Question on upgrading with miles

Old Dec 21, 17, 10:39 am
  #1  
formerly Wilko Pali Sedef
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Question on upgrading with miles

On some destinations, buying a paid economy ticket & then upgrading with miles turns out cheaper than booking an award ticket and paying the taxes (taxes higher than the amount of the paid economy ticket).

My question is, can I buy a paid economy ticket & request to upgrade immediately with miles? Or is the upgrade option only available on the date of the flight?

Many thanks for your help.
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Old Dec 22, 17, 1:07 pm
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We have purchased economy tickets (DLM - HEL) in March this year and upgraded immediately with miles without problem. Even reserved the seats through very helpful customer helpline.

Last edited by Spike01; Dec 22, 17 at 1:10 pm Reason: Addition
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Old Dec 23, 17, 3:42 am
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You can upgrade whenever you want if there is J space available. Works pretty much the same as the Elite Plus upgrade vouchers.

If there's no J inventory, you need to wait until check-in, when you can access any available seat up front...
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Old Dec 23, 17, 4:12 am
  #4  
formerly Wilko Pali Sedef
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Thanks both it seems not all booking classes are eligible? I didn't see class U in TKs website...
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Old Dec 24, 17, 3:33 am
  #5  
formerly Wilko Pali Sedef
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Originally Posted by craigthemif View Post
You can upgrade whenever you want if there is J space available. Works pretty much the same as the Elite Plus upgrade vouchers.

If there's no J inventory, you need to wait until check-in, when you can access any available seat up front...
thank you for the helpful tips Craig this is even more interesting and raises another question for me:
- is awardspace released based on J fare bucket inventory and if not do I understand it correctly that if I buy a paid economy ticket if an award limited capacity seat is not available but J inventory shows as available I am still able to upgrade?
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Old Dec 24, 17, 3:41 am
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Originally Posted by Wilko Pali Sedef View Post
thank you for the helpful tips Craig this is even more interesting and raises another question for me:
- is awardspace released based on J fare bucket inventory and if not do I understand it correctly that if I buy a paid economy ticket if an award limited capacity seat is not available but J inventory shows as available I am still able to upgrade?
No. Award space isn't based on J bucket inventory. (although it would be rather surprising if award space was made available, but TK weren't willing to sell a J bucket revenue fare)

Essentially that is the charm of TK's upgrade policy. You spend a lot of miles (pretty much the same as a pure award) but you can access more inventory. One of the things on my to-do list is to look at other *A FF programmes upgrade charts, to see where one could pay fewer miles for that same upgrade - not quite sure if United or Aeroplan say also upgrade into TK's J bucket.



Careful with "U" class though. I believe that there are 1 or 2 ultra-cheap Economy buckets that can't be upgraded.
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Old Dec 26, 17, 7:38 am
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Two pax flying JNB-IST-ARN tomorrow, one has 90K miles with TK and will try upgrading both pax at check-in. Will the upgrade work for the JNB-IST segment only, or even IST-ARN?
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Old Dec 26, 17, 8:27 am
  #8  
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Originally Posted by pineapple_juice View Post
Two pax flying JNB-IST-ARN tomorrow, one has 90K miles with TK and will try upgrading both pax at check-in. Will the upgrade work for the JNB-IST segment only, or even IST-ARN?
As far as I understand it both segments should be upgradeable as they cost the same amount of miles.
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Old Dec 27, 17, 9:37 pm
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FYI: It worked for one segment only.
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Old Dec 27, 17, 10:33 pm
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Originally Posted by pineapple_juice View Post
FYI: It worked for one segment only.
Hope it was the long segment!
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Old Dec 28, 17, 2:13 am
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Originally Posted by pineapple_juice View Post
FYI: It worked for one segment only.
Interesting, but not necessarily surprising.

The "at airport" upgrade is most likely easiest for the actual flight departing shortly and under "local/airport control" (if I have my terminology correct). To dig into the system to upgrade a flight departing from elsewhere is surely more complicated.
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Old Dec 28, 17, 3:01 am
  #12  
formerly Wilko Pali Sedef
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So does this mean that you can't upgrade both segments of a trip with miles as you would booking an award? Seems like dodgy practice to me...
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Old Dec 28, 17, 5:10 am
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Yes, I upgraded the longhaul flight (JNB-IST) while the second leg (IST-ARN) remained in Economy.
At the TK lounge in IST i asked if not the whole ticket would be upgraded since the mileage for an award JNB-IST-ARN is the same as JNB-IST (45.000 miles) but no, they declined this...

btw, upgrading the ticket at JNB took well over an hour... had to walk over to the ticket desk... then their computer (Amadeus system?) took forever to ticket the upgrade for me and my companion. Had to sign some forms too, for the deduction of miles.
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Old Dec 28, 17, 9:25 am
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In principle the upgrade should include both segments, but I can easily imagine local agents denying this and prepared only to upgrade the first segment/leg that they are handling (either due to ignorance or incompetence). My suggestion would be take this discussion upfront with the agent - perhaps even with a supervisor. Accepting to be upgraded for the first leg only and expecting to get this resolved upon arrival at IST is bound to fail - as already reported above the IST agents will not touch/couldn't care less if the pax has only been upgraded for the first leg.

Last edited by SK AAR; Dec 28, 17 at 9:33 am
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Old Dec 28, 17, 10:19 am
  #15  
formerly Wilko Pali Sedef
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Originally Posted by SK AAR View Post
In principle the upgrade should include both segments, but I can easily imagine local agents denying this and prepared only to upgrade the first segment/leg that they are handling (either due to ignorance or incompetence). My suggestion would be take this discussion upfront with the agent - perhaps even with a supervisor. Accepting to be upgraded for the first leg only and expecting to get this resolved upon arrival at IST is bound to fail - as already reported above the IST agents will not touch/couldn't care less if the pax has only been upgraded for the first leg.
Is there any written rule about this though, just to be sure it should be the case?
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