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TATL Upgrades using Skymiles and SWUs on Air France/KLM

TATL Upgrades using Skymiles and SWUs on Air France/KLM

Old Aug 2, 12, 2:24 pm
  #721  
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Originally Posted by DeltaUnitedContest View Post
Just want to echo the above request -- if anyone is up for it, I know it would be so greatly appreciated. For example, you can search for a W fare on DL.com, but not an O. I assume the only way to find O is to call DL? Sounds like if one uses EF, you can see inventory yourself as well?
O is AF/KL Classic Award availability and also the fare bucket for upgrades (like Z for DL).

Expert Flyer or Flying Blue (register for an account, you can still search) can be used to search for O availability.
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Old Aug 2, 12, 3:01 pm
  #722  
 
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Originally Posted by jimgraffam View Post
This thread is aching for a definitive how-to guide that starts with eligibility criteria, how to search for, how to request, and how to ensure the upgrade stuck.

I'd consider doing it myself except my last two trips have had to go through the pains of having my original leg and seat reinstated after the upgrade was either processed incorrectly or not reticketed (despite my asking them multiple times to ensure that it had been).

Anyone out there seasoned enough to do it?
I'm going to try and put together something today. I will post here and everyone will be more than welcome to add their own advice, opinions etc...
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Old Aug 2, 12, 3:08 pm
  #723  
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Originally Posted by DeltaUnitedContest View Post
I assume the only way to find O is to call DL? Sounds like if one uses EF, you can see inventory yourself as well?
Yes, with Expert Flyer you can see O inventory on Air France. Well, you would be able to see it if there were any.
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Old Aug 2, 12, 3:42 pm
  #724  
 
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Originally Posted by dhuey View Post
Yes, with Expert Flyer you can see O inventory on Air France. Well, you would be able to see it if there were any.
Unfortunately DL agents are so hit and miss on this that EF is the best way to go.

Just remember that it now appears these have to be married segments like KLM. So if you are going beyond CDG, ie LAX-LHR-CDG, you would have to search on EF for LAX to LHR.
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Old Aug 2, 12, 4:22 pm
  #725  
 
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Guide: How to upgrade pv=>affaires

I tried to put together a step by step guide for this. This is based on my own experience with the process (between me and partner, I did this about a dozen times). If there are mistakes, approximations or if something is unclear, please do not hesitate to reply.


Premium Voyageur to Affaires upgrade

Upgrade instruments:
PU503 or 15k miles

Eligible fares
AF ticket booked in W or S (not A, which is the cheapest PE fare)
Delta ticket booked in W (only delta fare for AF PE product)

Of note: Delta's availability in W corresponds to AF's A availability. However, Delta W fare is eligible for upgrade (AF A is not)
If AF A=0, then DL W=0. No Delta ticket available on this flight for PE product. In this situation, buying an AF ticket in W or S will be required. Alternatively, one can also create an ExpertFlyer alert and wait for desired flight delta W>0.
As per T&C, only TATL portion of the trip will be eligible for upgrade. Also, most AF 747 planes DO NOT HAVE a premium voyageur class and are therefore not eligible, even if TATL.

Upgrade Bucket
Upgrade has to be pulled from AF O bucket.
AF often releases O either far ahead or closer to the departure. IME, good US gateways for O include DTW, IAD and JFK. Success reported also from YUL (A380).

How to search for/book eligible fares
Using ExpertFlyer:
Look for AF W, S >0 to book an AF ticket, or DL W>0 to book a delta ticket

Using delta.com:
Use the Advanced Booking Page. For a direct flight, no domestic portion (ex JFK/CDG), chose the option “fare class W or above”. For a flight that includes a domestic portion (ex SAN/CDG through DTW), use the option “fare class Y or above”. The domestic portion will return Y (As per T&C, W cannot be combined with lower than Y) and the TATL will return W. If medallion, you will either get direct upgrade for the domestic portion at time of booking if V/X available or you will be put on the upgrade list.
If doing so the system does not return Premium Economy but rather only business class, it means that Delta W=0
If Delta W=0. One can set up an ExpertFlyer alert for the desired flight and wait for W to become >0. Alternatively, once can book on airfrance.us in the W or S bucket. Of note, the price will likely be higher (especially S).

