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Wow - selling the upgrades at the gate so explicitly.

Wow - selling the upgrades at the gate so explicitly.

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Old Jan 13, 18, 7:58 pm
  #301  
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Originally Posted by JBlaine View Post
Had no idea. Thx.
DEN is renowned for doing this. It was a DEN incident that started this thread.
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Old Jan 13, 18, 8:18 pm
  #302  
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On my flight today, about 5 minutes before boarding, the gentleman who was #1 on the list with 1 seat left. He inquired if he was going to get upgraded to the GA. GA's response was "Well, someone could still buy the seat so we'll let you know."

I mean it's just so blatant now. I guess it's not really a surprise. (He did end up getting his upgrade though!)
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Old Jan 13, 18, 8:26 pm
  #303  
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Originally Posted by demkr View Post
On my flight today, about 5 minutes before boarding, the gentleman who was #1 on the list with 1 seat left. He inquired if he was going to get upgraded to the GA. GA's response was "Well, someone could still buy the seat so we'll let you know."

I mean it's just so blatant now. I guess it's not really a surprise. (He did end up getting his upgrade though!)
buying is not the same as paying for an upgrade. Indeed you can still buy the last F seat ... at full price ... or someone SDCs, So this is not anything new at all.
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Old Jan 14, 18, 2:40 am
  #304  
 
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Do the GAs get a commission for selling upgrades ?
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Old Jan 14, 18, 6:21 am
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Originally Posted by demkr View Post
On my flight today, about 5 minutes before boarding, the gentleman who was #1 on the list with 1 seat left. He inquired if he was going to get upgraded to the GA. GA's response was "Well, someone could still buy the seat so we'll let you know."

I mean it's just so blatant now. I guess it's not really a surprise. (He did end up getting his upgrade though!)
I have been "that guy" a couple of times and simply asked the gate agent when do they usually clear that last CPU. In IAH, the GA said they normally wait until the flight is boarding, but she gave me a wink and cleared it then (about 20 minutes prior to boarding). In ORD, the GA told me that they had to wait until after boarding ended, so I had to take my E+ seat and the CPU cleared on my App about the time they started clearing standby's.

Maybe they are inconsistent between GA's as to when they clear the last CPU, but it's not like this GA announced it over the PA and was actively trying to sell it.
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Old Jan 14, 18, 6:58 am
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Originally Posted by FlyngSvyr View Post
...Maybe they are inconsistent between GA's as to when they clear the last CPU, but it's not like this GA announced it over the PA and was actively trying to sell it.
Announcements by some GAs at some stations is part of the CPU process inconsistencies.
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Old Jan 14, 18, 7:11 am
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Originally Posted by FlyngSvyr View Post
I have been "that guy" a couple of times and simply asked the gate agent when do they usually clear that last CPU. In IAH, the GA said they normally wait until the flight is boarding, but she gave me a wink and cleared it then (about 20 minutes prior to boarding). In ORD, the GA told me that they had to wait until after boarding ended, so I had to take my E+ seat and the CPU cleared on my App about the time they started clearing standby's.

Maybe they are inconsistent between GA's as to when they clear the last CPU, but it's not like this GA announced it over the PA and was actively trying to sell it.
The policy, such as it is, is that they can clear CPUs into open inventory when check-in closes (T-30). They can clear CPUs into no-show/misconnect seats when they board standbys (T-15 or later). However, agents clearly do have quite a bit of discretion.

Keep in mind that you're not really first on the list until T-30; not only could they sell a walk-up F seat or a TOD, but there could also be someone on a higher status / fare class than you who hasn't checked in yet, but who will appear ahead of you on the list when check-in is complete.
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Old Jan 14, 18, 7:25 am
  #308  
 
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
No, first is for sale at purchase, anytime in the reservation listing, at check-in and at the gate.
I am slightly confused by what you are saying. Here's what just happened with me:

I was buying a rt ticket to NRT with R space both ways. At the final stage of purchase, I was offered the upgrade for the domestic segments for $139- per segment. I would've taken it, but I had read somewhere that upgrade buy-ups at purchase don't count for PQD, so I thought that I would just go in the "Manage Reservations" tab after purchase and buy the upgrades. They were unavailable, even though lots of P inventory remains. I have been checking every day since my purchase and there are no buy-ups being offered.

