New Business Traveler

Old Sep 15, 19, 11:42 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Anchorage / So CAL
Programs: AKAir 75K, BestWestern PE
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New Business Traveler

Hello All,

I am new to the world of flying for work. I just hit AKAir 75K and don't know many of the best ways to use the program benefits. I have spent a few hours looking over the site and wanted to say thank you for all the information on here. It is very helpful.

I could not find any information on the site about same-day changes. My return dates often change as work cancels or other things happen. In the experience of other flyers is it better to wait to change your flight day of or book a few days out if you know that you are going to leave at a different time? Lately, I have just been calling and talking to the agent and asking for them to get me on an earlier flight. I have found trying to do it online more of a hassle. If you have any suggestions or tricks of the trade I would appreciate it.
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Old Sep 15, 19, 12:27 pm
  #2  
Moderator: Alaska Mileage Plan
 
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Welcome to FlyerTalk.

This thread has the most info on SDCs. You don't have to read the whole thing. Start at the end and work backwards. You'll get a sense when the posts start to seem out of date.

Same Day Confirmed Change (SDC)
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Old Sep 15, 19, 1:01 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
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The Alaska Airlines website: https://www.alaskaair.com/content/tr...flight-changes

In attempt to answer your question, if I need a different day than planned, I change the flight and pay as required. If I really need a different time for the same day as planned, I'll make the change and pay to confirm the seat. If I would rather leave at a different time and have some flexibility, I wait and do a same day change.

I don't find doing a same day change online to be a hassle.

As you know, 24 hours or less from your flight time, you can check-in. You have the option during that check-in process of selecting earlier or later flights. Those flights occur on the same calendar day as your booked flight.

You will lose any upgrade you may have had for the original flight but will be put back on the queue for the new flight.

There is more but Dayone has already provided you with the helpful link.
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Old Sep 15, 19, 1:06 pm
  #4  
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Thank you
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Old Sep 15, 19, 9:45 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: British Columbia
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While not offical there are also datapoints of a SDC from /to a co-terminal.

From my experience, as a 75K, coming from a confirmed upgrade on a SDC, I have been upgraded on the new flight without ever showing on the new flight upgrade waitlist, however I was unable to determine if my prior upgrade granted me higher priority. I have also done a standby to an earlier sold out flight while still confirmed on the later flight and did move to the top of the awaiting seats list and was cleared next.

AS customer service for Elites is pretty amazing. I think you will find that as a 75K you will see a favourable difference between what is written as policy and what you experience. I have experienced some incredible service that bent the rules so far it twisted them into a pretzel.

Welcome to AS and 75K.

James
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Old Sep 15, 19, 10:27 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: PDX
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If you are using a higher fare, you can same day change without a fee.

You ask if it is cheaper to change the flight or just wait until a few days before a flight.

I have been looking at flights to Chicago. Less than a week before the proposed day of travel, some flights were priced at $709 one way. In that case, it's cheaper to same day change, whether or not there's a fee. However, a strange thing happened in that some of those $709 flights went down to the low $300's while some remained at $709. One day before the proposed day of travel, some flights weren't listed at all, presumably because they are full or beyond full.
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Old Sep 15, 19, 11:38 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
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Originally Posted by Toshbaf View Post
If you are using a higher fare, you can same day change without a fee.
SDC fees are waived for MVPG & MVPG75K

Originally Posted by Toshbaf View Post
You ask if it is cheaper to change the flight or just wait until a few days before a flight.
Some will just purchase the cheapest fare for the day of travel which are usually early morning or late night flights and then SDC to the flight they prefer since there is no fare difference to pay. A change prior to day of travel will incur a fare difference. If you book the first flight of the day, and checkin 24 hours prior, you can SDC to any other flight on the day of travel before OLCI commences for those flights. I believe that your original fare class and ticket purchase date is maintained for the later flights you can SDC to.

