13 Responses

  1. farbster
    farbster at |

    I wonder if I have more than one pax on a reservation, do I have to upgrade both? What if I only want to upgrade my wife (I’m such a great husband) and I’m fine flying in the back?

    If I’m flying WN and there are more than one pax on the reservation, everyone must do the early boarding (you can’t break out only one).

  2. Gene
    Gene at |

    Very slippery slope. It won’t be long until no one gets free upgrades.

    1. Kris
      Kris at |

      Not such a bad thing. Free domestic upgrades have made many people over entitled. Some people seem to think an upgrade is a right, not a privilege, which is sickening.

    2. TomCT
      TomCT at |

      Perhaps they’d stop offering free upgrades completely. This way, those that pay to sit in front can have a more pleasant experience.

  3. Levy Flight
    Levy Flight at |

    Etihad have such a system. The set lowest bid option is not inexpensive. So you can’t just put in a very low bid below that threshold and if you are the only one have that upgrade come to you.

  4. ffi
    ffi at |

    I can foresee a future for AA
    Paid upgrades = VIPs / Miles / then Stickers based on status
    (prob EXPs earn stickers like rest or buy at a discount)
    then
    Paid upgrades – from bidding
    THEN,
    free upgrades for all elites

    1. Gene
      Gene at |

      @ffi — Yeah, this is basically the current UA system, although UA can’t seem to be honest about it.

      1. oleg
        oleg at |

        @Gene – not quite. UA (whether by choice or by technical incompetence) prioritizes cash upgrades above instrument upgrades.

        And at least for now on AA, comp EXP upgrades are ranked higher than these cash upgrades.

    2. oleg
      oleg at |

      While that may be a possible future, that removes much of the status benefits since there will be more than enough paid upgrades (at least assuming no minimum bid required). The two ways to fix that is either require a substantial minimum bid, or just forego the free upgrades entirely but count each status as a certain bid factor (e.g. EXP status = $100 towards bid, Gold = $25. So a GM bidding 110 would be first, followed by EXP bidding 5, followed by EXP bidding 0, followed by Gold bidding 70, followed by Gold bidding 0.)

  5. Pizza In Motion – American Airlines Launching A Bid System For Upgrades (Sub-title: I’m a Bit Scared)

    […] was having a perfectly reasonable day until I saw this post from Wandering Aramean detailing American Airlines’ decision to jump in the pool of airlines offering upgrades in an […]

  6. The Global Traveller
    The Global Traveller at |

    When Air NZ introduced bid upgrades they also assured elites that their upgrade vouchers (which expire if unused) or regular point upgrades (at fixed values only available to top elites) would have priority. Of course it didn’t take long before this was demonstrated to not be the case.

    Note Air NZ’s system is different because elites are encouraged to use the bid upgrade (makes sense as only 1 or 2 upgrade vouchers are issued annually and they apply per sector not per journey). Bids from elites are multiplied by a factor to give more weight to their bids.

    More recently Air NZ revamped their processes so bid upgrades are only processed in the day or so before departure.

    There is a thread on Flyertalk that tracks successful bids. For non-status pax, with exception of one or two routes with low volumes of premium passengers, to have a successful bid you generally need to bid considerably more than the old fixed value points upgrades.