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Consolidated - Chance of Operational Upgrade (Op-Up) on my flight?

Consolidated - Chance of Operational Upgrade (Op-Up) on my flight?

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Old Jan 7, 19, 2:30 pm   -   Wikipost
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Operational Upgrades - Op-ups -- are upgrades that occur when there is a need by the airline to move passenger to the higher cabin: could be due to overbooking of the lower cabin, could be a weight and balance issue, could be a broken seat, ....... whatever the reason, it is an airline driven reason, not a customer request.
If the issue still exists after all upgrades have cleared, then the common approach is for passengers to be selected based on status or status/fare but the GA has discretion and may make a selection for other reasons.

Overbooking is the most common reason, as there is no available / allowed seat for all the passengers in the cabin. If the cabin has available seats, there will be no op-ups except for some special corner cases (such as weight & balance).

Asking for an upgrade because of a special occasion or you are dressed especially professional, or you have a suave manner does not work, those often repeated "upgrade secret hints" will just get you a chuckle or a "go away" look.

pmUA FT classic thread on Op-ups - Operational upgrades from a gate agent's perspective

Related threads:

2014 Thread - Are Discretionary Complimentary (Operational) Upgrade Common on UA?

Chances of Operational Upgrade on International Flights (Honeymoon)? ..

Consolidated United Operational Upgrade (OP-UPs) Experiences
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Old Jan 7, 19, 10:22 pm
  #421  
 
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Standard policy is status and fare class (so basically CPUs if the flight were CPU-eligible) once all eligible upgrades are done. GAs have a bit of leeway to do what's convenient, but I wouldn't expect when you check in to make a big difference.
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Old Jan 8, 19, 7:02 am
  #422  
 
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This is not really an "op-up" as you'll see, but had a last-minute upgrade yesterday for family and I...

I'm Platinum, wife is Silver. We're travelling with kids (party of 4) on UA 633 MCO-ORD. F is 11 booked with 8 blocked. I hadn't bothered with splitting the PNR to get on the upgrade list, as it would've been a pain to deal with separate kids' PNRs, etc. Upgrade list only had NRSAs on it.

Right as boarding begins, GA calls me up saying she was going to upgrade the 4 of us to F. Took a few minutes as she had to wrestle with splitting the PNR and a balky computer.

Turns out she upgraded another party of 4 travelling on an award ticket. Guy commented first time it's ever happened to him on an award.
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Old Jan 8, 19, 7:20 am
  #423  
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Originally Posted by findark View Post
Standard policy is status and fare class (so basically CPUs if the flight were CPU-eligible) once all eligible upgrades are done. GAs have a bit of leeway to do what's convenient, but I wouldn't expect when you check in to make a big difference.
Thank you @findark. Checked in, but moot point now as both J and Y are Full per the Flight Status.
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Old Jan 8, 19, 7:27 am
  #424  
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Originally Posted by Aussienarelle View Post
Thank you @findark. Checked in, but moot point now as both J and Y are Full per the Flight Status.
Are you sure J is full? It will display as "full" and no longer show blocked J if f the total booked plus blocked equals the number of seats in the J cabin. i.e., with a 48 seat cabin, booked 40 and blocked 8 will show "full."
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Old Jan 8, 19, 7:33 am
  #425  
 
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Was on UA30 MUC-EWR on 12/31. I was seemingly one of the few elites on the flight. Economy was packed and at the Gate they issued a new BP for J... Original fare class was only K. I chose not to take the offer for 849$ the day before since it was a day flight
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Old Jan 28, 19, 1:15 pm
  #426  
 
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I'm currently booked on EWR-PVG on Feb 14th, which appears a bit odd:

J2JN2C1D0Z0ZN0P0PN0PZ0IN0I0Y9YN9B9M9E9U9H8HN8Q5V3W 0S0T0L0K0G0N9XN0X0
The seatmap appears mostly open, including wide-open E+. Now I know seatmaps are no indication of actual loads, but with only J2, but 29 J seats unassigned, what do the FT sages say about op-up chances here? CNY may have something to do with it..?
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Old Jan 28, 19, 1:29 pm
  #427  
 
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Originally Posted by pushmyredbutton View Post
I'm currently booked on EWR-PVG on Feb 14th, which appears a bit odd:
The seatmap appears mostly open, including wide-open E+. Now I know seatmaps are no indication of actual loads, but with only J2, but 29 J seats unassigned, what do the FT sages say about op-up chances here? CNY may have something to do with it..?
You are out of luck, It's sold 47/50. the remaining seats will sell or go to GPU upgrades (or someone will switch to that flight or someone will purchase a TOD).

I noticed that for flights to Asia, a lot of passengers don't choose their seat until check-in and a lot of them check-in at the airport about 2 hours before the flight (and sometimes less than 2 hours).
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Old Jan 28, 19, 1:34 pm
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Originally Posted by pushmyredbutton View Post
I'm currently booked on EWR-PVG on Feb 14th, which appears a bit odd:



The seatmap appears mostly open, including wide-open E+. Now I know seatmaps are no indication of actual loads, but with only J2, but 29 J seats unassigned, what do the FT sages say about op-up chances here? CNY may have something to do with it..?
Originally Posted by StuckinITH View Post
You are out of luck, It's sold 47/50. the remaining seats will sell or go to GPU upgrades (or someone will switch to that flight or someone will purchase a TOD).
Is the 47/50 count inclusive of blocks? The website will not tell you how many seats are blocked; the large number of 'sold' but unassigned suggests many seats blocked. Changing the date on your phone and using the app to check status may reveal the blocked count.

