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Using GUC on KE bookings - Consolidated Thread

Using GUC on KE bookings - Consolidated Thread

Old Jul 18, 18, 10:38 am
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Using GUC on KE bookings - Consolidated Thread

Hello,

I'm not having any luck with corporate customer care or reservations. If anyone in corporate can help me I would appreciate it.

On June 14th I bought a LAS-ATL-ICN-CGK-DPS-ICN-DTW-LAS ticket with a B class fare so I could use the GUC upgrade. The agent confirmed available inventory and re-issued the tickets. I thought everything was fine until July 15th when Korean cancelled my segments. They said Delta only held the tickets and did not re-issue them so they cancelled them. Delta is saying Korean cancelled the tickets and there is nothing they can do because there is no available inventory. So now I am stuck in the middle. I could have just bought a business class ticket from Korean air for cheaper than what I paid Delta. So far I have spent 6 hours on the phone and nobody can help or we get disconnected and I have to start all over with a new person.
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Old Jul 18, 18, 10:46 am
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Did the DL agent confirm GUC upgrades on the KE operated segments? I was told a few days ago that I couldn't do this, IIRC for intraAsia segments (and I'll have to check the fare class). I was using GUCs from the previous program year, but I don't think this should matter.
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Old Jul 18, 18, 10:56 am
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Originally Posted by Skystreak View Post
Hello,

I'm not having any luck with corporate customer care or reservations. If anyone in corporate can help me I would appreciate it.

On June 14th I bought a LAS-ATL-ICN-CGK-DPS-ICN-DTW-LAS ticket with a B class fare so I could use the GUC upgrade. The agent confirmed available inventory and re-issued the tickets. I thought everything was fine until July 15th when Korean cancelled my segments. They said Delta only held the tickets and did not re-issue them so they cancelled them. Delta is saying Korean cancelled the tickets and there is nothing they can do because there is no available inventory. So now I am stuck in the middle. I could have just bought a business class ticket from Korean air for cheaper than what I paid Delta. So far I have spent 6 hours on the phone and nobody can help or we get disconnected and I have to start all over with a new person.
It sounds as though DL either told you or you believed that DL had confirmed positive ticketed space on KE when DL had only reserved it and KE had not confirmed. When KE confirmed, DL had some short period of time to ticket (I think that it is 24 hours, but could be wrong) and did not. Or DL did everything correctly and it is KE that loused up. In any event, you won't get to the bottom of that because KE will blame DL and DL will blame KE.

The ask here is for DL to reach out through its ST liaison to KE's ST liaison and ask KE to force award space on its flight. There is nothing that DL can do to force KE to do anything. The outreach can take a few days and the outcome is far from certain, but that is the most productive course of action. Stay away from the blame issue because it is irrelevant.
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Old Jul 18, 18, 11:45 am
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
Did the DL agent confirm GUC upgrades on the KE operated segments? I was told a few days ago that I couldn't do this, IIRC for intraAsia segments (and I'll have to check the fare class). I was using GUCs from the previous program year, but I don't think this should matter.
The agent did confirm GUC upgrades when I originally booked it. We spent 2 hours looking for inventory that was available. I guess they never reissued the tickets the correct way and pulled my GUC as they were waiting for the Delta upgrades to clear?

I finally got an agent that long sold my ticket and got inventory and I had her use up my GUCs and re-issue. She wanted to wait until my Delta flights cleared to re-issue but I didn't want to go down that road again. So we will see in one month if everything is still ok. But Korean actually says everything is confirmed now. Too bad neither myself, Delta or Korean can assign me a seat.
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Old Sep 22, 18, 6:14 pm
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Question Using GUC on KE?

Has anyone successfully upgraded on KE using a GUC? If so, what exactly did you ask the DM agent to do? Unfortunately, I've dealt with a lot of incompetent or inexperienced DM agents who have not only refused to follow through on policy (e.g., SDC rules with upgrade instruments), and I want to be be prepared for the (long) conversation.

