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Purchasing a first-class upgrade comes with a catch

For the first time in six-and-a-half years, we were offered a reasonably priced upgrade at check-in today. However, unbeknownst to me, what used to be known as a first-class lounge is now a private club. Apparently they would have let us in if we’d had an international first-class ticket, which had been the case with our upgrades in the past. The clerk at the front desk was somewhat polite as she sent us back to integrate with the riff-raff, but if we want drinks before takeoff, we’re going to have to pay for them. The better news is that Kathryn and I can actually sit together on the flight now. When she booked the flight, the only seats available were across the aisle from one another. Now we’re 3A and 3B.