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The Big UPGRADE Thread – all you need to know about AY upgrades

The Big UPGRADE Thread – all you need to know about AY upgrades

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Old Dec 26, 18, 7:18 pm   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: esledo
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General
Upgrade space is capacity controlled, separately from revenue space in J cabin. The number of seats released to the different upgrade types are driven by a number of factors, but never by the "there are unsold seats in J cabin, let's fill them" policy some other airlines employ.

Check available seats before buying ticket (upgrade-types 1,2)
Check upgrades offered via booking refereence (upgrade-types 1,2,4 and possibly type 3 too)

Upgrade-types
1. Upgrades with points
2. Upgrades with vouchers
3. Cash upgrades (targeted and not targeted)
4. Upgrades by bidding
5. Cash upgrades at airport
6. Complimentary upgrades



Upgrades with AY+ points

Requirements:
  • flight marketed and operated by AY (operated by Norra is also eligible)
  • ticketed booking in paid economy (there must be a ticket number in your reservation)
  • all paid economy booking classes are eligible
  • award flights and points+money combos are ineligible (booking class X)
    • however, some reports state that it is possible to upgrade these
  • you cannot upgrade any codeshare flights
  • It is not required to have a Finnair-issued ticket

Cost:
  • Northern Europe (GOT, CPH, SVO, OSL, ARN, WAW, VNO, KEF, BGO) 7,500 points one way
  • Rest of Europe, DXB, TLV 10,000 points one way
  • long haul 50,000 points one way
    • as you upgrade a longhaul with points, the SH feeder upgrade will be included in the price.
  • there have been some occasional promotions especially for short haul upgrades (winter and summer campaigns)
    • Northern Europe 5,000 points, rest of Europe, DXB, TLV 7,500 points


Process:
  • you can check availability here before booking (note that there are faults with this tool)
  • once you have a ticketed booking, you can process your upgrade online here
  • you may also call AY to process your upgrade
    • note that during the campaigns the campaign prices are only for self-service upgrades
  • If there is no availability, you can call AY and be waitlisted. A waitlisted upgrade may clear at any time – within hours of your request or at the gate or any time in between
    • your status will play a role in this
    • If there is no SH availability you can still upgrade the LH and waitlist the shorthaul. You'll pay the same points price even if SH does not clear though.
    • NOTE: If you wish to do Advance Seat Reservation (ASR) in Economy class, select the desired seats before waitlisting. After waitlisting it is not possible to select seats via Manage My Booking, however one can do that via Chat or Call Center.
  • if you waitlist, your points will be taken from your account immediately; if the upgrade does not clear, your points will be returned to you but you will lose any points that have expired during the waiting time
  • your points need to be valid at time of processing the request but they do not need to be valid on the day of the flight
  • you will receive a new e-ticket showing booking class F but you will receive points/miles according to your original booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)
  • Once you have a new ticket, your upgrade is confirmed. However, if J is overbooked on your flight, you will be among the first pax that AY will bump back into Y. J rarely gets overbooked, though.
  • as an unpublished perk, you may choose to change your upgrade from a points one to a voucher one by calling AY; your points will be returned to you save for any points that may have expired
  • If you change your mind about the upgrade you may conctact CS and ask to cancel the upgrade and have points returned. There likely must be seats left in Y cabin to allow this, and your points expiry date must not have passed.

Perks:
  • all usual J perks like priority check-in, increased baggage allowance, priority security where available, lounge access, priority boarding
  • you will receive points/miles according to your original economy class booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)


Upgrades with vouchers
Vouchers are given to Finnair+ members upon advancing to and retaining the platinum and gold tiers. You can see number of vouchers, their type and expiry in your Finnair+ account.

Requirements:
  • flight marketed and operated by AY (operated by Norra is also eligible)
  • ticketed booking in economy (there must be a ticket number in your reservation)
  • all paid economy booking classes are eligible
  • award flights booked via AY+ are also eligible (booking class X)
  • most likely, points+money combos are eligible, too, since they book into X, but we have no verification of this
  • award flights booked via parners (eg. Avios, AAdvantage etc) are not eligible
  • you cannot upgrade any codeshare flights
  • It is not required to have a Finnair-issued ticket

