Legality of AFKL price discrimination for upgrades

Old Mar 7, 2024, 9:55 am
  #16  
 
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Originally Posted by Fabo.sk
It's simple enough: The algo is not tied to status.

The algo is tied to million other things that may or may not be correlated with status.

Consider this if you are travelling with your spouse:

You are a Platinum on your way to Ulti. Your spouse is Explorer.

You fly together for a weekend in Italy.
Your upgrade offer is 200 EUR. Theirs is 80.

Status! you cry.
But what about your purchase history?
You routinely purchase J tickets for work. Occasionally you have to slum it in PE because a client is cheap, but no worries, you upgrade yourself to J whenever possible and just up your hours sold to compensate.
Your spouse buys 3-4 tickets a year, always in Y, always Light, always sub 200 EUR fare component.

Is it that unreasonable to expect that it's good business to offer your partner a cheap upgrade and you the expensive one?
Nothing to do with status, not directly.
This is actually a reasonable and seemingly valid explanation.

Unfortunately, the paxex here is that the frequent flyer *experiences* this as sorts of "Tax" on being a status holder, seeing that for most of us, we gain and maintain status by flying AFKL (and/or other ST operators) and spending higher amounts of money, compared to - in these specific cases - pax who are not fqtvs of AFKL

Alas it is what it is and i believe that for the better part of flying AFKL, fqtvs and status holders we've become acustomed to this. It might be the case for other airlines as well, although there are some were the algo is a bit more....predictable in this respect.
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Old Mar 7, 2024, 11:16 am
  #17  
 
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The age when pax could expect good treatment by airlines has gone the way of 1000 euro transats and 500 euro shorthauls in Y. Largely gone due to price sensitive pax pressure.
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Old Mar 7, 2024, 2:12 pm
  #18  
 
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I wonder what would happen when you don't provide your FF number or a number from
another program ... would you then get discount upgrades?
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Old Mar 8, 2024, 3:46 am
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Originally Posted by f0zzyNUE
I wonder what would happen when you don't provide your FF number or a number from
another program ... would you then get discount upgrades?
Yes. When i buy TATL tickets for me + family their upgrade offers are always a lot cheaper then mine. I thought about leaving the FF out next time when planning on using the app upgrade offer and then later place an retro claim.
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Old Mar 8, 2024, 3:48 am
  #20  
 
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One more thing: when you're having a BlueBiz number from your company in your reservation the upgrade offers a getting up A LOT to really comical numbers. BER-AMS 169 Euros....
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Old Mar 8, 2024, 3:55 am
  #21  
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Originally Posted by BER Flyer
Yes. When i buy TATL tickets for me + family their upgrade offers are always a lot cheaper then mine. I thought about leaving the FF out next time when planning on using the app upgrade offer and then later place an retro claim.
The issue with that is that you wouldnt receive the FF benefits either, unfortunately.
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Old Mar 9, 2024, 2:50 am
  #22  
 
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I dont see many FF benefits once travelling in business class.
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Old Mar 9, 2024, 3:52 am
  #23  
 
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Originally Posted by f4free
I dont see many FF benefits once travelling in business class.
exactly. in case the offer does not suit you you can still enter your FF number and get all freqent flyer privileges on the economy secotrs.
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Old Mar 9, 2024, 3:54 am
  #24  
 
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Originally Posted by BER Flyer
One more thing: when you're having a BlueBiz number from your company in your reservation the upgrade offers a getting up A LOT to really comical numbers. BER-AMS 169 Euros....
good point. that could also be a reason for these high upgrade prices ... I do have a bluebiz account and it is connected to my flying blue profile. anyway I will cancel the bluebiz membership as it does not really pay out for the trips I make - especially after the earning threshold they introduced this year.
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Old Mar 9, 2024, 5:19 am
  #25  
 
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It does raise the question 'why do they even bother offering intra-Euro upgrades to FB Gold/Plat?' and 'what kind of metrics do they have on elites buying them?' If people are buying them, great, but the value proposition of intra-Euro business class is the priority check-in, security, and boarding, lounge access, slightly better seat pitch, and catering and service on board. FB Gold/Plat already get everything but the catering and service, so why would we pay our way?
On the other hand, people make poor decisions. Alcohol is a powerful motivator. So are XP. What's the cost of giving elites who purchase Y-to-J upgrades 10 XP, regardless of distance traveled?
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Old Mar 9, 2024, 5:48 am
  #26  
 
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Originally Posted by BubbaX
It does raise the question 'why do they even bother offering intra-Euro upgrades to FB Gold/Plat?' and 'what kind of metrics do they have on elites buying them?' If people are buying them, great, but the value proposition of intra-Euro business class is the priority check-in, security, and boarding, lounge access, slightly better seat pitch, and catering and service on board. FB Gold/Plat already get everything but the catering and service, so why would we pay our way?
business class is a seat in the front - sometimes with free adjacent seat and enough space for cabin baggage so you should be able to board last and still have space for your carryon. travelling in coach with carryon bag you should be upon the first to board to secure a space in the overhead lockers. I almost never travel with checked baggage - so being in biz helps a lot to make the journey smoother aboard.
on tight connections (often caused by delayed departuere) it is a huge advantage to deboard as one of the first.

