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New policy for paid and miles upgrades (AF/KL) - sept 2017

New policy for paid and miles upgrades (AF/KL) - sept 2017

Old Oct 8, 17, 3:22 pm
  #61  
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I hope they will soon realize that this is going nowhere with such crazy fares. They cannot sell any of those upgrades at that price.
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Old Oct 9, 17, 8:55 am
  #62  
 
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Last Friday we were quoted Ä1290/pp or a boat load of miles (over 100k) @ the gate for AMS-LAX. The agent seemed embarrassed to even say a number and mentioned the new policy. For what it's worth, there were 2 spots available in J and they were both taken before we pushed back.

It's funny, I always ask the senior purser about an upgrade potential yet they always find someone else and then seem surprised when I check in with them.
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Old Oct 9, 17, 10:42 am
  #63  
 
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Originally Posted by Ditto View Post
But how do you know how many tickets they actually sold to begin with?
Having J3 might just mean they would be happy to sell 3 full-fare business class tickets, and if everyone shows up downgrade and pay compensation for 3 passengers on a cheaper fare.
because 10 min before closing boarding, I had access to internal information ( I can't disclose the source) and J3 for an upgrade available and 4-5 AF staffs as J seats (It is fine).

So, I had time to observe friends and family tiers ( the 6 tiers), before doors closed, J and W had empty seats ( as per my internal and confirmed source), 2-3 minutes after the doors closed, the AF magic happened, as usual, and W and J were full. I was a nominated AF Observer for that flight and was duly reported, but I don't expect anything to change. It is AF.


So, my conclusion, the 6 tiers out of 5 is still the best value for money: Friends and Familly = Box of chocolates. Unfortunately, with over 200k miles with AF/KLM per year, I am not part of that family.

To finish with it...those CIO Orly based 777, what a disgrace, so overdue for a revamp.

C'est la vie.
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Old Oct 9, 17, 10:53 am
  #64  
 
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Originally Posted by nldogbert View Post
What is totally crazy is the new system does not take into account anymore which fare class you have purchased - so even if I had a W (full flex ticket), this would still have the same amount....which is totally crazy.
From the perspective of the airline it does not really matter when the upgrade fee is he same for everyone. An upgrade is an upgrade. The money to be made is the same regardless who takes it.

In a way it makes sense for them. By having one set fee they have chances that pax on cheap fares are upgrading faster than before. So instead of upgrading people on expensive fares (for a small fee) they can now upgrade people (on a cheap fare) for a medium/high fee. Netto, they win.

Of course, this would not be appreciated by the pax on more expensive fares (you being an example), but I can see how they got to this idea..
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Old Oct 9, 17, 4:03 pm
  #65  
 
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In theory, that makes sense. In practice, a passenger that paid 500 EUR for a long haul round trip is not really likely to pay 2500 EUR to upgrade to J both ways, this person would have bought J outright instead of cheap Y.
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Old Oct 9, 17, 6:33 pm
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Originally Posted by Xandrios View Post
From the perspective of the airline it does not really matter when the upgrade fee is he same for everyone. An upgrade is an upgrade. The money to be made is the same regardless who takes it.

In a way it makes sense for them. By having one set fee they have chances that pax on cheap fares are upgrading faster than before. So instead of upgrading people on expensive fares (for a small fee) they can now upgrade people (on a cheap fare) for a medium/high fee. Netto, they win.

Of course, this would not be appreciated by the pax on more expensive fares (you being an example), but I can see how they got to this idea..
Slightly disagree here. The upgrade price is now fixed in the sense it is not depending on the initial fare. That is beyond the logic of yield management which is the very same logic underlying the initial fare.

From a passenger perspective, the new upgrade policy does not make any sense.

Trying to put my feet into AF/KL shoes, I could see the benefit as the upgrade prices are now higher, which might mean more revenue.

From an overall perspective, I am trying hard to figure who would buy the upgrades under the new scheme:
- it can make sense from a economic perspective for very cheap ticket holder but as rightly pointed out, those hardly would have bought a premium ticket initially ;
- it makes no sense for the expensive ticket holders (Y, B, K, M) to upgrade now. And those would also hardly have bought a premium ticket, most likely because of corporate travel policies ;
- for all other Y pax, the price is now a deal-breaker.

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Old Oct 10, 17, 1:55 am
  #67  
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To add, I understood from the first post on this, the purpose of this change was to not water down these premium cabins...but I really can't see how moving in this way helps to achieve this purpose as those that purchased a 300+ Euro return ticket in Y would most probably take this offer up without too much hesitation (at least I would do this).

But in reality, as also pointed out, these type of pax would most probably not do it...so those of us on corp travel or on higher fare classes are the main pax that is being given finger (and I think it is also us that are normally the freq flyer group that has the most impact to these changes).

At least what I can tell you is that ground agents are too thinking that this new changes are ridiculous (I overheard the Delta agent working the AF flight talking about it - that no one will take the offers as they too think it's too much).

Anyway, I've written to FB to see what they response to this.