Cost:
  • Northern Europe one "European" voucher for a one-way flight
  • Rest of Europe, DXB, TLV one "European" voucher for a one-way flight
  • longhaul one "Longhaul" voucher for a one-way flight
  • LH voucher does not include upgrade for connecting shorthaul (like it does with points upgrades), SH flight requires a separate voucher/points upgrade
  • you may exchange four European vouchers for one "Longhaul" voucher by calling AY

Process:
  • you can check availability here before booking
  • once you have a ticketed booking, you can process your upgrade online here
  • you may also call AY to process your upgrade
  • If there is no availability, you can call AY and be waitlisted. A waitlisted upgrade may clear at any time – within hours of your request or at the gate or any time in between
    • higher tiers will be prioritized
  • if you waitlist, your voucher will be taken from your account immediately; if the upgrade does not clear, your voucher will be returned to you but you will lose any vouchers that have expired during the waiting time
  • you will receive a new e-ticket showing booking class F but you will receive points/miles according to your original booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)
  • Once you have a new ticket, your upgrade is confirmed. However, if J is overbooked on your flight, you will be among the first pax that AY will bump back into Y. J rarely gets overbooked, though.
  • If you change your mind about the upgrade you can contact CS and ask to cancel the upgrade and have voucher returned. There likely must be seats left in Y cabin to allow this, and your voucher expiry date must not have passed.

Perks:
  • all usual J perks like priority check-in, increased baggage allowance, priority security where available, lounge access, priority boarding
  • you will receive points/miles according to your original economy class booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)


Cash upgrades, offered via email / SMS / app or found under "Last minute offers"
AY will contact you about these targeted upgrade offers; you might receive an email or an SMS suggesting an upgrade at a fixed price or it can pop up in the Finnair app. You can find and report offers in this thread.
These fixed price upgrades might also be seen at the upgrade page, at earliest 4 days before take-off, under the section "Last-minute-offer". Offer can stay active on the page until as late as 2-24 hours before take-off, depending on route and availability.

Requirements:
  • Finnair selects targets for these upgrades on unknown factors
  • you might be contacted roughly 3–14 days before your flight
  • Same offer might be announced on website to all 4 days before the flight
  • flight marketed and operated by AY (or operated by Norra)
  • ticketed booking in paid economy (there must be a ticket number in your reservation)
  • all paid economy booking classes are eligible
  • you cannot upgrade any codeshare flights
  • you do not need to be a AY+ member

Cost:
Process:
  • follow the link on your email / SMS to process the upgrade
  • If no solicited offer, monitor webpage from T-4 days
  • Do not sloth if you want the upgrade, as they may send out more offers than actual seats available
  • you will receive a new e-ticket showing booking class F but you will receive points/miles according to your original booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)
  • Once you have a new ticket, your upgrade is confirmed. However, if J is overbooked on your flight, you will be among the first pax that AY will bump back into Y. J rarely gets overbooked, though.

Perks:
  • all usual J perks like priority check-in, increased baggage allowance, priority security where available, lounge access, priority boarding
  • you will receive points/miles according to your original economy class booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)


Upgrades by bidding in an auction
These upgrades are called "Name your price" on the upgrade webpage.
Requirements:
  • only available on some flights; if your flight is eligible, you can follow a link from MMB
  • availability may change over time, checking again later may prove successful
  • flight marketed and operated by AY (or operated by Norra)
  • ticketed booking in paid economy (there must be a ticket number in your reservation)
  • all paid economy booking classes are eligible
  • award flights and points+money combos are ineligible (booking class X)
  • you cannot upgrade any codeshare flights

Cost:
  • you will determine the cost by committing to an amount you decide for yourself
  • there's a starting price below which you may not bid
  • AY will place your bid in one of five categories; a five-star bid has the highest odds and a one-star bid the lowest odds (and yes, FTers have placed one-star bids that have been accepted)

Process:
  • you will place your bid online following the Upgrade link in MMB
  • all bids will be put on a waitlist
  • offer is not binding, you can cancel it at any point, even after Finnair accepted the bid
  • bidding is closed 7 days before flight, and accepted bidders are notified 6-7 days before flight with a call to pay.
  • at this point, you can decide which (all, none, any) of the passengers in the reservation should be upgraded.
  • you will receive a new e-ticket showing booking class F (??) but you will receive points/miles according to your original booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)
  • Once you have a new ticket, your upgrade is confirmed. However, if J is overbooked on your flight, you will be among the first pax that AY will bump back into Y. J rarely gets overbooked, though.

Perks:
  • all usual J perks like priority check-in, increased baggage allowance, priority security where available, lounge access, priority boarding
  • you will receive points/miles according to your original economy class booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)


Upgrades paid in cash at the airport

(Note that check-in agents are able to process last-minute points and voucher upgrades.)

Requirements:
  • upgrades may be available for purchase at check-in
  • flight operated by AY or Norra
  • ticketed booking in economy
  • all paid economy booking classes are eligible
  • most likely AY+ & partner award flights in economy are eligible, too, though this is unconfirmed
  • the marketing carrier does not matter, so this is the only upgrade where codeshares are eligible

Cost:
  • varies, expect to pay some hundreds of euros for long haul one way

Process:
  • the upgrade will be processed and paid for at the check-in desk of the airport of departure
  • most likely the above means the airport of departure of that particular flight, so to upgrade HEL-BKK on a CPH-HEL-BKK itinerary, you would need to contact (transfer) check-in at HEL
  • you will receive points/miles according to your original booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)
  • Once you have a new ticket, your upgrade is confirmed. The odds of being bumped back into Y are close to 0 as AY will not offer these upgrades if J is overbooked

Perks:
  • in practice, priority check-in is not possible since you will be an economy passenger when choosing the queue at the airport
  • all other usual J perks like increased baggage allowance, priority security where available, lounge access, priority boarding
  • you will receive points/miles according to your original economy class booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)


Complimentary operational upgrades
  • usually just a new boarding pass & seat either at the gate, at check-in or even after you have boarded
  • few and far between
  • the decision whom to upgrade on a particular flight seems a bit random but is at least partially dependent on the price of your ticket, booking class and status
    • an overheard policy was AY Plats, AY Golds and then anyone else
  • in theory, all usual J perks apply but in practice this depends on when you get to know about your upgrade; if you receive the upgrade at the gate, you will have checked in and there's no time to visit the lounge etc
  • you will receive points/miles according to your original economy class booking class (this may require a retroclaim if earning on other programmes than AY+)
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Old Jan 23, 19, 3:34 pm
  #451  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: HEL
Programs: anti-MaRiot SPG/IHG-P HH-D LeClub/CC-G, BA/A3-G DL/AY-P, Octopus
Posts: 4,837
I stopped watching at EF before flights just because of that - it started getting under my skin when Y0 and I got a Y seat While I had excellent stats in 2017, I received 0 opups in 2018. YTD I'm 50% (1/2 )
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Old Jan 24, 19, 2:17 am
  #452  
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: C2
Programs: AY Lumo, A3 Gold, TK Elite Plus
Posts: 467
Originally Posted by OH-LGG View Post
Ive been now 3 weeks on list for DXB upgrades.
Wasn't there the promise of clearing all Lumo upgrades as long as seats are available? I think it was discussed here after the tier introductory event.

Originally Posted by spek View Post
But it might show all segments 0, in that case is the probability high, right.
Or how shall i look at it, if Y is 0?
If all booking classes are zeroed, the likelihood of overall overbooking is quite high. If all Y fares are zeroed, it may be overbooked in Y cabin. However, there are usually so many changes with approaching departure time that it is quite difficult to guess / rely on anything (those tickets causing overbooking are flexible and expensive for a reason). But you can also look at it from the reverse perspective.
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Old Jan 24, 19, 3:10 am
  #453  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Helsinki-Vantaa APT, Finland
Programs: AY Platinum, Norwegian Reward
Posts: 3,101
Originally Posted by on22cz View Post
Wasn't there the promise of clearing all Lumo upgrades as long as seats are available? I think it was discussed here after the tier introductory event.
Never seen promise like this.
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Old Jan 24, 19, 3:43 am
  #454  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: HEL
Programs: Drawer of Cards
Posts: 173
Question, if me and Mrs Clydez are not on the same ticket.(bought bizcamp through company, cuz a work trip), wife booked economy, can i upgrade her with family upgrade benefit with 50k r/t?
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Old Jan 24, 19, 3:57 am
  #455  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: HEL
Programs: Drawer of Cards
Posts: 173
Originally Posted by Clydez View Post
Question, if me and Mrs Clydez are not on the same ticket.(bought bizcamp through company, cuz a work trip), wife booked economy, can i upgrade her with family upgrade benefit with 50k r/t?
Found an old thread from 2016, mentioned that no need to be on the same tickets.
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Old Jan 24, 19, 4:00 am
  #456  
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: HEL
Programs: AY+ Platinum (OWE), Accor Gold, Hilton Honors Gold
Posts: 1,416
Yes, I believe one PNR for customers in different classes on the same flight is not even possible. At least I’ve always been separated on a different PNR if I’ve upgraded just myself.
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Old Jan 24, 19, 4:06 am
  #457  
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: C2
Programs: AY Lumo, A3 Gold, TK Elite Plus
Posts: 467
Originally Posted by OH-LGG View Post
Never seen promise like this.
You are right. I searched for it and it was just a wish discussed here when Lumo was launched. Nothing promised by AY.
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Old Jan 24, 19, 6:29 am
  #458  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: HEL
Programs: Drawer of Cards
Posts: 173
Originally Posted by Clydez View Post
Found an old thread from 2016, mentioned that no need to be on the same tickets.
called platline, Couldn't make it work, since my outbound is 2 days earlier (got work to do) than Mrs Clydez, though on the same inbound.