Using airfrance.us
Use class Premium Voyageur in the booking page. Once selected your times/dates, advance the booking process. On the page showing itinerary and price, you will see the class of service. Be careful, the cheapest Premium Voyageur fare on AF is class A, which is not upgradable using PU503 or miles. To my knowledge, airfrance.us does not offer the possibility to choose higher fare (W, S) if desired and low fare (A) available.
Of note, unlike when booking on delta.com, when booking an itinerary with a domestic portion on airfrance.us (ex SAN/CDG through JFK), the domestic portion is not eligible for medallion upgrade. For medallions who want to upgrade the domestic portion but have to buy W/S on airfrance.us (because W not available on delta), I would recommend splitting the ticket in two: Buying the domestic portion on delta.com and the TATL portion on airfrance.us.

Please see post #733. DL domestic portions of AF ticket are eligible for upgrade. Therefore buying two separate tickets may not be necessary.

How to find availability for upgrade

Using Expertflyer

Search Expertflyer for O>0 on the desired flight. If O not available, create an alert or search for a different gateway (LAX, SFO, DTW, IAD, NYC…)

Using Airfrance.us

Create a flyingblue account, login and click Award ticket reservation. Look for Business Award available on your desired flight. O bucket is the same for upgrade from PV or directly redeem miles for Business. One should be looking for “Affaires (business) classic award”. I usually look each way separate to make it simpler. If a “affaires classic award” is available to book (for 50k miles each way) on your desired flight, it means O>0. If O not available, keep searching on a regularly or create an ExpertFlyer alert.

Using Delta.com

Somewhat less reliable due to the broken award search engine. One can look for “low award business” availability on the desired TATL flight. If available, it means O>0.

How to request the upgrade

Once you have purchased delta W or AF W/S and identified O>0 on your flight, call medallion line and ask them to process your upgrade using either your PU503 or 15k SM
If you have a delta.com ticket, the agent will be required to code your ticket into the airfrance flight number to be able to process the upgrade. The agent will also have to look for and identify the O availability you saw. If the agent is unable to accomplish or give you unexpected answers, either hang up and start again or ask to be transferred to the skyteam desk.
The process can take anywhere between 15 and 60 min, depending on the agent. Once the upgrade is processed (check your itinerary online and see new cabin in Affaires), ask the agent to get the new ticket re-issued. Some agents will be reluctant and will tell you your ticket is in the re-issue queue and will be re-issued later. Do not agree; nicely explain that you had issues in the past with this, especially with the AF/DL interface, and ask to be transferred to the re-issue desk. Once on the phone with the re-issue desk, explain again and get the ticket re-issued. You should receive a confirmation with a new ticket number and miles/PU503 should be pulled.
Of note, you will likely be asked to pay the luxury tax for business class out of CDG

If you have domestic portion not yet cleared for upgrade and have used a PU503 for the TATL upgrade, your itinerary should show both a confirmed seat in Y with complementary medallion upgrade requested (V/X), and a waitlist in first/business for G/Z.
Once the ticket is re-issued, the upgrade should stick.

How many miles/MQM should I get?

Once upgraded and re-issued:
50% bonus MQM and 25% miles class AF bonus for the TATL
50% bonus MQM and 50% miles class DL bonus for the domestic portion

Last edited by vgb2001; Aug 3, 12 at 2:35 pm Reason: edited to include corrections
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Old Aug 2, 12, 5:08 pm
  #726  
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Originally Posted by brit44 View Post
Just remember that it now appears these have to be married segments like KLM. So if you are going beyond CDG, ie LAX-LHR-CDG, you would have to search on EF for LAX to LHR.
In general, I start my EF searches with my long flights. If I can also find upgrades with a shorter connection, great, but that's just gravy. Within Europe, for example, the upgrade is barely any better than coach.
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Old Aug 2, 12, 7:06 pm
  #727  
 
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Originally Posted by brit44 View Post
Unfortunately DL agents are so hit and miss on this that EF is the best way to go.

