Has AA seriously dropped upgrade availability?

 
Old Oct 24, 08, 10:09 am
  #31  
 
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I have not missed one upgrade this year that I requested (eVIPs) and domestic stickers.

My upgrade for a flight tomorrow DFW-FLL came through last night, less than 48 hours out but I got it, so I am happy.
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Old Oct 24, 08, 10:10 am
  #32  
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Old Oct 24, 08, 4:05 pm
  #33  
 
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Since becoming EXP I have not missed an upgrade yet.

I would agree that they are clearing later and later, and in some cases I even bought a sandwich before boarding, but the percentage that come through in the end is 100%.

Has there been a reduction in service to Plats might be a better question. We can all agree there has been one to Golds.
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Old Oct 24, 08, 4:11 pm
  #34  
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Originally Posted by bdemaria View Post
Are you looking at the "award availability section" and specifically requesting C. For example, on 10/28 AA 153 ORD-NRT shows C5 and AA 175 DFW-NRT shows C7. Going a month later [11/25], AA 61DFW-NRT shows C5 and there are many more examples I could provide.
Originally Posted by astanley View Post
Hmmm. I just checked, and DFW-NRT on 175 or 61 on 1/16/09 has C (C4 for both), and the return NRT-DFW 176/60 has C on 1/26/09 and beyond (C7 some days), but nothing prior to that.

I just threw a dart at the wall for the dates, FWIW.

Cheers,

-Andrew
So, what you both seem to be saying is that if you use a tool incorrectly and get incorrect answers as a result, perhaps a rant isn't the logical next step?

Cheers.
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Old Oct 24, 08, 4:38 pm
  #35  
 
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I've had some tough luck with upgrades after hitting EXP. Since hitting EXP, I've made 1 JFK-SFO, 1 SFO-LAX, 1 ORD-SFO, and missed 3 SFO-ORD flights.

I'm 100% on eVIPs so far - SFO-JFK-LHR, but none of those cleared until the morning of. I'm still waitlisted for 10/26 LHR-ORD-SFO, with J4 and F3 showing for my two flights.
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Old Oct 25, 08, 4:02 am
  #36  
 
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Originally Posted by cstead View Post
I've had some tough luck with upgrades after hitting EXP. Since hitting EXP, I've made 1 JFK-SFO, 1 SFO-LAX, 1 ORD-SFO, and missed 3 SFO-ORD flights.

I'm 100% on eVIPs so far - SFO-JFK-LHR, but none of those cleared until the morning of. I'm still waitlisted for 10/26 LHR-ORD-SFO, with J4 and F3 showing for my two flights.

How far in advance do you purchase the ticket?

I believe the key to my success is booking at least 6 to 8 weeks out whenever possible.

As i mentioned above, I often clear within hours of the flight or on the drive to the airport myself. Frustrating, but better than not clearing. There have been threads of people complaining about which seat they get in F, so I guess there is always something to complain about.
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Old Oct 27, 08, 12:23 am
  #37  
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Originally Posted by Thumper View Post
How far in advance do you purchase the ticket?

I believe the key to my success is booking at least 6 to 8 weeks out whenever possible.

As i mentioned above, I often clear within hours of the flight or on the drive to the airport myself. Frustrating, but better than not clearing. There have been threads of people complaining about which seat they get in F, so I guess there is always something to complain about.
I don't know what you do to be able to book trips 6 to 8 weeks in advance, but mine are usually done with 2 weeks maximum notice, and most are done within one week. The change in priority to the original request has killed my hit rate. As a PLT, I have made less than 50% this year. Last year, I was at 80%. Given that my tix are bought with short notice, I am paying a lot higher fares than those who are getting the upgrade. This makes no sense to me from AA's revenue perspective.

