Kanye West Is the King of Flying Coach

Jun Sato/WireImage
Jun Sato/WireImage

Celebrity A-listers, no matter how embattled, are generously synonymous with all the privileges afforded to the 1%. So onlookers were astonished when Kanye West and his wife, Bianca Censori, were spotted humbly flying economy class last week after a recent trip to Italy.

In a viral Tiktok of the couple, West can be seen dozing in a white bathrobe and slippers while Censori scrolls through her phone next to him. And indeed, the pair appear crammed into the lacking-in-leg-room seats that the rest of us know so well.

After going on a series of antisemitic rants and getting axed from many of his business deals as a result, West has lost a significant amount of his once-immense fortune since 2022, when his billionaire status was knocked down to a net worth of around $400 million.

Some have therefore attributed West flying coach as yet another indicator of his continual fall from grace. Earlier this month, his former assistant sued him for sexual harassment, and West is also facing a $14 million loss on a Malibu mansion he disastrously attempted to renovate with Censori, the New Yorker reported this week. But in fact, West has been foregoing private jets to fly the friendly skies on the cheap consistently for years.

West did debut a private jet, a behemoth Boeing 747, back in 2018 that Kim Kardashian referred to as a “Yeezy floating office,” but this was a chartered ride, not one he owned outright, despite assumptions to the contrary.

In 2021, West was spotted boarding a commercial flight out of LAX, generating another viral moment. “Ye told me he been traveling solo commercial on some normal shit,” Vory, West’s former collaborator, commented on Instagram at the time. “Thought he was capping.”

In 2022, Kim Kardashian, who was then in the process of divorcing West, said that her soon-to-be-ex had nonetheless flown across the country with regular folks to watch her host SNL.

Kim Kardashian’s SNL Monologue Floored Dana Carvey and David Spade

“He literally took a coach, commercial flight,” Kardashian said on an episode of The Kardashians. “Sat in a seat next to the bathroom ... He said he didn’t sleep all night long just so he can get in town early enough to meet up with Dave [Chappelle] and go over jokes and really, like, help.”

And finally: it’s unclear whether West was flying first class, business class, economy or private when he wrote the following in 2011, but when it comes to air travel, the rapper and mogul may have penned one of the most relatable air travel tweets of all time: “I hate when I’m on a flight and I wake up next to a water bottle next to me like oh great now I gotta be responsible for this water bottle.”

Bianca Censori: Fashion Victim or PR Mastermind?

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