Fare Classes/Upgrades Explanation, please

 
Old Sep 13, 09, 9:15 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Programs: DL DM 1MM; SPG PM; Marriott PM
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Fare Classes/Upgrades Explanation, please

Hi, I'm a new member, so please forgive the simplicity of the question...

I'm going to attain SE for the first time ever this year (which is why I joined FT), thinking about doing a MR to get me over to GE.
I'm really excited about the domestic complimentary upgrades for Elite/Medallion members. But I just found a NW fare chart that shows all the fare classes and some that say 'no' when it comes to domestic segment upgrade. Does this mean if I book cheap economy fares in K or T or W classes, that I'll never get a complimentary upgrade?
Thanks for explaining all this fare class stuff. I've never really thought about it before.
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Old Sep 13, 09, 9:38 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: SJC/SFO
Programs: DL DM MM (fmr NW Plat), BA GGL/CCR, Aegean Gold, WorldClubs Life, SPG Plat, Hyatt Plat, HHonors Dmnd
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Welcome to FT. Not quite sure which chart you found / are looking at, a link would have helped If you're looking at http://www.nwa.com/worldperks/travel/compan.shtml that refers to what classes you can upgrade with miles. Basically, on NW/DL, Elites are eligible for upgrades on any published, paid fare class. (On Delta, and NW in a few weeks after the merger, there's currently no upgrades on award reservations, though that is supposed to be put back in place in 2010. Certain unpublished fares, such as those booked by travel aggregators, may also not be upgradeable depending on the terms of the fare).

But basically, anything you buy on nwa.com, and basically anything you buy elsewhere (unless you're going through some consolidator -- and I don't mean expeida or orbitz, but some agent that instead books a giant block of tickets/seats to re-sell) you are eligible for an upgrade.

* Except if you use Delta's pay with miles. Sigh. This was not the case on NWA, with the Delta PWM program you don't get upgrades and you don't get miles either.
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Old Sep 13, 09, 9:44 pm
  #3  
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Thanks so much for the reply. I'm trying to learn on the fly.

Here's the link to the NW Fare classes chart I found: http://cwsi.net/nw.htm

I found this one for DL: http://cwsi.net/delta.htm

The NW one seems restrictive, with some fare classes marked 'No' when it comes to Domestic Segment Upgrades. But I guess I'll just have to get Elite/Medallion status and try it out.

I'm going to be at SE in Oct. Should I do a MR for GE? Is the difference worth it? I guess I'll get higher priority for upgrades and 100% mileage bonus per flight, right?

Thanks
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Old Sep 13, 09, 9:58 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: SJC/SFO
Programs: DL DM MM (fmr NW Plat), BA GGL/CCR, Aegean Gold, WorldClubs Life, SPG Plat, Hyatt Plat, HHonors Dmnd
Posts: 1,408
That chart is wrong, or mis-labeled. The left column looks like what domestic segments can be upgraded with miles, the right column what international segments can be upgraded with miles. (That chart is also not authoritative - the authoritative answer can be found at http://www.nwa.com/worldperks/elite/...pDomesUpgrades - believe me, I've gotten plenty of upgrades on L/T/K fares.)

Quoting from that page:

The following fares do not qualify for upgrades: charter, bulk, VUSA passes, VUSA fares, travel-industry free and reduced-rate or standby tickets, student, infant or child fares, companion offers and group fares. Some ticket designator programs including N/GP/X/C may allow upgrades; check with Northwest Airlines for details. Upgrades are not permitted with select promotional offers and other fares that may be specified by Northwest Airlines. Only flights that are eligible for WorldPerks mileage credit qualify for Elite Qualifying Miles.
Yes, with Gold vs Silver you will get a higher mileage bonus, and higher upgrade priority. Will make a difference on short flights, but frankly the way DL has been handing out MQM's there's so many platinums that you are still going to have basically no chance on any of the heavy routes (transcons, etc).
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