Middle-class problems: Cheap flights
By Marianne Levy
Heard about that tiny place, just outside Biarritz? It's only a shack but the view from the terrace is to die for. Just as well, given that hideous plane journey…
We middle-class types love a cheap flight. It's how we imbue our grey lives with a little cosmopolitan glamour, a chance to wear enormous sunglasses and say things such as, "The Lake District? We would, but Olly can't live without his annual dose of blood-orange granita."
But, for all that cheap flights allow us to annoy the occupants of hitherto pristine parts of Europe, they're not without their problems. That £19.99 journey inevitably ends up costing £337.50, and that's before you include bail charges for punching the flight attendant who says your bag's too big for the cabin. And then there's landing 35 miles from the nearest… well… anywhere.
We think we're being canny when we opt for Ryanair over BA. On some level we believe it's like swapping Waitrose for Aldi: yes, it's not as nice, but the difference can be remedied with a slosh of artisan olive oil. We are wrong. Cheap flights are a bit rubbish. That's why they're cheap.
So it's either a staycation, which for many isn't an option (who can seriously say they're getting away from it all when Homes Under the Hammer is on the telly?), forking out a fortune in order to be treated like a sentient being with legs, or putting up and shutting up.
Or, putting up without shutting up. Because if there's one thing we middle classes like even more than a mini-break to Bologna, it's a really good moan.