The trip from LAX to Seoul, South Korea is one I have made more than a few times, and always in economy class. Each time I made the 10 to 17 hour journey (depending on jet stream and a layover), I suffered extreme jet lag – a mixture of mental/physical exhaustion, sleeplessness and a general ill feeling. For me, this lasted for a minimum of 3-4 days. When you only have 7 days to visit and your goal is to bond with your in-laws, or do anything productive for that matter, jet lag puts you at a distinct disadvantage. A business class flight, however, can greatly minimize or eliminate its effects. So start looking for business class deals for those long-haul flights!

Seoul, South Korea Building

The cause of jet lag is the disruption in your sleep/wake schedule. A flight crossing several time zones will do that to you. The exhaustion only increases when you have a stressful and/or sleepless flight. The long lines, severely limited space and lack of healthy (or palatable), reasonably priced food in economy class make the journey more challenging. Clearly, I’m familiar with the whole process.

When my wife and I settled on a date (in October, 2019) to visit her parents, I was determined not to relive that crushing feeling. We started pricing business class tickets and decided it was time to invest a few hundred dollars more into our health and wellbeing. We went with Great decision: by the time we arrived, we had gotten a solid 4 hours of sleep and had eaten very well. Of course, we were tired, but the timing worked out perfectly. After landing, we took a 1-hour bus ride to my sister-in-law’s and were in bed by 12:30AM. We woke up at 7AM ready to go – have coffee at Paris Baguette!

I credit the business class experience for a few reasons. For starters, simply being able to comfortably lie flat and doze for hours on end is jet lag medicine. It reduces the stress and shock on your body when you are dropped into a time zone 16 hours ahead of your own. Proper hydration and nutrition play an important role, too. The excellent in-flight service provided a range of healthy meal options, and the kitchen never closed. An hour after finishing dinner, I successfully ordered yet another meal then polished it off with a cup of relaxing chamomile tea. The next thing I remember, it was time for breakfast.

Needless to say, from now on all of my long-haul flights will be business class. The cost of jet lag outweighs the cost of the upgrade. I’ll definitely tap to find the discounted ticket too. Shout out to agent extraordinaire Ethan Fox, who handled my booking!