Logic when Swiss Choice Business Class Upgrade is available?

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Old Jul 1, 19, 7:15 am
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Logic when Swiss Choice Business Class Upgrade is available?

I've tried searching if a thread on the Swiss Choices options already exists, but with the FT search tool I wasn't very successful... So I beg pardon if a thread on this already exists.

Anyway, I was looking to book ZRH-ARN 2nd to 12th september, specifically LX1250 and SK1605.
(I've noticed that booking both flights one way on their respecitve airlines sites leads to a total price of 160.- in Y which is 100.- less than booking the flights in one roundtrip... go figure, but that is not important right now.)

The return on SK at 95.- for J is a steal, however while the LX flight for Y light is only 85.- J is over 350.-. So I thought I'd just use the Swiss choices option to buy an upgrade, which are usually available at 89.- one way, however on this specific flight the buy up into J option is not available. Huh, weird, given that it's still empty.

I did some digging, and checked ZRH-PRG, where the option is available. Maybe the ARN flight is already quite full? Nope: Availability is still there, as the flight is still P7 Z9 etc., so that's not it either. then I thought maybe they don't offer it to Sweden, so I checked ZRH-GOT, where it also is available. Maybe only ARN? GVA-(ZRH)-ARN with the same ZRH-ARN flight I am looking to book (btw 30.- cheaper in Y and over 100.- cheaper in J, how insulting!): Guess what? Buy up option is available and it even costs only 69.- for both flights. What is the logic behind that? Why is a (even cheaper) buy up option on the same flight available with a GVA-ZRH in front of it(which is also included in the upgrade), but for ZRH-ARN (on the same flight) it is not? (I'm seriously considering just taking the train to GVA out of spite. But +1 doesn't approve sadly since that'd come with a 6am departure in Zurich main station....)
Maybe it's the booking class? Flight books into K, no matter if you chose light classic or flex, it's never available, on other routes it is available on all these options and in the same booking class (K).

I've tried every flight option to ARN from ZRH and several dates and the upgrade option is never available.

As you can imagine I'm noticably fed up by the Swiss pricing model, even more so after I discovered that ARN-ZRH flights on LX in J only cost 190.- but double that the other way (which I'd need). Ahhhh, the glories of dynamic pricing.

Does anybody know the logic or reason behind this? Or even better: How I can make the option on buying an upgrade available?

Especially since Swiss says this about the option:
The Upgrade to Business Class is possible at any time up to 24 h before departure and can be booked during or after your flight reservation. Opt for even better service and comfort at any time and upgrade your existing Economy fare to Business Class. It is available on all Europe flights operated by SWISS and can be booked per route.
Yep, obviously it is available on all routes... Guess I'll just book Y and try again then or try over the phone.

Last edited by Nick Art; Jul 1, 19 at 7:42 am
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Old Jul 1, 19, 8:20 am
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I am using the Swiss choice/Comfort package buy-up upgrades quite frequently and unless, both outbound and return are all LX segments, I do not see this option online. But it is usually available if you call Swiss. In fact, I just booked an upgrade for GVA-ZRH-BOD on the phone. The return portion of the ticket (BOD-BRU-GVA) is on SN and online the option to upgrade was not available. From your post, it was not clear if you booked the ZRH-ARN and ARN-ZRH flights as two one-ways?! Maybe the Swiss choice upgrade option is not offered for one-way flights? Are there one-way P fares?
From my experience, this upgrade should be available as long as C seats are available: If the flight is P0, then the upgrade books in Z, if Z is full in D and so on ...
Hope this helps.
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Old Jul 1, 19, 8:50 am
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Originally Posted by Viennafly View Post
I am using the Swiss choice/Comfort package buy-up upgrades quite frequently and unless, both outbound and return are all LX segments, I do not see this option online. But it is usually available if you call Swiss. In fact, I just booked an upgrade for GVA-ZRH-BOD on the phone. The return portion of the ticket (BOD-BRU-GVA) is on SN and online the option to upgrade was not available. From your post, it was not clear if you booked the ZRH-ARN and ARN-ZRH flights as two one-ways?! Maybe the Swiss choice upgrade option is not offered for one-way flights? Are there one-way P fares?
From my experience, this upgrade should be available as long as C seats are available: If the flight is P0, then the upgrade books in Z, if Z is full in D and so on ...
Hope this helps.
It is actually available on one ways, as all flights I named to check I were one ways. But I guess you're right and I'll call the airlines to book the upgrade. But it's still annoying it isn't available online (and only for this route somehows).
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Old Jul 2, 19, 5:36 am
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So I called: Upgrade price: 385.- per Person per Leg. That is more than the original ticket in Business would have cost (350.-) and that is not even including the Economy fare that I already paid.

Keep in mind that for the same flight but with GVA-ZRH before it the upgrad only costs 63.-.

What's the logic behind that pricing?
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Old Jul 2, 19, 6:05 am
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Originally Posted by Nick Art View Post
So I called: Upgrade price: 385.- per Person per Leg. That is more than the original ticket in Business would have cost (350.-) and that is not even including the Economy fare that I already paid.

Keep in mind that for the same flight but with GVA-ZRH before it the upgrad only costs 63.-.

