rumor : new upgrade co-payment effective 01dec04

 
Old Oct 5, 04, 10:23 am
  #46  
 
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So now that AA is no different from anyone else, I'm glad I cashed in all my miles for a trip to Austrailia. Now I'll start earning with skyteam.

AAs J class is just barely worth the miles. They really need to improve service, food, AAtitudes before you can charge people like that. What's next a fee for booking 31AB HJ on a 777.

This is actually going to hurt AA. People will have no incentive to fly AA international if it's expensive to upgrade. No point in earning miles on other flights to save up for that upgrade. Since they are most likely getting rid of MRTC, coach will be coach on all airlines. So there will be no loyalty anymore and they will lose those low-fare flyers they may consider to be the bottom of the barrell. This will definately affect the bottom line.

Last edited by bstndance; Oct 5, 04 at 10:30 am
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Old Oct 5, 04, 10:26 am
  #47  
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Originally Posted by JonNYC
Additionally, I don't know applicability to VIP upgrades.
Jon, please let us know as soon as you hear whether or not this applies to VIP upgrades.
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Old Oct 5, 04, 10:26 am
  #48  
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Is it AA's goal to eliminate upgrades?

I've bought international RT tickets for less than $500, and now they want to charge me that much for the privilege of using another 50k miles to upgrade?
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Old Oct 5, 04, 10:28 am
  #49  
 
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Spoke to EXP Desk to get confirmation

The desk said yes. The USD 250 is one way required for all fares except Y&B did not ask about discounted J. All flights starting Dec.1 that have NOT been waitlisted by that time will be affected.

VIP upgrades are not affected.

I have already sent out three letters to AAdvantage, Daniel P. Garton and Gail Green. Maybe Arpey is next.

BTW I can't remember the last I used miles to upgrade for me it is is the principle of the thing. Gain market share by differentation not being a me too with an inferior product.

This one I hope they change and soon.
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Old Oct 5, 04, 10:36 am
  #50  
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They should at least toss us a bone - reduce the # miles required for upgrade.
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Old Oct 5, 04, 10:37 am
  #51  
 
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So far, my employer has not questioned my exessive $50 and $75 "change fees" (aka expedite fees). I guess my expense reports are going to reflect a lot of new "change fees".
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Old Oct 5, 04, 10:45 am
  #52  
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Originally Posted by SanDiego1K
Jon, please let us know as soon as you hear whether or not this applies to VIP upgrades.
So far no one has indicated to me that VIPs are involved in tomorrows announcement. I'd be tempted to assume that they may hit the VIPs with some kind of fare class restriction at some point to match-- but that is purely dumb speculation.

Thing about this change is, since it applies to all non-full(ish) fares, some tickets could easily be $1000(or more) + 50,000 miles (more to Asia) + $500 r/t. More extreme examples as well, I'm sure.

Personally, I don't think the whole thing was thought out very well-- even if it was inevitable. At the very least, it should have been a different amount for "deep discount (.5 point)" vs. "discount (1 point)" fares, IMHO.

Or, I think I would have even preferred them just making "deep discount" fares non-upgradable w/ miles-- since "deep discount" + $500 r/t, you'd be better off buying a "discount" fare instead anyway in most cases-- again, MHO.
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Old Oct 5, 04, 10:56 am
  #53  
 
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AA must be taking their cues from crack dealers.
Get em hooked cheap then when they're jonesing raise the price.
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Old Oct 5, 04, 11:02 am
  #54  
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This is just stupid. It makes my chances of hitting Platinum on American in 2005 exactly zero, as I'm not going to pay $1000 on top of the fare to upgrade internationally. I guess if I stay Platinum I'll just do it on 60 segments, and use miles to fly full F to LHR. Or is an upcharge on that next?

Now I'm really mad that I blew my status comp with UA at the beginning of 2003. And I just might do the 2/4 deal on United to get that status back instead of spending the money to stay Platinum on AA this year. I'm lifetime Gold on American, which means that I can book the exit row in advance for leisure travel.
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Old Oct 5, 04, 11:04 am
  #55  
 
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Originally Posted by hauteboy
AA must be taking their cues from crack dealers.
Get em hooked cheap then when they're jonesing raise the price.
--------------------------------------

ROTFLMAO-----
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Old Oct 5, 04, 11:10 am
  #56  
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My guess is that AA will announce a cabin refurbishment progam (with new J seats) at the same time or very shortly afterward and tell us that the only way to pay for it is with a new upgrade co-payment.

