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All seats available for points - or are they?

All seats available for points - or are they?

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Old Mar 13, 11, 7:57 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Stavanger, Norway
Programs: Eurobonus Gold, SPG Gold, Skywards Basic, Golden Circle Jade
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Unhappy All seats available for points - or are they?

I wrote this and posted it on my blog http://gardkarlsen.com/blog/?p=865 while on my way to Geneva. Just had to get some frustration out of the system...or maybe I'm just expecting to much from SAS. What do you guys think?

My feelings when it comes to SAS has gone up and down over the years – I have been furious with them (like when I had to fly on economy from Asia to Europe even if I had a business class ticket – and I had to pay business class price as well) and I have been very happy with them when flying business class to Asia. I’m a pretty loyal StarAlliance and Eurobonus member and in 2010 I flew 43 SAS flights and in total I flew about 150.000 km (with various airlines) so I think I fly a bit more than the average passenger. The following is not meant as a whining note – just a feedback from a loyal StarAlliance member to SAS as I have mixed feelings with them.

I have been fortunate to fly to Asia on business with SAS a few times and for the price they are…well, not maybe a bargain but at least an affordable alternative when looking at companies like Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines. The business class service is quite good, the food is not bad at all and at least you get a sort of flat bed (even if I can’t understand why it is not possible to get the bed completely horizontal but that goes for business class on many airlines). But their product is getting a bit outdated…the entertainment system is a bit of a joke these days compared to what you find on e.g. Singapore Airlines and Emirates both in terms of size of screen and selection of movies, games and music and the StarAlliance business lounges are not amazing. But I guess it is the lack of some sort of recognition that annoys me a bit. I’m not expecting to be carried on board the plane just because I have been a Eurobonus gold card member for several years but it would be great to see that they appreciate that I’m loyal to them and StarAlliance.

When going from Stavanger to Geneva on vacation I asked at Stavanger airport if it was possible to upgrade from economy to business and how many points it would cost – after all the add says “All seats available for points” right?. The lady at the check in counter had no clue and she called the ticket office and they had no clue either. But she told me that she had put me on standby upgrade and I could check at the gate and they would provide me with all the info. When boarding from Stavanger to Copenhagen I asked at the gate and the guy was like “No, I don’t think that is possible and why would you?…you don’t get more legroom” So this is how the ground staff promotes one of the advantages of being a Eurobonus member (upgrading with points)? But he told me to check at the gate in Copenhagen when boarding for Geneva. When boarding in Geneva I asked again if it was possible with an upgrade and how much it would cost and finally I got a clear answer “No, it is not possible to upgrade from Economy to business”. I’m fine with that but wouldn’t it be great if the ground staff at Stavanger airport had this information and could have informed me from the very start? So I got onboard the flight to Geneva and was seated almost at the very back of the Airbus A321 and as far as I could tell there were still seats available on Economy Extra and business. There are more and more ways of earning Eurobonus points (SAS Mastercard, Trumf points etc) and yet it seems like there are more and more restrictions on how to use them.

On a two hours flight it is not a big deal where you sit in the plane and what kind of service that you get - but I just find it strange that SAS doesn’t do anything to reward loyal members. Wouldn’t it be great if they tried to put in a bit of extra effort for Eurobonus goldcard members? I would have been thrilled if they said “As you are a loyal member, have a gold card etc of course you can upgrade with the following amount of points” Today it just seems very random – like when I was upgraded without warning or asking on a short flight from Berlin to Copenhagen.
Over the last couple of years I have had a couple of long flights with Emirates and on my second trip I reached Silver status. On my next flight the flight attendant came to me and carefully tried to pronounce my name. I confirmed that it was me and I was wondering what I had done wrong but then he greeted me and said welcome back on Emirates….and that is “just” as a Silver member.

Well, maybe this just makes me sound like a spoiled brat and maybe I’m just expecting too much out of SAS these days. I’m honestly really happy with the perks of the Eurobonus gold card (the lounge access, the extra baggage etc) but sometimes I just get a bit frustrated as I feel like SAS is not really going out of their way to take good care of their loyal customers and the information that I get from SAS employees can be vague or even wrong. But rumor has it that even with a SAS Pandion card you don’t get that much recognition – maybe that kind of service is not a part of the Scandinavian culture. But the conclusion after this trip is…all seats are not available for points.

