Upgrade Pricing (ridiculous)

Old Mar 14, 20, 1:35 am
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: PHL (kinda, no airport is really close)
Programs: AA Exp (2020 is first and last year). Enterprise Platinum woo-hoo!
Posts: 3,537
Upgrade Pricing (ridiculous)

I am flying - well, booked anyway - PHL-LAS-PHL, Flight 1837 on 4/12 and Flight 832 on 4/17. I'm not sure what I paid, around $400-500, normalish fare at the time I booked it. I think I got a small discount through American Express.

When I look at the trip I get a message that says "Move to First for $944."

However, if I go to book the trip brand new, the first class fare is - $959.

Wow, what a deal!

F fare would have been about $1175 a month ago.

While I'm on the subject - with the current waiver, if I've booked a trip and the price has come down, can I cancel and rebook at the lower fare and still have the residual available? The no-fee change is a one-time offer, right? I have a later trip that I could rebook for $200 less than I paid, but it's for a business meeting and I'll want to wait and make sure we don't change it. The meeting has to take place, the time can't really change, but it's conceivable (although cumbersome) to have the group work remotely.
redtop43 is offline  
Old Mar 14, 20, 3:23 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Programs: AA EXP, 2MM lifetime Platinum, Expedia +gold +++
Posts: 1,413
Originally Posted by redtop43 View Post
I am flying - well, booked anyway - PHL-LAS-PHL, Flight 1837 on 4/12 and Flight 832 on 4/17. I'm not sure what I paid, around $400-500, normalish fare at the time I booked it. I think I got a small discount through American Express.

When I look at the trip I get a message that says "Move to First for $944."

However, if I go to book the trip brand new, the first class fare is - $959.

Wow, what a deal!

F fare would have been about $1175 a month ago.

While I'm on the subject - with the current waiver, if I've booked a trip and the price has come down, can I cancel and rebook at the lower fare and still have the residual available? The no-fee change is a one-time offer, right? I have a later trip that I could rebook for $200 less than I paid, but it's for a business meeting and I'll want to wait and make sure we don't change it. The meeting has to take place, the time can't really change, but it's conceivable (although cumbersome) to have the group work remotely.
li upgrade my fares every month. Lately, the website and app always offer me the upgrade but apparently it is a flexible fare, sometimes the offer is just for one way of the trip so it's actually closer to twice what is tells you when you try to go through with the offer. When I call I always get discounted fares that are always much less than the offer. Call in and see what they offer if you are interested, ask for the lowest F/J option.
FAA1996 is offline  
Old Mar 14, 20, 10:53 am
  #3  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: PHX/SFO
Programs: AA EXP; AS 75K; WN A List; UA 1K 1MM; Hyatt Globalist; Marriott AMB; Hilton Diamond (Aspire)
Posts: 46,477
From an elite upgrade perspective, the fact that AA does not offer discounted buy-ups to F is a very good thing. If you want the opportunity to buy cheap upgrades, suggest moving your flying to UA. They are happy to sell F seats out from under waitlisted 1Ks at a substantial discount.
Kacee is offline  
Old Mar 14, 20, 1:13 pm
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: PHL (kinda, no airport is really close)
Programs: AA Exp (2020 is first and last year). Enterprise Platinum woo-hoo!
Posts: 3,537
My point was that the price to upgrade was only $15 less than the price of a brand new ticket. My understanding is that you can upfare for the difference between the price you paid and the current F fare. The upgrade price on the app is around twice that. You should get more than a $15 discount for already having bought a $400 ticket.
redtop43 is offline  
Old Mar 14, 20, 2:02 pm
  #5  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: PHX/SFO
Programs: AA EXP; AS 75K; WN A List; UA 1K 1MM; Hyatt Globalist; Marriott AMB; Hilton Diamond (Aspire)
Posts: 46,477
Originally Posted by redtop43 View Post
My point was that the price to upgrade was only $15 less than the price of a brand new ticket. My understanding is that you can upfare for the difference between the price you paid and the current F fare. The upgrade price on the app is around twice that. You should get more than a $15 discount for already having bought a $400 ticket.
If the point was that AA's customer-facing IT sucks, yes I agree wholeheartedly
Kacee is offline  
Old Mar 14, 20, 2:12 pm
  #6  
PHL
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: PHL, NYC
Programs: AA PLT, DL SLV, UA SLV, MR LTT, HH DIA
Posts: 8,613
Originally Posted by redtop43 View Post
My point was that the price to upgrade was only $15 less than the price of a brand new ticket. My understanding is that you can upfare for the difference between the price you paid and the current F fare. The upgrade price on the app is around twice that. You should get more than a $15 discount for already having bought a $400 ticket.
I've posted about this a few times. Example: I buy a coach trip for $400. The same discounted F trip would be something like $850 during the same booking process. After getting ticketed on $400 coach ticket, I get an offer to upgrade my $400 roundtrip for $1200.

Other times, I may get an offer to upgrade my $400 trip $150 for 1st leg and $300 for 2nd leg, which is equal pricing as was showing at time of booking for $850 First class.

OTHER times, I accept the $150 upgrade for the 1st leg, leave the 2nd leg alone. And then the app asks me if I want to upgrade that leg for $900.

Now, some might say that the high offers like $1200 additional for First roundtrip, or $900 for the 2nd leg are because only flexible seats remain at that point in time. However, I've gone to the booking engine as a new ticket and the First pricing was still $850. And, Expertflyer still had ample seats left in all buckets for first class (J, C, D, I, etc.).
PHL is offline  
Old Mar 14, 20, 2:21 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Programs: AA EXP, 2MM lifetime Platinum, Expedia +gold +++
Posts: 1,413
Originally Posted by PHL View Post
I've posted about this a few times. Example: I buy a coach trip for $400. The same discounted F trip would be something like $850 during the same booking process. After getting ticketed on $400 coach ticket, I get an offer to upgrade my $400 roundtrip for $1200.

Other times, I may get an offer to upgrade my $400 trip $150 for 1st leg and $300 for 2nd leg, which is equal pricing as was showing at time of booking for $850 First class.

OTHER times, I accept the $150 upgrade for the 1st leg, leave the 2nd leg alone. And then the app asks me if I want to upgrade that leg for $900.

Now, some might say that the high offers like $1200 additional for First roundtrip, or $900 for the 2nd leg are because only flexible seats remain at that point in time. However, I've gone to the booking engine as a new ticket and the First pricing was still $850. And, Expertflyer still had ample seats left in all buckets for first class (J, C, D, I, etc.).
This is an IT issue, if you call you can pay the difference between what you paid and he current lowest F fare.
Kacee and ijgordon like this.
FAA1996 is offline  
Old Mar 14, 20, 10:58 pm
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: PHL (kinda, no airport is really close)
Programs: AA Exp (2020 is first and last year). Enterprise Platinum woo-hoo!
Posts: 3,537
In practice, what I may end up doing - assuming I decide to fly - is to cancel my original flight, rebook it at what is almost surely a lower Y fare, and likely get upgraded anyway.

Both legs are B763's with 28 F seats. A few weeks ago F on the outbound was about half full, and on the return there was only one open seat and if I went to price the flight, under F it said one ticket left. I know seat maps are imprecise and "one left" could mean "one left at this price." Anyway, when I looked yesterday it was up to 6 open F seats.
redtop43 is offline  
Old Mar 15, 20, 6:46 am
  #9  
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 160
As others have said, if you call in they should let you upfare your trip to First for the difference between what you paid originally and the current $959 fare for those flights in First.

I too have seen offers to upgrade to First for stupid high amounts, more than the cost of buying a First Class ticket at that time.
BobOscar is offline  
Old Mar 15, 20, 9:56 am
  #10  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: PHX/SFO
Programs: AA EXP; AS 75K; WN A List; UA 1K 1MM; Hyatt Globalist; Marriott AMB; Hilton Diamond (Aspire)
Posts: 46,477
Originally Posted by redtop43 View Post
Both legs are B763's with 28 F seats. A few weeks ago F on the outbound was about half full, and on the return there was only one open seat and if I went to price the flight, under F it said one ticket left. I know seat maps are imprecise and "one left" could mean "one left at this price." Anyway, when I looked yesterday it was up to 6 open F seats.
In general, loads are going down, not up, as pax cancel their travel.

Watch out for a downgauge.
Kacee is offline  
Old Mar 15, 20, 10:06 am
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: SoCal to the rest of the world...
Programs: AA EXP with lots of BA and CX. UA 2MM Lifetime Plat - No hotel loyalty anymore
Posts: 6,363
Nothing to see here - I get the same with BA's upgrade post ticketing. The best bet is to catch these on AA BEFORE 24 hours have elapsed after ticketing and call in and have them refare a new ticket. I've done this even with CORPORATE agency issued tickets. and paid the diff separate from my company.
NickP 1K is offline  
Old Mar 15, 20, 10:20 am
  #12  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: PHX/SFO
Programs: AA EXP; AS 75K; WN A List; UA 1K 1MM; Hyatt Globalist; Marriott AMB; Hilton Diamond (Aspire)
Posts: 46,477
Originally Posted by NickP 1K View Post
Nothing to see here - I get the same with BA's upgrade post ticketing. The best bet is to catch these on AA BEFORE 24 hours have elapsed after ticketing and call in and have them refare a new ticket. I've done this even with CORPORATE agency issued tickets. and paid the diff separate from my company.
You don't need to call within 24 hours. AA's policy is not to charge a change fee for upfare to a higher cabin. (And of course now, everything is subject to change fee waiver regardless).
FAA1996 likes this.
Kacee is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: