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First-class fliers are usually upgraders

June 24, 2007

Re "Globalism at 35,000 feet," Opinion, June 19

What Pico Iyer seems not to understand about business and first-class seats on airlines is that most are filled by people like me: frequent fliers who have accumulated lots of miles by being loyal to a specific airline.

I almost always fly first or business class, but I usually pay a coach fare and trade my many miles for the upgrade.

He also paints a worst-case scenario of the price of a business-class ticket. I hope that he will disclose where he finds those $500 seats so that the rest of us can get in on that.

I'm 6-foot-4, and a flight to Asia or Europe is a living hell for me jammed into the tiny coach seats that so many airlines provide.

The idea that business-class fliers want to avoid the riff-raff or eat more crummy airline food is ridiculous.

I fly business class because I get a much bigger seat, lots of legroom and arrive relaxed and rested instead of having my nerves jangled by being crammed into the "back of the Airbus."

JOHN HUMBLE

Santa Monica

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Does anyone actually pay $9,000 for a business-class seat? In my experience, everyone in business class, except for the air marshal, is an elite frequent flier enjoying a free upgrade from that $500 coach seat.

TOM DIETTERICH

Corvallis, Ore.

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