Also, this year and next year are going to be really tough on PLT's because of the EQM bonus earlier this year. Tons of flyers have been bumped into the next tier because of it. On a 5:30PM flight DFW-SJC on Friday, there were 32 passengers on the upgrade list. I was number 8, and I booked this ticket 10 days out. I am even having trouble getting exit rows now.
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Old Oct 27, 08, 6:54 am
  #38  
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Originally Posted by SJCFlyerLG View Post
On a 5:30PM flight DFW-SJC on Friday, there were 32 passengers on the upgrade list. I was number 8, and I booked this ticket 10 days out. I am even having trouble getting exit rows now.
Being #8 on that route as/a PLT who booked 10 days out isn't bad at all.

W/smaller airports such as SJC I think the problem is not so much the significant jump in elites but rather route reductions. There are 6 SJC-DFW flights, but now only 2 SJC-ORD flights. Fewer flights = more pax.
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Old Oct 27, 08, 5:20 pm
  #39  
 
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I sit corrected... EF is showing the inventory now. It was a couple of weeks ago when I checked. Perhaps AA opened up some inventory. Though I did notice when I checked April/May timeframe everything was baco to C0 on each flight... Wonder if they are only opening them up closer to departure date at this point not letting the "early bookers" book it. (I like to plan vacation schedules many months in advance)
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Old Oct 27, 08, 6:35 pm
  #40  
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Originally Posted by TooMuchTravel73 View Post
Wonder if they are only opening them up closer to departure date at this point not letting the "early bookers" book it. (I like to plan vacation schedules many months in advance)
This is pretty standard for AA revenue mgmt. Have a couple of award/upgrade seats set aside when the flight is open and, as flight time arrives, if the loads are low, they will go ahead and open more up.
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Old Oct 27, 08, 8:47 pm
  #41  
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I hate to open this can of worms again, but as several posters have pointed out, the "time of request" system means the highest-revenue flyers tend to have the lowest priority for upgrades. I fail to see what is wrong with the CO system of prioritising, within status, by fare class. Those who keep the airline in business should get the perks.

On the other hand, I love the BAEC so I know I'm in the minority around here.
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Old Oct 27, 08, 9:42 pm
  #42  
 
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Originally Posted by chj View Post
I hate to open this can of worms again, but as several posters have pointed out, the "time of request" system means the highest-revenue flyers tend to have the lowest priority for upgrades.
Umm... generally speaking the highest revenue flyers don't need to be upgraded because they are already in first.


Originally Posted by chj View Post
I fail to see what is wrong with the CO system of prioritising, within status, by fare class. Those who keep the airline in business should get the perks.
Nothing "wrong" with CO's system, but then again there's nothng "wrong" with AA's either. AA seems to value those of us who purchase cheap fares early, so my guess is they think we are helping to keep them in business, too.
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Old Oct 27, 08, 10:23 pm
  #43  
 
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Originally Posted by SJCFlyerLG View Post
I am even having trouble getting exit rows now.
I have been finding this to be the case myself. Booked a trip to MIA week before Thanksgiving and the exit rows are gone.
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Old Oct 28, 08, 6:42 am
  #44  
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Originally Posted by aa767flyer View Post
I have been finding this to be the case myself. Booked a trip to MIA week before Thanksgiving and the exit rows are gone.
The exit row seats are reserved by other elites. Are you suggesting that AA should reserve these for elites who book 2 weeks out only, 10 days, they should be held for gate assignment? No matter what someone is going to be unhappy.

In certain cases, playground "I called it" rules are actually the most logical.
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Old Oct 28, 08, 7:33 am
  #45  
 
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It certainly seems that they are holding back on confirming 500-mile upgrades. It's a rarity now to receive confirmation at the relevant (72 hour in my case) upgrade window. I'm waiting for confirmation for MIA-MEX on Thursday. Less than 48 hours to flight time with J7 D4 and only 4 seats showing as occupied yet still waiting. Are there still a lot of people clearing at their upgrade window or has this become nothing more than a hollow marketing ploy?
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