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C inventory but AA claims no availability for upgrade

C inventory but AA claims no availability for upgrade

Old May 5, 17, 11:11 am
  #1  
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C inventory but AA claims no availability for upgrade

I initially posted the issue in the chances to upgrade thread: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/ameri...solidated.html . But since the issue now seems to be something different I opened a separate thread. Hope moderators agree

I have a ticketed reservation for a domestic, non-stop flight. I am in waiting list for a miles+copay upgrade. I am gold.

Initially there was no C inventory available. But since the start of this week Expert Flyer shows a few C seats available on my flight. Called AA to confirm the upgrade but the agent told me there is no availability, and I am still in waiting list. Waited 24 hours just in case, EF inventory still shows the same number of seats. Then called AA again and I got the same negative answer.

Yesterday I contacted EF support. They verified that the information that I see on their site is correct and is the one being published by AA. And they don't understand neither exactly why they don't upgrade me:

It may be that they don't want to upgrade you without the wait list being processed, if then the question is why aren't they processing the waiting list.
Another day later and the C inventory remains exactly the same. Checking the seatmap I suspect (yea, I know it is no foolproof indication) no upgrade was yet processed, because I don't see any changes on first class seats, neither on MCE seats.
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Old May 5, 17, 11:22 am
  #2  
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Originally Posted by lostfly View Post
I initially posted the issue in the chances to upgrade thread: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/ameri...solidated.html . But since the issue now seems to be something different I opened a separate thread. Hope moderators agree

I have a ticketed reservation for a domestic, non-stop flight. I am in waiting list for a miles+copay upgrade. I am gold.

Initially there was no C inventory available. But since the start of this week Expert Flyer shows a few C seats available on my flight. Called AA to confirm the upgrade but the agent told me there is no availability, and I am still in waiting list. Waited 24 hours just in case, EF inventory still shows the same number of seats. Then called AA again and I got the same negative answer.

Yesterday I contacted EF support. They verified that the information that I see on their site is correct and is the one being published by AA. And they don't understand neither exactly why they don't upgrade me:



Another day later and the C inventory remains exactly the same. Checking the seatmap I suspect (yea, I know it is no foolproof indication) no upgrade was yet processed, because I don't see any changes on first class seats, neither on MCE seats.
I believe though even C is available then it flips to elite status order. Perhaps Gold's are at T-24?
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Old May 5, 17, 11:25 am
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I would recommend trying to make a dummy booking for your flight on aa.com. If there is C class availability, then the "Systemwide Upgrade" link should appear below the flight details on the search page.

Beyond that, all you can do is hang up and call again.
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Old May 5, 17, 11:35 am
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What is your flight number and route?
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Old May 5, 17, 12:37 pm
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I would call one more time, and instead of asking them to clear your upgrade, first ask if there's C inventory on the flight in question. If they say yes, give them your PNR and ask them to clear the upgrade.

IME, agents are reluctant to clear waitlisted upgrades manually, but asking the questions in that order often gets it done.
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Old May 5, 17, 12:59 pm
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Originally Posted by DLinYUL View Post
I would recommend trying to make a dummy booking for your flight on aa.com. If there is C class availability, then the "Systemwide Upgrade" link should appear below the flight details on the search page.

Beyond that, all you can do is hang up and call again.
lostfly is GLD so they can't do an SWU check.
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Old May 5, 17, 1:03 pm
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A (potentially risky) Plan B would be to ask to be removed from the waitlist. Then request the upgrade be cleared into the available C inventory. This is probably best done after confirming that there is upgrade space on flight #XXX on mm/dd, before bringing your reservation into it.
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Old May 5, 17, 2:14 pm
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Originally Posted by deeruck View Post
lostfly is GLD so they can't do an SWU check.
Someone here could presumably do the check on aa.com if we had the flight details.
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Old May 5, 17, 2:30 pm
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Thanks for all the replies ...

Originally Posted by jordyn View Post
Someone here could presumably do the check on aa.com if we had the flight details.
I know, but I don't like to post the details publicly. Anyway, Expert Flyer's support confirmed that AA is indeed publishing the C inventory on that flight. I understand that their "source" is more reliable than a SWU check on aa.com, or that is not correct?

I even double and triple checked that the flight I check on ET is my flight. Just in case I might be on a different date or flight, I went paranoid and did the following ... From the ET page that showed the C inventory opened the seatmap. Then from my reservation on aa.com I clicked to change seats. So I could compare the available and assigned seats, and they matched. LOL

Originally Posted by DLinYUL View Post
... Beyond that, all you can do is hang up and call again.
I will certainly call again next week. I was just wondering if there is something else going on. Either something specific to that flight, or may be a new upgrade policy?

Somebody knows the internals of the process? I thought that once inventory is released by RM, then the waiting list is processed automatically. I guess it isn't? Somebody manually processes the list for every single AA flight???
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Old May 5, 17, 3:07 pm
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Originally Posted by lostfly View Post
I will certainly call again next week. I was just wondering if there is something else going on. Either something specific to that flight, or may be a new upgrade policy?
Next week?

No. Call now. Politely explain to the phone agent that you want to confirm a mileage upgrade to your flight and that you can see (in real time) the required "C" inventory.

If that doesn't work, then call back later today/tonight. If that doesn't work, keep calling this weekend.

The competence/proficiency of AA's phone agents has steadily declined over the past few years. Keep calling until you find someone willing to take your $$ and miles.
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Old May 5, 17, 8:23 pm
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Originally Posted by lostfly View Post
I know, but I don't like to post the details publicly.
Up to you, but it's hard to see what the downside is.

Anyway, Expert Flyer's support confirmed that AA is indeed publishing the C inventory on that flight. I understand that their "source" is more reliable than a SWU check on aa.com, or that is not correct?
No, there's no reason to think that Expertflyer is more authoritative than aa.com in this regard, and there's been some indications in the past that availability doesn't always match 100%.

I'd think that if you could confirm that AA's own systems were saying that the upgrade you'd (a) have a better argument than using a third party website, and (b) could try calling into web services and asking why the website is showing availability when the reservations agents say there's none. Maybe that would result in a different outcome.
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Old May 6, 17, 4:43 pm
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Originally Posted by jordyn View Post
I'd think that if you could confirm that AA's own systems were saying that the upgrade you'd (a) have a better argument than using a third party website, and (b) could try calling into web services and asking why the website is showing availability when the reservations agents say there's none. Maybe that would result in a different outcome.
A fellow EXP forum member was very kind to offer to check, and confirmed that SWU are availables exactly as shown by Expert Flyer. Many thanks.

I'll call again with this valuable information. Not sure it will help though ...
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Old May 6, 17, 5:39 pm
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Expert Flyer gets its info directly from the GDS, so if EF shows C class inventory, it's because AA has published that inventory with the GDS.

Is it possible that the problem lies with agents who are stuck in the past and mistakenly think that domestic 2-class upgrades still require A class inventory (like they used to for many years) and not C class (which is a relatively recent change)?
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Old May 6, 17, 9:16 pm
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I experienced once where on both EF and AA.com I found C availability on SFO-LAX-LHR on the LAX-LHR leg but when searching just LAX-LHR it showed no C availability. I called and tried to book and explained that even AA.com was showing the upgrade was available but the phone agents showed no availibility.
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Old May 7, 17, 9:12 am
  #15  
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Originally Posted by lostfly View Post

Somebody knows the internals of the process? I thought that once inventory is released by RM, then the waiting list is processed automatically. I guess it isn't? Somebody manually processes the list for every single AA flight???
My experience is that it has been hit or miss. The last time I wait listed for C, it cleared automatically (but no email - I had to keep checking my reservation). Several times previous to that, my wait listed request for C did not clear automatically. As soon as I got the EF alert, I called AA and got the upgrade pushed through. Without the EF alert, who knows if I would have been upgraded. I have been on a few flights recently where F has gone out with several empty seats and there was no U or C availability ever. I assume all EP. PL, and Gold upgrades cleared, but who knows (I was on a purchased P fare before the prices sky rocketed and pushed me to UA and so was not looking at upgrade lists). I think AA still has not gotten the kinks out from the switch from F and A to J and C on domestic flights.
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