VIP treatment and all that jazz
Who would have thought that a credit card could get you a once-in-a-lifetime experience? Sure, MasterCard may be known for its "Priceless" TV commercials, but at the end of the day we all know how the advertising world can exaggerate.
So imagine our surprise when we were invited to experience the MasterCard Priceless Experience at this year's Skywards Dubai International Jazz Festival. Being a key sponsor of the event, the organisation gave select MasterCard Premium cardholders from around the region the opportunity to be flown in to Dubai to attend the event. And the package includes VIP terrace access, an opportunity to meet the headlining act backstage after the show, and VIP after-show party passes. Feeling very smug, Emirates Business got to try it out.
Being based in Dubai, my guest and I didn't get on any luxurious flight, but we did travel to the event at Dubai Media City in style. You can be picked up from anywhere in the city in a top-of-the-range Audi and taken to the venue.
A big thanks goes out to our friendly chauffeur Haneef.
Upon arriving, our least favourite bit of the night comes up when we are greeted by fake paparazzi and a camera crew. I would have loved to see how the actual guests reacted to this gimmick, but let's just say, I wasn't a big fan. My friend and I aren't John and Toni Terry – ie desperate to lap up all the media attention.
Our friendly escort then takes us to the ticketing area to get our access wristbands for the night (and yes, the camera crew is still following us… grrr), after which we're given a quick tour of what's where before taking us to the VIP terrace.
Spacey and casual, guests are treated to endless drinks and food throughout the night, with comfy seating arrangements to enjoy the show.
Finally, after James Morrison does his things, the lucky winners get the opportunity to meet the guy, take pictures and sign autographs.
Yep, money really cannot buy you that.
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