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7+ full-fare Y 75K on 17 person F waitlist ?!

7+ full-fare Y 75K on 17 person F waitlist ?!

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Old Apr 17, 19, 6:26 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Seattle, WA
Programs: AS 75K, AA Exec Plat
Posts: 36
7+ full-fare Y 75K on 17 person F waitlist ?!

I'm flying on tomorrow's (4/18) AS 736 from SEA to BOS. I am on a full-fare economy fare (Y booking code) and am an MVP 75k. Normally I would have been upgraded days in advance, but for this flight I'm on the 7th spot on the waitlist. What strikes me as incredible is this list only has 16 people in it at T-22, so at least 7 people out of 16 are 75Ks on a Y economy fare! And this doesn't account for any that would have been upgraded already once the 5 day window opened.

I couldn't believe this was possible and called Alaska, and an agent said the people ahead really should be there (implying they truly are Y full-fare 75Ks that booked before me). Has this ever happened to anyone else out there?!

My point isn't to cry about this -- I'l be just fine in Y. Just can't believe there would be so many full-fare 75Ks on such a short waitlist. (obviously the list will grow longer as more check-in, but this number would be incredible even on a 40+ waitlist)

Can't post an image since it's my first post, but you can see the list for yourself on Alaska's website.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 7:02 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: PDX
Programs: AS MVP, AA Platinum, IHG Platinum
Posts: 247
Welcome to Flyertalk! Here are some links to threads where people post their upgrade success/failure stories. On the surface, this does seem unusual, although the upgrades on the T-con routes originating from Seattle are among the more difficult to get. When did you purchase the ticket?

2019:
I Got/Didn't Get MVP/Gold/75K Upgrade on AS (2019)

2018:
I Got/Didn't Get MVP/Gold/75K Upgrade on AS (2018)
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Old Apr 17, 19, 7:13 pm
  #3  
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Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Seattle, WA
Programs: AS 75K, AA Exec Plat
Posts: 36
I booked right before the 75K upgrade window opened, so about 5 days before flight.

Thanks for sharing those! I did consider posting this there, but I figured a separate discussion thread might make sense given how rare this is. I do fly SEA<->BOS very often (1+ times a month) and as a 75K I've been upgraded every time, so seeing this really surprised me, making me even think it might be an AS bug, so I wanted to get input from the community. Could ask there instead if that makes more sense.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 7:18 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: PDX
Programs: AS MVP, AA Platinum, IHG Platinum
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Originally Posted by SEA737 View Post
I booked right before the 75K upgrade window opened, so about 5 days before flight.

Could ask there instead if that makes more sense.
You should get some responses from some 75k's here. Those were just for you to rummage through in the meantime and see if you find anything - although it sounds like you are fairly experienced with upgrades on this route.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 7:20 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
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Originally Posted by SEA737 View Post
so at least 7 people out of 16 are 75Ks on a Y economy fare!
I don't believe that is correct.

If you booked more than 5 days out, this just means that there are 7 75ks on any instant-upgrade-eligible fare (not necessarily full Y) who booked before you did.

If you booked within 5 days of the trip, that means that the other 75ks were already added to the list, so it just means that there are 7 75ks (in any non-saver fare class) who booked before you.

Remember that once someone is added to the queue, you cannot move ahead of them (it's a queue). Instant--upgrade-eligible fares are added to the queue when they are purchased. Other 75k's are sorted by fare class and added at T-5 days. So if you purchase within 5 days, you don't displace all the other 75k's who were added when the window opens. Even if you purchase outside of 5 days, you don't displace other 75k's who bought instant-upgrade-eligible fares.

There is a separate queue for 75ks, so you are ahead of all the MVPs and MVPGs.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 7:28 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
I don't believe that is correct.

If you booked more than 5 days out, this just means that there are 7 75ks on any instant-upgrade-eligible fare (not necessarily full Y) who booked before you did.
Isn't it in order of fare class if over 5 days out?

Y, S, B, M, H, Z, Q, L, V, N, K, G, T, R, W
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Old Apr 17, 19, 7:30 pm
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Originally Posted by RAD_PDX View Post
Isn't it in order of fare class if over 5 days out?

