Possible to negotiate reduced upgrade charge?

 
Old Jan 24, 08, 10:15 am
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Possible to negotiate reduced upgrade charge?

When I check in for an international flight, I occasionally get a message that "I can upgrade to business class for $X." Has anyone had success in renegotiating their requested fee -- for instance, we'll pay $X for one upgrade if you throw one in for my traveling companion for free?
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Old Jan 24, 08, 10:31 am
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brp
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Never tried it, but I would doubt it. I've seen premium seats go out empty, so I don't think the "Let's Make a Deal" approach works with them.

That said, there's no harm in trying and reporting back. Can you talk like an auctioneer?

Cheers.
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Old Jan 24, 08, 10:35 am
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I always ask......seldom receive....but it is worth the effort.

I try to be as upbeat and polite about it as possible.
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Old Jan 24, 08, 10:39 am
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Is it usually just the regular fare difference between coach and business? Or do they offer a slight discount? If so, do you recall the rough discount %?

I don't fly intl very often, but still curious... Thanks!
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Old Jan 24, 08, 11:00 am
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It is generally LESS than the fare difference. I always buy bargain basement fares and the offer is usually upgrade to business for an additional $725 from DFW to Europe (only when business and first are wide open).
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Old Jan 24, 08, 11:29 am
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Originally Posted by iamthehpt View Post
It is generally LESS than the fare difference. I always buy bargain basement fares and the offer is usually upgrade to business for an additional $725 from DFW to Europe (only when business and first are wide open).
It is less about J and F being wide open and more about Y being over-sold, thus the need to upgrade anyway....

In answer to the op's question, I once offered a lower amount for an offered upgrade J-F on a NRT-DFW flight. I think they asked for around $600 and I offered $500. They looked confused and said no. I paid the amount they offered and flew F on a discount Y ticket (VIP to J)
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Old Jan 24, 08, 11:43 am
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Originally Posted by 1/[email protected] View Post
I I think they asked for around $600 and I offered $500. They looked confused and said no.
You mean they didn't say "what do you think we are, f$#%* Priceline?"

Cheers.
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Old Jan 24, 08, 1:17 pm
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Originally Posted by brp View Post
Never tried it, but I would doubt it. I've seen premium seats go out empty, so I don't think the "Let's Make a Deal" approach works with them.

That said, there's no harm in trying and reporting back. Can you talk like an auctioneer?

Cheers.
In other words, this helps to avoid the freebee OP UPG that we (particularly lowly PLTs) so long for.
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Old Jan 24, 08, 1:33 pm
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Originally Posted by 1/[email protected] View Post
It is less about J and F being wide open and more about Y being over-sold, thus the need to upgrade anyway....
What is your source of this information? Are you saying that if J and F are wide open, but Y is not oversold, they would not be offering these upgrades?
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Old Jan 24, 08, 1:34 pm
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I believe the best approach would be to show the agent that you truly are a man of means. Walk up to the podium with a few $100 bills in your hand and tell him/her that "Mr. Franklin" would like to upgrade.
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Old Jan 24, 08, 4:27 pm
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Originally Posted by iamthehpt View Post
When I check in for an international flight, I occasionally get a message that "I can upgrade to business class for $X." Has anyone had success in renegotiating their requested fee -- for instance, we'll pay $X for one upgrade if you throw one in for my traveling companion for free?
AA's $X number is -not- just another random number. It's based on the distance of the flight. Every time a certain city-pair has this option available, it's always the same price. So the passengers is really left with one simple choice: either pay the price (and upgrade), or don't pay the price (and don't upgrade).
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Old Jan 24, 08, 5:03 pm
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Originally Posted by dayone View Post
I believe the best approach would be to show the agent that you truly are a man of means. Walk up to the podium with a few $100 bills in your hand and tell him/her that "Mr. Franklin" would like to upgrade.
I want to be the person sitting in the seat next to a couple of upgraded hundred dollar bills.

Cheers.
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Old Jan 24, 08, 6:01 pm
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Originally Posted by Blumie View Post
What is your source of this information? Are you saying that if J and F are wide open, but Y is not oversold, they would not be offering these upgrades?
Spoke to a ticket agent in LHR about this around a year ago. She was setting me up for a standby VIP upgrade that hadnt cleared yet and I asked her about it since I had seen the signs up in the LHR the last time I had travelled. She said that they happen on days, rather than specifically on flights (though a particular flight may be excluded), that have very heavy loads in Y but light premium loads. I suggested it was a way to make money on op-ups that they would be giving anyway and she laughed.

Also, in my experience, I have never seen the upgrades offered only when the loads in J / F are light. I did a few flights over the holidy period. All had light loads in J - one flight with 4 or 5 of us in J, yet not offered. This is not conclusive I know.....
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Old Jan 24, 08, 6:20 pm
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Sometimes, if you decline, you can check again at the gate. If they still have space, they may sell you it for a cheaper rate, but probably not.
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Old Jan 24, 08, 6:24 pm
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What mileage do you earn on these tickets then ?

I have never seen such an offer in the last 2 years, either way I fly the wrong routes or pick the wrong dates.
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