He could have gone by commercial airline. Sat in first class.
Or was it necessary that he be there at all to collect his little award? It's not unheard of for people have someone accept an award in their stead and read a little acceptance speech for them. Or he could have be video taped a prerecorded message. I'm sure the award could have been packed and shipped to him.
More do as I say not as I do from the privileged class.