Holly Branson is being praised as “down-to-earth” after she was spotted in economy class on a recent Virgin Atlantic flight from Antigua to London. I’m impressed too.
I don’t buy the virtue signaling of flying economy class. If that is the reason for her flying behind the curtain, then I can only shrug and say I hope it makes you feel better. If she’s doing it out of earnest concern for the environment, good for her.
Maybe she chose economy class because everyone could be together in one row. Then again, she could have brought a nanny along in Upper Class to tend to the two older children.
Whatever the reason, we should never judge people based upon the class of service they fly…that’s even worse. People of very diverse backgrounds have all kinds of reasons to fly in different classes of service. You often can tell very little about someone simply based upon the cabin they fly in.
I guess why I am impressed is because she’s the daughter of the airline’s owner! Her father is a billionaire and she was returning from her summer holiday on Necker Island, her father’s private island in the Caribbean. In other words, she has every resource to fly private…and certainly at least in Virgin’s “Upper Class” product, but she chose not to…
And I appreciate that.
I’ve done some soul searching and after my son’s last flight in business class, I won’t take him into business or first class again until he’s a bit older. It’s not because business class should be the sacrosanct den of the self-conferred elite or that crying babies somehow annoy coach passengers less.
Instead, it is because I could not enjoy my flight when he was misbehaving. So if he’s misbehaving, he’s robbed my ability to relax in a premium cabin. Thus, I’m not going to pay the premium for it…I’ll just fly in the back until he’s better able to fly in the front.
And if that is the reason for her flying economy class, then good for her. That greatly impresses me.
But if I could afford to fly private, that would be a far better solution for me than flying economy class…
It’s refreshing to see someone simply not insist upon the best when they are entitled to it (as the owner’s daughter). What a juxtaposition between her and the Cho sisters at Korean Air!
Branson vs. Cho
Recall that Heather Cho, another daughter of an airline owner, assaulted a flight attendant when she refused to serve her macadamia nuts in a ramekin prior to takoeff. Her sister, Emily Cho, doused water in the face of an advertising executive, prompting outrage. Both have been forced out of Korean Air.
What a wonderful example Holly Branson has set for other children of airline owners. Can you imagine the Cho sisters actually sitting in economy class on Korean Air?
There’s been a lot of brouhaha over the flying patterns of the UK Royal Family. Is it wrong to fly private? Was it noble to fly in economy class on flybe?
I’m of the opinion that it is best not to speculate and best not to judge on matters like this.
But I will certainly join in the chorus of praises for Holly Branson. Because I work all the time with people who throw baby-like temper tantrums if they don’t get a premium cabin seat. Sitting in economy class is never the end of the world. Sometimes, it is even the better option.
Useless ramblings or do you somehow understand my cautious admiration?
image: Holly Branson / Instagram