I've got a trip from Asia back to the US later this year, and I would be flying on a DL-coded, KE-operated flight in M class. This ticket would be issued on DL ticket stock. I know that there has to be O space available to UG, but I was wondering whether there has to be O space open on the DL side or KE side. I ask because in my past experiences, whenever I've used a GUC on KLM, for example, there have been multiple DM agents who have insisted that O or OY space needs to be available. Of course, this doesn't make sense because O and OY fares don't exist for KLM. They should be looking for Z class in the KLM system. Sadly, time and time again, they insist I'm wrong.

Back to my initial queries: What exactly is the DM agent looking for? Do I give them the KE flight number and ask them to look for O? Or, do I give them the DL flight number and tell them to look for O? Tbh, I had a conversation already with a DM agent, and he said that Y fares book into Z and B and M fares book into O. This is despite the fact that this is what the DL site says (in the T&C) for GUCs: " Valid on Delta-marketed, Korean Air-operated flights for use globally on Delta's published fares booked in Y or B class to Korean Air's Z class, or booked in M class to Korean Air's O class."

Thanks ahead of time to all!

UPDATE: Just spoke to another DM agent, and she was much, much more helpful than the first agent. Here's what she said...
  • Tell the DM agent to go to GUC/RUC page.
  • Agent should check upgrade availability on "other airline" tab.
  • Look at Korean Air flight (or DL flight number).
  • Then it lists the class of service that it needs to be changed to (e.g., Y to Z).
Hope this is helpful for folks!
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Last edited by UVAhoo06; Sep 22, 18 at 6:31 pm
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Old Sep 22, 18, 7:09 pm
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Inventory needs to be on KE flight number

The agent was correct at least of a few days ago. Only Y upgraded to Z per the original rules. Recent change or typo? With Delta who knows
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Old Sep 22, 18, 7:14 pm
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The rule that Y or B upgrades go into Z class while M upgrades go into O is reminiscent of PMNW upgrades (done on the PMNW website) using miles. IIRC intraEU upgrades on KLM also sometimes go into O class and sometimes into Z.
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Old Sep 23, 18, 4:28 am
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Originally Posted by UVAhoo06 View Post

I'v I ask because in my past experiences, whenever I've used a GUC on KLM, for example, there have been multiple DM agents who have insisted that O or OY space needs to be available. Of course, this doesn't make sense because O and OY fares don't exist for KLM. They should be looking for Z class in the KLM system. Sadly, time and time again, they insist I'm wrong.
It does make sense as KLM has both O and Z (availability). For travel on KLM-operated flights marketed by KLM or Air France; For fares booked in B or M they should be looking for O class, while fares booked in Y are eligible to upgrade into Z class.
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Old Sep 20, 20, 6:33 pm
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Using GUC on KE

Hello,

Iíve searched through this forum and I couldnít find an answer. Maybe you guys can help me out.

I found a convenient flight that gets me back into Boston at 10:35am. I plan on buying a B fare on DL and using a GUC since itís on KE metal (I canít use a mileage upgrade). I called DL last night and the agent wanted to sell me the KE Prestige ticket rather than tell me how a GUC works on KE. The DL Agent told me there were no seats available at the time. I read through the rules on DLís website and it says my upgrade has to confirm 24 hours prior to departure.

Does this mean KE might open up seats later on leading up to the 24 hours prior to departure?

I guess worst case, I can sit in the back but Iíll be home 6 hours earlier.

Any thoughts or opinions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
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Old Sep 20, 20, 8:16 pm
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Originally Posted by mfong View Post
Hello,

Iíve searched through this forum and I couldnít find an answer. Maybe you guys can help me out.

I found a convenient flight that gets me back into Boston at 10:35am. I plan on buying a B fare on DL and using a GUC since itís on KE metal (I canít use a mileage upgrade). I called DL last night and the agent wanted to sell me the KE Prestige ticket rather than tell me how a GUC works on KE. The DL Agent told me there were no seats available at the time. I read through the rules on DLís website and it says my upgrade has to confirm 24 hours prior to departure.

