"free" upgrade to first class.

Old Sep 21, 13, 6:41 am
  #1  
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"free" upgrade to first class.

I've just been on the phone to BA and after quite a lot of listening to recorded violins I managed to speak to someone to try and book LHR <> BOS in November. Out in J and back in F.

Turns out it is far cheaper to book non flexible fare out in J and a standard back in F than it is to book a class which allows us the first upgrade. I also arrived at a completely different price with the one way F/J combo on the website. Are these kind of discrepancies common?
Even with the 5 booking fee I would save.. Break down was as follows this is total for 2pax:

--Price via Website--
Outward and Return in J (non flex) : 3,157.70
Outward in J return in F : 5,295.70

--Price via Phone--
Outward in J return in F : 5,108.00 (free upgrade from J to F)
Outward in J return in F : 4417.85 (nothing free all booked into classes travelled)

Now, I assume that the very last option is actually the bes, as I've paid for an F fare I'll then get F tier points, which wouldn't be the case with the J fare + free upgrade.

This is bonkers?
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Old Sep 21, 13, 6:47 am
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Old Sep 21, 13, 6:49 am
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Originally Posted by Alan Smith View Post
Now, I assume that the very last option is actually the bes, as I've paid for an F fare I'll then get F tier points, which wouldn't be the case with the J fare + free upgrade.

This is bonkers?
No with the J-F upgrade you get the F miles and tier points, I believe.

It's bonkers if you aren't wanting a J flexible fare, but if you are wanting a J flexible fare then it's a good offer.
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Old Sep 21, 13, 7:18 am
  #4  
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Well yes. The utility of a fully flex ticket does have an associated value. I understand that.

That still doesn't explain the price difference for web vs phone for same condition fare and class? 5,295.70 vs 4,417.85
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Old Sep 21, 13, 8:28 am
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Originally Posted by Alan Smith View Post
This is bonkers?
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Old Sep 21, 13, 8:49 am
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There's an overlap of fares between the higher business buckets and the lowest first bucket.

You can in fact fly on a purchased F (A-bucket) fare for GBP 3,717 return in that period. Getting your "free" upgrade requires an outbound C, D, or J bucket fare.

A business discount fare is to be had for GBP 1,580 return (I-bucket) but for that there's no free F upgrade, although you might try looking for availability on ba.com to combine the business and first fares. For November 3rd-11th, out in J, back in F, I got GBP 2,648. Seems a deal.
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Old Sep 21, 13, 9:11 am
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I had something similar happen. I booked a return trip from LHR-IAH in F and on the outbound flight, a ticket in F (A fare, refundable but penalty for changes) was cheaper than the cheapest J fare available (refundable penalty fare). On the return, the website only seemed to offer me a cheap J fare that was non-refundable (not sure what bucket) or an expensive completely flexible fare with no penalties. BA has a fare sale going on through the 24th so maybe that has to do with paid F being cheaper than J??

I'm not complaining though because I'm usually stuck flying on UA due to work policy, but since F on BA was cheaper than J on UA, they let me take the BA flight and an added bonus is now I don't have to worry about cobbling together enough tier points to make silver with my leisure travel.
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