"Upper Class passengers and Flying Club Gold members making their own way to the airport can check in at the Upper Class check-in, in Zone A of the main terminal, before taking a priority lift straight to the dedicated security channel," says Catchpole. "Upper Class customers ... can now check in 40 minutes prior to their scheduled departure time at the latest, and whiz through the dedicated security channel straight to the gate."
As for the ultimate question -- Is first class worth it? -- the market seems to be reacting the way it usually does to luxury products and premium services: yes, it's worth it, if you can afford it and if those products and services are perceived as being unique.
With the growing affordability of private and corporate jets, however, as well as with budget tightening and improvements in business-class comfort, more high-end travelers are likely to put business before the ultimate pleasure.