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Expert Mode: opt-in to see upgrade visibility/fare bucket data- Website back?

Old Nov 15, 18, 8:53 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: WineCountryUA
Late Sept 2022 website expert mode is not working, mobile app is still working

Note on 18 Oct 2018 the fare class for upgrades changed from R to PZ
Changes to UA's Fare Classes (19-20 October 2018)

Updated instructions (2022)
Originally Posted by Micp3208 View Post
... Try this:
My United > Settings > Special Preferences & Accomodations > Scroll down past search preferences and click Enable expert mode.
Originally Posted by UA Insider View Post
Hi Everyone,

I wanted to let you know that well be re-launching Expert Mode as an opt-in feature later this afternoon. This feature will display all fare classes when shopping for flights on united.com. You can opt-in to this feature by logging into your MileagePlus account and following these steps:
  1. Go to united.com > My Account
  2. Select Manage Profile
  3. In the Preferences section, select View All Flight Search Preferences
  4. In the Expert Mode section, read and acknowledge the customer advisements
  5. Click Save at the bottom of the page

As always, thanks for your feedback and patience over the last couple weeks while we worked to make these changes.

Shannon


Archive thread: Expert Mode: better upgrade visibility and opt-in to see fare bucket data {Archive}

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Expert Mode: opt-in to see upgrade visibility/fare bucket data- Website back?

Old Jun 23, 20, 1:21 pm
  #106  
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: SAN
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I have had this same issue as well. Beware that this also carries over into Same Day Change offers on the computer sometimes, although the 1K agents are able to get it done for me on the phone when that happens.
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Old Sep 6, 20, 4:46 pm
  #107  
 
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Is Expert Mode permanently broken? For at least a few months now, every flight I search shows 0 in all or practically all buckets, even when a wide variety of fares are available and offered for sale in the Search results. I thought this was just a glitch back when COVID first caused booking system chaos, but it has never been fixed.

Example from a search I did when purchasing a ticket this morning: N, K, B, R, and P were all 0 but all offered for sale in their respective "columns."
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Old Sep 6, 20, 4:50 pm
  #108  
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Originally Posted by higher_flyer View Post
Is Expert Mode permanently broken? For at least a few months now, every flight I search shows 0 in all or practically all buckets, even when a wide variety of fares are available and offered for sale in the Search results. I thought this was just a glitch back when COVID first caused booking system chaos, but it has never been fixed.

Example from a search I did when purchasing a ticket this morning: N, K, B, R, and P were all 0 but all offered for sale in their respective "columns."
works fine for me ...
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Old Sep 6, 20, 5:05 pm
  #109  
 
Join Date: May 2007
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I have to search by segment or it shows incorrectly. Really frustrating.
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Old Sep 6, 20, 5:13 pm
  #110  
 
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Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
works fine for me ...
Wow, really? I see the same thing in the App and on the Web. Here's the flight I mentioned above with all classes available for sale:



Originally Posted by Duke777 View Post
I have to search by segment or it shows incorrectly. Really frustrating.
Ahhh fascinating. Just tried that, and voil.

Yessss, incredibly frustrating. Even more so, considering the SFO non-stop I have flown monthly for many years is gone for now. Connecting flights only, and I am guessing that will be the case for a long while.

I didn't even imagine that domestic connecting flights would cause such an issue with fare classes. So very lame
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Last edited by WineCountryUA; Sep 6, 20 at 5:28 pm Reason: merging consecutive posts by same member
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Old Sep 6, 20, 7:17 pm
  #111  
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Originally Posted by Duke777 View Post
I have to search by segment or it shows incorrectly. Really frustrating.
If you search segment-by-segment, the results you get are meaningless, unless you are looking specifically for upgrade inventory (in which case, that's not only the correct procedure, it's the only valid one). Even if there is an appropriate fare in place, the fact that there is K inventory on ABC-DEF and K inventory on DEF-GHI does not mean that there is K inventory on ABC-DEF-GHI.

Originally Posted by higher_flyer View Post
I didn't even imagine that domestic connecting flights would cause such an issue with fare classes. So very lame
It didn't; there's something else wrong. I'm able to reproduce the issue that's being described, but I've flown on connecting flights for years, and Expert Mode has always been 99%+ accurate. Somehow, UA has managed to break their inventory retrieval code.

