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Can you decline an upgrade to PY when your business class upgrade doesn't clear?

Can you decline an upgrade to PY when your business class upgrade doesn't clear?

Old Mar 30, 19, 8:04 pm
  #1  
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Can you decline an upgrade to PY when your business class upgrade doesn't clear?

I imagine that this must have been discussed elsewhere, but I've just spent quite a bit of time searching and couldn't find it. I have read the terms and conditions of Air Canada's upgrade policy, which says that you'll automatically be put in an available PY seat if an upgrade to business doesn't clear, but can you decline that if you don't like the PY seat being offered?

Yesterday I flew YYZ-YVR on a 777. It was R0 14 days out so I put myself on the waitlist for a business upgrade, which was going to be 8 eUpgrade credits. I was booked into a preferred aisle seat in Y with a lot of legroom. Looking at the app, I saw that the business cabin was fully checked in and that the entire flight was sold out with a long standby list. The gate agent made no announcement at all regarding upgrades and didn't call me or any other passengers up to offer PY seats.

I boarded with zone 1 and when the GA scanned my digital boarding card, she handed me a paper boarding card for 13A in PY. I told her that I actually preferred my original economy seat, but she said that it had been reassigned. So, I boarded the flight and sat next to a guy on the aisle who slept for the entire 5 hours. I didn't have the heart to wake him up so that I could get up, even though I would have liked to. It got me thinking though that it would have been even worse if I had an inside E or F seat.

I see this morning that the upgrade, which I would have declined had I been given a choice, cost me 4 credits. So my question is whether the GA followed proper procedure and whether there is anything I could have done to decline the upgrade and maintain my original seat selection.
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Old Mar 30, 19, 8:20 pm
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What? I didnít think those upgrades cost anything because they put those truly on standby for PY first. No?
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Old Mar 30, 19, 10:40 pm
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If you request an upgrade to J and your upgrade does not clear Air Canada generously assumes that you want an upgrade to PE. Anyone specifically requesting an upgrade to PE will be ahead of you, but it then goes according to the regular ranking process for anyone who didn't make it into J. You get docked the e-Upgrades to PE.

You do have the ability to decline the upgrade. The risk is that if you don't do this proactively with the gate agent they will upgrade you by default and may give your carefully chosen Y seat away to someone without pre-assigned seating (i.e. "GTE" on their boarding pass) so that when you tell them you want back into Y you get a middle seat at the back of the aircraft.

If you don't want to be upgraded to PE, you had better tell the gate agent before they start clearing upgrades that you only want an upgrade to J and if that fails to clear you want to keep your current Y seat and not be upgraded to PE.
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Old Mar 30, 19, 10:45 pm
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Originally Posted by YVR72 View Post
What? I didnít think those upgrades cost anything because they put those truly on standby for PY first. No?
No. People who request an eUp to PY are first followed by people who failed to eUp into J. Some people have issues with this as it can mean non status people in Standard can get the eUp over a Comfort fate SEMM. Those who get this eUp are charged the number of required credits.

Only people who do not request an upgrade and relieve an operational upgrade - which in AC is if/when cabins are oversold almost only, do not have to pay in credits.

The issue is - and this has been posted before but I canít recall where, once your J eUp fails and you get thrown into PY any good preferred seat disappears and you could get a poor PY seat and end up using credits for what many consider to be a bad cabin not worth credits.

I donít know if there is any good solution here. Well, AC should approach those on the PY list before processing the eUp or have the IT competence to allow people to make the choice and process it all in a better way but ... I donít see this happening. In the near future.
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Old Mar 31, 19, 8:23 am
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Originally Posted by jc94 View Post
I donít know if there is any good solution here. Well, AC should approach those on the PY list before processing the eUp or have the IT competence to allow people to make the choice and process it all in a better way but ... I donít see this happening. In the near future.
You indicated that you didn't know if there was a good solution and then went on to describe it.
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Old Mar 31, 19, 9:14 am
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Originally Posted by The Lev View Post

