Stealth upgrade for VIPs?

 
Old May 5, 09, 12:24 pm
  #1  
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Stealth upgrade for VIPs?

I was on a IAH-DCA flight this morning and there was a US Senator on board. He was seated up front, and I ended up one row in front of his staffer in the back. I joked with her about how only the senator got to sit up front and she remarked that he had been upgraded, but that there hadn't been room for her. Curious, I checked the PDA site and the Senator's name and set number were not listed under the people who had been upgraded. I'm just curious if there is an official VIP upgrade policy, or if this is something done under the table. I'm not complaining, just curious.

On another note, after pushing back from the gate, despite there being about 30 planes waiting, we went straight to the runway and took off. I guess there are some advantages to having a VIP on board.
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Old May 5, 09, 12:29 pm
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Is it possible the senator was paid first, and therefore didn't show up on the upgrade list?
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Old May 5, 09, 12:29 pm
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Most Senators are heavy Elites. CO's policy changes from time to time depending on the political needs of CO. Once upon a time we were told to never, ever upgrade for free any politician. His aide probably couldn't get upgrade on his status due to a full F cabin.
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Old May 5, 09, 12:32 pm
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Originally Posted by sfogate View Post
never, ever upgrade for free any politician.
Yes, that would run afoul of a issues that would put the EO and CO in a potentially bad spot.
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Old May 5, 09, 12:41 pm
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Last summer I flew IAH-DCA Ron Paul got upgraded into the seat next to mine. I presume he is a fflyer but I saw him get upgraded at the podium before boarding at IAH.

I'll presume you saw John Cornyn, the junior senator from Texas?

Ciao,
FH
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Old May 5, 09, 1:16 pm
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Originally Posted by FlyingHoustonian View Post
I'll presume you saw John Cornyn, the junior senator from Texas?
It wasn't Cornyn. I'm pretty sure this person doesn't have status on CO as most of their 2008 flying was not commercial (that's a big hint as to who it was). Also, their aide said that they were "upgraded", which implies (at least to me) that it wasn't a paid F ticket.
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Old May 5, 09, 1:18 pm
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Originally Posted by FlyingHoustonian View Post
Last summer I flew IAH-DCA Ron Paul got upgraded into the seat next to mine. I presume he is a fflyer but I saw him get upgraded at the podium before boarding at IAH.

I'll presume you saw John Cornyn, the junior senator from Texas?

Ciao,
FH
Ron Paul flies CO regularly, he is an elite with them. I have see him in the IAH Terminal A PC a few times when he was taking a NW flight.
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Old May 5, 09, 1:18 pm
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The only time I rode beside a senator on CO, we were both in Y.
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Old May 5, 09, 1:24 pm
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Originally Posted by octopic View Post
It wasn't Cornyn. I'm pretty sure this person doesn't have status on CO as most of their 2008 flying was not commercial (that's a big hint as to who it was). Also, their aide said that they were "upgraded", which implies (at least to me) that it wasn't a paid F ticket.
I heard the FAs on my IAH-CLE flight this morning talking about him. You are correct, I would bet he didn't do ANY commercial flying in the first 10 months of last year.
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Old May 5, 09, 1:40 pm
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Is this senator from Arizona?
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Old May 5, 09, 1:53 pm
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Why are we playing "Guess the Senator"? Is their identity protected or something?
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Old May 5, 09, 1:54 pm
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Originally Posted by Hartmann View Post
Why are we playing "Guess the Senator"? Is their identity protected or something?
natural secretion. I mean....national secret? wayoverused.
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Old May 5, 09, 1:55 pm
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I've flown with LH Senators and there was no special treatment Maybe when CO joins *A there will be.
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Old May 5, 09, 2:00 pm
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ALL OF YOU HAVE NO CLUE. Special phone numbers, special customer service agents, special service all arround, that go far beyond upgrades. Without attacking anyone I can not tell you disapointed I am that all of you know so little about Special Services. TWA was the master and the best but they are gone.

Last edited by Centurion; May 5, 09 at 2:27 pm
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Old May 5, 09, 2:33 pm
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Originally Posted by Centurion View Post
ALL OF YOU HAVE NO CLUE. Special phone numbers, special customer service agents, special service all arround, that go far beyond upgrades. Without attacking anyone I can not tell you disapointed I am that all of you know so little about Special Services. TWA was the master and the best but they are gone.
ANA is the master of that now. Station manager meets you at the jetway, escorts to and from everywhere, special tags, international upgrades, the works.

Of course, all the special phone numbers in the world didn't help Ted Kennedy when he ended up on the TSA watch list by accident.
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