Old Jul 24, 18, 5:45 pm
  #10  
QueenOfCoach
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: LAX
Programs: AA Lifetime Gold but Plat for a year (yippie)
Posts: 4,356
Originally Posted by s0me0nesmind1 View Post
Hello folks,

I'm planning on a vacation to Hawaii (Maui) and am trying to figure out the best means of booking my flight.
Here is my suggestion.

First get an Expert Flyer subscription. They are able to query directly into the AA database and get real-time fare bucket availability.

In EF you can ask for Awards and Upgrades buckets, for either an exact date or +/- 3 days. Try that and get a feel for what might be available at the time you want to fly. Also note that EF has a list of exactly the fare codes for various upgrades and awards.

When you find flights that suit your needs with available awards or upgrades, then go to the AA website and get the reservation and put it on hold.

Call and say "I have record XYZABC and I want to buy the ticket if I can upgrade." This way you will commit to the ticket and get that upgrade at the same time in the same transaction. If you find an award flight that suits your needs, you can just reserve it on the website and need not call.

If they don't have any upgrades or awards that suit your needs, then you will go on a waiting list. Buy the ticket, then call and put your reservation on the wait list. If your reservation clears, then they automatically do the upgrade and charge your co-pay and miles. If you do not clear, then you are not charged anything.

Expert Flyer takes the guess work out of this kind of thing. You can see exactly what they have available and make plans. That sure beats sitting on the phone saying "Try this.... try that....".
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