Do you get refunds when you BuyUp?

Old Mar 13, 12, 9:03 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: New York / Hawaii
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Do you get refunds when you BuyUp?

I have two scenarios:

Flew on EWR-ORD-HKG on a Business class reward ticket, but the EWR-ORD segment could only be waitlisted into F and confirmed into Y. While there were 6 F seats available at the check-in window, I was offered (and took) the $89 upgrade offer for EWR-ORD. Glad I did because no one cleared the list (guess everyone else bought up.)

Booked EWR-DEN-FAT in economy, used a regional upgrade. Even though F was completely open 3 weeks prior to departure, EWR-DEN cleared about a week before departure and DEN-FAT didn't; was offered $69 check-in upgrade offer on DEN-FAT that I declined...and not only did I not get the DEN-FAT upgrade, I wasn't even on the waitlist.

On these multi-segment trips, I suppose it's risky using premium rewards. Does anyone have any experience getting refunded buy-ups, miles, or upgrades.... or should you assume you'll need to pay the check-in upgrade offer if you really want to fly into the cabin you've tried to book into with other instruments (elite upgrades, Y/B/M-instant upgrades, reward upgrades, regional/systemwide upgrades, etc.)?
Weatherboy is offline  
Old Mar 13, 12, 9:28 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Originally Posted by Weatherboy View Post
I have two scenarios:

Flew on EWR-ORD-HKG on a Business class reward ticket, but the EWR-ORD segment could only be waitlisted into F and confirmed into Y. While there were 6 F seats available at the check-in window, I was offered (and took) the $89 upgrade offer for EWR-ORD. Glad I did because no one cleared the list (guess everyone else bought up.)

Booked EWR-DEN-FAT in economy, used a regional upgrade. Even though F was completely open 3 weeks prior to departure, EWR-DEN cleared about a week before departure and DEN-FAT didn't; was offered $69 check-in upgrade offer on DEN-FAT that I declined...and not only did I not get the DEN-FAT upgrade, I wasn't even on the waitlist.

On these multi-segment trips, I suppose it's risky using premium rewards. Does anyone have any experience getting refunded buy-ups, miles, or upgrades.... or should you assume you'll need to pay the check-in upgrade offer if you really want to fly into the cabin you've tried to book into with other instruments (elite upgrades, Y/B/M-instant upgrades, reward upgrades, regional/systemwide upgrades, etc.)?
Your first scenario really bothers me. You should have had the priority over any upgrader (including by-ups) when it came to claiming one of the remaining F seats since you have already paid for the first class (in miles). I think in the old UA world you would have been on a higher priority waitlist in this case.

For the second one, did you inquire why you were not on the UG list? If I were you I'd make sure that my name shows up there with the rest of the elites.
todorovic is offline  
Old Mar 13, 12, 10:08 am
  #3  
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Originally Posted by todorovic View Post
Your first scenario really bothers me. You should have had the priority over any upgrader (including by-ups) when it came to claiming one of the remaining F seats since you have already paid for the first class (in miles). I think in the old UA world you would have been on a higher priority waitlist in this case.

For the second one, did you inquire why you were not on the UG list? If I were you I'd make sure that my name shows up there with the rest of the elites.
For the second one, it's considered UA express and there appears to be systems integrations problems on those flights...which include an invisible/missing upgrade list on their website/mobile devices. Four calls into the UA Premiere line, and each agent confirms it's waitlist..only for the next agent to say "oops, you're not on the list..let me put you on it." As with the first scenario, you'd think if they're selling check-in upgrades, they'd have room to process a waitlisted passenger on a regional upgrade.
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