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Help understanding QF international upgrades - requested vs op-ups

Help understanding QF international upgrades - requested vs op-ups

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Old Sep 25, 16, 11:46 am
  #1  
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Question Help understanding QF international upgrades - requested vs op-ups

As a European-based mainly BA flyer, I'd be grateful for some help in trying to understand the way that international upgrades work on QF - specifically, what the system of 'requested' FF upgrades means in terms of the likelihood and frequency of op-ups.

For context, I'm flying in November on QF30, HKG-MEL, booked in PE. FWIW, I'm a OWE with BA. EF is currently suggesting that PE may already be oversold (zero inventory in all the PE buckets), with Y and J both filling up but still having a bit of space.

If this were a BA flight, I'd be reconciled to the fact that upgrade inventory probably won't open up in J, but that there will most likely need to be op-ups from W on the day, and that status pax will by and large be first in line for these.

But with QF, am I right in understanding that there will be QF status FFs in the W cabin who will be bidding for upgrades using miles; and that these will most likely clear in order to shift some of the excess capacity in W into any available space in J? And does this mean, in practice, that QF are unlikely to need to do op-ups on the day of the flight? And as a non-QF FF, should I presume that I'm a long way down the pecking order for these?!

Very grateful for any clarity!
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Old Sep 25, 16, 3:37 pm
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Zero PE inventory could mean that a 744 is to be subbed back to a 330. In which case ticketed PE pax may be shoved into J (or not). The seating diagram might make this hypothesis clear.
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Old Sep 25, 16, 9:25 pm
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Originally Posted by jk156 View Post
But with QF, am I right in understanding that there will be QF status FFs in the W cabin who will be bidding for upgrades using miles; and that these will most likely clear in order to shift some of the excess capacity in W into any available space in J? And does this mean, in practice, that QF are unlikely to need to do op-ups on the day of the flight? And as a non-QF FF, should I presume that I'm a long way down the pecking order for these?!
Highly likely some QF freq flyers will have requested upgrade with points and others may be using the bidding system.
Also some QF flights have (many) non rev's trying to get seats.
QF does not process QF point upgrades until close to departure (refereed to a QF upgrade lottery here on FT)
QF manage the total load vs aircraft seats very carefully.
If you read the QF forum you will see operational upgrades are very rare. And would expect they would go to QF freq flyers well before others, no matter what status

So expect to fly in the cabin class you paid for

Last edited by Mwenenzi; Sep 25, 16 at 9:33 pm
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Old Sep 26, 16, 2:34 am
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Opups are close to never on QF for lots of reasons, quite unlike EK or BA for that matter. As og states your best chance is a330 which has no PE seating substituted for 744 and you will either op-up or op-down Compensation for flying Y is surprisingly little (few hundred dollars for oneway HKG-MEL). Most of the year the route is served by A330 not 744 as there isn't sufficient traffic so good chance you will get opup through substitution (OWE does count for pecking order for this, unlike for points upgrades).
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Old Sep 26, 16, 3:58 am
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Thanks number_6, really helpful to understand. Obviously I never count on opups, but just wanted to understand how (un)common they are on QF compared to the likes of BA.

I'll keep an eye out for an equipment change, fingers crossed it stays as a 744 but good to know that being OWE does count for something if it switches to an A330. Seatmap and timetable still showing 744, and QF (oddly, if EF is to be believed) still selling PE tickets.
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Old Sep 26, 16, 4:57 am
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Don't the 744s have 58 seats in J and the A333 and A332s now only 28? If so wouldn't a swap mean almost half of J pax downgraded or moved to other flights? I highly doubt W pax would be upgraded if swapped.

My understanding is that when an aircraft is subbed to the new suites downgrades occur first to award pax.
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Old Sep 26, 16, 5:17 am
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Originally Posted by m0hamed View Post
Don't the 744s have 58 seats in J and the A333 and A332s now only 28? If so wouldn't a swap mean almost half of J pax downgraded or moved to other flights?
One would expect that if anything close to 58 J seats had been sold, Qantas would not be substituting an A330 for the 747.

Especially if a considerable number of W seats had also been sold.
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Old Sep 26, 16, 5:20 am
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Originally Posted by ButFli View Post
One would expect that if anything close to 58 J seats had been sold, Qantas would not be substituting an A330 for the 747.

Especially if a considerable number of W seats had also been sold.
It can happen when technical issues arise. I was simply referring to the above that a W pax shouldn't expect an upgrade if subbed, rather quite the opposite.
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Old Sep 26, 16, 5:24 am
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In my experience as a BAEC Gold member for 3 years I received many more op-ups on BA metal than the last years as a QFF Platinum (equivalent to BAEC Gold) and QFF Platinum One (equivalent to BAEC Gold Guest list) flying QF metal.
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Old Sep 26, 16, 4:08 pm
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Do a search on FT for "Proactive Onload Qantas" for some insight.

But that was before Qantas began providing points upgrades as late as at the gate on boarding.

Expect to travel as booked.

[Although if you could secure enough QFF points for an upgrade there may be a possibility.]
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Old Sep 28, 16, 12:27 pm
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Hope jk156 won't mind me piggy-backing on this thread.

What are the chances of upgrading with points from Premium Economy to Business? I'm flying LAX-MEL on the A380, currently booked in Premium Economy. I have no status with Qantas, One World Ruby with Cathay. I hardly fly Qantas so if I transfer points in the hopes of upgrading, I'll be stuck with Qantas FF points that I could be using elsewhere.

If the upgrade almost always comes through, I'd be more inclined to take the risk but it sounds like upgrades with points especially for someone with no status are slim to none?

Thanks for any feedback!
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Old Sep 28, 16, 3:03 pm
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Originally Posted by suziemay View Post
...
What are the chances of upgrading with points from Premium Economy to Business? I'm flying LAX-MEL on the A380, currently booked in Premium Economy. I have no status with Qantas, One World Ruby with Cathay. I hardly fly Qantas so if I transfer points in the hopes of upgrading......
The upgrade can happen - BUT you acknowledge that you are very low on the QF list. If flying on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday I'd say "no chance" because the flight will quite likely be very full especially with QF status passengers. Monday or Tuesday might be a better option. If you transfer points and the upgrade doesn't happen, you can still use those points through the QF FF program for whatever takes your fancy - so they are not completely lost - unless you don't touch your account in 18 months.
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Old Sep 29, 16, 10:59 am
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Originally Posted by og View Post
The upgrade can happen - BUT you acknowledge that you are very low on the QF list. If flying on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday I'd say "no chance" because the flight will quite likely be very full especially with QF status passengers. Monday or Tuesday might be a better option. If you transfer points and the upgrade doesn't happen, you can still use those points through the QF FF program for whatever takes your fancy - so they are not completely lost - unless you don't touch your account in 18 months.
I don't fly QF all too much so while the points aren't lost, I may not get to use them for awhile, so sounds like it's a gamble. LAX>MEL is on Tuesday before Thanksgiving weekend, MEL>LAX on Wednesday after Thanksgiving weekend. I know it's not guaranteed, but want to venture to guess my chances? 10%? 5%? Hmmm... decisions decisions.

Thanks for your insight!
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Old Sep 29, 16, 3:27 pm
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Originally Posted by suziemay View Post
.... Tuesday before Thanksgiving weekend, MEL>LAX on Wednesday after Thanksgiving weekend. I know it's not guaranteed, but want to venture to guess my chances? 10%? 5%? Hmmm... decisions decisions!
I'm unaware of when "Thanksgiving weekend" is. It is not a recognised event in Australia. That said, I'd think long haul international wouldn't be affected too much by a frenetic holiday period that would appeal to a local market?
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Old Sep 29, 16, 3:50 pm
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Originally Posted by og View Post
I'm unaware of when "Thanksgiving weekend" is. It is not a recognised event in Australia. That said, I'd think long haul international wouldn't be affected too much by a frenetic holiday period that would appeal to a local market?
United States of America Thanksgiving is November 24. Given the OP's route, the safe assumption is that the "weekend" to which is referred is the weekend after that date. While I am American and clearly knew the reference, a very (very) quick Google search would have given you the answer!
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