There is something quite delightful about “turning left” when you enter an aircraft. Invariably this means that you will be flying in a premium cabin!
Flying Business Class comes with its perks – complimentary chauffeur-driven cars, lounges, fast-track customs & immigration – and it’s well worth doing some research before you take your trip.
And remember, in our airline reviews BusinessClass.com helps you with everything from suite size to Champagne served! For special, even exclusive Business Class offers, sign-up to our free weekly newsletter.
The BusinessClass.com guide to the do’s & don'ts of business travel:
1. Select your Seat Carefully:
Research the aircraft you will be flying. Do not assume that all carriers operate the same cabin layout because they don’t. Seat configurations could vary between outbound and inbound flights with the same airline, depending on the aircraft type. And, of course, Business Class seats can differ dramatically depending on the seat design. Look for lie-flat beds on longer routes. Window seats are often best suited for solo travellers, while middle seats are more sociable, depending on the seat layout. And of course, some airlines offer a Business Class suite - for maximum privacy and comfort - it's invariably akin to a First Class experience! Business Class seats are designed to maximise passenger comfort and the in-flight experience. They will have hidden cubby holes, concealed charging points and USB connectivity. Alternatively, ask a flight attendant to show you around your seat. BusinessClass.com reviews airlines and we research seats extensively - from configuration to facilities on offer.
Of course, airlines differ on what they offer – and the best is arguably Qatar Airways Business Class and its superb Qsuite.
2. Use the Complimentary Chauffeur Service:
A limited number of airlines provide a complimentary chauffeur pick-up and drop-off service. If they do, you have paid for this perk – use it. Check online if the airline offers this service and book well ahead of time to avoid disappointment. Some airlines have limited or cancelled this service due to the pandemic. The following Airlines currently provide a complimentary chauffeur service: Emirates Business Class, Qantas Business Class, Lufthansa Business Class, Austrian Business Class, SWISS Business Class, Turkish Airlines Business Class, Air China Business Class, and Etihad Business Class. Check with your airline, which may have reintroduced this service or provide an alternative paid-for chauffeur service.
Always check the terms and conditions of use – some will have mileage limitations and could be limited to specific airports and destinations.
3. Find the Dedicated Check-in & Make the Most of the Exclusive Lounge(s):
Business Class passengers will invariably have a dedicated and quieter check-in. Know where to find this before arriving at the terminal to avoid unnecessary delays. Also, research what exclusive lounges are available with your ticket and maximise the time spent there before your flight. Ask check-in staff for directions if you are unsure what lounges you can use. Business Class Lounges provide complimentary food and drinks – à la carte or buffet dining, self-service, or bar services. There will be various seating options – areas to rest or work, free Wi-Fi, USB and charging points, and some provide exercise equipment, spa treatments and private shower suites. Check beforehand to make sure what services are on offer. Lounge quality differs from airport to airport. If you are a frequent Business Class traveller and have accumulated enough points on your airline loyalty card , you may even be allowed to use a First Class lounge! Check this out at the check-in desk.
For amazing Business Class lounges, Doha and Singapore are top of the list – catering for Qatar Airways Business Class and Singapore Airlines Business Class respectively.
4. Dress Comfortably:
Wear something comfortable on your flight. Avoid clothes that crease excessively or make you overheat. Ask the flight attendants if they have a hanger for your suit or jacket. Wear loose-fitting, breathable clothing. Some airlines provide pyjamas for long-haul flights. If not, consider taking some casual tracksuit bottoms and a light baggy top to change into before you get your head down to sleep. You’ll be able to walk around without raising any eyebrows.
Qantas Business Class and American Airlines Business Class both offer lovely, comfortable unisex inflight sleeping outfits.
5. Pre-order your In-flight Meal:
Many airlines now allow customers to order their meals ahead of the flight, providing three main advantages – two for the customer and one for the airline. The customer could have a broader and more varied choice of meal selections (such as in the case with SWISS International Air Lines, where advanced ordering allows the additional choice of four meals not otherwise offered during the flight). Secondly, pre-ordering avoids disappointment in the air if the airline stocks a limited number of portions per flight. Pre-ordering also helps the airline to reduce food waste. If you have a special diet, pre-ordering your in-flight meal before departure is always wise.
Some airlines offer celebrity Michelin-starred chef menus and some offer “Skychefs”. It's for you to choose!
