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Chances of Upgrade Clearing and Availability (2019 master thread)

Chances of Upgrade Clearing and Availability (2019 master thread)

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Old Jun 28, 19, 1:58 am   -   Wikipost
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Last edit by: aztimm
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Chances of Upgrade Request Clearing
NOTE: Be aware of recent (20 May 2017) upgrade priority changes.

"New Upgrade Priority as of 20 May 2017

(Upgrades were prioritized by elite status and then time of request until 20 May 2017)
  • Elite status
    1. Concierge Key
      • Executive Platinum
        • Platinum Pro
          • Platinum
            • Gold
    • Upgrade type
      1. Miles and copay award upgrades and systemwide upgrades (SWU)
        • 500 mile upgrades on purchased tickets
          • 500 mile upgrades on upgrade eligible awards)
      • Elite qualifying dollars in the past 12 months
        • Booking class
          • Time of request"


See Upgrade Priority Changes to Status, Rolling 365 Day EQD Spend May 20 2017

Link to Gary Leff, View From the Wing 16 May 2017

Updated 6 Jan 2019 by aztimm
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Old Jan 1, 19, 12:43 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: DFW
Programs: AAdvantage EXP, HHonors Gold, Marriott Rewards Lifetime Gold Elite
Posts: 13
Chances of Upgrade Clearing and Availability (2019 master thread)

Originally Posted by domingogo View Post
Just cleared on this leg on the 27th. Currently plat with +$6K EQD. Cleared around 14h in advance after calling AA 4 times. There were around 6 J's left 72h before departure and then I assume quite a few upgrades cleared since only 2 J's were available 24h before the flight.
The seats are not as comfy as for example in the 788 but it's still great to be able to lay down and arrive rested considering it's a red-eye flight.

Fingers crossed your SWU will clear. If you have never been to BA, try to leave the plane asap and go through customs as there are multiple international flights landing at the same time and sometimes it can take up to an hour.
@domingogo. Thanks for your input and comments. Checked with AA again today. Now at less than 100 Availability looks good at this point, however, was advised by EXP Desk that they usually don't clear prior to 48 hours on this route. however, still have fingers crossed.

Good luck with your Upgrades as well
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Old Jan 1, 19, 6:47 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: DFW
Programs: AA-PLT, 1.3MM, GE
Posts: 213
HLCinCOU...

Quote:
Originally Posted by wandertheglobe
Anyway, the AA customer rep was polite as was I and I appreciated their responding to my question. Being platinum I still will be on the bottom of the upgrade lists, considering I got 2 upgrades in 2018 and both were on small market, regional flights.



So....you appreciated them responding...when they apparently just blew you off but did in fact confirm that they did the list wrong. I have to say, nothing in this story makes much sense.


****************************************

I can understand your confusion, but basically the question is why were #2 - #18 skipped on this flight? The AA rep did not answer the question directly after first giving me a standard answer about ExPlat, etc. getting upgraded over Plat but I asked why there algorithm did not place ExPlats higher on the list. Again, didn't really answer the question but to say its complicated which is when he made his "at the gate" comment. I just wish they followed the algorithm 1, 2, 3, ... but they didn't on this flight. Look on this page, folks have had to call the help desk 4 times to check on an upgrade! and finally got it to clear. Is that because they were top on the list or because they were a squeaky wheel? I don't know, but it will be a long time before I get another upgrade.





Page 2 of upgrade list. #1 only from page one got selected.
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Old Jan 2, 19, 10:21 am
  #3  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: Denver, CO
Programs: AA EXP, IHG Spire Elite
Posts: 45
Originally Posted by Stripe View Post
SWU upgrades on either of those flights will be a challenge, especially the ORD route, which regularly sells out in business. Seeing many empty J seats over 100 days out is of no use in predicting upgrade success.

On the positive side, DFW-FCO will be running by then, which may relieve some of the overall demand pressure to FCO and improve your chances. That's a complete guess, however.