Regards
Gard
at the very back of SK617 bound for Geneva
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Old Mar 13, 11, 8:35 am
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Join Date: Apr 2006
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It is only possible to up-grade from eco extra to business Intra-Europe as far as I know.
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Old Mar 13, 11, 8:36 am
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Join Date: Mar 2001
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Sorry to hear about your experience, but please read the rules

In Europe upgrading with point is only possible from Y+ plus to C, and offcourse you should have been told.

http://www.sas.dk/da/EuroBonus/Brug-...gradering-SAS/
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Old Mar 13, 11, 8:37 am
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Originally Posted by Chriscross View Post
It is only possible to up-grade from eco extra to business Intra-Europe as far as I know.
Yes, I now know this too :-) But it would have been great if the personnel at the check in counter at my local airport knew about these rules too ;-)
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Old Mar 13, 11, 8:40 am
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Originally Posted by bjerregaard View Post
Sorry to hear about your experience, but please read the rules

In Europe upgrading with point is only possible from Y+ plus to C, and offcourse you should have been told.

http://www.sas.dk/da/EuroBonus/Brug-...gradering-SAS/
Yeah, I don't have a problem with this - but I do find it a bit strange that you can't use your points for upgrade from Economy to Business also on European routes. And I think the add is a bit misleading (the add that says "all seats available for points" I mean). In addition to what I write in the blog entry I have also experienced lack of knowledge or even wrong information from SAS staff a number of times and it just annoys me from time to time
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Old Mar 13, 11, 8:43 am
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Originally Posted by gardkarlsen View Post
Yes, I now know this too :-) But it would have been great if the personnel at the check in counter at my local airport knew about these rules too ;-)
Sorry to be ignorant, but if you knew, why did you then ask.?

The "All seats available for points" is when you buy a ticket, not for upgrades, and have never been.
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Old Mar 13, 11, 9:43 am
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Originally Posted by gardkarlsen View Post
My feelings when it comes to SAS has gone up and down over the years – I have been furious with them (like when I had to fly on economy from Asia to Europe even if I had a business class ticket – and I had to pay business class price as well) and I have been very happy with them when flying business class to Asia.
What happened when you were downgraded from business to economy? Were you compensated in any way?
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Old Mar 13, 11, 11:10 am
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Originally Posted by bjerregaard View Post
Sorry to be ignorant, but if you knew, why did you then ask.?

The "All seats available for points" is when you buy a ticket, not for upgrades, and have never been.
Sorry if I was being unclear - I did not know about the rules at the time when I asked (if I did I wouldn't have asked ) - I have just been able to upgrade from economy to business on intercontinental routes and I just assumed that I would have the same option within Europe. And I have to admit that I don't read all the fine print when it comes to the rules of upgrading - I just see the big adds and feel that they are a bit misleading. I now know about the rules because when I asked in Geneva for an upgrade I finally got an answer out of SAS...and she said what has been mention here today...you can't upgrade from economy to business but only from economy extra to business.
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Old Mar 13, 11, 11:11 am
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Originally Posted by BardK View Post
What happened when you were downgraded from business to economy? Were you compensated in any way?
Hehe...it is a long story and I guess I have to get over it soon so I shall not go into details about it in this thread
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Old Mar 13, 11, 12:38 pm
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The possibility to upgrade from economy to business on intra-Europe flights using points was removed at the same time as economy extra was introduced, so around 2005.

Why anyone would pay 10,000 points to upgrade from economy extra to business intra-Europe (the only option currently available) is beyond me.
But upgrading from economy to business might be a different matter considering the extra food and drinks, but unfortunately that's not possible.
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Old Mar 13, 11, 2:23 pm
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Originally Posted by Chriscross View Post
It is only possible to up-grade from eco extra to business Intra-Europe as far as I know.
Originally Posted by gardkarlsen View Post
Yes, I now know this too :-) But it would have been great if the personnel at the check in counter at my local airport knew about these rules too ;-)
I don't get this. You know that you cannot upgrade from Economy to Business on intra-Europe with SAS, and then you complain when the SAS staff don't let you do it?
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Old Mar 13, 11, 3:33 pm
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Originally Posted by Someone83 View Post
I don't get this. You know that you cannot upgrade from Economy to Business on intra-Europe with SAS, and then you complain when the SAS staff don't let you do it?
Sorry if I'm not able to explain this - English is not my first language :-) No, I did not know this when I asked (why would I ask if I knew it?). But when I asked at the gate in Copenhagen I was given an answer. And when you are given an answer you learn something and because of this I now know about the rules regarding upgrades.
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Old Mar 14, 11, 8:11 am
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10K for Y+ to C intra Europe is IMHO a total waste of points. Maybe I would do it if Y+ was completely full and I had a middle seat and it was one of the longer flights, but would not feel happy.
M to C, on the other hand would be great. This could be a nice perk for EBG actually. I second that.
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