Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Airlines and Mileage Programs > British Airways | Executive Club
Reload this Page >

Grrrr ... I'm angry (just lost upgrade due to slow BA)

Grrrr ... I'm angry (just lost upgrade due to slow BA)

Old Feb 26, 15, 4:35 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Programs: EL AL Matmid, BA Executive Club GGL/CCR, Hilton Diamond, Avis President's Club
Posts: 1,782
Grrrr ... I'm angry (just lost upgrade due to slow BA)

I had a reservation made for October in business class (with 'domestic First' for the internal flights in the USA):

TLV-LHR-JFK-CLT-LAX-CLT-JFK-LHR-TLV

Last week, I noticed that there was reward availability in First from LHR-BOS at approximately the same time as I was meant to fly to JFK (in fact, it was 45 mins later, which was even better for me).

Before booking the upgrade to First, though, I needed to change the itinerary.

Off I went to the phone and contacted BAEC. No problem in changing the LHR-JFK-CLT-LAX to LHR-BOS-PHX-LAX and I had done my homework on the Matrix so I knew it would work on exactly the same fare basis as before. But... "we will need to send it to 'back office' to calculate the fare. That could take up to 2 days".

Based on past experience I was sure that it would take less time. The last time they told me something could take up to two days they phoned me back 10 minutes later!

Yesterday (after one day) I phoned to check. Still in 'back office'. So I told the guy that I was worried that the two reward seats showing as being available in First may disappear by then and then the whole exercise will have proved pointless. "Don't worry, you'll soon hear from us" I was told.

Well, this evening, guess what? Those two seats did indeed disappear!

Of course, there was "nothing we can do, sir" ...

If I would have known at the time that it would take so long I would have just cancelled the booking and rebooked the new one immediately, which would have gone through pretty quickly but would have cost me an extra $125 (the change fee on my booking is $75 and the cancellation fee is $200).

Now, apart from letting off steam, what is the point of all this?

What I would like to know is, is there any possibility in such situations to get BA to reserve the upgrade (even charge the Avios) before they have completed their fare calculations? Is there any 'magic formula' I need to recite to the person at the other end of the phone line to achieve this? I have already managed to get complex itineraries via the Matrix fed into their system by following the rules carefully, but this seems a step too far!
mikebg is offline  
Old Feb 26, 15, 6:20 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: YYZ/YTZ/YUL
Programs: BA Gold, TK Elite
Posts: 1,467
As far as I know the answer is 'no'.

No doubt more experienced FTers will chime in shortly, but I have never heard of any possibility of 'reserving' award space for any reason.
TravellingSalesman is offline  
Old Feb 27, 15, 2:40 am
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Programs: BA silver
Posts: 432
I once had a booking where award upgrades to CW opened up on the return leg but on a different date. I rang to ask to change my return date so I could upgrade and was told yes I could but they would have to calculate any price difference and the back office would do this. They booked the extra flight so I did not lose the award upgrades and until it was sorted out, it showed up as both return flights in MMB
sarahuk is offline  
Old Feb 27, 15, 4:11 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 1,520
We wouldnt usually hold the avios seats because the system we have only allows you to hold the availability for One flight in one booking class.

You see it means that if you didnt want to go ahead we would have lost the orginal fare and would potentially cost ba to put that right.

However what i would expect and what i would do in this situation is call up the fares department and explain that there is limited availability and if they can do the quote over the phone. This is something they will allow particularly if its Uua.

Its usually only send down to fares if the flights are more than a few days away and you are looking to change to flights on a different day where we can then hold the availability.


***** all opinions are my own and dont represent ba or iag***
Anonba is offline  
Old Feb 27, 15, 4:19 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 12
i purchased two tickets and upgraded to CW for my future parent in laws.but a family member fell ill and they had to change dates. one day has reward seats in CW. but I wasn;t sure will i do a cash upgrade so both legs can be CW or just do one avios flight so one leg would be PE and the return is CW.

