Poor Sam Bankman-Fried. The disgraced founder of FTX is facing mounting legal challenges and dwindling assets. Perhaps there’s no greater sign of the times than Bankman-Fried’s choice of flying Alaska Airlines First Class across the country versus American Airlines Business Class.
Sam Bankman-Fried Flies Alaska Airlines First Class
You remember the early scene in Blue Jasmine where Jasmine, played by Cate Blanchett, complains about having no money and having to fly across the country, but still doing it in first class?
I feel like Bankman-Fried is in a similar boat (or plane). Last time he was sighted in the air, Brinkman-Fried flew I the comfort of American Airlines “Flagship” business class, which offers lie-flat seating and multi-course dining between New York (JFK) and three California destinations. This premium service comes at a premium price.
But if you ever want the cheapest first class tickets, that’s where Alaska Airlines comes in. Alaska Airlines, in many respects, is a very decent airline. But while competitors have embraced lie-flat seating on key coast-to-coast flights, Alaska Airlines’ all-Boeing narrow body fleet consists of a “first class” product that is decidedly mediocre with limited recline and legroom and certainly nothing close to a lie-flat seat.
Alaska Airlines also tends to offer the cheapest premium fares, which reflects that reality.
For Bankman-Fried, can we infer anything from his choice to fly Alaska from San Francisco to Newark versus flying United or JetBlue on the same route, both of which offer lie-flat seating, or taking JetBlue, Delta, or American to JFK, which also offer lie-flat seating?
He looks like he’s been sleeping well. 🥱 pic.twitter.com/WxuRO1eetG
— Matthew Liu (matthewliu.eth) (@matthewliu) February 16, 2023
Is the money drying up, even from his parents?
Bankman-Fried might as well “live it up” in AA First Class or JetBlue Mint Class before the trial concludes because even if he is miraculously found not guilty, the civil lawsuits will come and inevitable bankruptcy means he may not have the liquidity or reserves to continue flying in premium cabins.
Already, even American Airlines business class is a downgrade from flying private.
Thankfully, I am not a crypto investor. My interest in this issue extends only to why and how one airline was chosen over the other. But for Bankman-Fried, the choice to fly Alaska Airlines to Newark (cheapest fares), suggests that cash reserves might be dwindling.
(image: matthewliu.eth / Twitter // H/T: View From The Wing)