What's the logic behind that pricing?
Don't come with logic. I once checked for a flight to Miami in First. If you started in ATH (via ZRH), it was around 5k, if you started in GVA (with same connection in ZRH !) it was 15k !
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Old Jul 2, 19, 6:26 am
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Originally Posted by Nick Art View Post
What's the logic behind that pricing?
In my experience, the upgrade pricing always leaves you worse off than if you had bought Business from the beginning, especially if it is a multi-leg flight (since the later upgrade is per leg). I would only consider it if someone else had paid for the Economy fare and I would just pay for the actual upgrade. Paying for both makes no sense.

Our corporate travel policy requires all bookings to go through our travel agent and Swiss has traditionally not allowed me to upgrade TA bookings using Swiss Choice, only as per fare rules, which has then made even less sense price-wise.

Lufthansa are more flexible in terms of upgrade options.
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Old Jul 2, 19, 7:53 am
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Originally Posted by Vixit View Post
In my experience, the upgrade pricing always leaves you worse off than if you had bought Business from the beginning, especially if it is a multi-leg flight (since the later upgrade is per leg). I would only consider it if someone else had paid for the Economy fare and I would just pay for the actual upgrade. Paying for both makes no sense.
... not necessarily: For example for GVA-ZRH-AMS RT:
Eco classic fare (booking classes KK/LL) 212.15 CHF + upgrade to P for 72 CHF for each direction (not per leg!) = 356.15 CHF
in contrast: Business saver fare (booking classes PP/PP) = 495 CHF

so the later upgrade saves you ~139 CHF. And 3126 status miles for 356 CHF is not bad.
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Old Jul 2, 19, 8:58 am
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Originally Posted by Viennafly View Post
... not necessarily: For example for GVA-ZRH-AMS RT:
Eco classic fare (booking classes KK/LL) 212.15 CHF + upgrade to P for 72 CHF for each direction (not per leg!) = 356.15 CHF
in contrast: Business saver fare (booking classes PP/PP) = 495 CHF

so the later upgrade saves you ~139 CHF. And 3126 status miles for 356 CHF is not bad.
Hm, I could have sworn I was asked to pay per leg a year or so ago...

Regarding status miles: so apparently Swiss Choice with fixed price upgrade gives you status miles for the higher class, but Swiss Choice with bid upgrade does not. What would be the logic in that, given that Swiss decide what the lowest bid threshold is?
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Old Jul 2, 19, 9:57 am
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I‘ve always found that the Swiss Choice option leaves you off cheaper when booking directly at the time of booking, especially when booking early.
Otherwise what‘d be the sense in the whole thing? Paying more for worse Tarif conditions?

As an example:
GVA-ZRH-ARN in Y light costs 65.- plus 63.- for the Upgrade (not per leg). Total of 128.- for Business class vs 250.- when booking Business directly.

ZRH-GOT 139.- for light + 82.- for the upgrade: Total of 221.- for Business vs. 359.- when booking Business directly.

Examples searched on second September.
Originally Posted by Carpacchio View Post
Don't come with logic. I once checked for a flight to Miami in First. If you started in ATH (via ZRH), it was around 5k, if you started in GVA (with same connection in ZRH !) it was 15k !

I understand that from different markets prices might be different. But ATH and GVA are far apart while GVA and ZRH are next to each other, the prices for the tickets are also comparable, and on other routes ex ZRH the upgrade cost is the usual 82.-. Furthermore the upgrade cost shouldn‘t be more than 100.- than just booking a new business class ticket!



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Old Jul 2, 19, 10:14 am
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Interesting, thanks for letting me know, in the past you could not see the business upgrade price until you had actually bought the economy ticket already.

Still curious if anyone is able to use the fixed upgrade option for tickets issued by a travel agent?
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Old Jul 3, 19, 3:11 am
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Originally Posted by Vixit View Post
Interesting, thanks for letting me know, in the past you could not see the business upgrade price until you had actually bought the economy ticket already.

Still curious if anyone is able to use the fixed upgrade option for tickets issued by a travel agent?
In my recent case, it was a travel agent booking, which I upgraded by calling the LX SEN hotline. And I can confirm that I never saw the possibility to access the Comfort package upgrades online when the trip was booked by a travel agent.

@Nick Art: How were you able to see the business upgrade price without booking the Eco ticket?
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Old Jul 3, 19, 3:26 am
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Originally Posted by Viennafly View Post
@Nick Art: How were you able to see the business upgrade price without booking the Eco ticket?


In the booking process on swiss.com after the seat selection you have the option to chose the Swiss Choices:



And by clicking on add it shows you the prices for each direction:
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Old Jul 3, 19, 3:55 am
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This makes sense! Thank you.
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Old Jul 3, 19, 10:59 am
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Something has changed recently (maybe since 3/4 weeks) in that the comfort package to upgrade is gone from a majority of routes regardless of whether P is available or not.

Not quite sure why this is the case but out of 15 or so bookings I have only 1 still has the option (and it’s a seasonal route). All bookings had the option originally except those booked recently.
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Old Jul 5, 19, 12:10 am
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It is possible with TA bookings

I can confirm that I was able to buy a comfort upgrade ZRH-LCY on a ticket issued by our corporate travel agent. I did online after the TA had issued the ticket before.
(Note. It is only possible after TA has isseued the ticket, which sometimes takes some days...

I alsonoted that on some of my booked flights flights the option disappeared after some days - turned out these were the flights that were literally full
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