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Possible to upgrade flight at checkin for reasonable rate?

Possible to upgrade flight at checkin for reasonable rate?

Oct 7th, 2007, 09:14 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,008
We were on the pay with miles and $$ upgrade list for our American flights to and from Frankfurt for several months. On our outbound flight from DFW to FRA a few weeks ago, we were not upgraded. The flight was oversold in coach and they were offering $700 + meals and hotel for people who could take a flight the next day. Biz Class was also full.

However, on our return flight last Thursday, we were given an upgrade a couple of days before the flight. I had checked the seats available a couple of days before and there were still quite a few in Biz Class so I felt we had a reasonable chance. I was so glad to be in Biz Class. It cost 25,000 miles and $300 but I felt it was so worth it.
bettyk is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 01:09 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 9,642
AAFF, I don't think that's always true. I was offered the cheap upgrades to Gatwick when there were plenty of empty seats in coach. These were very off-season flights (not during school holidays in Europe or the U.S., few families flying, and also not during any big convention period in Orlando).
BTilke is offline  
Oct 7th, 2007, 01:19 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 2,472
We had one wonderful experience that is consistent with AAFF's comment. We were flying from ATL to Frankfurt for Christmas holidays 2005, and Delta had oversold coach. Our family of 4 was upgraded to 1st (or Business Elite, or whatever they called it) for free. My husband's gold medallion status was why we were chosen.
noe847 is offline  
Oct 17th, 2007, 11:48 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,002
My reply's late but Delta doesn't offer paid upgrades to their international Business Elite cabin (not the $200-$400 kind anyway), only for domestic first class. I've gotten an op-up to BE when coach was oversold.
Patty is offline  
Oct 17th, 2007, 01:50 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,513
Have had a few upgrades when economy was oversold. On one occasion we went from economy to first in Air Canada from Toronto to Delhi - had to fly the next day but it was still worth it.

One other occasion my partner and i were crossing the pond on points - flight was oversold so we volunteered to go on business on the flight the next day and they gave each of us a travel voucher for $300 for our trouble. The same deal was offered on the route home but unfortunately, due to work commitments, we could not have taken advantage of it.

My partner was joining me in South Africa – flying on points. I had not been able to get him a business seat so he was in economy. He mentioned this in passing when he checked in. As he went to board the plane the gate attendant said that his seat had been changed – he was not a happy bunny because he assumed the worst (middle seat) – but when he got on the plane he was directed to business class (I know he’s not too swift could have worked it out by looking at the seat number)
wombat7 is offline  
Oct 17th, 2007, 02:04 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 17,531
"Op-ups" are great when they happen, but counting on them is a fool's paradise.

Paid upgrades at the counter/gate are more common on BA than on other airlines of my acquaintance. It never hurts to ask, however.

American has a couple of European routes where they use 2-class 757 narrow-bodies, which they sell only as one-class (economy) services. American frequent flyer elites and folks paying higher-bracket economy fares get to choose the "first class" seats, and at other times I've seen signs posted at the airport offering to sell the bigger chairs for $150 or $200 on a first-come basis. Still economy service, but much more comfortable than down the back on a Slaveship.

On a related note, MaxJet announced its winter fares within the last couple of days - $499 one way JFK-Stansted, $599 from LAX or Vegas. With taxes, slightly higher coming back due to UK airport fees. Fares are good through Feb.
Gardyloo is online now  
Oct 17th, 2007, 02:31 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 11,334
I upgraded at the counter (it was $500) to business class on UA, ORD to London. It was a flight that left about 2 hours late so I was really very tired and so glad to be able to sleep!!! I can not sleep in economy, no matter how tired I am.

I am flying from ORD to FRA in November and I plan to ask about the price for upgrading to bus class. My ticket for this trip was very reasonable, so paying another $400-500 seems a bargain.

BTW, I'm premier exec with UA.
simpsonc510 is offline  
Oct 17th, 2007, 03:15 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,002
Similar to American, Delta also operates domestically configured 764 and 752 (these are ex-AA/ex-TWA ones) on some European routes. These are sold as all coach flights with elites and Y/B fares able to select a seat in the "first class" section with same economy class service. I believe anyone can request these seats at the airport for no additional charge if any are still available.
Patty is offline  
Oct 17th, 2007, 04:15 PM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 2,481
We were offered an upgrade from economy to economy plus last month on United and should have said, yes. Since we usually fly coach we thought, "how much better could it be?"
Wow, what a dumb question! We should have asked, "how bad can it get???"
The plane from San Diego to Chicago was okay. The 747 from Chicago to Frankfurt was truly the smallest amount of leg and everything else room I’ve ever had on a plane. Giving other meaning to, “fly the friendly skies”. On the flight home we vowed to take the upgrade, no matter the cost but the flight was full.

At least we weren’t stuck next to the galley on that plane with the service cart banging the seat each time it passed.
Just to really rub it in, United had paper napkins that stated, “More leg room than any other carrier.” I suppose they can say that because they give more legroom to those lucky few seats in economy plus.
L84SKY is offline  
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