Just remember that it now appears these have to be married segments like KLM. So if you are going beyond CDG, ie LAX-LHR-CDG, you would have to search on EF for LAX to LHR.
AF does not enforce married segments on O inventory. A good agent at international manual reissue can confirm upgrades into O even if the married segments are O0 so long as each segment has O available.
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Old Aug 2, 12, 7:11 pm
  #728  
 
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Originally Posted by vgb2001 View Post
If you have a delta.com ticket, the agent will be required to re-ticket your ticket into an airfrance ticket to be able to process the upgrade.
Actually, they just have to re-code as an AF flight number. Mine always remained on DL's 006 stock.

Originally Posted by vgb2001 View Post
Of note, you will likely be asked to pay the luxury tax for business class out of CDG
This also applies ex-LHR, unless AF and DL have started collecting the full APD for PV fares (which they should be doing, per a strict reading of the guidance from HMRC).
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Old Aug 2, 12, 9:02 pm
  #729  
 
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Originally Posted by vgb2001 View Post
I tried to put together...
Fantastic. Thanks.
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Old Aug 3, 12, 7:59 am
  #730  
 
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Originally Posted by mtkeller View Post
Actually, they just have to re-code as an AF flight number. Mine always remained on DL's 006 stock.



This also applies ex-LHR, unless AF and DL have started collecting the full APD for PV fares (which they should be doing, per a strict reading of the guidance from HMRC).
re-code: thanks, I've edited my post
ex-LHR: does AF have any TATL flights ex-LHR? I know they tried LHR/LAX a while back but I thought they had given up on that.
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Old Aug 3, 12, 8:05 am
  #731  
 
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move the "guide" to post #1?

Mods, is there any way to move the guide "Guide: How to upgrade pv=>affaires" post #725 to post #1 in order to make it more visible, easier to find? There are a lot of questions re. upgrade PV to Affaires and this post will likely answer a lot of them.
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Old Aug 3, 12, 8:35 am
  #732  
 
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IMO if you are redirected to the international reissue desk right away they are the most competent in handling these, and may be able to get around the married segment issue.

Can anyone confirm recent reissues with SWU on a ticket on AF stock?
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Old Aug 3, 12, 8:39 am
  #733  
 
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Of note, unlike when booking on delta.com, when booking an itinerary with a domestic portion on airfrance.us (ex SAN/CDG through JFK), the domestic portion is not eligible for medallion upgrade. For medallions who want to upgrade the domestic portion but have to buy W/S on airfrance.us (because W not available on delta), I would recommend splitting the ticket in two: Buying the domestic portion on delta.com and the TATL portion on airfrance.us.

This has not been my experience. I had a ticket MEM-ATL-CDG-CPH and on the MEM-ATL portion I received a complimentary medallion upgrade.
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Old Aug 3, 12, 9:55 am
  #734  
 
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Originally Posted by brit44 View Post
Of note, unlike when booking on delta.com, when booking an itinerary with a domestic portion on airfrance.us (ex SAN/CDG through JFK), the domestic portion is not eligible for medallion upgrade. For medallions who want to upgrade the domestic portion but have to buy W/S on airfrance.us (because W not available on delta), I would recommend splitting the ticket in two: Buying the domestic portion on delta.com and the TATL portion on airfrance.us.

This has not been my experience. I had a ticket MEM-ATL-CDG-CPH and on the MEM-ATL portion I received a complimentary medallion upgrade.
Was this an AF stock? Then it could be something new then. For sure in the past, an AF-coded, AF stock ticket on a DL flight was not eligible for medallion upgrade. Perhaps they have sorted this out? It is true that now AF Flying Blue elite are eligible for upgrade as well, although low in the list... Great news. I will edit my post to link to yours. Thanks!
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Old Aug 3, 12, 11:53 am
  #735  
 
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It was on AF stock, but it was about a year ago. As of late have ticketed all through DL.
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