However, with V3, I would say the odds are nonzero but not high. They are maybe blocking J as they expect more Y demand, but I don't think Y is over by much yet.
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Old Jan 28, 19, 1:44 pm
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
Is the 47/50 count inclusive of blocks? The website will not tell you how many seats are blocked; the large number of 'sold' but unassigned suggests many seats blocked. Changing the date on your phone and using the app to check status may reveal the blocked count.

However, with V3, I would say the odds are nonzero but not high. They are maybe blocking J as they expect more Y demand, but I don't think Y is over by much yet.
You are right, I did not check the app changing the date on my phone. I'll let pushmyredbutton try that.
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Old Jan 28, 19, 1:49 pm
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Originally Posted by StuckinITH View Post
You are right, I did not check the app changing the date on my phone. I'll let pushmyredbutton try that.
There's minimal blocking by checking the app. I see 47+1, so definitely not a chance on this one. UA86 is still my lucky route for op-ups though Just maybe not this time...
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Old Jan 28, 19, 2:15 pm
  #431  
 
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Originally Posted by pushmyredbutton View Post
I'm currently booked on EWR-PVG on Feb 14th, which appears a bit odd:



The seatmap appears mostly open, including wide-open E+. Now I know seatmaps are no indication of actual loads, but with only J2, but 29 J seats unassigned, what do the FT sages say about op-up chances here? CNY may have something to do with it..?
Nil. J2 Y9 would not indicate an oversale in the back. The unassigned seats are because, for whatever reason, most Chinese pax don't choose seats until check-in.
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Old Feb 1, 19, 9:06 am
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SFO-CTU, Feb 2.

Premier desk said economy's overbooked by 3, which matches the app upgrade display: capacity 36, booked 26(+3 blocked)

Interestingly enough, UA is still willing to sell economy seats, in as low of a fare class as L.
Available fare classes: J7 JN7 C7 D7 Z7 ZN7 P7 PN7 PZ0 IN0 I0 Y4 YN4 B4 M4 E4 U3 H2 HN2 Q2 V2 W2 S1 T1 L1 K0 G0 N4 XN0 X0

Chances of an op-up as a plat? I assume it's quite low due to only being overbooked by 3, plus bad SFO weather this weekend?
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Old Feb 1, 19, 9:11 am
  #433  
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Originally Posted by sincx View Post
Chances of an op-up as a plat? I assume it's quite low due to only being overbooked by 3, plus bad SFO weather this weekend?
Yeah I think you've put your finger on it. Less than 25%.

Interesting UA clearly doesn't think it will fill the J cabin with last minute purchased J, even with only 7 open seats.
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Old Feb 1, 19, 2:25 pm
  #434  
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Originally Posted by sincx View Post
SFO-CTU, Feb 2.

Premier desk said economy's overbooked by 3, which matches the app upgrade display: capacity 36, booked 26(+3 blocked)

Interestingly enough, UA is still willing to sell economy seats, in as low of a fare class as L.
Available fare classes: J7 JN7 C7 D7 Z7 ZN7 P7 PN7 PZ0 IN0 I0 Y4 YN4 B4 M4 E4 U3 H2 HN2 Q2 V2 W2 S1 T1 L1 K0 G0 N4 XN0 X0

Chances of an op-up as a plat? I assume it's quite low due to only being overbooked by 3, plus bad SFO weather this weekend?
2 or 3 misconnects, a few upgrades clear, a check-in cash upgrade or two -- no overbooking or op-ups.

And very doubtful you can purchase a new ticket below Q or V or even higher. To purchase a new ticket you need fare class inventory and a fare rule for which you meet all the conditions. Advance Purchase required will generally eliminate the lower fares. You can potentially SDC ( or irrops rebookings) onto the flight at a lower fare class, but you are not going purchase a new ticket for those fare classes.
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Old Feb 1, 19, 3:19 pm
  #435  
 
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
2 or 3 misconnects, a few upgrades clear, a check-in cash upgrade or two -- no overbooking or op-ups.

And very doubtful you can purchase a new ticket below Q or V or even higher. To purchase a new ticket you need fare class inventory and a fare rule for which you meet all the conditions. Advance Purchase required will generally eliminate the lower fares. You can potentially SDC ( or irrops rebookings) onto the flight at a lower fare class, but you are not going purchase a new ticket for those fare classes.
Well, for what it's worth, the flight's now showing:
Available fare classes: J3 JN3 C3 D3 Z3 ZN3 P3 PN3 PZ0 IN0 I0 Y0 YN0 B0 M0 E0 U0 H0 HN0 Q0 V0 W0 S0 T0 L0 K0 G0 N0 XN0 X0

App says : capacity 36, booked 25 (+8 blocked)

So perhaps this has moved from impossible to merely improbable. 2nd tier China is very elite light and passengers on these routes tend not to pay for upgrades. But given the weather in SFO, misconnects seem highly likely.
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