the gate agent they will upgrade you by default and may give your carefully chosen Y seat away to someone without pre-assigned seating (i.e. "GTE" on their boarding pass) so that when you tell them you want back into Y you get a middle seat at the back of the aircraft.
Yes, happened to me last year - aisle bulkhead Y seat to middle seat in PY. I did not realize this could (would) happen. IIRC, no credits were ever deducted (and neither was the preferred seat fee refunded), but I was paged before boarding. When I told the person to whom I had been chatting in the Zone 2 line, it turned out that we were going to be sitting next to each other, and he volunteered to take the middle seat - a totally unexpected and generous gesture.
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Old Mar 31, 19, 10:07 am
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Originally Posted by The Lev View Post
You indicated that you didn't know if there was a good solution and then went on to describe it.
Yeah true; I guess I meant a good solution that AC would have the ability or willingness to implement
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Old Mar 31, 19, 11:48 am
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Thanks for the replies. Iíll be proactive next time and let the gate agent know.
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Old Mar 31, 19, 12:57 pm
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Is there a wiki somewhere here that has the time at which upgrades are processed? I've seen it mentioned in a few times in posts, but can never reember where to look / where to search to find that info. Would be useful, since many of us probably find ourselves in this silly situation, which shouldn't even be a thing.

(Mostly asking for myself though, since I decided to save a few bucks and book a LHR-YYZ leg in Flex V and chance an upgrade clearing, but would totally prefer my current bulkhead Y seat versus a crappy PY seat.)
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Old Mar 31, 19, 1:26 pm
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Originally Posted by jc94 View Post
No. People who request an eUp to PY are first followed by people who failed to eUp into J. Some people have issues with this as it can mean non status people in Standard can get the eUp over a Comfort fate SEMM. Those who get this eUp are charged the number of required credits.
Two things:

1. Brand (Standard/Flex/Comfort) plays no part in priority. Only fare class. Though I could see this changing at some point.
2. When PY was introduced, upgrades definitely were processed for explicit requests to PY before failed requests to J, but I have seen some evidence to suggest this is no longer the case.

Originally Posted by D404 View Post
Is there a wiki somewhere here that has the time at which upgrades are processed? I've seen it mentioned in a few times in posts, but can never reember where to look / where to search to find that info. Would be useful, since many of us probably find ourselves in this silly situation, which shouldn't even be a thing.
PDM clears the onload list 5 minutes after flight status switches to FC (when check-in closes).
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Old Mar 31, 19, 2:12 pm
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Originally Posted by canadiancow View Post
Two things:

1. Brand (Standard/Flex/Comfort) plays no part in priority. Only fare class. Though I could see this changing at some point.
So currently, a Standard S E75K who checks in ahead of a Flex S E75K would be higher on the airport waitlist?

Basis doesn't matter?
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Old Mar 31, 19, 2:21 pm
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Originally Posted by yyznomad View Post


So currently, a Standard S E75K who checks in ahead of a Flex S E75K would be higher on the airport waitlist?

Basis doesn't matter?
Let's ask Ben.

Oh .... wait ....
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Old Mar 31, 19, 2:38 pm
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Originally Posted by yyznomad View Post


So currently, a Standard S E75K who checks in ahead of a Flex S E75K would be higher on the airport waitlist?

Basis doesn't matter?
That was certainly the case when branded fares were introduced, and I've seen nothing to suggest it's changed.
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Old Mar 31, 19, 6:15 pm
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Originally Posted by canopus27 View Post
Let's ask Ben.

Oh .... wait ....
Both of them.
Or AY.

Originally Posted by canadiancow View Post
That was certainly the case when branded fares were introduced, and I've seen nothing to suggest it's changed.
No wonder they can't even get their own AQM/AQD numbers correct when they can't even get their upgrades correct...
(or maybe it is correct?) hmm...
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Old Apr 1, 19, 10:07 am
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Originally Posted by yyznomad View Post
Both of them.
Or AY.
I think only one of them still works there anyway.


Originally Posted by yyznomad View Post
​​​​​​
No wonder they can't even get their own AQM/AQD numbers correct when they can't even get their upgrades correct...
(or maybe it is correct?) hmm...
What makes you think it's incorrect? Brand doesn't fit in to the cabin/status/fare class published priority.
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