Airpoints dollar upgrades

Old Nov 15, 18, 7:44 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: Nov 2018
Posts: 8
Airpoints dollar upgrades

Over the last 2 years have many of you had more and more difficulty getting elite upgrades using airpoints dollars? Or in my partners case RU. Are one-ups now taking precedence? I fly out of ALK to IAH tonight and looks like my partner and I will have the joy of the back of the plane? Yet again just should have paid for the PE fare in the first place. Also had the pleasure to see they have moved me from 36C to a less desirable location. After 10yrs of Elite status Im just beginning to wonder what benefit truly remains that you can't just get with Koru membership?
Jenky is offline  
Old Nov 15, 18, 8:21 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
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There just aren't that many PE seats on the NZ Dreamliners, and they certainly fill up with paid passengers on that route. That said, I'd be interested to know if there are some behind-the-scenes shenanigans to discourage Elites from using Elite APD upgrades on Y fares.
sopwith7 is offline  
Old Nov 15, 18, 8:37 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: New Zealand (most of the time)
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Quite simply the problem is there are too many HVCs as well as too many passengers willing to pay for PE/BP meaning getting upgrades can be a challenge as premium cabins are full on the vast majority of flights. Despite people coming in here every few months suggesting that OneUps clear before a RU or APD upgrade there is not a single piece of evidence to suggest this occurs.

Having said that I've never not had an upgrade clear in my last ~15 or so long-haul flights.

If flying in a specific cabin is so important you should always pay for it. Period. If you want upgrades cleared you should book flights well in advance and base your flights around A/R availability so these can clear immediately.
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Old Nov 15, 18, 10:34 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
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Mr Biddle ever thought that NZ do not want to upset the likes of yourself who have lots of positive comments about them and few negatives?
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Old Nov 15, 18, 10:44 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
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Originally Posted by wayoutwest View Post
Mr Biddle ever thought that NZ do not want to upset the likes of yourself who have lots of positive comments about them and few negatives?
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I​​​​​​ can assure you I get no preferential treatment. Probably 75% of my upgrades were cleared at time of booking because I'm willing to be flexible with dates in lots of cases.

I feel sorry for Silver and to an extent Gold members who may only fly overseas 1-2x per year because they have pretty poor odds of singse upgrades clear these days.
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Old Nov 16, 18, 12:59 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: New Zealand (when I'm home!)
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I recently gifted 2 APDs to a pair of friends either-way. The first didn't clear. On the return trip home, they had to argue to secure their last two seats in PE. But it was worth it though... they got a lot of sleep on that leg!

Frankly, a lot of people are just willing to pay cash fares which removes upgrade space. These days, unless I can get an upgrade at booking, I'll usually just cash fare myself to BP, and if I'm taking my partner with me, consider flying PE instead if no other cheap business fares from other airlines are available (crossing our fingers with an upgrade request).
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Old Nov 16, 18, 8:57 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: SEA, DUD, GLA
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I've seen no change in my Recognition or Elite Upgrades clearing. In over 50 attempts they have cleared in all but 3 cases. The failures have either been on flights between LAX/SFO and AKL. I typically book early (4 months to almost a year in advance).
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Old Nov 16, 18, 12:44 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
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Ditto.
i have had no failures to clear in the last few years. H4nce have a rosey view of the process.
But I am a realist, if I want J / PE to North America I either book into R class 6-9 months ahead or pay for it and don’t rely on an upgrade clearing.
I have had multiple upgrades clear to HKG, Japan, Perth, Islands, London ex-LAX, but I don’t gamble ex-AKL/rtn to North America - if you want it, pay for it or book in to R.
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Old Nov 16, 18, 3:08 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: New Zealand (when I'm home!)
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Yeah, the routes matter. If you want to go to Asia, upgrades are wide open. It's the USA routes which are competitive. Dates of flying matter too. Luckily it almost always makes sense for me to be flying on less-busy day.

I'm not really sure why the Asia route is so much less competitive. Is it due to the competition from other airlines? Or is it because only one leg is overnight?
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Old Nov 17, 18, 4:15 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
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Just an update to this: flying to LAX in three months. Snagged a guaranteed APD upgrade (PE to BP) on the way home, the back BP cabin was almost empty. However there was no chance in hell to get one on the AKL-LAX leg. And talking with Air NZ, they expect the cabin to be most likely booked with cash fares for basically the entire week I am flying for all flights going to LAX.

Not sure why BP is so much more popular going than coming back but there you go.
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Old Nov 17, 18, 4:40 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
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Originally Posted by kiwifrequentflyer View Post
Just an update to this: flying to LAX in three months. Snagged a guaranteed APD upgrade (PE to BP) on the way home, the back BP cabin was almost empty. However there was no chance in hell to get one on the AKL-LAX leg. And talking with Air NZ, they expect the cabin to be most likely booked with cash fares for basically the entire week I am flying for all flights going to LAX.

Not sure why BP is so much more popular going than coming back but there you go.
I will often book BP going over and PE coming back. I mush prefer to be fully refreshed for my arrival on holiday rather than coming back to NZ.
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