French writer Françoise Sagan said, “Money may not buy happiness, but I’d rather cry in a Jaguar than on a bus.” With wealth comes privileges, and the privileges the rich have in the world can sound unbelievable. There is a website called flyblade.com where the wealthy can “hail a plane” instead of a car in seconds. There is also a Craigslist for the rich called jamesedition.com where luxury items like yachts are put up for sale. Here are more such perks of being rich in this world that you might find interesting to read.
1. Some banks have therapists known as “wealth psychologists” who help their rich clients mentally cope with their immense wealth and issues stemming from it.
Wealth psychologists help their rich patients deal with issues that stem from having an immense amount of money. These issues can be the guilt they face for being filthy rich or advice on how to ensure that their children don’t end up becoming spoiled along with some advice on inheritance.
Private wealth management institutions or financial services firms have wealth psychologists on board who offer to counsel their clients and train the company’s financial advisors. More than financial planning, the role of wealth psychologists in the lives of the rich is more for “legacy planning” which means preparing the family and its future generations for the “emotional transfer of wealth.” Financial institutions like Wells Fargo and U.S. Bank have wealth psychologists with them from 2007. These psychologists can charge around $450 per hour. (1, 2)
2. McDonald’s has a Gold Card that allows its holders free and unlimited food forever. Warren Buffet and Bill Gates have one.
With wealth comes influence, and with influence comes the “Gold Card” by McDonald’s. Bill Gates owns this mysterious Gold Card and is known to frequently have breakfast at McDonald’s. Warren Buffet and Mitt Romney also have cards that allow them to have unlimited food at the restaurant forever.
Otherwise given only to celebrities, do-gooders, or high-profile people, in 2018, McDonald’s held sweepstakes to let a random person win a “Gold Card” which meant an unlimited supply of McDonald’s food for life. This is when the presence of the Gold Card was confirmed by McDonald’s. These cards can be specific to a location or can be used at any McDonald’s restaurant around the world like it is for Bill Gates. (1, 2)
3. Living above the 800-foot elevation in New York City is an exclusive privilege for the super-rich. About 40 people live above that elevation.
This is an exclusive privilege for the super-rich, and only about 40 people are in the “800 Club” in New York City. This luxury of living above 800 feet in New York City is only for the super-rich because an apartment above that level can cost a fortune, and only a handful of skyscrapers like the 1 World Trade, One57, Trump World Tower, etc., are built beyond that limit. As described by the people who live above that elevation, “It is like living in a snow globe.”
According to The New York Times, about 21 skyscrapers exist that go beyond 800 feet. As the supply for spaces above that level is very limited, the prices are sky-rocketing. By 2020, more skyscrapers are expected to be constructed. Buying an apartment above 800 feet can cost around $100 million. Renting an apartment above that height can cost around $65,000 per month! (source)
4. Some wealthy Chinese people hire “body doubles” to take their place and get prosecuted in court. This practice is called “ding zui.”
“Ding zui” is a Chinese term that translates as “substitute criminal.” Rich Chinese people hire their body doubles to stand trial on their behalf and also receive punishment. This is not a rare but a common practice among the elite. In 2009 during the trial of Hu Bin, and in 2012 during the trial of Gu Kailai, accusations of ding zui surfaced.
The media has documented several cases of rich Chinese hiring other people to serve as stand-ins. For about $8,000, people have agreed to stand trial or serve time on behalf of the real people. Once, the owner of a demolition company hired a man to spend time in jail in his stead for $31 a day. A police officer in China who requested to remain anonymous confirmed the existence of the practice and told The Sydney Morning Herald that people could “spend some money and remain free.” (1, 2)
5. The Bel Air Circuit is an invite-only group of about 400 ultra-powerful and wealthy individuals who get to see movies on the day of their release in their own homes. The membership costs $100,000 to join and $4,000 a month.
Tom Cruise, Ben Affleck, Woody Allen, Steven Spielberg, and Prince Saud al-Faisal are just some names out of the 400 who are a part of the invite-only Bel Air Circuit now known as the “Bel Air Digital Circuit.” Once free, it can now only be afforded by the super-rich. Even if you have the money, you cannot just get in. It is named after the famous “Bel Air” area of Los Angeles in the United States and was started by Loius Mayer and Daryl Zanuck to enable them to critique and view new movies in the comfort of their homes.
The members of this elite club own state-of-the-art D-Cinema screening rooms and can watch the day-and-date movie at 4k resolution on the same day of its release by just calling the movie studio or e-mailing them. To get a Bel Air Circuit system in the home costs around $400,000 to $500,000 to fulfill all its technical requirements like a 4k projector, a 7.1 speaker system, etc. (source)