11 Things Reserved for the Rich That Average Americans Probably Don’t Know About

Woody Harrelson uses his newfound wealth and status post-apocalypse to comfort himself

Woody Harrelson uses his newfound wealth and status post-apocalypse to comfort himself. | Sony

As unfortunate as it is, we all don’t get to live like Mark Zuckerberg. Relatively few of us get to experience the luxuries reserved for the rich and famous, though social media and other channels help us keep tabs on what they’re up to. It might be a fantastic tropical vacation or a meal in their giant estate cooked by a private chef. We can see it all on Instagram or Snapchat. It might make you envious.

Or it might motivate you to see what else you’re missing. The world of the wealthy is vastly different from that of the average American.

Most of us shop at Wal-Mart or Safeway, for example. Rich people might not shop at all — unless it’s at an exclusive store in an upscale shopping center. Average folks only go swimming when we’re at a hotel or when the heat forces us to brave the crowds at a public pool. Millionaires and billionaires, conversely, have some of the most incredible private pools and beaches to themselves.

And that’s not all. There are all kinds of products and services designed specifically for the rich, and some of them you’ve probably never even heard of. How would you like the ability to speak directly to your bank’s president, rather than talking to a teller? Or how about having brands and companies pay you to wear their products or have parties at your home? These are just a couple of examples of the things the wealthy experience while the rest of us languish away in financial mediocrity.

Let’s take a closer look at 11 things rich people have that you’re missing out on.

1. Underwater luxuries

Can you imagine being rich enough to pay someone to be a personal mermaid? Believe it or not, it does happen. But that’s just one of many submerged luxuries rich people can buy. Bill Gates, for example, has an indoor-outdoor pool that has its own dedicated music system. And one rich guy in Utah even built a $2 million pool, so he could practice scuba diving.

2. Kidnapping insurance

A missing persons billboard

An insurance policy protects against ransom requests. | Barry Williams/Getty Images

You might be vaguely aware kidnapping insurance exists. But there’s little or no reason the average person would need it. It’s typically a product purchased by wealthy individuals to protect themselves from extortion. That is, if you’re kidnapped and your family is hit with a ransom request, you have an insurance policy to protect you.

Many big companies offer it, and if you feel you might be at risk, it’s available for purchase. Incredibly enough, as much as $1.5 billion per year is paid to kidnappers for ransoms.

Next: Who pays for your parties?

3. Sponsored parties

A couple of rich people prepare to party

Sponsors love parties with lots of rich people. | iStock.com

Your parties might be cool, but they’re nothing compared to the parties rich people throw. And a lot of those parties actually attract sponsors, where companies will come in with free swag and gifts for attendees. Why? Because they’re gaining access to wealthy customers all gathered in a single space. It’s like those grab bags people at awards shows get, filled with expensive products and samples.

Next: Bank tellers are for the lower classes.

4. Private banking

Old bank sign engraved in stone

Wealthy people get access to bank executives. | iStock.com/BrianAJackson

When you go to the bank, you typically speak to a teller or just use the ATM. But if you’re rich? You get special treatment, such as a direct phone number to management or bank executives. You can also expect access to special products and services. This is called private banking and is typically reserved for wealthy clients.

Next: You shouldn’t be able to drive to the golf course, right?

5. Fly-in golf courses

Golfer tees

A golfer tees off. | Otto Greule Jr./ Stringer/Getty Images

Some people play golf in order to seclude themselves. There’s no better way to seclude yourself than to golf somewhere that is almost completely inaccessible. For those seeking that experience, fly-in golf courses exist. There’s no way in except by private plane. That makes it inaccessible to all but very rich players, and it all but ensures you’ll make it for your tee time without hitting traffic.

6. Luxury safe rooms

Illustration depicting a family in their back yard underground bomb shelter, early 1960s

This illustration depicts a family in their backyard underground bomb shelter in the early 1960s. | Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Do you think the wealthy have simple storm cellars like the rest of us bumpkins? No, they have luxury safe rooms and bunkers in case the weather gets crazy — or the populace gets a little too rowdy. Just take a look at the new high-end safe houses being purchased or built by the world’s wealthy. They have it all. And they’re available in remote locations (or in big cities) all over the world.

7. Information

Illustration of a man saturated with information

The wealthy can pay for information. | iStock.com

Knowledge is power, and if you can pay for knowledge, you can pay for power. The wealthy have access to all sorts of specialized information that many of us can’t afford. Be it from squawk services, research groups, private learning sessions and lessons, or private market research firms, imagine having an intelligence report from leading experts for every facet of your life?

8. Heated everything

plumber fixing central heating system

Heated appliances are a luxury only some can afford. | iStock.com/BernardaSv

In some parts of the world, heated sidewalks and toilet seats are commonplace. In the United States? Less so. But many rich people are heating anything and everything. That includes sidewalks (no shoveling), warming drawers for food (keep that pizza hot), and warming drawers for towels. None of this stuff is cheap, of course, which makes it something usually only available to the rich.

9. Free stuff

Shoppers are photographed at a Kanye West temporary PABLO store

A person shops at a Kanye West temporary PABLO store. | Jackie Butler/Getty Images for Bravado

Celebrities always have the latest and greatest clothes and gadgets. And quite often, they don’t even pay for them. There are special brand memberships and discount cards used by the rich and famous to get just about anything they want, often for free. It’s like those sponsored parties mentioned earlier — it amounts to a marketing opportunity for many brands. One example? Beyonce has a Popeyes Chicken card that gets her free food for life.

10. Special invites to apps, clubs, and events

A crowd at Coachella

Rich people socialize on another, exclusive level. | Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Yes, there are special exclusive (and often invite-only) clubs, events, and even smartphone apps unavailable to the average Joe. One such thing, the Fyre Festival, famously imploded. But others live on. And when it comes to dating, there are a few apps out there that only cater to the wealthy, such as Raya and Tinder Select. Unfortunately, they don’t let just anyone sign up.

11. Concierge service

A concierge of a luxury hotel

A concierge takes care of all sorts of things for the wealthy. | Jean Christophe Magnenet/AFP/Getty Images

You might have seen a concierge at a hotel. But it’s a service that’s available from a number of different sources, including credit cards. A concierge will basically do anything you don’t want to do and figure things out that you don’t want to take the time to figure out. Want to book a flight? A concierge has it covered. Pick up groceries? They’re on it. If only you could afford a “lifestyle management service,” right?

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