While they were checking the cost to upgrade by cash. They held the seats for me. It took them almost a week to get back to me, but they assured me that once the seats were held until they got back to me they wont be given to other people. And that was true!

my only problem was that it takes AAGGES to get to an agent on the phoneline to get them to save the seats for me!
bluefirefly is offline  
Old Feb 27, 15, 6:25 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: UK
Programs: BA GGL (but soon to lose the GL :-(), IHG Spire Amb, Hilton Dmnd (and pleb/pleb-plus in 1001 others)
Posts: 771
Originally Posted by mikebg View Post
"we will need to send it to 'back office' to calculate the fare. That could take up to 2 days"
Originally Posted by mikebg View Post
If I would have known at the time that it would take so long ...
? ?
flibbly is offline  
Old Feb 27, 15, 6:28 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Ipswich
Posts: 7,389
Originally Posted by flibbly View Post
? ?
Why the confusion? "could" isn't the same as "would".

OP explains it well enough - the previous time it took 10 minutes. Companies often quote a maximum and deliver well within that timeframe.
windowontheAside is online now  
Old Feb 27, 15, 6:30 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: London, UK
Posts: 4,653
Originally Posted by Anonba View Post
We wouldnt usually hold the avios seats because the system we have only allows you to hold the availability for One flight in one booking class.

You see it means that if you didnt want to go ahead we would have lost the orginal fare and would potentially cost ba to put that right.

However what i would expect and what i would do in this situation is call up the fares department and explain that there is limited availability and if they can do the quote over the phone. This is something they will allow particularly if its Uua.

Its usually only send down to fares if the flights are more than a few days away and you are looking to change to flights on a different day where we can then hold the availability.


***** all opinions are my own and dont represent ba or iag***
Normally most BA agents that I've spoken to will simply grab the availability and put it in it's own PNR, so exactly this situation doesn't arise.

Then, once the back office has done their stuff, they're able to somehow merge the PNRs are re-ticket.

GGL have done this multiple times and always been very helpful about it.
Dave_C is offline  
Old Feb 28, 15, 4:35 pm
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Programs: EL AL Matmid, BA Executive Club GGL/CCR, Hilton Diamond, Avis President's Club
Posts: 1,782
Originally Posted by Anonba View Post
However what i would expect and what i would do in this situation is call up the fares department and explain that there is limited availability and if they can do the quote over the phone. This is something they will allow particularly if its Uua.
How do I get through to the fares department?
mikebg is offline  
Old Feb 28, 15, 4:37 pm
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Programs: EL AL Matmid, BA Executive Club GGL/CCR, Hilton Diamond, Avis President's Club
Posts: 1,782
Originally Posted by Dave_C View Post
GGL have done this multiple times and always been very helpful about it.
Maybe, but I am still a humble silver (although soon to be at least gold).
mikebg is offline  
Old Feb 28, 15, 5:04 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Yorkshire
Programs: BA Bronze, HHonors Gold, VS Red.
Posts: 1,236
Originally Posted by mikebg View Post
How do I get through to the fares department?
Anonba is referring to what they would do as an Agent. The Fares Team very rarely speak to Customers directly.
BLHD is offline  
Old Feb 28, 15, 5:09 pm
  #12  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: London
Programs: Mucci. Nothing else matters.
Posts: 36,048
Originally Posted by mikebg View Post
How do I get through to the fares department?
I don't think a customer can. You have to ask the agent to do it.

A lovely agent did exactly that for me the other evening, and got a really helpful change authorised.
Globaliser is offline  
Old Mar 1, 15, 5:16 am
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Programs: EL AL Matmid, BA Executive Club GGL/CCR, Hilton Diamond, Avis President's Club
Posts: 1,782
Originally Posted by Globaliser View Post
I don't think a customer can. You have to ask the agent to do it.

A lovely agent did exactly that for me the other evening, and got a really helpful change authorised.
Thanks for the tip. I shall remember to ask for that next time I have such a situation.
mikebg is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread