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Explain this fairing - Y is $1k more than J

Explain this fairing - Y is $1k more than J

Old Oct 9, 20, 8:12 pm
  #1  
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Explain this fairing - Y is $1k more than J

I'm sure it's happened before but its not something I've ever come across and curious about what's underlying

Looking at options for a trip (and have realized that I have my date wrong and cities in the wrong order, so I know I won't be booking this) but curious how economy "lowest" economy fare (booking into C and Y) can fare at $1,000 more than the business (booking into D and Y fare)... I'm guessing a significant part of it is the 2nd segment booking into Y but what's keeping that segment from booking into lower inventory given it looks like all of the buckets are wide open....

I guess it just seems strange (even in the absurdities of fare rules, married availability, etc. that the engine can't come up with an economy fare that is at least the same as lowest business fare.
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Old Oct 9, 20, 8:35 pm
  #2  
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I’m not as much of a fare expert as others on here, but looks to me like the economy option is full fare, vs. the business which books into the ‘somewhat’ discount D bucket. There is no economy fares left on the domestic segment, so this is probably the best attempt to put you into economy where possible, and it probably doesn’t combine with the D fare, so put you into C on the domestic segment, which can only combine with a Y in economy. Meanwhile, there is a through D fare in Polaris, which is probably generally going to be even cheaper than a straight Y fare anyway. Cant see the fare rules, but the C/Y fare is probably more flexible (like fully refundable, or refundable with a fee) than the D fare which is probably non-refundable and has a change/cancel fee (this is international, so change fees will still apply on most types of fares).

Just a guess, but if you were actually booking this, and didn’t want to splurge for D on the international segment, it might be cheaper to stay in economy by booking this as multi-city, where you might be able to get the discount F fare on the CLE-IAH, and then book into a discount fare class on the international segment.

edit: after looking and thinking a little more, change fees are waived until the end of the year, so there wouldn’t be a change fee on the D fare, but refundability difference still stands, and change fee comment still applies if this trip was next year. Also, there is a much cheaper economy option of $760 W fare departing CLE in the afternoon that day, but it’s < 90 minute layover.

Last edited by emcampbe; Oct 9, 20 at 8:46 pm
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Old Oct 9, 20, 8:39 pm
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Without doing any extensive research --

I think the "lowest" "economy" fare is actually (as you are seeing) CLE-IAH (C) + IAH-GRU (Y). Whereas the Business fare is properly a through-fare for CLE-GRU (D). It appears that CLE-IAH is pretty close to sold out in economy that day at that time, which forces combination with an expensive IAH-GRU economy fare.
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Old Oct 9, 20, 8:45 pm
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All I see is PZ and IN greater than 1 on the long haul
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Old Oct 9, 20, 8:59 pm
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C + Y > D + D.

QED

Welcome to the surreal world of Airline fares.... What you might be bumping into could be combinability issue -- you asked UA to find you an economy ticket and it wasn't available -- so it got a full fair Y on the second second and looks to find a fare on the first segment that it can combine that with -- in your case a "C" -- and that makes for one expensive ticket....
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Last edited by Textile; Oct 9, 20 at 9:08 pm
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Old Oct 9, 20, 9:03 pm
  #6  
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Originally Posted by emcampbe View Post
I’m not as much of a fare expert as others on here, but looks to me like the economy option is full fare, vs. the business which books into the ‘somewhat’ discount D bucket. There is no economy fares left on the domestic segment, so this is probably the best attempt to put you into economy where possible, and it probably doesn’t combine with the D fare, so put you into C on the domestic segment, which can only combine with a Y in economy. Meanwhile, there is a through D fare in Polaris, which is probably generally going to be even cheaper than a straight Y fare anyway. Cant see the fare rules, but the C/Y fare is probably more flexible (like fully refundable, or refundable with a fee) than the D fare which is probably non-refundable and has a change/cancel fee (this is international, so change fees will still apply on most types of fares).

Just a guess, but if you were actually booking this, and didn’t want to splurge for D on the international segment, it might be cheaper to stay in economy by booking this as multi-city, where you might be able to get the discount F fare on the CLE-IAH, and then book into a discount fare class on the international segment.

edit: after looking and thinking a little more, change fees are waived until the end of the year, so there wouldn’t be a change fee on the D fare, but refundability difference still stands, and change fee comment still applies if this trip was next year. Also, there is a much cheaper economy option of $760 W fare departing CLE in the afternoon that day, but it’s < 90 minute layover.
Without a Polaris lounge available, I'd take the <90 minute layover, especially compared to a nearly 12 hour layover...but nonetheless. Since whatever I do wind up booking will likely have to be refundable for...reasons...this was more of a "what do UA's flight schedules look like" exercise. Hadn't thought about combinability C to Y which would make sense (is D not combinable with anything in back, or is this just a case of both are only combinable with Y and C+Y cheaper than D+Y?

