This Shark Tank 'Shark' Always Flies Economy. Here's the Surprising Reason Why

Flying: It’s the worst. It makes people sick, and if the airlines aren’t squeezing every last ounce of comfort from your flight, your fellow passengers probably are.

It’s worst of all in economy of course–and yet that’s where entrepreneur Barbara Corcoran, the Shark Tank shark and entrepreneur rumored to have a net worth of about $80 million, says she always flies coach if she’s paying for the ticket.

“I always fly economy if I’m paying the tab because I’m too cheap to spring for an expensive ticket,” Corcoran told Kara Cutruzzula in an interview recently for The Points Guy travel site. “I’m even too cheap to use free miles to upgrade because I realized those free miles can buy one of my relatives who don’t have the money a free ticket to somewhere.”

Of course, Corocran isn’t always paying the tab, and she clocks in her share of miles in higher class accommodations and private jets. But she said she’s compiled a list of travel hacks to make flying coach more palatable.

Among them:

Bring your own food.

“I’m not even a picky eater, but I know what I like, and I know that if I have fresh bread, delicious cheese and a bottle of wine, I’m going to be the happiest traveler in town,” Corcoran said.

Drop a cloth napkin on the tray table in front of you.

“It sets the tone and makes a difference, especially when you’re squeezed in the middle seat.”

Get in the zone and get to work.

“I use it to accomplish things that I don’t want to do or that I’m stalling on, and it forces the issue since I have a deadline.”

Carry on everything.

“Even with the smallest carry-on bag, despite how tightly I pack, I will only use what’s on the top half.”

(She has a few other cool tips, too. It’s worth checking them out.)

I find Corcoran’s attitude inspiring–both for aspiring entrepreneurs who should become very comfortable with inexpensive economy class tickets and for people in general.

If you’re an entrepreneur, every penny you put into things like your travel budget is money that’s not going into building your business. And

for the rest of us, I think her perspective on money is interesting–since she has a good chunk and can pretty much do whatever she wants with it.

As she put it in a Reddit AMA she did a few years ago:

“Wealth complicates things. I’m not really sure who my real friends are now … and so I keep my original circle small. When I cashed out on my business, everybody I knew suddenly had a $10,000 problem. But I’m not giving the money back.”

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