everyone.

Whine Wednesdays Now Everyone Can Fly …...... In Business Class

It always fun to see old photos of people traveling in the early days of air transportation. Flight attendants were carving meat while people were dressed up for the occasion. Nowadays the meals are often meh even in business and what people wear can often leave lot to be desired.

Back in time:

Whine Wednesdays Now Everyone Can Fly …...... In Business Class Old Days


I tend to wear smart casual while traveling so not to be out of place and to be respectful towards fellow travelers.

It is true that quite a few almost dress down when travel and the couple on the photo I took are by far not the worst offenders that I have seen of late.

What is your take? Should people dress up or down while traveling?

Remember that some airlines won’t consider a passenger for operational upgrades if they are not adequately dressed for the cabin. Airlines also have guidelines for staff members traveling in premium cabins.

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  • McCaron

    same happens now in upscale and luxury hotels when people dress or behave inappropriately 🙁

  • Andrew

    maybe they always flew first and decided to go casual on business class. 😉
    personally, I am not too fussy how they dress, but it’s the altitude by some that really gets me

  • Meick Meibaum

    I fly business to get enough sleep or work in the plane. On both occasions, I’m not fussed about other passengers clothings…

  • Kflik

    The problem is that the only way to have (almost) flat bed is to fly business class.
    It would be different if we would have something like almost-flat-seat-in-economy-class or in premium class.

    The service like in economy, but much better seats.
    I hope we will have something like that in the future.
    Maybe flat beds in Air Asia X is something in this direction.

  • Joseph Merrick

    Character and behaviour has nothing to do with the amount of money you have or the kind of clothes you wear.

    But I agree on one point: A little bit more style wouldn’t hurt most people.

  • KR

    this seems to be recurring theme that rears its head very so often, be it here or in other blogs / forums. There is absolutely nothing wrong with people dressing however they want for flights – all that matters is their behaviour, period. If your ability to enjoy an experience is conditioned on others creating an ambiance with their sense of style (or lack of it), then you have bigger personal issues to deal with

  • Ian Smith

    Sign of the times. I don’t mind people wearing those kind of clothes on a Business Class flight, but I find it more difficult to accept in a hotel lounge.

    Some of my lounge gripes over the last two weeks are:

    Witnessing a couple filling their hand bag with Tiger Beer at the Intercontinental Saigon.

    Numerous people putting breakfast food in their bags at the Hilton Millennium

    and adults who think it is ok to let their children climb all over the lounge chairs, because the little chap is just expressing himself.

    Thus my only sanitary is my room, these days, but only if you are lucky of course.

    • Rohan Relaxo

      Indeed, we are all glad you restrict your sanitary habits to your room 😀

  • Gaijinsan

    You didn’t say where this was, but considering the airline and the “style” I’d fathom a guess they are Aussies. A lot of labor class Aussies have a fair bit of money these days, so not unheard of to be buying business fares, especially on a carrier like MH who sometimes nearly gives away business fares.

    Having said that, it’s also the counter for OneWorld Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald check-in, so they could be in economy and he may quite easily be a miner commuting from Sydney to Western Australia often enough to make OW Ruby on Qantas.

    I’m not condoning the way they are dressed, I don’t travel like that nor would my wife but to each his own, it’s not the same world as when that front end of a classic 747 was taken in your photos.

    I think the days of commonly being op upped based on appearance are gone as well. Every time I’ve had an operational upgrade, it was decided based on my alliance status long before anyone ever saw me in person. Usually I just had my name called and was given a new boarding pass or other times was told at check in / lounge check in that they moved me to business due to being Star Alliance Gold.

    • Holiday_Hero

      My wife holds no status, flys infrequently with no particular airline and gets upgraded on around one third of her flights. Dressing classy and looking stunning has proven to be more lucrative than my own prolific loyalty with One World.

  • RackDaddy

    You wear “smart casual” to be “respectful towards fellow travelers”? Give me a break.. No one cares what you’re wearing. I’d much rather sit next to a considerate guy in a Metallica t-shirt and shorts, than sit next to a a-hole in a suit. Maybe we should stop judging peoples character and airline class eligibility on how their dressed, John.

    • BenniHK

      It could be much worse if an over dressed obesity ahole with dykwmi attitude sitting besides (mama I swear I m not talking about J nor S)!
      So better train up than dress up, it’s far more respectful to the others. Less eyesore to me at least!

      • SeattleBurbGirl

        What does that even mean?

    • Craig J

      I think it’s tacky the way travelers dress these days – leggings, shorts, flip flops, etc. not to mention how gross it is to see people walking up and down the aisle with their shoes off when they want to use the bathroom. I miss the travel days of early aviation when people dressed up when they flew. And I’m from Hawaii where flip flops are common. I see it more on the mainland than in the islands and I wonder what their parents taught them about respecting others. I guess they taught them how to trim their toenails in public too!

  • Pete Pongsudthiraks

    So elitist and judgmental. I think you have no manners for taking a picture of that couple and posting it online. You’re taking this whine Wednesday a little bit too far this time.

  • rdrago43

    @John – have you noticed how celebrities (think Hollywood, music industry, etc.) dress? Many of these people have more money than 99% of the rest of us but dress a lot worse than what you describe/picture here.

    As @RackDaddy:disqus said, I don’t care how my fellow passenger is dressed as long as they don’t behave like jerks.

  • Alun Hill

    I’m with you, John.
    My heart sinks when I see scruffy people in business – and my wife (we always travel together) is horrified.

    • dave the knave

      Sebastian’s dad, is that you?

  • Ken

    As Oscar Wilde said: you can’t be overdressed or over educated.

    • Trevor

      And Oscar Wilde is horribly wrong.

      • dave the knave

        Gays are never wrong on matters of fashion.

        • BenniHK

          U r so right.. Lmao…

  • Pete

    Behavior is key, and I have more issues with people forgetting to shower or mistaking a lounge for a fitness club – or not using headphones when watching youtube or skyping but instead entertaining their surroundings. I agree with Meick´s priorities.

  • Chris

    I don’t know what I find funnier – the article or the comments to the article. I didn’t have a good laugh like this for quite some time – many thanks for this 🙂

    • Jeff R

      Definitely the comments.

  • Jim

    Who cares what people wear on an airplane or a bus as long as they don’t bother me in any other way or I don’t have to stare someone’s crack constantly. It is more about comfort. People also fly other than economy on their vacation. We usually don’t stay in cities but go to the rural areas, deserts, backcountry, country roads etc and I wouldn’t want to be dragging my suit with me on those trips.
    Still, personally I find the woman’s clothing tacky and mostly suitable on a gym or beach. Having large tattoos or any for that matter is so redneck. But still that is my personal opinion about such style, who am I to judge or decide what other people do or wear as long as they leave me alone.

  • Rohan Relaxo

    Been a while since your last moral policing outburst …. not sure what articles of this nature add to your amateurish blog, but then again, readers have (unsuccesfully) suggested you hire a copyeditor for several years now…so go figure

    • jim

      He already has that sebastian. 😉

      Honestly, John has 99% good and informative posts. What I can’t understand why he lets that “sensation trash out of nothing” person posts his writings here.

      • Rohan Relaxo

        I dont think even Sebastian will claim he is a copyeditor ….I agree that the articles on here are “informative” (on occasion) & I suggest they should focus on that. I am not sure how views about what random people wear in airports or hotels are informative.

  • Heathrowfun

    What rubbish. Flying in business class is a premium I or my employer pay for for my COMFORT. I determine what to wear on a plane based upon what I will be doing on arrival. On ‘casual flights’ where I am flying overnight and going straight to a hotel to change, I will wear clothes that I would NEVER consider wearing in a normal situation (e.g. track pants, which are absolutely prohibited chez moi except when flying overnight in business) – Why would I pay very significant premium for comfort and then decide on clothes not based on my comfort, but upon what some blogger wants me to wear to make his cabin photos look nicer?

  • Alex

    Uggggh, this article makes you sound like a bit of a sanctimonious nob.

  • Paul

    Looks like trailer trash. There is a difference between dressing very casual and trashy.

  • disqust101

    From the look of those two, I highly doubt they were in Biz – unless they happened to win the lotto or they are mules. Their luggage is shite – everything about them suggests they don’t have two nickels to rub together, let alone enough to fly Biz.

    It’s not how you dress that counts anyway. It’s how you act. If I’ve seen one DYKWIA douche in a bespoke suit or high-end designer dress, I’ve seen a hundred.

  • Barbarella

    I absolutely don’t care how others dress like. I don’t watch tv reality shows either. I have other things to focus on.

    What absolutely bothers me is how people sometimes SMELL. And I don’t mean someone overdosing their cologne… Sweat, lack of shower, “exotic” food habits equal to hangover syndrome etc. This is something I cannot simply switch my perception off. I will not write down the carriers’ names or routes because I would be labelling and profiling the specific group of passengers

    • Paul

      Amen – I agree 100%

  • UserName

    Is this the same blogger who got his impeccable satin panties in a wad over a lady in a bathrobe in a concierge Lounge somewhere?

    Dude, you need to relax and stop worrying so much about what other people are wearing.

  • TrailerTrash

    I could care less about what anyone else in the F cabin thinks about me and I definitely don’t care about them or about what are wearing or doing.
    Just stay out of my space in flight and we will be a-ok.

