Some time ago I read an interesting debate on FlyerTalk forum about Budget Traveling as a choice. Some people fly low cost airlines and stay in cheap hotels because they are on a budget; some because there is no other direct flight on a certain route, but some choose to take low cost flights even if they could easily afford to buy a business class ticket for a regular flight. Why would anyone choose to do that?The three options one has when it comes to flying – low cost, economy and business class – do not split travelers into 3 different income groups, but rather demonstrate three different mentalities.
It can happen that people who don’t normally afford to pay for business class do travel in such seats. Sometimes because they are on a business trip and the ticket is paid for by their employer, sometimes because they receive a free upgrade and sometimes just because they want to feel special. Flying business class, in addition to the increased comfort, carries with it a certain image, a certain (high) standard. But on the other hand it puts a certain distance between the business class traveler and the people who are flying economy class. It’s like an invisible wall that mentally separates one from “the rest” and that can both comfort one and make one feel lonely.
On the other hand, many people who could easily afford to fly business class and stay in a 5***** hotel don’t do so because they are very sociable and enjoy meeting people. They take low cost flights because sitting close to other passengers enables them to start interesting conversations. They stay in cheap hotels so that they meet other travelers and so that they can get friendly tips from the receptionist on nice places to eat (maybe family run ones), nice bars or other places where they can get to know the locals and the local reality.
Flying a low cost airline is about more than just saving money. It is a different approach to traveling. But it depends on you, on whether you prefer the style and isolation of the business class, or you like socializing on a low cost flight.