When I first made EXP about 9 years ago we not only got more SWUs (8) but they were frequently confirmable in advance. That is all a distant memory. Now we get 4 and often find them hard to use even on domestic flights.
Thanks for the reply. We had a flight from DEN-PHL-FCO that showed as SWU all the way there at booking, but I let it sit and came back this morning and now there's a pretty red X next to the PHL-FCO leg. Will keep looking daily as I know they'll pop up once in a while and we have some time. Looking for connections through ORD, DFW, CLT or PHL.
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Old Jan 2, 19, 1:44 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: Denver, CO
Programs: AA EXP, IHG Spire Elite
Posts: 45
Random but related question:

When looking for or periodically checking AA.com for long haul SWUs, what is the AA system's typical update / release schedule? What I mean is, rather than check the website for a particular flight from US to Rome (or other international city) only to find there still not an available SWU for those flights showing as available at booking, is there a time that any of you have seen they typically refresh and release, or are they completely random and checking a few times per day isn't a bad thing? If it's just once per 24 hours at a set time at night, then I'll just check each morning. If it's random and can be anytime (e.g., one of you has been on in the morning, observed no SWUs, then checked later and SWUs were showing on same flight), then I'll keep checking a few times per day.

Trying to get back that flight I lost due to spacing the hold deadline over the weekend - was available at booking, but then gone the next day.

Thanks!
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Old Jan 3, 19, 8:28 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: DFW
Programs: AA EXP, LT Gold
Posts: 2,868
Originally Posted by acoburn73 View Post
What I mean is, rather than check the website for a particular flight from US to Rome (or other international city) only to find there still not an available SWU for those flights showing as available at booking, is there a time that any of you have seen they typically refresh and release, or are they completely random and checking a few times per day isn't a bad thing? If it's just once per 24 hours at a set time at night, then I'll just check each morning. If it's random and can be anytime (e.g., one of you has been on in the morning, observed no SWUs, then checked later and SWUs were showing on same flight), then I'll keep checking a few times per day.
It's pretty random, until you get closer to the flight. Then, often it can happen at 7 days out, or many report the 36-hour mark as well.

In my experience, it's always entirely random... which is why I have a subscription to ExpertFlyer, so I am not checking it daily.
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Old Jan 3, 19, 8:37 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: Denver, CO
Programs: AA EXP, IHG Spire Elite
Posts: 45
Originally Posted by econometrics View Post
It's pretty random, until you get closer to the flight. Then, often it can happen at 7 days out, or many report the 36-hour mark as well.

In my experience, it's always entirely random... which is why I have a subscription to ExpertFlyer, so I am not checking it daily.
Yep, I have an ExpertFlyer subscription as well, so I'll probably just set up alerts for all of the AA metal flights from the USA to FCO (CLT, DFW, ORD, PHL) on the days we are interested in heading out.

Thanks!
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Old Jan 3, 19, 8:42 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: DFW
Programs: AA EXP, LT Gold
Posts: 2,868
Originally Posted by acoburn73 View Post
Yep, I have an ExpertFlyer subscription as well, so I'll probably just set up alerts for all of the AA metal flights from the USA to FCO (CLT, DFW, ORD, PHL) on the days we are interested in heading out.

Thanks!
It's a bit cumbersome, but that's basically what I do as well for my LHR flights.
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Old Jan 3, 19, 8:57 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: Denver, CO
Programs: AA EXP, IHG Spire Elite
Posts: 45
Originally Posted by econometrics View Post
It's a bit cumbersome, but that's basically what I do as well for my LHR flights.
Funny - one of the flights I'm interested in shows a C seat available on ExpertFlyer, but when I search AA.com for the same flight, no systemwide upgrade link shows. I thought it was because it won't show due to only one seat being open, and I'm booking for two people, so I tried a quick one-person round trip flight from DFW-FCO on that exact flight and still nothing, even though EF shows one available as an award/upgrade C seat.

