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Are there really any BIG downsides to basic economy (Saver) on short Q400 flights?

Are there really any BIG downsides to basic economy (Saver) on short Q400 flights?

Old Dec 5, 18, 1:57 pm
  #16  
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Join Date: Sep 2007
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post

I'm actually surprised that AS will assign you a seat at T-24. They should really do it at the gate, once all the main fares have gotten the better seats.
Well that's another question that I had that doesn't seem to be answered here, yet. I'm not sure WHEN saver seats are assigned. If it's at the gate, then yes, on this route almost always I would be in the last few rows. At T-24 there are usually at least 10 seats or so across the first 8 rows or so that are still open. You're right that the front of the cabin does fill up more as main fares auto upgrade to elite seats on the Q400 or self change based on status but again, when everyone can check in there usually are about 10 seats or so open in the front rows and the back of the plane is pretty much packed. By the time departure happens though the front is filled and the back is either filled by standby or last minute bookings or goes out with a FEW (but not many) empty seats.


Thanks for the clarification on the SDC. That's certainly a non-issue for me on these flights. The change fee cost would be too great to be worth it on this route and there is almost always less then $50 difference between the cheapest flight that day and most expensive, unless it's short notice/holiday travel, and since my trips are almost always just "heading up to Seattle to hang out for the day" I would simply pick a different (cheaper) weekend.
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Old Dec 5, 18, 2:29 pm
  #17  
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
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In your situation I would fly saver if the buy-up was $30. I did notice that it's $10 for some flights... even then I would be tempted to fly saver if I didn't have status.
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Old Dec 5, 18, 3:49 pm
  #18  
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: SEA
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The ONLY downside to Saver on a Q400 flight is if you are Gold or above you loose the change fee waiver.
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Old Dec 5, 18, 3:50 pm
  #19  
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: SEA
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I booked my first Saver fare yesterday for January. My SO had already booked one, so it's highly unlikely that I will need to change. I selected my seat at the back of the Q400. I'm going to miss 1A/B
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Old Dec 5, 18, 3:50 pm
  #20  
 
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Originally Posted by jsguyrus View Post
The ONLY downside to Saver on a Q400 flight is if you are Gold or above you loose the change fee waiver.
Some people don't like the back of the plane.
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Old Dec 5, 18, 4:25 pm
  #21  
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: SEA
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Originally Posted by sturges View Post
I booked my first Saver fare yesterday for January. My SO had already booked one, so it's highly unlikely that I will need to change. I selected my seat at the back of the Q400. I'm going to miss 1A/B
I like 1A, however 20A is my second favorite, so quiet!
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Old Dec 5, 18, 8:01 pm
  #22  
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Originally Posted by sturges View Post
I booked my first Saver fare yesterday for January. My SO had already booked one, so it's highly unlikely that I will need to change. I selected my seat at the back of the Q400. I'm going to miss 1A/B
Wait, so you do still select your seat on saver fares?? I thought they were auto assigned either at check in or at the gate...
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Old Dec 5, 18, 8:05 pm
  #23  
 
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Originally Posted by acarney View Post


Wait, so you do still select your seat on saver fares?? I thought they were auto assigned either at check in or at the gate...
You can choose from the saver-eligible seats. If there are none left then you will be assigned a seat later. Basically all the non-blocked-out rows at the back of the plane. They seem to block out a few rows, probably so that they have some leeway to seat saver parents beside saver kids.

That is why I was saying earlier that on a plane with middle seats, I would NOT postpone picking your seat, and hoping that you get auto-assigned a good seat because all the crappy saver seats are gone. It's much more likely that the other saver passengers pick the saver-eligible window and aisle seats and you end up in the back row middle.
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Old Dec 5, 18, 9:51 pm
  #24  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
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Originally Posted by acarney View Post
I've been annoyed by the "high" prices between PSC and SEA (especially when compared to SEA to LAX sometimes). These fares always seem to be $80 to $100 one way, for a very short ~45 min flight on a Q400. I normally fly this route just for leisure and usually it's just a same day flight or just an overnight stay. Other then not picking your seat, is there any real downside to these fares when the route is short and all the seats kinda suck (I mean it's a Q400, not like I'm stuck with a middle seat or something).

Are these fares more likely to get bumped compared to a main fare?

Would I still get a free checked bag since I'm an Alaska credit card holder?

Do I even care about the checked bag? Often bags are checked at a la cart on Q400s anyway, I still would have access to that with 1 properly sized carry on, right?

Do you still really earn miles on the saver fares? It says actual miles flown, which I think means it's 1 to 1 and not some 50% earning rate, BUT, flight under 500 miles just get rounded up to 500, do saver fares get 500 miles and count as a segment?

I'm usually really opposed to these fares since they normally only cut $20 to $40 off that you pay back in extra fees, but when not taking a bag or just 1 carry one the fare doesn't seem half bad, especially because round trip now is like $109 after tax!
PSC is downright cheap. Look at prices from BLI (which is a lot shorter), and they're even higher than PSC.
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