BF waitlist CANCELED more than 24hrs out

 
Old Feb 26, 08, 4:45 pm
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Angry BF waitlist CANCELED more than 24hrs out

The official policy on BF waitlist clearing is that they are cleared up until 24 hours prior to departure of your int'l flight. Turns out that is NOT the case; the waitlist can be canceled MORE THAN 24 hrs prior to departure. (How much more is the question.)

My situation: I am booked on CO 120 EWR-BCN, ("Barthelona") tomorrow. Departure is 710pm out of EWR. Today at 4pm EST, I checked my res online and saw I had been removed from waitlist. That's at least 3 hours before the waitlist should have expired.

So, I called the Elite res ctr to inquire; she told me that I had, indeed, been removed from the waitlist. She checked the BF cabin and found 1 seat left open, in a J-class fare. (So, as of 4pm EST, there was still a seat left, but I recognize that CO would hold that open until flight time so they could sell it.)

CO clearly thinks they will sell that J-fare, and they canceled the u/g waitlist prior to the 24hr mark because they knew they'd be keeping that seat open for sale.

So here's the question: how far in advance CAN the airline cancel the BF waitlist? 25 hrs? 28? 32? 37? What happens if, in this case, somebody cancels their trip at 6pm tonite and frees up a BF seat. I'm no longer on the waitlist, so i can't get it even though the policy says they'll waitlist me up to 24hrs prior to departure.
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Old Feb 26, 08, 5:18 pm
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Originally Posted by CALfly5 View Post
The official policy on BF waitlist clearing is that they are cleared up until 24 hours prior to departure of your int'l flight. Turns out that is NOT the case; the waitlist can be canceled MORE THAN 24 hrs prior to departure. (How much more is the question.)

My situation: I am booked on CO 120 EWR-BCN, ("Barthelona") tomorrow. Departure is 710pm out of EWR. Today at 4pm EST, I checked my res online and saw I had been removed from waitlist. That's at least 3 hours before the waitlist should have expired.

So, I called the Elite res ctr to inquire; she told me that I had, indeed, been removed from the waitlist. She checked the BF cabin and found 1 seat left open, in a J-class fare. (So, as of 4pm EST, there was still a seat left, but I recognize that CO would hold that open until flight time so they could sell it.)

CO clearly thinks they will sell that J-fare, and they canceled the u/g waitlist prior to the 24hr mark because they knew they'd be keeping that seat open for sale.

So here's the question: how far in advance CAN the airline cancel the BF waitlist? 25 hrs? 28? 32? 37? What happens if, in this case, somebody cancels their trip at 6pm tonite and frees up a BF seat. I'm no longer on the waitlist, so i can't get it even though the policy says they'll waitlist me up to 24hrs prior to departure.
That Stinks, the only thing I can think of is CO decided if they dont sell it they will use it for Crew Rest.

Heading out to TXL tommorrow also on the Exec Barbie Jet, when I looked at my res yesterday I saw CO unblocked 16 D-E-F which is designated crew rest if BF seats arent available. I grabbed 16/D although the flight is empty I find I get a better sleep if I sit up then from lying down over the 3 seats as Im 6'2". I take it my flight had BF seats still open and the crew rest were shifted up there or to a few rows in the back as the whole back is wide open.
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Old Feb 26, 08, 6:14 pm
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Originally Posted by craz View Post
That Stinks, the only thing I can think of is CO decided if they dont sell it they will use it for Crew Rest.
Can't be that. The fligth is blocked at 7:50 and anything under 8 hours won't have any seats held for crew rest.
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Old Feb 26, 08, 6:45 pm
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Originally Posted by CALfly5 View Post
What happens if, in this case, somebody cancels their trip at 6pm tonite and frees up a BF seat. I'm no longer on the waitlist, so i can't get it even though the policy says they'll waitlist me up to 24hrs prior to departure.
Call back and see if you can goad the agent into sighting "weather" as the reason CO decided to unilaterally go against what's published and the industry norm.

But seriously - I don't know who'll get the seat...maybe an employee. Either way the new BF policy can't get here soon enough.
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Old Feb 26, 08, 7:10 pm
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Originally Posted by J.Edward View Post
But seriously - I don't know who'll get the seat...maybe an employee. Either way the new BF policy can't get here soon enough.
I keep asking employees in the res ctr about the new BF gate upgrade issue, and I or Mrs. CAL probably calls every 2 weeks or so about various reservations, and NONE of the reps has heard Thing One about the "new BF Gate Upgrade policy". Not ONE in over 10 reps we've spoken to in the last month or so. (I realize there are hundreds of reps, and that CO won't tell them about it until its released, but if the program is actually underway and has any steam behind it, the grapevine is a very efficient info disseminator...)