EDIT: Just logged out of AA and back in and did a one PAX booking model for DFW-FCO on that day - it now shows as a business upgrade available systemwide seat. I have all of my EF alerts set to two seats, so it looks like it's accurate! If I had just bought those tickets on Monday for the PHL-FCO leg that showed C available for SWUs, I'd not be messing around with this! :-)
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Old Jan 6, 19, 2:59 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 3
Last Friday, Jan 4, I had a rare but pleasant experience on the route JFK-LHR. My girlfriend (AAdvantage Gold) and I (AAdvantage Platinum) were booked in Premium Economy. While we were at the Flagship Lounge waiting for our flight I opened our booking on the AA app and saw a upgrade offer to business class for $465 but didnt take it. Eventually, we got to the gate a bit early and we saw the standby list with our names on it.

My girlfriend (no. 1) and me (no. 2) were cleared on the standby list although we didn't request any upgrades. Refreshed mobile pass in the app and we really got upgraded to Business class for free!
Apparently, there was lots of available space in Business and a fully booked economy class.

My question know is why were we no. 1 and 2 on that list? Because we were booked in Premium Eco or because of my Platinum status? And why was she listed before my on that list?
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Old Jan 6, 19, 6:42 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: PHL (kinda, no airport is really close)
Programs: AA PPro. Enterprise Platinum woo-hoo!
Posts: 2,939
This thread seems overwhelmingly attuned toward overseas upgrades to J. Is there any information on domestic F upgrades?

I'm particularly interested in upgrade chances as a PP when flying LAS-PHL redeyes, LAX-PHL redeyes, and LAX-PHL afternoon flights.

I assume the chances of the first and last are very good and very bad. Not sure about the middle one.

These factor into my decision about how to book flights, as I fly this route about a dozen times a year. I sometimes book LAS-LAX-PHL for the extra EQM's, although honestly it's probably not worth the time unless i'm flying paid F and doubling the extra miles. But still would be very useful to know.
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Old Jan 6, 19, 8:59 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: DCA/IAD
Programs: AA/US - PlatinumPro; 1W Sapphire; HHonors - Silver; UA dirt
Posts: 5,368
Well, sitting down on my first week as a Plat Pro with three trips over the next 10 days: DCA-GSO, DCA-CLT and DCA-CVG. Of the five upgradeable segments so far, 4 have upgraded.
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Old Jan 6, 19, 9:38 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: Washington DC
Programs: American Airlines
Posts: 22
Originally Posted by IADCAflyer View Post
Well, sitting down on my first week as a Plat Pro with three trips over the next 10 days: DCA-GSO, DCA-CLT and DCA-CVG. Of the five upgradeable segments so far, 4 have upgraded.
My first week as PP as well, and at 72 hrs I cleared DCA-ORD and PHX-ONT. I did not clear ORD-PHX which I really wanted since itís on a 788. It wonít end up mattering anyways since unless the govt reopens tomorrow it will be canceled.
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Old Jan 7, 19, 2:17 am
  #13  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Dallas
Programs: AA ExPlat, Marriott Ambassador, Hilton Gold, Hertz PC
Posts: 109
First trips as ExPlat (~$23k EQD):

DFW-MSY - Cleared 100 hours
MSY-DFW - Cleared 100 hours
DFW-BNA - Cleared before boarding
BNA-ORD - Cleared at 48 hours
ORD-DFW - Cleared before boarding
DFW-LHR - Op-up in the middle of boarding (no SWU used )
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Last edited by adunker; Jan 7, 19 at 12:51 pm
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Old Jan 7, 19, 8:57 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Programs: US CP, IC Gold
Posts: 488
Experienced this issue twice in the last year; inventory being dumped into C without myself and my companions SWU upgrade being processed. Out of 4 flights, only one worked through the auto system (the other was done at booking on the phone).

Any ideas why or should I reach out to AA to figure out what the heck they're doing?
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Old Jan 7, 19, 11:02 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Programs: AA Exec Platinum
Posts: 38
On DFW-LHR, no SWU was requested?
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