Originally Posted by BubbaX
On the other hand, people make poor decisions. Alcohol is a powerful motivator. So are XP. What's the cost of giving elites who purchase Y-to-J upgrades 10 XP, regardless of distance traveled?
airlines make more money selling business class seats than selling cheap upgrades. so who would buy business class tickets in the first place when there is always the option for a cheap upgrade including extra XP. that won't happen
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Old Mar 9, 2024, 7:32 am
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Permit me to try again. I just went to the airport, took priority check-in to print my boarding pass. I took the priority security line, went to the lounge, and sat in 3A in economy class for a one-hour flight. Yes, someone was in the seat next to me.
The airline in question wanted to sell me 2A for 115 Euro. They also want to sell it to someone without status for 115 Euro. For someone without status, that seat has more value: not just the getting off the plane much earlier (as opposed to 20 seconds in my car), but also in terms of lounge and security, for which the airline has additional cost.
The price is the same, but the value to the customer and the additional cost to the airline are different. Now, certainly, an airline wants to provide non-status customers with an experience that will encourage them to buy the tickets, as you suggest. On the other hand, if you fly enough to get FB status, the only reasons to be in Y intra-Europe are connecting from long-haul, company policy, or price insensitivity. And none of those reasons are dispatching planes with 10 rows of J across Europe.
The point of my exercise was to suggest things that these elite passengers might value disproportionately to the airline's cost, since that is how business class and frequent flyer programs work.

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Old Mar 9, 2024, 7:59 am
  #28  
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Originally Posted by BubbaX
Permit me to try again. I just went to the airport, took priority check-in to print my boarding pass. I took the priority security line, went to the lounge, and sat in 3A in economy class for a one-hour flight. Yes, someone was in the seat next to me.
The airline in question wanted to sell me 2A for 115 Euro. They also want to sell it to someone without status for 115 Euro. For someone without status, that seat has more value: not just the getting off the plane much earlier (as opposed to 20 seconds in my car), but also in terms of lounge and security, for which the airline has additional cost.
The price is the same, but the value to the customer and the additional cost to the airline are different. Now, certainly, an airline wants to provide non-status customers with an experience that will encourage them to buy the tickets, as you suggest. On the other hand, if you fly enough to get FB status, the only reasons to be in Y intra-Europe are connecting from long-haul, company policy, or price insensitivity. And none of those reasons are dispatching planes with 10 rows of J across Europe.
The point of my exercise was to suggest things that these elite passengers might value disproportionately to the airline's cost, since that is how business class and frequent flyer programs work.

The main issue here is that the non-status person next to you would be asked to pay 115, but you will be asked to pay 220 as a status pax (actually it just happened to me again today with these exact prices &#129315. Even as you get considerably less value.

And to me it doesnt seem that the non-status or pax who rarely or never travel J get a special offer to entice them, they just get the normal price while the others get actually a penalty and are asked to pay astronomical amounts to discourage them.

However if we look at Delta, they offer free upgrades to their elites and a lot of paid upgrade offers for all customers, but the unsold seats get offered for free to their elites. If we make a parallel between intra-Europe and domestic US, which is relatively comparable, it looks a bit odd that AFKL is not only not doing free upgrades unless the flight is overbooked, but they do their best to keep their elites in Y or somehow encourage them to book J (which I guess is not really working). Im not sure how LH Group does it for their elites, but at least they offer many ways to upgrade (plus FF status points) at normal prices and overall their J intra-Europe is priced at a very accessible rate in most cases (I saw several times the price in J at LH at a similar rate of AFKL Y or close to it). So AFKL has quite an interesting and maybe quite isolated upgrade policy compared to the competitors.
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Old Mar 9, 2024, 8:34 am
  #29  
 
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The difference, however, is that US Domestic passengers don't easily get priority security or lounge access as part of elite status: usually a credit card provides that. And the domestic first class seat is a larger seat, not just part of the front cabin with a moving curtain. Plus, their catering is even less appealing than what you get in a classic Wandersbox (the new ones might be better).
Your main point stands. I often travel for work, usually paid for by the public sector of some country. They usually don't pay for anything beyond the cheapest Y ticket, even if I'm on a 24-hour itinerary. So, I can't book J, but if there's space available, I'll often find the upgrade worth my miles - on long haul, of course, and provided it's not ridiculous. That chance of a space-available upgrade might even make it worth my while to choose a less-advantageous routing.
But they've got the data, and maybe it makes sense to them.
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Old Mar 9, 2024, 10:56 am
  #30  
 
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Originally Posted by BubbaX
It does raise the question 'why do they even bother offering intra-Euro upgrades to FB Gold/Plat?' and 'what kind of metrics do they have on elites buying them?' If people are buying them, great, but the value proposition of intra-Euro business class is the priority check-in, security, and boarding, lounge access, slightly better seat pitch, and catering and service on board. FB Gold/Plat already get everything but the catering and service, so why would we pay our way?
Originally Posted by f0zzyNUE
business class is a seat in the front - sometimes with free adjacent seat and enough space for cabin baggage so you should be able to board last and still have space for your carryon. travelling in coach with carryon bag you should be upon the first to board to secure a space in the overhead lockers. I almost never travel with checked baggage - so being in biz helps a lot to make the journey smoother aboard.
on tight connections (often caused by delayed departuere) it is a huge advantage to deboard as one of the first.
I am bit puzzled by the 2 lines of thought here, because I am 200% in line with BubbaX: As FB Plat, I would not pay even 5 euro to get upgraded to C for intra-Europe flights since the added value is not worth it for me. On the other hand, I am a little bit concerned by how many people would consider the proposition of f0zzyNUE and bite on these (overpriced) upgrades. I totally understand that people (and in this case frequent fliers) have different needs and value things differently but it would still be interesting to have some numbers. Shall we do a poll?
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