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YHZ-YYZ, 1st AC upgrade and no status, either!

YHZ-YYZ, 1st AC upgrade and no status, either!

Old Jan 11, 00, 11:02 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Jan 1999
Posts: 404
YHZ-YYZ, 1st AC upgrade and no status, either!

YHZ-YYZ AC 121 11:00am Sat. Jan 8. $269 weekend getaway fare to Toronto. I had called the night before and discovered that the flight was over-booked. So, when checking in, I followed advice offered here on Flyertalk. I volunteered to be bumped to the 2:30 flight, not much of a hardship considering the compensation they might offer.

When I got to the gate, I asked the agent if he'd be bumping people up to business class, and he said he'd probably have to. I then asked, it'd be mostly Elites and Super-Elites, right? Then I said, it wouldn't be me, would it? He smiled and said possibly, and added, "That's the right way to ask, by the way."

Well, I guess it was. Got seat 6D on a domestic 767, my first time in business class on AC. It was great to be able to stretch out and use the footrest. Everyone but me got a delicious-looking "snack" consisting of a hot pita with roastbeef and melted mozzarella cheese, a pasta salad, and dessert. A variety of wines were served. In contrast, I got handed a tiny economy-class plastic container with a bun labelled "Asian vegetarian." Well, it served me right! But the flight attendant, a friendly chap, checked and found what I surmise was a stand-by J-class vegetarian tray for me to eat with my sandwich, so I really lucked-out.

This upgrade should result in 2.5x the miles I normally would've expected. 800 miles x 50% for a discount ticket, now 800 miles x 1.25 for a J-class seat.

YYZ-YHZ AC 626 4:55pm Monday. My meeting ended earlier than expected so I decided to try and race to the airport and catch an earlier flight than my one scheduled at 7:30pm. Got to the airport at 4:30 and didn't think there'd be a problem since I had only a carry-on bag. But the line-up for economy was at least 10-15 minutes long. An AC agent said those with only carry-on luggage could proceed directly to the gate, which I hadn't thought of.

But at security, the agent demanded to see my boarding pass, which I said I would get at the gate. She then asked to see my ticket, and I told her it was an e-ticket. She then asked to see a printed record, but I told her I bought my ticket on the Internet. The fact that I had a piece of paper with my reservation no. and ticket file no. PRINTED on it wasn't good enough for her. I didn't feel like arguing, and it wouldn't have gotten me anywhere anyway. Next time I'll be better prepared.

I checked my watch, and it was around 4:37pm. The Y check-in line was out of the question, so I turned around from security and headed to a nearby Executive Class check-in counter. I explained to the agent that I wanted to take the earlier flight but that time was running out. Fortunately, since I had only an e-ticket and a carry-on bag, check-in took less than a minute.

Got seat 12A, a window, and now know why the bulk-head is so coveted! Wow, the leg-room was great. Also, I didn't have to fight for the arm-rest with the person in the other seat (aisle) since it was extra thick due to the fold-away meal trays. There was also a small video screen on the wall in front. Heck, even in J-class I had to share the big screen with everyone else!

Food was quite good: strips of braised chicken, and a chick-pea vegetable salad with sun-dried tomato dressing. It was delicious and probably just as good as the roastbeef pitas offered in J the other day.

Conclusions:

I really enjoyed getting upgraded to biz, but I think that for me personally, for a flight of only two or three hours, it wouldn't make much difference. I wouldn't be prepared to pay a much higher price or increase my flying time just to get a J-class seat.

Second, a lesson re-enforced and often emphasized on Flyertalk was the importance of being polite and friendly to airline personnel. It's good to do anyway, without expecting anything in return. But sometimes it does pay off, like when a flyer with no status gets upgraded to business class on a discount weekend fare.

Happy flying, everyone!


[This message has been edited by freeflyer (edited 01-11-2000).]
freeflyer is offline  
Old Jan 11, 00, 2:15 pm
  #2  
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Join Date: May 1998
Location: Canada
Programs: AC SE 2MM, HH Dd, SPG; IC Pl/A; AA; DL
Posts: 13,957
Glad it worked out and that AC was good to you.
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