I heard it myself at the DO in Houston last September, but here it is end of Feb -- almost a half-year later -- and we still don't have a gate upgrade policy. Nobody in res has heard of it, and no one at the gates have either. I wonder if CO is backing off on this now. Clearly if they go against their own policies and delete watilists more than 24hrs prior to departure, they aren't all that eager to accommodate people who wish to upgrade internationally using miles.
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Old Feb 26, 08, 8:55 pm
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New policies are usually out two weeks or more before the official start time. I have not seen anything about this yet.
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Old Feb 26, 08, 9:00 pm
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(i know people might flame away but...) why does it matter when continental (CO) eliminates the businessfirst (BF) waitlist? if they know that there aren't going to be upgrade seats available, i would actually prefer that they obliterate the list as early as possible. why should one have their hopes up -- unneccesarily -- if CO knows it isn't going to release the seat.

people complain when airlines aren't forthcoming about delays (i.e., they know an incoming aircraft is going to be late but not letting people know about it). isn't this the same thing? as soon as CO knows it isn't going to release the seat, it should let people know.
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Old Feb 26, 08, 9:58 pm
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Well, like the OP suggested, if there were a few cancellations prior to the 24 hour mark, then there is a very good possibility that the upgrade would clear just before the 24 hour mark. There has been a lot of anecdotal evidence, as well as commentary from CO Insider to suggest that CO will often release all but one or two seats for upgrade/award at the 24 mark. So a flight that was J1 at T-28 could easily go J3 at T-25, and if the upgrade waitlist were still in effect, there's a good chance the upgrade could clear.
CO would have no way of knowing for sure that the 15 other J pax were 100% locked and loaded, other than to look at historical patterns. So it still doesn't make sense why they would cancel the waitlist.

I agree that in many instances it wouldn't have made a difference, but given the possibility that it could have, CO probably should have kept the list.
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Old Feb 26, 08, 10:09 pm
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Originally Posted by ijgordon View Post
Well, like the OP suggested, if there were a few cancellations prior to the 24 hour mark, then there is a very good possibility that the upgrade would clear just before the 24 hour mark. There has been a lot of anecdotal evidence, as well as commentary from CO Insider to suggest that CO will often release all but one or two seats for upgrade/award at the 24 mark. So a flight that was J1 at T-28 could easily go J3 at T-25, and if the upgrade waitlist were still in effect, there's a good chance the upgrade could clear.
CO would have no way of knowing for sure that the 15 other J pax were 100% locked and loaded, other than to look at historical patterns. So it still doesn't make sense why they would cancel the waitlist.

I agree that in many instances it wouldn't have made a difference, but given the possibility that it could have, CO probably should have kept the list.
I agree with this but maybe CO didnt kill the whole list. Say at T-28 they saw there was 1 seat left and 11 people still on the list so they decided no way will they have 11 no-shows or cancelations , so CO deletes everyone on the list from #3 or #4 onwards as they know no way are they gonna clear. So the list is still there and yet those who werent near the top are wiped off it.

Yet there are times Im way off the top and yet I got the Battlefield, either misconnects or others before me turned it down not wanting to leave whom ever it was they were traveling with alone back in Coach, and of cause no-shows even thou they might have done OLCI
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Old Feb 27, 08, 8:12 am
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Originally Posted by ijgordon View Post
CO would have no way of knowing for sure that the 15 other J pax were 100% locked and loaded, other than to look at historical patterns. So it still doesn't make sense why they would cancel the waitlist.
this is precisely why it does make sense to cancel the waitlist. continental (CO) has an ungodly amount of data that it uses to make these decisions. if, after statistical analysis, CO believes that the passenger definitely won't be upgraded or has an extremely small chance of being upgraded, i am all for cancelling the waitlist, even if it is an extra hour, day, week...ahead of time.
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Old Feb 27, 08, 8:14 am
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Originally Posted by craz View Post
Yet there are times Im way off the top and yet I got the Battlefield, either misconnects or others before me turned it down not wanting to leave whom ever it was they were traveling with alone back in Coach, and of cause no-shows even thou they might have done OLCI
different animal here. misconnects won't impact businessfirst (BF) upgrades since the list is cancelled way before someone has the opportunity to misconnect. that is why a new BF waitlist policy (that was mentioned at the DO) would be nice so that it would allow gate standbys (and, accordingly, utilize misconnect seats).
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Old Feb 27, 08, 9:31 am
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Originally Posted by CALfly5 View Post
The official policy on BF waitlist clearing is that they are cleared up until 24 hours prior to departure of your int'l flight. Turns out that is NOT the case; the waitlist can be canceled MORE THAN 24 hrs prior to departure. (How much more is the question.)

My situation: I am booked on CO 120 EWR-BCN, ("Barthelona") tomorrow. Departure is 710pm out of EWR. Today at 4pm EST, I checked my res online and saw I had been removed from waitlist. That's at least 3 hours before the waitlist should have expired.