    • Richard

      To Cooper– I think people should dress nicely! If I’m in F and you are dressed in shorts and barefoot, I will have a word with the FA!

      • Trevor

        LOL sure thing keyboard warrior. You sound like one of those people who just likes to complain about everything, and the FA will see that right away.

      • Ridoncularious

        And for additional clarity, just what is it that you would expect the FA to do once you’ve had a word aside from rolling his or her eyes at you?

      • TrailerTrash

        Richard can a person even board an aircraft with bare feet? I don’t care what you are wearing so what is it your concern if I am in a tshirt and shorts with flip flops? Maybe you should be flying private if you want to play dress up and expect everyone else to.

    • dave the knave

      “I could care less about what anyone else in the F cabin thinks about me” How much less could you care what they think? A little? A lot? Do you care that people know you have a C Class (“cheap” class) Mercedes?

      • TrailerTrash

        You mad bro?
        I may have to shed a tear because you dissed my pic..

  • Flyboy

    Did you actually go and see if they are travelling in Business Class or hold some Oneworld status ? To be fair, John, the photo was taken at Phuket airport and I am sure that the people in question were just asked to join the Business Class queue because it was rather empty and the queue at the economy line up was always very long. We shouldn’t judge… I was in shorts myself and I was in J class.

  • J Verde

    Never mind the bigoted judgement of what the couple is wearing (and the fact that in the background of the photo, EVERYONE is similarly dressed). Look at the size and pitch of those seats in the 70’s flash-back pic! I miss seats that were designed to fit *real* humans

  • Jason

    Just curious, do you fly business / first class to show off people?

  • Angela Wong

    Hi John,the caviar,prime rib carving…was presented in first class cabin only served to the “genteel” class then, now all N American airlines have only business class left and it’s a much younger cross section of pax with a “different” demeanour! I’m a retired f/a and I totally agree with your viewpoint 🙂

  • Ming Chu

    The photo shown above says nothing – since you did not know what class they are really flying in as ticketed. I have seen more than enough times that business class/first class agents call over passengers from coach/economy if there are no premium class passengers in line. If this was taken in the cabin itself that would be another story.
    However yes I do agree that as long as someone is behaved properly in whichever class is much better than how they are dressed. I understand that there is a limitation on what you should dress -but that should be applicable in all situation (except your own private home/room).

  • alexlobov

    You’re copping a bit of hate for this but I’m with you on this one, John. If I have to look at a person because they are in public and wearing something hideous then my innocent eyes are being punished – nay, raped – by said person’s horrendous choice of clothing. I think we should hold ourselves and our fellow citizens to a higher standard. The world is getting uglier – in terms of design, architecture, public spaces – and the people who inhabit it are part of the problem. Whether in Business or Economy, I believe people should make an effort – track pants and the photo you just posted are all signs that they have no respect for their fellow human beings that are forced to look at them. And in return, they shall get no respect from me. Keep fighting the good fight, John.

  • Richard

    I always dress at least smart casual and most times wear a sport jacket. This makes me feel better and many times has gotten me upgraded to business from economy.The people that dress down have gone too far!

  • beth

    WOW! What a horrible attitude. I wear yoga pants and sweats in Emirates first because it’s comfy. I did look like the couple in the pic once…having been bumped for three days straight without access to checked bags or decent facilities and being told that I would have to sit standby to try to get a flight so no time to get to a hotel and no one willing to pay for it. Maybe they were in a similar spot? And you are telling me that you have never looked less than “smart casual” in your entire history of traveling.
    Let me ask, if they were flying economy would that make what they are wearing ok?
    No one needs to look great when traveling and I was taught not to judge people on looks. Please feel free to wear sweats, I will still find you respectful.

  • Gary

    Maybe they’re just a couple of travel bloggers, who made a ton of miles through their affiliate links 😉

  • Retron

    It always amuses me when this topic rears its head. I travel wearing a pair of Tesco jeans and a Tesco polo shirt, topped off with a light coat from the same place – total cost less than £40. I can gaurantee you that I’m more comfortable as a result than those who cram themselves into suits and shirts!

    Frankly, if you’ve paid to be there (be it via points or cash), who cares whether you’re impressing strangers or not by your choice of clothes?

    Incidentally the worst behaviour I’ve seen at the airport has been from people dressed smartly, such as the “gentleman” in a suit who was yelliing about how “disgraceful” it was that he wasn’t allowed into the Galleries Club lounge at Heathrow. I’ve seen similar protestations outside the Concorde Room too…

  • Cedric Conrad Peng

    This is generation gap….and what is “smart casual” for u? hahaha…