Has AA seriously dropped upgrade availability?

 
Old Oct 28, 08, 8:13 am
  #46  
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
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Originally Posted by bdemaria View Post
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.
My comment wasn't really a complaint. I get it first come first served with the exit rows. But in past practice, you could find most of the exit row seats especially on a 757 open more then a month out. I find this more so during the holidays but alas the trip I booked exit rows are gone. Simply an observation.
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Old Oct 28, 08, 9:49 am
  #47  
 
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Originally Posted by SJCFlyerLG View Post
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.

I am able to coordinate my travel around industry events, and do go out of my way to book early.

As to quantifying revenue, If I am doing 80K of my 110K to 120K a year domestic, I still consider myself one of AAs best customers.

My last flight before Thanksgiving Day is that Tuesday, and both the Saturday segments and Tuesday segments were pretty full when I booked them September 9.

I think soon enough there will be threads: Platinum, the new Gold...........
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Old Oct 28, 08, 9:56 am
  #48  
 
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Originally Posted by oklAAhoma View Post
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.
My simplistic view is that Revenue Management's forecasting models must place a higher value on cash flow (e.g. fares purchased long before the flight) and therefore they extend certain benefits to those fliers who are elite and purchase early. Late-in-the-game purchases are taken as a "given" at a certain percentage basis.

Of course, they probably model every route, which is why the HNL routes have so few upgrades available on them.

Cheers,

-Andrew
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Old Oct 28, 08, 11:23 am
  #49  
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
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Originally Posted by britenbsas View Post
Are there still a lot of people clearing at their upgrade window or has this become nothing more than a hollow marketing ploy?
AA has never (that I recall) promised that upgrades would clear at the beginning of the window. The timing - and rate of success - has been largely route dependent for as long as I've been chasing upgrades, which has been since 1996 or so.


Originally Posted by astanley View Post
My simplistic view is that Revenue Management's forecasting models must place a higher value on cash flow (e.g. fares purchased long before the flight) and therefore they extend certain benefits to those fliers who are elite and purchase early. Late-in-the-game purchases are taken as a "given" at a certain percentage basis.
^^ Well said.

(And thank you for that. I tried to say the same thing several months ago, but failed. Your post conveys what I would have said had I paid more attention in Econ. )
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Old Oct 28, 08, 2:20 pm
  #50  
 
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Originally Posted by astanley View Post
My simplistic view is that Revenue Management's forecasting models must place a higher value on cash flow (e.g. fares purchased long before the flight) and therefore they extend certain benefits to those fliers who are elite and purchase early. Late-in-the-game purchases are taken as a "given" at a certain percentage basis.
I would say insightful not simplistic- particularly the last sentence. ^
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Old Oct 28, 08, 2:38 pm
  #51  
chj
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
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astanley makes a very interesting point that I had to think about for a bit - it all has to do with the time value of money - in other words the discount AA places on cash in the future when comparing it to cash right now.

For a $100ish each way LGA-ORD deep discount fare bought two months in advance to be worth the same (or even .66x as the EQM/EQP ratio would suggest) as a $400ish each way H fare between those two points bought on the day of departure, AAs discount rate for revenue would have to be extraordinarily high. This is commonly associated with companies on the brink of failing to meet fixed payments, who are thus willing to pay any rate of interest for cash right now. It is one reason why the interbank lending rate reached the levels it did at the height of the liquidity squeeze.

Obviously there are other factors at play here as well as time value of money, but perhaps the reason that BA gives more benefit to late-booking high-fare flyers than AA does is that it is in better financial shape?

I apologize if those figures are wrong, I have an AAirpass so I may be off by a bit.
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