Is this unusual, because it appears to be in conflict with your, "anytime in the reservation listing", statement?
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Old Jan 14, 18, 7:45 am
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Originally Posted by zombietooth View Post
Is this unusual, because it appears to be in conflict with your, "anytime in the reservation listing", statement?
No. Buy-ups for the entire trip are available at any time via Manage Reservations. Buy-ups for a single leg of the trip are not.

You were correct that a time-of-purchase upgrade would not have counted for PQDs. However, there's really nothing you can do in the situation you describe in order to get a PQD-earning buy-up. In order to earn PQDs, you would need to be able to book into a domestic first class fare. However, combining that with your existing R space would have required a fare break at the international gateway. So, suppose you were traveling ABQ-SFO-NRT and back. Your fare was almost certainly priced as ABQ-NRT. In order to do a PQD-earning buy-up, UA would have to have a domestic first class fare ABQ-SFO that was combinable end-on-end with an SFO-NRT roundtrip fare. Many UA international fares are not, especially if they're at any kind of discount.

So, instead of a $139 buy-up that didn't earn PQDs, you likely would have been faced with a $2K buy-up that did.
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Old Jan 14, 18, 10:28 am
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
No. Buy-ups for the entire trip are available at any time via Manage Reservations. Buy-ups for a single leg of the trip are not.

You were correct that a time-of-purchase upgrade would not have counted for PQDs. However, there's really nothing you can do in the situation you describe in order to get a PQD-earning buy-up. In order to earn PQDs, you would need to be able to book into a domestic first class fare. However, combining that with your existing R space would have required a fare break at the international gateway. So, suppose you were traveling ABQ-SFO-NRT and back. Your fare was almost certainly priced as ABQ-NRT. In order to do a PQD-earning buy-up, UA would have to have a domestic first class fare ABQ-SFO that was combinable end-on-end with an SFO-NRT roundtrip fare. Many UA international fares are not, especially if they're at any kind of discount.

So, instead of a $139 buy-up that didn't earn PQDs, you likely would have been faced with a $2K buy-up that did.
Thanks so much for the explanation. I now understand.
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Old Jan 14, 18, 1:42 pm
  #311  
 
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Yes, touting GPU/RPU benefits while attempting to sell all First/Business seats makes the benefits of attaining higher status somewhat of a sham!
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Old Jan 14, 18, 2:09 pm
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Originally Posted by 2stepbay View Post
Yes, touting GPU/RPU benefits while attempting to sell all First/Business seats makes the benefits of attaining higher status somewhat of a sham!
So United shouldn’t be attempting to sell all First/Business seats?
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Old Jan 14, 18, 2:16 pm
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As someone who buys lots of last-minute first-class domestic tickets, I would prefer if United would hold back more first class inventory for folks like me to BUY, at full price, up to the last minute. Several times already this year I had to fly coach because I couldn’t buy a first ticket and several upgrades had already cleared....I suspect my position is not a popular one...
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Old Jan 14, 18, 9:29 pm
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Originally Posted by caiken View Post
As someone who buys lots of last-minute first-class domestic tickets, I would prefer if United would hold back more first class inventory for folks like me to BUY, at full price, up to the last minute. Several times already this year I had to fly coach because I couldn’t buy a first ticket and several upgrades had already cleared....I suspect my position is not a popular one...
There is no reason that anyone should have any problem with what you are saying. It's ridiculous to expect guaranteed upgrade inventory-it's always been a lottery of sorts.

Anyone willing to fork over F prices should have priority over everyone else.

Good Luck!
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Old Jan 14, 18, 9:45 pm
  #315  
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Originally Posted by IAH-OIL-TRASH View Post
So United shouldn’t be attempting to sell all First/Business seats?
For a legitimate fare difference? Sure. For an arbitrary low segment fee that doesn't even cover the differential between a couple checked bags and a BOB sandwich, most definitely not. To a Kettle for less cost than en Elite customer on the same fare? Most definitely not.
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