Airline hamster wheel slowing

Johnnie Moore

I’m Johnnie Moore, and I help people work better together

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I just got a letter from Virgin Atlantic. They’re trying to put a cheery spin on the fact they’re downgrading me from Silver to Red in the frequent flyer programme. I’m expecting the same soon from United where I plummeted from Gold to Silver last year and now will fall to some shamefully non-metallic category. I’ve been flying less lately.

I feel like an addict in recovery. I used to get very excited about those little perks like using the premium lounges… but when I really examine the experience there was also stress in structuring my travel to make sure I span the airline’s hamster wheel fast enough. And I think all that worrying whether I’d get comped an upgrade caused more stress than the occasional success ever really gave me. And to be honest, I always found something a bit depressing about those lounges, that we’d all sold a tiny little piece of our soul to be there. Likewise in Business Class: I wonder if secretly we all know we don’t really BELONG and are all faking it.

We’ll see how my recovery progresses. I could easily have a relapse.

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