Photo: Facebook / @Qatar Airways
A crafty man from China used one first class ticket to enjoy gourmet food and fine wine in a luxury airport VIP lounge all year round...
The genius rescheduled his trip 300 times and ended up cancelling for a full refund, costing the airline tens of thousands of dollars.
Love can be a very incomprehensible thing. Whether it's a love of travel or food, sometimes you can't explain why it exists. The unusual case of a Chinese gastronome will leave you in disbelief and undecided whether he prefers first-class lounges, their food or just airport visits. Almost a decade ago, a man in China bought a first-class plane ticket, not to get to an exotic location, but just to indulge in delicious food at the first-class lounge at Xi'an International Airport.
Nothing unusual about that, right? But it will surprise you to know that this smart man has eaten a year of free meals in a luxury lounge. A first-class ticket that was subject to Eastern China Airline's full refund rules allowed him access to the airport's VIP lounge.
This man has found incredible delicacies and a way to enjoy them regularly. Imagine luxurious clientele, fine food and even fine wine combined with great ambiance and service, all for free. After enjoying a hearty meal, this man never took off. Instead, he changed his departure date (probably to the next day) and returned home. He did the same more than 300 times in a year. New day, new ticket, same delicious meal followed by the usual exercise of changing flight dates.
If we crunch the numbers, while lounge dining is free for first class passengers, paid access is $300. Judging by those numbers, the man in some way cost the airline $90,000 or more. By the time Eastern China Airlines began to discover what was going on, the gallant gastronome had simply cancelled his plane ticket and received a full refund, no less.
Why is a first-class lounge a great place to be?
What is it about the first-class salons that attract the attention of many (read: millionaires)? The easiest way to explain this would be to take you for a relaxation session in the Emirates Business Class Lounge at Dubai Airport. But since that is not feasible, we would like to share the details of this Utopia that can be found in almost every airport on the planet. A first-class salon usually offers a shower spa, luxury toiletries and hair dryers to help you look amazing and fabulous for your next destination.
When you're revitalized, you can enjoy a selection of delicious meals, sip a premium drink, or contemplate your lavish life in the business centre. If socializing is not your thing, the first-class lounges are equipped with quiet areas where you can relieve stress in uninterrupted peace. Most premium lounges also have dedicated spa areas where you can opt for complimentary massages and treatments. That pretty much explains why the Chinese guy went out of his way to come back every day for a year!