Forget the flute of chilled Moët & Chandon before take-off, mid-flight gin and tonics, and a roaming dessert trolley after dinner. Flying business class isn’t what it used to be.

Efforts to minimise human interaction and reduce the risk of Covid-19 infection are taking the shine off the most expensive seats on-board commercial aircraft. Gone are the multicourse banquets and warm personal service, once the hallmarks of carriers such as Singapore Airlines and Cathay Pacific Airways. Nowadays, what’s left of premium-grade travel is functional, hygienic and closer to cattle class — only with more legroom.

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