6. Enjoy the complimentary alcohol, but stay hydrated:
You have a great seat and have enjoyed a delicious meal. You are settling back to watch a movie, and the fantastic flight attendants are ensuring your glass is never empty – does it get any better than this? Business Class travel comes with the perk of complimentary alcohol, be it from a welcome glass of Champagne upon boarding to a small selection of fine wines, spirits, mixers, cocktails, and beers with your meal, or upon request. Enjoy the pleasures of never having an empty glass, but also ensure to stay hydrated. Avoid a mid-flight hangover and disturbed sleep by keeping hydration levels in check. Remember, a pressurised cabin has low humidity levels that will have a dehydrating effect on the body. Many airlines provide a complimentary bottle of water upon boarding, and you only have to ask if you’d like more. That said, take a look at the signature cocktail and mocktail lists. Nothing celebrates a special Business Class flight more than sampling the airline’s signature tipple. It’s also worth taking a look at the non-alcoholic beverage list. Certain airlines offer unique regional speciality drinks, such as juices, coffees, and teas. Also, note that some airlines are dry and drinking alcohol is strictly prohibited both on the ground and in the air.
7. Ask for Amenities:
Expect an attractive Business Class amenity travel bag on long-haul flights containing a dental kit, eye mask, earplugs, lip balm, moisturising cream, and even fragrance with some airlines. These bags have evolved in recent years into something unique and collectable. Designer brands have partnered with airlines to produce nice-looking, practical, sustainable and desirable amenity kits. British Airways Business Class has collaborated with The White Company’s Restore & Relax Spa Collections. Singapore Airlines uses British perfumer Penhaligon. Emirates Business Class has partnered with BVLGARI and provides men’s and woman’s luxury travel kits, and Lufthansa has teamed up with renowned Greek skincare brand Korres. If you are a frequent flier and have received the same style kit on a previous flight, ask for a different design to complete the set. Passengers will receive soft/foam/memory pillows, a seat cover, a duvet and a blanket on demand. Some airlines will provide a comfortable mattress pad. Just ask if you need more. The screen of the in-flight entertainment systems is generally larger than that of the standard cabin and frequently comes paired with noise-cancelling headphones. These are often of good quality and will help cut out the peripheral noise of the cabin.
8. Use your full Baggage Allowance:
A Business Class ticket provides passengers with a greater baggage allowance than in Economy Class, both in the hold and cabin. Research the checked baggage allowance of your airline, as limits can vary in dimension, weight and quantity – depending on the airline.
9. Plan your Sleep:
Consider the time zones you are passing through on long-haul flights and plan for the best time to get some sleep to arrive fresh and ready for the next stage of your journey. Finnair provides a handy timeline on their IFE screen so passengers know exactly when to expect meal service and when they will be left alone for periods of rest. Seasoned Business Class travellers are less likely to ‘explore’ the numerous benefits of their Business Class seat and will take advantage of the lie-flat seat, complimentary earplugs (or use the noise-cancelling earphones) and eye mask at the earliest opportunity. Airlines differ with the Business Class bed & bedding that they offer. Also, some airlines offer express meal service, allowing passengers to get their heads down soon after taking off. Another alternative is to have a full meal at the Business Class lounge before departure and forgo the main in-flight meal in place of sleep.
10. Use the Arrival Lounge:
Check ahead that your destination has an Arrivals lounge available for use. These are great for freshening up after a long overnight flight, or perhaps, enjoying a nice coffee over breakfast. If you changed from smart work clothing on the flight, this is an excellent opportunity to change back again.
11. Reduce jet lag:
Jet lag is the misalignment of your body’s internal clock due to flying through three or more different time zones. Unfortunately, jet lag cannot be prevented entirely. However, there are several methods to reduce the effects. A lot depends on the direction of travel – the impacts of jet lag flying east are generally regarded as worse than flying west due to losing time from the body’s 24-hour cycle. Symptoms can range from disturbed sleep to daytime sleepiness, impaired thinking, stomach problems and more. Combat the effects by preparing for your flight several days before with quality sleep at home or changing sleep and waking times to be closer to that of your destination. Create a schedule for the first couple of days of your trip, allowing for periods of sluggishness throughout the day. If you are visiting your travel destination for less than three days, consider not changing your current sleep cycle too much – you’ll only have to change it again when you arrive home. Stay hydrated during your flight. Limit alcohol and caffeine. Eat healthy and light, and avoid fat-heavy meals and snacks. Stay awake on daytime flights heading west to force sleep at the regular local time. Make the most of your lie-flat bed on longer journeys eastwards and try to sleep for as long as possible. Upon arrival at your destination, take a power nap if bedtime is too far away, but not for too long. If it’s daytime, go outside. Daylight will help adjust your internal body clock.
Flying Business Class is a splendid way to travel. The most important part of the experience is to enjoy all the perks and arrive at your destination fed, watered, relaxed, refreshed and with a smile of your face!
BusinessClass.com searches hundreds of travel sites at once to help you find the best premium travel offers on both flights and the finest hotels. The Flight Search on BusinessClass.com includes all the information you will need to help you make a considered choice - from price to time in the air, seat size to Champagne marque! Check out your next flight here: