How Complimentary Upgrades Work

Old Aug 24, 12, 10:04 am
  #31  
 
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The DL Ticket Glitch...

Happened before and happened again for this weekend...

DL-issued ticket with AS segment (LAX-PDX). Have AS PNR + "first class waitlisted" notation on AS.com itin. Lots of U space @ T-120 hours. No upgrade.

Just called AS rez line and was promptly upgraded.

I have a couple of these in the future. Is this, in fact, a comp upgrade system glitch? If so, is a fix in the works? Or do I need to be on top from T-120 and possibly later. (The LAX flights tend to be pretty easy for U space, but down the road, on a PDX-BOS itin, if there's only a single U seat at or w/in the T-120 window, I'm concerned this DL "glitch" may mean the difference between receiving a comp upgrade or not).

Thx to Missy or anyone else who can clarify.

--mcz
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Old Aug 24, 12, 10:58 am
  #32  
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if you could PM me the confirmation code every time its happens, I can forward it to the Dev team.
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Old Aug 30, 12, 4:24 pm
  #33  
 
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Still trying to work out this slightly confusing upgrade process, but I have a question: Let's say there's a flight that at T-24:01 has 0 U, 1 F, and all MVP/G/75k have been upgraded. There's a DL elite that hasn't received an upgrade yet, so he/she is placed on the waitlist for that last F seat at T-24. At T-18 my plans change and I buy a coach ticket (of any class) and get immediately put on the 75k waitlist. Nobody buys the last remaining F seat before departure.

First question is, who gets upgraded to F, me or the DL elite?

And second, if I were MVPG instead of 75k, who gets upgraded first?
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Old Aug 31, 12, 10:44 am
  #34  
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Originally Posted by steadyASshegoes View Post
Still trying to work out this slightly confusing upgrade process, but I have a question: Let's say there's a flight that at T-24:01 has 0 U, 1 F, and all MVP/G/75k have been upgraded. There's a DL elite that hasn't received an upgrade yet, so he/she is placed on the waitlist for that last F seat at T-24. At T-18 my plans change and I buy a coach ticket (of any class) and get immediately put on the 75k waitlist. Nobody buys the last remaining F seat before departure.

First question is, who gets upgraded to F, me or the DL elite?

And second, if I were MVPG instead of 75k, who gets upgraded first?
at T-18, you'd just buy the F ticket, because it wouldn't be much more expensive than the walk up fare and you want the extra EQM's

otherwise
75K before Delta
Delta before Gold
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Old Aug 31, 12, 2:07 pm
  #35  
 
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Originally Posted by missydarlin View Post
at T-18, you'd just buy the F ticket, because it wouldn't be much more expensive than the walk up fare and you want the extra EQM's
Thanks for the honest response, even if it is frustrating. Now, onto the complaints...

I just checked SEA-LAX for tonight, and the "Best Deal" for the 8pm (about T-7) is $278.80, F is $437.80. $159 is chump change for some but personally I'd buy the coach fare, especially since I tend to buy a lot of last-minute tickets (adds up very quickly). I would consider +57% more for F "much more expensive".

Originally Posted by missydarlin View Post
otherwise
75K before Delta
Delta before Gold
The part I bolded is really baffling. Why on earth would you put partner elites before your own? Does any other airline do this? Does anybody think this is a good idea? When will this be fixed?

Yet another reason to plead for a DL-style upgrade processor, even if it means not getting your upgrade till the gate. These recent AS upgrade changes seem to be nothing but trouble for AS elites.
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Old Aug 31, 12, 2:44 pm
  #36  
 
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Lesson of the day learned:

Get to 75K, and you'll get your upgrade all day..
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Old Sep 3, 12, 12:12 am
  #37  
 
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Missy Darlin'

On three occasions past 4 weeks I called in when fares lowered and asked for certificates for the fare difference.

Before putting in the request, I asked clearly and specifically if there was any chance that by doing so I would forfeit my early place in the upgrade waitlist ie if the ticket had to be rewritten or otherwise changed so that my date placed on the upgrade waitlist would change. On each occasion (and on two preliminary calls) I was told it would not ie the ticket would not need to be rewritten/changed and the place on the upgrade waitlist would not change)

I asked because about two years ago I had been told there was a small but finite chance in the act of changing the ticket I would be knocked off the wait list and they could only add me back on with today's (at that time) date

For the past two years I have avoided repricing tickets and getting the refund/rebate/difference in fare certificates.

Today, I called in and was told the opposite, that they have to issue a new ticket and that the place on the waitlist almost always moves down to the date of the repricing, In fact, she was in shock when on a very rare and unusual occasion this did NOT happen.

I went through 12 or so tickets I had repriced over the past 6 six weeks and discovered that on EACH and EVERY one of those occasions the waitlist position HAD changed to reflect the date of the last change for repricing.

On almost all phone calls I asked both at the beginning and at the end if my place on the waitlist had any chance of being changed by the repricing and had been assured it had not.

In fact, today's agent explained that each time the waitlist had been redated it had needed to be inputted manually ie, the system had "thrown" me off the waitlist by my repricing the ticket and they had to "manually" put me back on. I spent a long time with her going over my 12 or so repriced tickets to be certain they had remembered to manually put me back on the upgrade waitlist and they had, but with the new date ---nothing else could be done.

When I asked the agent if she could give feedback that at least one MVPG
would like them to check with the IT department to be certain there wasn't some other way to do this that wouldn't lose one's position on the waitlist, she replied" but this is the way we want it to be."

If AS wants to leave it that way to discourage passengers from asking for repricing of fares that go down (every bit their right to do, if they think it makes them more money without antagonizing their customers) they should make it clear to them before they do it.

There is no way to know where one is on the WL or what date your were "last added" unless you ask as I did today to determine what the ill-effect was of my repricing.

Missy. if you added this information to your wonderful discussion illuminating how AS constructs its waitlist it might help people decide whether or not to ask for repricing.


Better still, if you would ask your IT department what it would take to keep people in their spot on the WL and whether that could be a 75K/MVPG benefit to separate us from the MVPs.

Many people have been complaining about "chipping away" of elite benefits--
I don't think the beancounters have found AS gets much more revenue because elites are not repricing their tickets because of this as THEY AREN'T
AWARE they are losing anything by doing it in order to avoid doing it. How would they know it could be a problem, if they didn't ask to have the date they were added to the WL read to them after repricing. Who would even think to ask that?

Despite the many times I asked, I was always told all they had to do was generate a certificate and nothing else, especially not my place in the upgrade list would change.

Is this also somethiing that is not easily fixable with your computer system?
If so, just let people know so they can do their own cost/benefit analysis of whether the difference in price is worth (the almost certainty of) lowering one's priority on the upgrade waitlist.
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Old Sep 3, 12, 1:33 am
  #38  
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Originally Posted by thumbelina View Post
Missy. if you added this information to your wonderful discussion illuminating how AS constructs its waitlist it might help people decide whether or not to ask for repricing.

Better still, if you would ask your IT department what it would take to keep people in their spot on the WL and whether that could be a 75K/MVPG benefit to separate us from the MVPs.

Many people have been complaining about "chipping away" of elite benefits--
I don't think the beancounters have found AS gets much more revenue because elites are not repricing their tickets because of this as THEY AREN'T
AWARE they are losing anything by doing it in order to avoid doing it. How would they know it could be a problem, if they didn't ask to have the date they were added to the WL read to them after repricing. Who would even think to ask that?

Despite the many times I asked, I was always told all they had to do was generate a certificate and nothing else, especially not my place in the upgrade list would change.

Is this also somethiing that is not easily fixable with your computer system?
If so, just let people know so they can do their own cost/benefit analysis of whether the difference in price is worth (the almost certainty of) lowering one's priority on the upgrade waitlist.
This is clearly outlined when you generate a GARR at alaskaair.com - its an option that you have to select that indicates you will be removed from the upgrade waitlist and need to rerequest your upgrade. As for AS changing this- I think it would be a technical limitation as this generates a new ticket # (due to ticket exchange I think) and one cannot be on the list earlier then the ticket issue date. If it were to change I could see all sorts of 'favors' happening...

So yes a 'known issue' and a risk of the GARR.
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Old Sep 3, 12, 7:40 am
  #39  
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Originally Posted by beckoa View Post
As for AS changing this- I think it would be a technical limitation as this generates a new ticket # (due to ticket exchange I think) and one cannot be on the list earlier then the ticket issue date. If it were to change I could see all sorts of 'favors' happening...
UA puts you on the waitlist as of the original booking date and leaves you there regardless of any reissues/exchanges.

I can see AS intentionally moving you down the waitlist when you GARR as an incentive to prevent you from GARRing, but I've had issues with tickets before where an agent had to reissue to the ticket to fix the problem (through no fault of my own). I vehemently disagree with being forced to move down the waitlist when this happens.

It's also not clear if we maintain our waitlist position through a schedule change when the flight number changes (since the PNR no longer matches the VCR at that point, so the ticket may have to be reissued). For some reason, I wouldn't be surprised if we do indeed lose it, even though that would be absolutely stupid.
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Old Sep 4, 12, 12:40 pm
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Originally Posted by jackal View Post
UA puts you on the waitlist as of the original booking date and leaves you there regardless of any reissues/exchanges.

I can see AS intentionally moving you down the waitlist when you GARR as an incentive to prevent you from GARRing, but I've had issues with tickets before where an agent had to reissue to the ticket to fix the problem (through no fault of my own). I vehemently disagree with being forced to move down the waitlist when this happens.

It's also not clear if we maintain our waitlist position through a schedule change when the flight number changes (since the PNR no longer matches the VCR at that point, so the ticket may have to be reissued). For some reason, I wouldn't be surprised if we do indeed lose it, even though that would be absolutely stupid.
Beckoa--that assumes that one goes through the process oneself on the website

I call in so that I benefit from the knowledge of those doing the change(AS phone agents, particularly the ones who answer at night out of Phoenix have many years experience, are exceptionally knowledgeable and helpful) Perhaps the problem came that several of the times I repriced the flights it was during daytime hours--I am spoiled by that nighttime Phoenix crew.

Perhaps my problem those times was either that knowledge wasn't there or
there was miscommunication (which i doubt as I asked twice per call and on multiple calls) --the last agent I had suggested that the previous agents only found out after I hung up the phone that I had been thrown off the waitlist by their actions when the computer prompted them to reenter me on the waitlist. We went through all the record locator numbers and they had indeed got me back on on all the reservations, but each with a new waitlist join date.

I only post this so Alaska makes its reps aware of the fact it is not just possible but overwhelmingly probable that one will lose one's spot on the waitlist so that they so inform the passengers. If this is purposeful, to maximize revenue, it is certainly within their rights and perhaps prudent. Psychologically, knowing
a company could have chosen to keep things that way but opted not to WINS my loyalty bigtime, so I am letting AS know in case they see things my way.

AS has gotten a lot of bad publicity with what has been referred to as chip, chip, chip or south of expected new policies. A few north of expected policies which MINIMALLY affect the bottom line might serve to turn some customers perceptions around. This may not be that issue. Beancounters--how about a cost/benefit analysis of the problem or is it just too difficult an IT problem?
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Old Sep 4, 12, 4:14 pm
  #41  
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Originally Posted by thumbelina View Post
Beancounters--how about a cost/benefit analysis of the problem or is it just too difficult an IT problem?
The GARR option basically lets you rebuy your ticket at today's price if its lower than what you originally paid. Thus giving you a refund for part of your non-refundable ticket.

But what comes with the benefit of rebuying at today's price, is that your upgrade placement reverts to today as well.

I'm not the person who codes the upgrade system, but I do know its pretty complicated, as are most things that involve the GDS.

I don't believe its as much a matter as trying to discourage elites to request price drops as it's not considered a priority to put a bunch of effort into re-coding an already complicated process (and everything is complicated when it touches the GDS) to make it easier for you to keep your upgrade while we are also giving you money. But that's just MHO.
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Old Sep 4, 12, 4:22 pm
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Originally Posted by steadyASshegoes View Post
The part I bolded is really baffling. Why on earth would you put partner elites before your own? Does any other airline do this? Does anybody think this is a good idea? When will this be fixed?

Yet another reason to plead for a DL-style upgrade processor, even if it means not getting your upgrade till the gate. These recent AS upgrade changes seem to be nothing but trouble for AS elites.
Gotta agree with this. DL. Isn't putting us all ahead of its top or mid-tier elites, is it? Oh wait, they've already been offered UGs if they were eligible. I'll echo here as my DL luck has been absolutely horrid in '12 vs. '11, irrelevant of airport or route. Not really sure I think many/most DL folks should warrant being ahead of Golds, unless we're going to put their Plats or something equivalent below 75K and then go from there. Obviously overcomplicating the situation, but I don't see how tit-for-tat isn't warranted here, as DL isn't doing favors for most of us.
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Old Sep 5, 12, 8:15 pm
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thanks missydarlin

I wasn't so much complaining about the policy (I sort of thought it had to do with the complexity of the upgrade IT) as making sure others knew it reset their priority.

THere is a thread for people complaining about not getting their upgrade--if others have also not been advised that they PROBABLY would lose their spot on the upgrade waitlist, they probably would never know that was what moved them further down and perhaps caused them not to get one.

About 1.5 years ago a phone agent did tell me that was a possibility and I often chose not to reprice. It was only because I knew glitches with the upgrade list had been worked on in the meantime involving IT and the fact that the phone agents all assured me it would not affect my place on the WL that I did.

It takes a lot of work to sort out all of the certs and their expirations and keep track of them and one can only use so many toward the price of another ticket.

Plus if one puts them into the wallet sometimes the funds expire faster (most of the time for those of us who book far in advance of departure)

THat alone is enough to discourage repricing unless the difference is substantial
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Old Sep 9, 12, 1:11 pm
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Looking at my SEA-IAH flight tomorrow, I'm seeing F2 U0 A0. I'm MVP and on the wait listed for first class. If I check in now and get my coach seat, will I be taken off the first class waitlist? Or will I remain on the waitlist with a possible call up at the boarding gate if "U" space opens up before the flight? (I'm assuming that all empty F seats are converted to "U" inventory around boarding time).

My question boils down to whether there's an advantage to checking in now or should I wait to check in until I get to the airport in this particular case.

Thanks.
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Old Sep 9, 12, 3:27 pm
  #45  
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Originally Posted by koopas View Post
Looking at my SEA-IAH flight tomorrow, I'm seeing F2 U0 A0. I'm MVP and on the wait listed for first class. If I check in now and get my coach seat, will I be taken off the first class waitlist? Or will I remain on the waitlist with a possible call up at the boarding gate if "U" space opens up before the flight? (I'm assuming that all empty F seats are converted to "U" inventory around boarding time).

My question boils down to whether there's an advantage to checking in now or should I wait to check in until I get to the airport in this particular case.

Thanks.
No, you will not be taken off the first-class waitlist.

Check-in time has absolutely nothing to do with anything at all with ONE exception: IDB order is done strictly in reverse-order of check-in time (the last person who checks in is the first to get IDB'd, etc., without regard to status), but this really only affects you if you do not have a confirmed seat assignment. If you have a confirmed seat assignment, there really is no difference between checking in at T-23:59:59 or T-00:30:01.
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