Both legs need to be on the same flight.
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Old Jan 24, 19, 8:01 am
  #459  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: MMX (CPH)
Programs: AY+ Platinum, A3*G, 1865 Voyager, Nordic Choice Platinum, Liberokerho GOLD
Posts: 9,825
Yes, that is a given. The point of the perk is to bring family with you on your (business) trip.

I believe (but may recall incorrectly) that I've been able to upgrade family when we were on same longhaul flights but our shorthaul connecting flights to/from HEL was from different EU origins.
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Old Jan 24, 19, 11:12 am
  #460  
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: HEL
Programs: AY Plat Basic
Posts: 815
Originally Posted by intuition View Post
...been able to upgrade family when we were on same longhaul flights but our shorthaul connecting flights to/from HEL was from different EU origins.
Yes.
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Old Jan 25, 19, 12:38 am
  #461  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: HEL
Programs: Drawer of Cards
Posts: 173
yeah well. lets see if Mrs Clydez as lowly AY*G would get the voucher upgrade.
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Old Jan 25, 19, 3:18 am
  #462  
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Somewhere.
Programs: SK*S, AY Gold (Sapphire), SBUX GOLD and statusless elsewhere
Posts: 2,915
What about the scenario of a Plat with e.g. XXX-HEL-XXX and the person being upgraded for 50K round trip has HEL-XXX-HEL with both flying HEL-XXX on the same day, would the companion benefit from this? Or does the entire itinerary be the exact same dates and departure points for the long haul segment (subject to availabilty)?

I assume this would be a case of HUACA
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Old Jan 25, 19, 3:54 am
  #463  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: MMX (CPH)
Programs: AY+ Platinum, A3*G, 1865 Voyager, Nordic Choice Platinum, Liberokerho GOLD
Posts: 9,825
Originally Posted by miamiflyer8 View Post
What about the scenario of a Plat with e.g. XXX-HEL-XXX and the person being upgraded for 50K round trip has HEL-XXX-HEL with both flying HEL-XXX on the same day, would the companion benefit from this? Or does the entire itinerary be the exact same dates and departure points for the long haul segment (subject to availabilty)?
...
Yes. You need to be travelling together and you need to have both tickets issued before upgrade can be applied.

First:
Originally Posted by Clydez View Post
called platline, Couldn't make it work, since my outbound is 2 days earlier (got work to do) than Mrs Clydez, though on the same inbound.

Both legs need to be on the same flight.
Also, if they did allow "family upgrade perk" for one single leg I assume you still would pay 50k, so not really a perk.
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Old Jan 25, 19, 5:25 am
  #464  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: HEL
Programs: Drawer of Cards
Posts: 173
true, 50k/leg would be normal price. but then she as AY gold on waitlist will be cleared quicker? because my plat status?
As i m not very clear how do ay clear gold waitlist, seems very last moment.

Last edited by Clydez; Jan 25, 19 at 5:30 am
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Old Jan 25, 19, 6:06 am
  #465  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: HEL
Programs: AY+ Plat
Posts: 264
Originally Posted by Clydez View Post
As i m not very clear how do ay clear gold waitlist, seems very last moment.
As a Gold, I don't see any difference compared to what Plats and Lumos describe here. Quite often the upgrades clear immediately.
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