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Flights: NEVER do this one thing if you want a business or first class plane seat upgrade | Travel News | Travel

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Flights in business or first class are what many travellers aspire to – but it’s not easy to secure an upgrade for free. There are various ways by which you can boost your chances of being upgraded, but there are also things you should never do. A travel expert has revealed that doing one thing in particular can ruin your chances of getting a better seat. Nik Loukas, who has worked in the flight industry for over a decade and runs a travel website, explained the secret was to do with the choice of plane food.

Passengers should never require a special plane meal if they want to be in with a chance of getting upgraded, Loukas told Business Insider.

These meals vary from vegetarian to kosher, but unless you actually need these meals, they could be jeopardising your luck.

“If there’s a special meal request in your booking, the airline won’t even look at you (for an upgrade),” he said.

“Because you’ve got a dietary requirement they might not be able to cater for you if they upgrade you.”

Nevertheless, an advantage of these special meals is that they are made individually and have “a little more love and care” paid to them, Loukas told Business Insider.

There are other methods to put to use should you be particularly keen to get upgraded.

A flight attendant has revealed the best trick to persuading crew to upgrade your ticket

The key is to bring gifts for your cabin crew as the flight attendants will appreciate the kindness shown.

Oak Lynn Woods, a vlogger and flight attendant for a major US carrier, told TIME she advises bringing treats to give to your crew.

When she takes personal flights she says she always brings a bag of goodies for the crew on board.

“People don’t realise how rude passengers are,” Woods said. “I experience that every day at work,” consequently a display of thoughtfulness can go a long way.

Even if you don’t manage to nab a seat upgrade the crew may well make sure you benefit from other perks such as free drinks or food from the better classes.

It’s also well worth bringing gifts for the gate agents as well. These are normally employees who endure passengers’ anger most of the time so pleasing them will go a long way.

It can be well worth asking about an upgrade as you board the plane, cabin crew have revealed.

Australian flight attendant James explained on the radio show Kyle & Jackie O that it is often the flight attendants who choose whether to give out an upgrade

“It’s not when you are checking in, they’re all on their computers and they’re traced and everything – we have the power,” he said. However, James revealed that this can be “frowned upon.”

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Travel & Escape

48 hours in . . . Bruges, an insider guide to Belgium’s city on water

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Little Bruges, the perfect pocket-sized medieval city, was a Sleeping Beauty. Laced with canals, it was one of the great North European trading ports in late medieval times. The magnificently detailed paintings of its artists, such as Jan van Eyck and Hans Memling, record its wealth in clothing, jewellery and ornament. Then it fell rapidly into decline and slept until rediscovered and restored to glory in the 19th century.

Today its new riches are in tourism, carefully managed and constantly refreshed by year-round cultural events, so that it retains the dynamism of a living city. The best way to appreciate all this is to stay a few days, luxuriating in the dreamily romantic boutique hotels, and visiting the rewarding museums and churches at your leisure. Above all, this is a place to walk and wonder, and there are still plenty of quiet corners to discover, where historic Bruges sleeps on.

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Europe’s most incredible cosy cabins for watching the Northern Lights

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The Northern Lights are a phenomenon likely to appear on the wish, bucket or to-do list of any intrepid traveller. And what better way to experience them in Europe than by bunking down in cosy cabins, surrounded by miles of forest, still water or the peaks of mountains. They might be pared-back but still boast polished elements, whether it’s a heated hot tub in Sweden, an ‘igloo’ extension in Norway or a glass roof above your bed in Finland. Nothing distracts as the Aurora Borealis flames across the sky – curl up under a blanket and take a look inside. . .

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The curious idiosyncrasies of the Icelandic, from elves and nudity to dark jokes and shark meat

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Iceland: the land of fire and ice, home to long winters, pickled foodstuff and perhaps the world’s most confounding alphabet. Considering a trip there? Arm yourself first with five of its more curious cultural quirks…

They believe in elves. Sort of

… at the very least, the ancient mysticism around them remains alive and well. According to an oft-quoted survey conducted by the University of Iceland, nearly 10 per cent of citizens actually believe elves to be real, while more than 80 per cent are on the fence but refuse to deny their existence.

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