Originally Posted by Toshbaf View Post
I have been looking at flights to Chicago. Less than a week before the proposed day of travel, some flights were priced at $709 one way. In that case, it's cheaper to same day change, whether or not there's a fee. However, a strange thing happened in that some of those $709 flights went down to the low $300's while some remained at $709. One day before the proposed day of travel, some flights weren't listed at all, presumably because they are full or beyond full.
I flew AS591 PHX-SEA this morning. I was watching the flight all week from the 75K window last Tuesday morning. At T-27 hours I noticed that I and my companion had been upgraded without notification. There were 13F available until that time and AS was still selling F at $599. Once OLCI opened the F fare dropped to $329 and at T-4 U opened up. The flight departed with a full F cabin but at least one was non-revenue and a standby was seated in 1W. The waitlist was fully depleted but the flight was full and not everybody awaiting seats got one.

James

Last edited by Flying for Fun; Sep 15, 19 at 11:44 pm
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Old Sep 16, 19, 10:25 am
  #8  
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Join Date: Aug 2019
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Flying for Fun wrote:
"Some will just purchase the cheapest fare for the day of travel which are usually early morning or late night flights and then SDC to the flight they prefer since there is no fare difference to pay. A change prior to day of travel will incur a fare difference. If you book the first flight of the day, and checkin 24 hours prior, you can SDC to any other flight on the day of travel before OLCI commences for those flights. I believe that your original fare class and ticket purchase date is maintained for the later flights you can SDC to."



This is exatly what I was wondering about. When I book a flight change a few days in advance, any decent flight seems to be an additional cost. If I just change to the cheapest flight for the day and plan on doing the SDC to a different flight it seems that I don't get charged more and get on the flight I want. This, of course, depends on the day of week and holidays but generally has worked.
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Old Sep 16, 19, 4:27 pm
  #9  
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Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Back home in the REAL Washington (SEA); still working occasionally in the other Washington (DCA area)
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three risks with SDC that I have experienced in ~15 years of extensive travel ...
  1. later flights on heavily traveled routes/days (e.g., LAX/SFO/SJC<-->SEA on Mon mornings and Thurs evenings) occasionally sell completely out ... yes there is a good chance that some of those passengers will be SDCing to earlier flights as their business calendars permit, but you should be prepared to take the flight you actually book, or one with a later but less-than-optimum departure (e.g., book 0600 hoping for 1730, but the available choices wind up being either 1345 or 2145) ... note though that it IS possible to SDC again, so it's always wise to keep an eye on availability
  2. SDCing onto a later flight often means you wind up in a middle seat in the third-from-last row of the jet
  3. if you've been upgraded to F on your original flight, you go back on the "Upgrade Requested" list for the new flight
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Old Sep 16, 19, 4:36 pm
  #10  
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This is all very informative for me. Thank you all. I went from a job for the past 23 years where I never traveled to a career where I am going to travel over 100K miles this year and live in hotels 100+ days. This has been lots for me to adjust too.
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Old Sep 16, 19, 9:19 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
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Originally Posted by Flying for Fun View Post
Some will just purchase the cheapest fare for the day of travel which are usually early morning or late night flights and then SDC to the flight they prefer since there is no fare difference to pay. A change prior to day of travel will incur a fare difference. If you book the first flight of the day, and checkin 24 hours prior, you can SDC to any other flight on the day of travel before OLCI commences for those flights. I believe that your original fare class and ticket purchase date is maintained for the later flights you can SDC to.


s
I purchased a cheap fare for the last flight of the day. The first flight of the day was the same price. The 2nd flight of the day was more expensive. Later, I needed to change to an earlier flight. It was not being tricky, rather my schedule changed making the last flight too late.

I am not MVPG so I had to pay $50 but that was partly offset because the 2nd flight of the day that I took may have been $30 more.
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Old Sep 16, 19, 9:34 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
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Originally Posted by chillymac View Post
This is all very informative for me. Thank you all. I went from a job for the past 23 years where I never traveled to a career where I am going to travel over 100K miles this year and live in hotels 100+ days. This has been lots for me to adjust too.
At least you found FT relatively early in your travel career. I've had periods of light and middling (by FT standards) travel on and off for the past 20+ years and only found FT a few years ago when looking for a new laptop backpack. There's tons of good information that will help make your travels smoother and more pleasant.
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