I Dont Understand???????????????

Old May 5, 2005, 5:00 pm
Join Date: Jun 2004
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Originally Posted by enviroian
Excellent post AZ. ^
Have to second this. Great post!

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Old May 5, 2005, 5:16 pm
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Originally Posted by AZ Travels the World
I would encourage you to read my message again. With all due respect, I did not come close to implying that an elite upgrade is a God given right. In fact, I said that if I were in charge at the airline I would have done something similar long before HP management did. (I just would have structured and handled it quite differently.)

What irritates me are two things:

1) We elite members, especially at the upper mileage levels, make a significant commitment to an airline in exchange for a promise that they will deliver on the benefits they establish to entice our business and loyalty. In this case, when they launched this new push on the sale of deeply discounted first class seats, they sent a very nice letter to us elite members explaining the new program and how what they’re really doing is selling seats that are otherwise going empty in order to make some extra money in tough times. Sounded reasonable. They went out of their way to promise that they will carefully control the sale of these discounted seats in order to preserve the coveted upgrade benefit for elite members.

While they may have intended to do that, if they ever did it, that approach has long sense been abandoned.

Elite upgrades at America West are now a very different benefit than they were before this new strategy was implemented.

2) Rather than simply admit that they're selling all the seats they can in order to offset fuel costs and the ridiculously low fares they must compete with, the "Customer Advocate" reportedly explains that, in fact, nothing has changed and that elite members are not being adversely impacted. If he truly believes that, he is out of touch with reality.

Doug Parker trumpeted in at least one management conference call how much money they are making from their "highly successful" discounted first class program. To think those sales are not happening at the expense of the elite members who used to sit in those seats is either naive or deceitful. Neither is acceptable.

Hp_fa, when you fly 125,000+ miles a year, you make your choices based upon the airline that offers you the best overall service and comfort with the least amount of hassle. Upgrades are a critical component of that mix for many of us. America West used to be the best in this regard, which is the biggest reason we became such loyal customers. Things have changed drastically. And while, yes, it is no doubt a function of the industry’s economic realities, that isn’t our fault. (A few of us are still paying nearly $1000 to fly PHX to DFW or $500 to fly PHX to DEN -- hardly the "cheapest seats available" on the route.) Granted, it is what it is, but we have a right to be irritated.
What do you people want??? Part of HP's stated strategy is to actually SELL first class seats. That's why they made the F fares more reasonable. This has been all over the press and HP's website. They even give you the option to BUY (gasp!) a first class seat at a more reasonable fare than other airlines.

That means that upgrades have become more limited. So, what is the solution? Simple, choose ANOTHER airline, if you are so unhappy! Find an airline with easier upgrades (NW comes to mind -- although they are still not perfect).

Also, make sure to write to HP and tell them. You would be surprised how many people complain, but never WRITE the airline. If Anthony Mule has not received complaints, then I would suggest every HP Elite write him TODAY.
formeraa is offline  
Old May 5, 2005, 6:24 pm
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 72
I must agree with the previous thread, if you WANT to be guaranteed a FC seat PURCHASE a FC seat. Upgrades are based on availability. Its amazing how grown up adults act like crybabies when they do not get FC. HP like any airline is in the business to make money. A boeing 757 has 12 seats and airbuses have 8. In some markets there are more business travelers who have platinum or gold status than there are leisure travelers. Furthermore, if passengers are willing to use mileage for upgrade from a paid coach class ticket, mileage upgrade will go above any elite level upgrade. Keep in mind that people also like to use ALL mileage as an award redemption ticket and fly FC. Places like PHX-SJC, EWR, JFK, BOS, ORD, SFO, DFW, ATL are full of elite passengers. When I used to work on the elite desk for HP, upgraded passengers could only be upgraded if "E" class was available. So if no "E" class was available no upgrade even if "F" class was available. "F" class was the class used for an actual FC purchase. The only time "F" could be taken for an upgrade if a gold or platinum member purchased a "H" or "Y" coach class seat. Typically, in some markets HP would hold 1 or 2 seats under "F" class to try to sell any last minute "F" class tickets. Usually yield management computer systems would change any unsold "F" class around the stoke of midnight Arizona time to an "E" class. Most airlines do this as well. When HP was codesharing with CO, they would also allocate X number of upgradable seats versus FC purchasable seats. This is also done by DL/NW. Now I have not worked on the elite desk for over 5 years so I know some of the procedures have changed. I hope this will try to help the person who started this thread understand a little better.
skyfly is offline  
Old May 5, 2005, 6:38 pm
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: PHX
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Posts: 250

Originally Posted by skyfly
A boeing 757 has 12 seats and airbuses have 8...
Actually, B757 has 14 and A320/A319 have 12 seats in First. The B737s have 8 in First. Just though I could try and hold off some of the public humiliation for skyfly!
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Old May 5, 2005, 8:58 pm
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Originally Posted by formeraa
What do you people want???
Originally Posted by skyfly
Its amazing how grown up adults act like crybabies when they do not get FC.
<sarcasm>I know what I want. I want super cheap airfare, I always want to ride up front. I want 200% bonus miles for my super cheap airfare. I wouldn't mind a nice chair massage while flying and decent movies and food. I also want the airline to be super profitable and stay in business for as long as I need them. I'm sure there is more that I want but...</sarcasm>

I don't think many (I say many as there may be one or two that may think this way) that think we are entitled to upgrades, that we should be pampered at the expense of the airline's demise or anything such as that. I also don't think anyone is really being a crybaby about it either.

I feel if anyone is going over the edge its those that say the airline can do no wrong and hasn't hurt the elite program at all. We are merely stating, or at least I am, that the airline says nothing has changed but obviously it has. Just come out and say hey, we know you aren't getting upgraded as much due to our lower fare F seats. We wish we didn't have to do it but to keep the airline afloat we kinda have to do it. Sorry and as soon as we are super profitable again, we'll jack those seats back up so you ride up front all the time.

As far as purchasing F seats. For some of us and I'd reckon alot of us it's not an option. I know my company that even in the F seat is CHEAPER I have to purchase coach. I've paid 1200.00 for a round trip when F was only 995.00 (yeah I got upgrade right away cuz it was full Y) but you see my point.

We are customers of the airline and we do have the right to our opinion no matter how right or wrong it may be. But I don't see anyone crying about it.

Robertsonland is offline  
Old May 5, 2005, 10:42 pm
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 12
Originally Posted by hp_fa
Come on now folks. A courtesy upgrade is not a God given right. It is a courtesy provided our best customers that allows them to potentially buy the cheapest seats available and get to move up front for free including, for free, all the amenities that come in first class. You can't blame HP for trying to generate revenue from those seats. With fuel up over 200% from a few years ago and fares relatively flat the money needs to come from somewhere, in this case the ability to sell an upgrade rather then give it away.
No one said it was a God-given right. However, it is a "benefit" offered by America West to entice frequent fliers to fly this particular airline. I certainly am not going to stop flying America West because I can't get upgraded to first. But, they need to stop offering it as a perk if they don't intend to honor their agreement. It kind of reminds me of the old "bait and switch" scam.

Just in case you're interested, the following is a link to elite benefits.

Snaggletooth is offline  

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