I certainly hope I get my choice of meals if I pay $500 more to upgrade.
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Old Oct 5, 04, 11:10 am
  #57  
 
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Example

JFK-LHR r/t

1) Milesaaver award: 90,000 miles.

2) Buy cheap ticket & upgrade by Dec 1: $350 + 50,000 miles. Get 6904 miles (plus bonuses) and 3452 q-points. In effect, about 54,000 miles (40,000 + 6,904 + 6,904 EXP/PLT bonus) for $350.

3) Buy cheap ticket & upgrade after Dec 1: $350 + 50,000 miles + $500. Get 6904 miles (plus bonuses) and 3452 q-points. In effect, about 54,000 miles (40,000 + 6,904 + 6,904 EXP/PLT bonus) for $850.

Last edited by richarddd; Oct 5, 04 at 11:17 am
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Old Oct 5, 04, 11:25 am
  #58  
 
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Originally Posted by richarddd
JFK-LHR r/t

1) Milesaaver award: 90,000 miles.

2) Buy cheap ticket & upgrade by Dec 1: $350 + 50,000 miles. Get 6904 miles (plus bonuses) and 3452 q-points. In effect, about 54,000 miles (40,000 + 6,904 + 6,904 EXP/PLT bonus) for $350.

3) Buy cheap ticket & upgrade after Dec 1: $350 + 50,000 miles + $500. Get 6904 miles (plus bonuses) and 3452 q-points. In effect, about 54,000 miles (40,000 + 6,904 + 6,904 EXP/PLT bonus) for $850.
---------------------------------


$350 / 54000 = 0.65 cents/mile

$850 / 54000 = 1.57 cents/mile


Given that they sell miles for around 2 cents each to Hertz, et al for their programs--looks like you are still getting the miles cheaper than AA sells them to other companies.

I am not sure awarding miles such that they are valued at less than a penny a piece was a very good business model long term...
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Old Oct 5, 04, 11:25 am
  #59  
 
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In case anyone at AA reads this forum, I must chime in here and agree with the other posters that this move is very discouraging. I only use my miles for upgrades--I have never exchanged them for a free ticket. This move tremendously decreases the value of AAdvantage miles to me.

I'd be happy to pay up to $100 each way for an international upgrade, but the amounts that are being tossed around here are crazy.

Why didn't they just increase the number of miles needed for international upgrades by an amount they consider to be the cash-equivalent of the new fees?
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Old Oct 5, 04, 11:28 am
  #60  
 
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OK, now comparisons are really a mess:

CO - East Coast Gateway to FRA, about $550 plus 40000 miles plus $900 upgrade fee. Value $3800-1450=1350 for 40000 miles = 3.375 cents/mile

UA - East Coast Gateway to FRA, about $788 (H or M fare) plus 60000 miles. Value $3800-788=3012 for 60000 miles = 5.02 cents/mile

AA - East Coast Gateway to FRA, about $550 plus 50000 miles plus $500 upgrade fee. Value $3800-1050=2750 for 50000 miles = 5.5 cents/mile

In my case I live near IAD and UA provides direct service. Despite that, I have chosen AA as my carrier of choice up until now. This change will definitely make me rethink that decision. Actually as much as I hate to admit it even with the change AA still comes out on top according to the comparative analysis outlined above. I will still have to weigh the changes once I see all the details. Which airline would you choose?

A question, will this charge only apply to international upgrades using miles, or all upgrades using miles? If it also applies to Domestic/Caribbean upgrades then this is really bad. I guess I will have to wait until tomorrow to find out. Oh, and tomorrow is my birthday. Thanks for the present AA!

The good side to this, if there is any, is that there should be more seats available for upgrade as some will refuse to pay the surcharge as noted in previous posts.

Last edited by aaupgrade; Oct 5, 04 at 11:40 am
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