Originally Posted by fumje View Post
Without doing any extensive research --

I think the "lowest" "economy" fare is actually (as you are seeing) CLE-IAH (C) + IAH-GRU (Y). Whereas the Business fare is properly a through-fare for CLE-GRU (D). It appears that CLE-IAH is pretty close to sold out in economy that day at that time, which forces combination with an expensive IAH-GRU economy fare.
Yeah, looks like it's 0 in Y and 1 in F at the moment which is slightly odd but based on how full all of my flights out of CLE have been recently and how few flights they are (compared to better days) isn't too surprising.

Originally Posted by myperks View Post
All I see is PZ and IN greater than 1 on the long haul
Yeah, looks like PZ and IN to/from Brazil is pretty much wide open on most of the options something I am not at all used to seeing and making me seriously contemplate booking Y and burning PPs for this trip
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Old Oct 9, 20, 10:13 pm
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Mrs. and I are planning a trip EWR-PNI-NRT-EWR in a few years. When sampling prices, after selecting J for the first two segments, the complete trip is in the $6k to $7k when flying NRT-EWR in J, but is over $15k if flying the last leg in W.

Airfare structure is something that even the best FTers haven't been able to decode.
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Old Oct 10, 20, 5:54 am
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I used to travel from BRU to the UK on regular basis and often found that a J fare was cheaper than a Y fare. When I got onboard I would often be the only J pax but Y would be full. All about demand.

Equally, a couple of years ago we wanted flights to MBJ and had to route LHR- MIA-MBJ. First was £1000 cheaper than Business. Very strange as F was full on both TATL sectors.
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Old Oct 10, 20, 12:53 pm
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Originally Posted by 737Av8tor View Post
I used to travel from BRU to the UK on regular basis and often found that a J fare was cheaper than a Y fare. When I got onboard I would often be the only J pax but Y would be full. All about demand.
Some companies will not pay for J even if it's half the price. Policies written by people who have never travelled.
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Old Oct 10, 20, 2:27 pm
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Originally Posted by mahasamatman View Post
Some companies will not pay for J even if it's half the price. Policies written by people who have never travelled.
heh, more often than not the policies are written by people that have seen every possible abuse of the system and consequently get a bit aggressive about curtailing opportunities to do so.
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Old Oct 10, 20, 3:42 pm
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The Y fare is fully refundable while the D fare is not. That may not matter to OP, but it does to some businesses, perhaps many on this particular route. Fare differentials such as this are fairly common. Most would book below Y, but it's not available so Y it is.
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Old Oct 10, 20, 3:59 pm
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
Without doing any extensive research --

I think the "lowest" "economy" fare is actually (as you are seeing) CLE-IAH (C) + IAH-GRU (Y). Whereas the Business fare is properly a through-fare for CLE-GRU (D). It appears that CLE-IAH is pretty close to sold out in economy that day at that time, which forces combination with an expensive IAH-GRU economy fare.
This is correct. It is forcing Y "by any means possible" which involves a fare break in IAH and produces a higher result than the D through fare. If you split the ticket in IAH it is almost certainly cheaper (in Y) than either presented option.
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Old Oct 10, 20, 4:05 pm
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Originally Posted by Textile View Post
C + Y > D + D.
Not quite right. It's actually C + Y > D as the business class ticket is a single "through" D fare (fare basis code DNX7A9EN) for CLE-GRU trip that covers both segments, while the C + Y fares are a broken fare where there is a separate fare being applied to each segment.
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Old Oct 10, 20, 4:23 pm
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Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
The Y fare is fully refundable while the D fare is not. That may not matter to OP, but it does to some businesses, perhaps many on this particular route. Fare differentials such as this are fairly common. Most would book below Y, but it's not available so Y it is.
That's what tripped me up -- while the trip I eventually book will need to be refundable this was a search based on "lowest available" (in part because UA.com can't seem to remember/apply my fare type search preferences) -- virtually every bucked on IAH-GRU is not only available but wide open (9) so it wasn't clicking why that segment would book in Y... it seems, though that none of the fares other than Y are combinable with the C fare thus yielding this result.

Also interesting that it was the #1 result but I've long given up trying to figure out what, if any, logic is applied to the default sort on .com
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Old Oct 10, 20, 8:11 pm
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Originally Posted by xliioper View Post
Not quite right. It's actually C + Y > D as the business class ticket is a single "through" D fare (fare basis code DNX7A9EN) for CLE-GRU trip that covers both segments, while the C + Y fares are a broken fare where there is a separate fare being applied to each segment.
True, good observation
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