So, I called the Elite res ctr to inquire; she told me that I had, indeed, been removed from the waitlist. She checked the BF cabin and found 1 seat left open, in a J-class fare. (So, as of 4pm EST, there was still a seat left, but I recognize that CO would hold that open until flight time so they could sell it.)

CO clearly thinks they will sell that J-fare, and they canceled the u/g waitlist prior to the 24hr mark because they knew they'd be keeping that seat open for sale.

So here's the question: how far in advance CAN the airline cancel the BF waitlist? 25 hrs? 28? 32? 37? What happens if, in this case, somebody cancels their trip at 6pm tonite and frees up a BF seat. I'm no longer on the waitlist, so i can't get it even though the policy says they'll waitlist me up to 24hrs prior to departure.
Hi CALfly5, our courtesy waitlist program worked exactly as designed. The way it currently works, your courtesy waitlists will be kept until 24 hours before the first flight in your itinerary (which isn't necessarily the flight you've waitlisted). In your case, the first flight in your itinerary was from Washington (DCA) to New York/Newark (EWR), so your waitlist was expired 24 hours before the scheduled departure of that flight. While this process is clearly imperfect, you can at least check in online right at 24 hours (currently, check-in won't work if one of your flights is waitlisted).

Originally Posted by CALfly5 View Post
I keep asking employees in the res ctr about the new BF gate upgrade issue, and I or Mrs. CAL probably calls every 2 weeks or so about various reservations, and NONE of the reps has heard Thing One about the "new BF Gate Upgrade policy". Not ONE in over 10 reps we've spoken to in the last month or so. (I realize there are hundreds of reps, and that CO won't tell them about it until its released, but if the program is actually underway and has any steam behind it, the grapevine is a very efficient info disseminator...)

I heard it myself at the DO in Houston last September, but here it is end of Feb -- almost a half-year later -- and we still don't have a gate upgrade policy. Nobody in res has heard of it, and no one at the gates have either. I wonder if CO is backing off on this now. Clearly if they go against their own policies and delete watilists more than 24hrs prior to departure, they aren't all that eager to accommodate people who wish to upgrade internationally using miles.
So that's you spreading all the rumors! Seriously, the reason many of us haven't heard about this yet is because it hasn't been introduced. The ability for waitlists to automatically transition to the airport upgrade list is a significant technology project. We're still committed to it, and expect to formally introduce it later this year. Until then, however, our current processes and policies will stay in effect.
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Old Feb 27, 08, 1:34 pm
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Originally Posted by CO Insider View Post
Hi CALfly5, our courtesy waitlist program worked exactly as designed. The way it currently works, your courtesy waitlists will be kept until 24 hours before the first flight in your itinerary (which isn't necessarily the flight you've waitlisted). In your case, the first flight in your itinerary was from Washington (DCA) to New York/Newark (EWR), so your waitlist was expired 24 hours before the scheduled departure of that flight. While this process is clearly imperfect, you can at least check in online right at 24 hours (currently, check-in won't work if one of your flights is waitlisted).

So that's you spreading all the rumors! Seriously, the reason many of us haven't heard about this yet is because it hasn't been introduced. The ability for waitlists to automatically transition to the airport upgrade list is a significant technology project. We're still committed to it, and expect to formally introduce it later this year. Until then, however, our current processes and policies will stay in effect.
thanks Scott for letting us know all is still 100%, didnt know that its canceled based on ones 1st flight even if its a flight connecting to the Intl flight.
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Old Feb 27, 08, 5:25 pm
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Originally Posted by CO Insider View Post
Hi CALfly5, our courtesy waitlist program worked exactly as designed. The way it currently works, your courtesy waitlists will be kept until 24 hours before the first flight in your itinerary (which isn't necessarily the flight you've waitlisted). In your case, the first flight in your itinerary was from Washington (DCA) to New York/Newark (EWR), so your waitlist was expired 24 hours before the scheduled departure of that flight.
Thanks Scott; that is something I didn't know - that the waitlist expires at the 24hr mark of your first flight.

So that's you spreading all the rumors! Seriously, the reason many of us haven't heard about this yet is because it hasn't been introduced. The ability for waitlists to automatically transition to the airport upgrade list is a significant technology project. We're still committed to it, and expect to formally introduce it later this year. Until then, however, our current processes and policies will stay in effect.
I doubt I have the kind of clout to start that rumor. There are much bigger fish than I who people listen to. Anyway, I hope I don't get "tagged" as a pain-in-the-a** on future PNRs. I hope that type of tagging would also be a 'significant technology project'.

Thanks for the clarifications and updates.
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Old Feb 27, 08, 11:07 pm
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Originally Posted by craz View Post
thanks Scott for letting us know all is still 100%, didnt know that its canceled based on ones 1st flight even if its a flight connecting to the Intl flight.
That actually sounds like bad news to me. Considering how many upgrades/rewards likely clear shortly before T-24 for the international flight in question (I've seen it happen several times), connecting passengers could be at a huge disadvantage.
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