How Easy are Upgrade Coupons to Use?

Old May 10, 17, 11:14 am
  #1  
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How Easy are Upgrade Coupons to Use?

Just applied for the AGR MasterCard the other day and the upgrade & companion coupons were added to my account. I have an Acela business class ticket from Providence to Philly booked on a Sunday in September (after Labor Day). I tried to apply the upgrade but was told I could only do so 12 hours before departure. This seems like an attempt to make these upgrades hard to use, as it is dependent on an upgraded seat being available last minute.

Does anyone have experience with using these upgrade coupons, and are they hard to use in practice?
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Old May 10, 17, 11:42 am
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I've never had a problem getting them to clear, even when I've called in only a few hours before departure. I could see that changing if I traveled at a peak time, like a NYP departure from 4 to 6 p.m. - but those trains cost so much that I always book one earlier or later.
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Old May 10, 17, 1:05 pm
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They are very easy to use on Acela. Even on super busy trains that show no First availability days or hours before departure, there are frequently last minute cancellations. Just a few weeks ago, I kept refreshing the app to see availability of First Class for purchase, and about five minutes before departure, it opened up. Immediately called Amtrak and secured the upgrade.
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Old May 11, 17, 4:29 pm
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Originally Posted by MASTERNC View Post
Does anyone have experience with using these upgrade coupons, and are they hard to use in practice?
Have used them for years, no problem.
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Old May 12, 17, 8:44 am
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Good move booking the Acela, the upgrade to Business Class on the regional are pretty much pointless, worth the $2 soda you get in the cafe car.
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Old May 16, 17, 7:21 am
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I've missed one, back when I was Select and riding the Carolinian on a Sunday from Washington DC to Cary there was no space by the time I was able to use my coupon. Otherwise I've been able to apply them to NERs pretty easily from 2013-2016 when I had Amtrak status.
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Old May 28, 17, 6:05 pm
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and If you are not select plus and no status , will regular customer service be able to help?
Hold times can be very long.
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Old May 29, 17, 8:31 am
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Originally Posted by writetorich View Post
and If you are not select plus and no status , will regular customer service be able to help?
Hold times can be very long.
You'd call the AGR line either way, and I haven't seen its hold times get as bad as the main Amtrak line. You should also be able to have any ticket agent in a station handle the upgrade.
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Old Jun 12, 17, 12:38 pm
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I got an agent at WAS to process my Acela upgrade about an hour before departure... it took a few minutes but was quite easy.
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