ExpertFlyer (and presumably KVS Tool) still show the correct information, but right now, the only thing that UA Expert Mode can reliably be used for is finding upgrade space.
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Old Sep 6, 20, 7:35 pm
  #112  
 
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
If you search segment-by-segment, the results you get are meaningless, unless you are looking specifically for upgrade inventory (in which case, that's not only the correct procedure, it's the only valid one). Even if there is an appropriate fare in place, the fact that there is K inventory on ABC-DEF and K inventory on DEF-GHI does not mean that there is K inventory on ABC-DEF-GHI.
I know but this works for PN and PZ. Also lets me know how much P and above is available. P availability is always a positive sign for upgrades. I dont care much about Y inventory and married segments. Plus Im still ending up in G or K these days.
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Old Sep 6, 20, 7:40 pm
  #113  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
It didn't; there's something else wrong. I'm able to reproduce the issue that's being described, but I've flown on connecting flights for years, and Expert Mode has always been 99%+ accurate. Somehow, UA has managed to break their inventory retrieval code.
Oh I totally agree. I never had this problem until the COVID chaos melted down the reservation systems in late spring. This appeared around that time, and in all the ensuing months it has not been fixed
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Old Sep 6, 20, 11:29 pm
  #114  
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Originally Posted by Duke777 View Post
I know but this works for PN and PZ. Also lets me know how much P and above is available. P availability is always a positive sign for upgrades. I dont care much about Y inventory and married segments. Plus Im still ending up in G or K these days.
Fair enough; I just wanted to point that out in case anybody reading this thread got confused. As you say, if you're looking specifically for anything related to upgrades, point-by-point searches are far superior.
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Old Sep 7, 20, 10:31 am
  #115  
 
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I see this on one search



and this on another


--is the second one accurate, at least?

Quite strange.
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Old Sep 7, 20, 10:46 am
  #116  
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
...
--is the second one accurate, at least?

Quite strange.
Is the second one a fare break? Is there a fare for ATL-LGA routing via ORD?

Fare breaks separates the fare class inventory
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Old Sep 7, 20, 11:11 am
  #117  
 
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
Is the second one a fare break? Is there a fare for ATL-LGA routing via ORD?

Fare breaks separates the fare class inventory
Both are KAX7ADES.

Here is the fare construction for each, which matches what UA is showing:


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Old Sep 7, 20, 11:47 am
  #118  
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
Both are KAX7ADES.
They're actually both broken fares. That's why CHI appears at all; if they were through fares, it would only have shown one component for each search; SFO-NYC for the first and ATL-NYC for the second.

So, it's sometimes faulty with broken fares also.
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Old Sep 7, 20, 12:45 pm
  #119  
 
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
They're actually both broken fares. That's why CHI appears at all; if they were through fares, it would only have shown one component for each search; SFO-NYC for the first and ATL-NYC for the second.

So, it's sometimes faulty with broken fares also.
Sorry, yes indeed they are both broken. But to the question about the expert mode problem, I find it quite confusing that there is a different display, especially in this case where it's pulling the same fare and presumably then applying the same routing rules. The zeroed inventory is obviously wrong, but I wonder, if a nonzero inventory is displayed, is it correct? It doesn't really matter with 9 all the way down in this example, but the discrepancy makes me doubt both.
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Old Sep 7, 20, 1:12 pm
  #120  
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
Sorry, yes indeed they are both broken. But to the question about the expert mode problem, I find it quite confusing that there is a different display, especially in this case where it's pulling the same fare and presumably then applying the same routing rules.
It isn't the same fare. The origin and destination cities are part of the fare; even if two fares have the same name, if they serve different city pairs, they're different fares.

Originally Posted by fumje View Post
The zeroed inventory is obviously wrong, but I wonder, if a nonzero inventory is displayed, is it correct? It doesn't really matter with 9 all the way down in this example, but the discrepancy makes me doubt both.
I share your doubts. I would not rely on any of the values, although I suspect that the non-zero values are probably correct.

What's happening is that the Expert Mode code (and, in most cases, the pricing software) is searching for each fare component separately. This bypasses the married segment inventory that UA puts in place for all sets of flights that it intends to sell as connections. (I don't think it's intentional -- I just don't think UA has bothered to go in and clean it up). So, that explains the case where the values appear to be correct -- but it doesn't explain the case with all of the zeroes.
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