Cheers!
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Old Oct 10, 17, 7:32 am
  #68  
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Hi guys
here are a few thoughts. I am also in the opinion that the new prices are a complete no sense. I am not against the idea of a dynamic pricing, because it makes some sense in terms of generating more revenue and it makes sense to discount more, for paid upgrades, a half-empty cabin vs an almost full one. But even in the case of an almost full one, you still have to propose a semi-discounted upgrade price, otherwise no one will pay for it. Do not forget one very important point : when you purchase a paid upgrade, you still earn the miles of the originally booked fare and class, not the miles of the upgraded class/ticket.
IMO there is no point proposing a paid upgrade at €1700 from Y to J, as I was proposed during the weekend to return from JFK, as this supplement corresponds roughly to paying the fare difference but without getting the miles. And even without talking about miles earning, there is no way somebody paying a discounted ticket like €400-500 Europe-US will pay afterwards €1700 per pax to upgrade to J. If you can pay this, you would have purchased J upfront.
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Old Oct 10, 17, 8:02 am
  #69  
 
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just a reference point...

colleague flew IAD -> CDG last week, he paid €1500 for a return (CDG <-> IAD) Y ticket..I do not know the fare class, but he bought it only a week or two before departure.

Upgrade costs...all Y -> J
CDG -> IAD
Miles - 70k
Money - €500

IAD -> CDG
Miles - 90k
Money - €600

The exact costs may be slightly different but it's pretty darn close... I cannot comment on how full the cabins were. Either way, I remember us discussing that the cash cost is not too bad but the miles cost is absurd.
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Old Oct 10, 17, 8:11 am
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Maybe the reasoning behind it is that they were losing revenue because passengers who might otherwise pay for J tickets were now taking the gamble and booking Y or W, knowing that the odds of a reasonable upgrade price were good. By making it more difficult/expensive to upgrade at the last minute, they might be expecting that these passengers will now book J from the start.

Now whether that reasoning is realistic or not is another matter...
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Old Oct 10, 17, 8:34 am
  #71  
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The upgrade costs mentioned here seem all over the map. Some (like mthe previous one) are very reasonable.
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Old Oct 10, 17, 8:46 am
  #72  
 
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Originally Posted by Goldorak View Post
I hope they will soon realize that this is going nowhere with such crazy fares. They cannot sell any of those upgrades at that price.
A week ago on HKG-CDG I asked to see how much the upgrade Y to W would have cost on-board. Y purser showed the iPad saying 50000miles.

Funny thing, eventually she said itís not even possible as someone from the cockpit needs the seat. Well, there sure was a guy in the seat, for 20 minutes while he ate, then back to the cockpit. I sat front row in Y and this seat was 2 meters from me.
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Old Oct 10, 17, 11:12 am
  #73  
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Originally Posted by SeatReserved View Post
A week ago on HKG-CDG I asked to see how much the upgrade Y to W would have cost on-board. Y purser showed the iPad saying 50000miles.

Funny thing, eventually she said itís not even possible as someone from the cockpit needs the seat. Well, there sure was a guy in the seat, for 20 minutes while he ate, then back to the cockpit. I sat front row in Y and this seat was 2 meters from me.
I think you should be glad that you did not waste those 50000 miles for that PE seat - it really is not worth that amount of miles even if you have unlimited miles in your account - as it seems that you had a bulk head seat in Eco which is actually more or less the same PE from leg space point of view.
Am saying this after again back from a worthless PE seat experience (I just fly it because it is not out of my own pocket and for the guaranteed 100% miles or more).

Though going back to the topic, this is rather crazy to ask for so many miles for a really 10% better seat/amenities compared to Y.

Cheers!
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Old Oct 10, 17, 11:24 am
  #74  
 
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Originally Posted by nldogbert View Post
I think you should be glad that you did not waste those 50000 miles for that PE seat - it really is not worth that amount of miles even if you have unlimited miles in your account - as it seems that you had a bulk head seat in Eco which is actually more or less the same PE from leg space point of view.
Am saying this after again back from a worthless PE seat experience (I just fly it because it is not out of my own pocket and for the guaranteed 100% miles or more).

Though going back to the topic, this is rather crazy to ask for so many miles for a really 10% better seat/amenities compared to Y.

Cheers!
Yeah, that's what I told her as well and managed to keep smililng while asking her if that was for real. 50k miles for that upgrade is an upseller's wet dream.

This only makes the discussion here more relevant; the prices of up-selling need to be somehow reasonable. Now they are way off.
And this should be very basic management math and reasoning.
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Old Oct 10, 17, 12:57 pm
  #75  
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Originally Posted by Lewis42 View Post
just a reference point...

colleague flew IAD -> CDG last week, he paid Ä1500 for a return (CDG <-> IAD) Y ticket..I do not know the fare class, but he bought it only a week or two before departure.

Upgrade costs...all Y -> J
CDG -> IAD
Miles - 70k
Money - Ä500

IAD -> CDG
Miles - 90k
Money - Ä600

The exact costs may be slightly different but it's pretty darn close... I cannot comment on how full the cabins were. Either way, I remember us discussing that the cash cost is not too bad but the miles cost is absurd.
Were these rates quoted to your colleague at the airport by an agent or over the phone or via twitter?
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