Y, S, B, M, H, Z, Q, L, V, N, K, G, T, R, W
No, instant-upgrades are added to the queue immediately upon purchase. If they weren't, they wouldn't get upgraded when U space opened up outside 5 days (and, for example, they could be poached by GGUs). That means that they are sorted by purchase date, not fare class.

Non-instant are added when the window opens, in order of fare class.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 7:38 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
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Not to derail the original question, but since I'm in a mood for more learning, why does the seat map for that flight tomorrow show 3 empty seats in F, but they won't sell you a first class seat?
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Old Apr 17, 19, 7:47 pm
  #9  
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
I don't believe that is correct.

If you booked more than 5 days out, this just means that there are 7 75ks on any instant-upgrade-eligible fare (not necessarily full Y) who booked before you did.
I didn't know that, but looking more into it it seems you're right.

This actually makes me think of something interesting. I purchased hours before the 5 day window opened. However, my reservation didn't show I was on the upgrade list immediately. I brushed it off and figured I'd call later, and when I checked the following day I was on the list. It seems like even though I purchased before the window opened, I may have been added after it opened.

Looking at other FT AS threads, it seems like order is 1) folks on instant upgrade fares added before 5 days, 2) folks on all other fares added right on the 5-day window (sorted by fare), 3) all other 75Ks who buy after 5-day window begins.
What this means is maybe I'm getting hosed and Alaska added me within 5 days (and thus below every 75K who purchased earlier) even though I purchased before 5 days. Might give Alaska a ring and test this theory.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 7:49 pm
  #10  
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Originally Posted by RAD_PDX View Post
Not to derail the original question, but since I'm in a mood for more learning, why does the seat map for that flight tomorrow show 3 empty seats in F, but they won't sell you a first class seat?
Could be that someone hasn't selected a seat, but I've actually seen this many times before, and I think Alaska does hold seats only to release them into inventory a few hours out. I've been on flights with F0 and 3-4 seats open, and then people get upgraded and take those seats (or, say, F1 and then 5-6 people get upgraded)
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Old Apr 17, 19, 8:23 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
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Welcome to FlyerTalk!

I think VegasGambler's suggestion is the most accurate here - I too have seen a delay before my reservation reflected a waitlist online, though in every case my eventual success or failure of upgrade has been consistent with being on the list the whole time. Further, I once called in to AS under similar circumstances when it didn't appear online and they said they could see me on the waitlist already on their end.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 8:26 pm
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Originally Posted by SEA737 View Post
I purchased hours before the 5 day window opened.
Note that the window opens at midnight pacific time, regardless of the time of the flight. So it's 120hr + however many hours into the day your flight leaves.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 8:28 pm
  #13  
 
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
Note that the window opens at midnight pacific time, regardless of the time of the flight. So it's 120hr + however many hours into the day your flight leaves.
I thought that this wasn't the case for FC, only PC?
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Old Apr 17, 19, 8:35 pm
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Originally Posted by icelandman2 View Post
Welcome to FlyerTalk!

I think VegasGambler's suggestion is the most accurate here - I too have seen a delay before my reservation reflected a waitlist online, though in every case my eventual success or failure of upgrade has been consistent with being on the list the whole time. Further, I once called in to AS under similar circumstances when it didn't appear online and they said they could see me on the waitlist already on their end.
Thanks!

I investigated further and it seems that even though my reservation was made before the 5 day window, it wasn't actually ticketed until after the window, which means I was added to the list after everyone who booked before then, including discount fares.

Ultimately this delay seems to be down to the corporate travel agency that booked my flight, so not a problem on AS's part.

It also means that actually I'm probably about the last or one of the last 75Ks on the upgrade list, which is consistent with the number of 75Ks on economy that I've seen on that route on a busy business day.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 8:51 pm
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Originally Posted by icelandman2 View Post
I thought that this wasn't the case for FC, only PC?
Also [nit] for PC it's not midnight Pacific time, but rather midnight in the time zone of the departure city of the flight.
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