Does this mean KE might open up seats later on leading up to the 24 hours prior to departure?

I guess worst case, I can sit in the back but Iíll be home 6 hours earlier.

Any thoughts or opinions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
You need the correct upgrade space on the KE flight. In this case same as an award for business. KE is known for releasing very few if any seats for awards.
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Old Sep 20, 20, 8:21 pm
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Originally Posted by flyerCO View Post
You need the correct upgrade space on the KE flight. In this case same as an award for business. KE is known for releasing very few if any seats for awards.
Also, KE has always imposed long blackout periods on award space, so try to check their current policy which might preclude ever being able to upgrade your flight. If there won't be upgrade/award space, it's pointless to keep checking for it and you might want to consider trying to purchase an upgrade.
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Old Sep 20, 20, 9:33 pm
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Originally Posted by flyerCO View Post
You need the correct upgrade space on the KE flight. In this case same as an award for business. KE is known for releasing very few if any seats for awards.
On top of that, KE isn't even selling F except for JFK and LAX and at this point, it isn't even clear what aircrafts they will be deploying next year if Covid continues out of control, though to be fair, other than on the A380 and select 77Ws, KE offers a pretty decent J product with good privacy except on the aircrafts aforementioned
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Old Sep 21, 20, 1:45 am
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Thank you for your reply.

I will most likely book it anyways because I get in 6 hours earlier than the DL flight. I was just hoping they will release more seats prior to departure, but doesn’t look like it.

I mean, whatever right? Sitting in the back for 14 hours?

I looked at the award availability and it only shows economy seats left.

What would you do?

Last edited by mfong; Sep 21, 20 at 1:55 am
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Old Sep 21, 20, 7:35 am
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Set an expertflyer alert for the required KE inventory if you have a subscription.

The 24 hours means that DL just needs to process the ticket/upgrade by 24 hours from departure... not that KE will release more inventory in that period. It is possible that KE could release more upgrade/award inventory in the days/weeks leading up to the flight, but as others mentioned they are notoriously stingy with only giving 1 or 2 award spots per flight.

However, you mentioned you are booking a B fare... which means you only need the KE upgrade inventory Z, not award inventory O so that should be much more readily available. For example, I see lots of flights where it is O=0 award but Z=9 upgrade. If you are buying a B fare, make sure the agent is looking for the proper Z inventory on the KE flight number. They probably don't do this very often or at all so might be looking for award O instead or looking at the DL flight for inventory instead of the KE number.

Valid on Delta-marketed, Korean Air-operated flights for use globally on Delta's published fares booked in Y or B class to Korean Air's Z class, or booked in M class to Korean Air's O class
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Last edited by rylan; Sep 21, 20 at 7:41 am
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Old Sep 21, 20, 8:30 am
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Originally Posted by rylan View Post
Set an expertflyer alert for the required KE inventory if you have a subscription.

The 24 hours means that DL just needs to process the ticket/upgrade by 24 hours from departure... not that KE will release more inventory in that period. It is possible that KE could release more upgrade/award inventory in the days/weeks leading up to the flight, but as others mentioned they are notoriously stingy with only giving 1 or 2 award spots per flight.

However, you mentioned you are booking a B fare... which means you only need the KE upgrade inventory Z, not award inventory O so that should be much more readily available. For example, I see lots of flights where it is O=0 award but Z=9 upgrade. If you are buying a B fare, make sure the agent is looking for the proper Z inventory on the KE flight number. They probably don't do this very often or at all so might be looking for award O instead or looking at the DL flight for inventory instead of the KE number.
This helps. I though only Y got to use Z. Z will likely appear at some point.

OP, note if it does, an outright Z class business ticket is normally cheaper than a B class coach ticket. However Z class business fares usually have 30-60 day advance purchase requirements. Thus if Z becomes available close to departure you might not meet the requirements to purchase the Z class ticket.
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