Biz Class Upgrade Possible on International Flight?

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by Biscuet, Jul 15, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Biscuet

    Biscuet Active Member

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    I have a flight tomorrow from PEK-IAD-ATL on UA. I called today to ask about biz class availability. They told me there are 7 seats left and if i applied an SWU (which i don't have) then i'd most likely get the upgrade. Since i don't have the SWU (i'm premiere exec, not 1K), has anyone had experience with getting upgraded automatically at the gate? Does that still happen on UA flights? Any tricks to getting the bump to biz class?

    PS: While i was on the phone with UA today they upgraded my friend who's traveling with me who has no status to Economy Plus for free so he could sit next to me. Great customer service!!
     
  2. Scottrick
    Original Member

    Scottrick Gold Member

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    You need (1) upgrade instrument such as SWU, (2) miles or miles + copay depending on fare class, or (3) pray the flight is oversold and you get an op-up, or a bump to a later flight with an op-up. No free upgrades unless they have a darn good reason to move you.
     
  3. Biscuet

    Biscuet Active Member

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    Thanks Scottrick. I guess i'll start praying that it's oversold. Customer service told me the miles + copay was 30k miles and $550. Yikes!
     
  4. Ygor
    Original Member

    Ygor Gold Member

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    If there are still 7 seats left in biz class, I think an op up due to oversell is probably not possible, or INP as we would say around here. Good luck!
     
  5. seaflyguy
    Original Member

    seaflyguy Silver Member

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    Even if coach is oversold, and they need to op-up people into business, they're going to start with GSes, then 1Ks... so I'm not optimistic about your prayers (presumably to the Flying Spaghetti Monster) being answered. Sometimes not even FSM can help.
     
  6. RichardInSF
    Original Member

    RichardInSF Silver Member

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    Alas, not looking overbooked on July 16, 17, or 18 flights -- all three have Y9 B9 M9.
     
  7. Biscuet

    Biscuet Active Member

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    BUMMMMMMMER!! Ha! Oh well... i'm in 17C, the bulkhead. Best seat in E+ in my opinion. I'll survive. :)
     
  8. legalalien
    Original Member

    legalalien Gold Member

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    30k miles $550 is still way cheaper than paid C. :)
     
  9. Jslo
    Original Member

    Jslo Gold Member

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    Yeah, if you gotta wing it on a UA 777, with no chance of upgrade- it does get a lot worse than 17C. Wishing you uneventful travel.
     
  10. chitownflyer
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    chitownflyer Silver Member

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    This may be the Upgrade for Cash(UFC) option you should ask about upon check in at PEK.
     
  11. RichardInSF
    Original Member

    RichardInSF Silver Member

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    No, UFC doesn't require miles. On this route, UFC would typically be about $800.
     
  12. Canadi>n
    Original Member

    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    There would likely be higher fare-paying customers or higher elites who'd likely get the bump before they got down to a PremEx, and because your res is linked to your companions, his/her lack of status would also serve to put you further down the list since UA would be reluctant to break up a party traveling together, and your colleague would not be entitled since they have no status.
     
  13. chitownflyer
    Original Member

    chitownflyer Silver Member

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    Correct. There have been past cases of UFC for around $550, but it seems United has upped the fee to the $700 or $800 range to maximize revenues.
     
  14. jumbo_cards

    jumbo_cards Silver Member

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    I know several 1K'ers often get bumped (no need SWU) to international biz class on routes that is often full for economy. SFO->PEK is one of them.
     
  15. Biscuet

    Biscuet Active Member

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    Just an update:
    When i got to the airport i was told they switched the aircraft from a 747 to a 777 new config. So i was on the aisle in row 19 (bulkhead). Great seat, great view of biz class lol. I sat next to a chatterbox, but oh well. Overall, not a bad flight.

    One disappointment: UA now charging for "premiere" movie selections on the On Demand system. Lame. There are about 6 movies to choose from in the free option and then about 25 to choose from in the premiere. Why the nickel and diming??
     
  16. aanswer

    aanswer Silver Member

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    There was a discussion about this a while ago. A bad move IMO.

    Last year, I got in on the JFK to SYD deal. The Australian couple behind me were complaining (and rightfully so) about lack of IFE and other features.
     
  17. Biscuet

    Biscuet Active Member

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    The config is nice. 3, 3, 3 seating makes it feel not nearly as cramped (that was E+, i don't know how economy feels). But yes, the free IFE was terrible. The premier option looked decent though, but i didn't pay for it because of the principle. Maybe it should be free for *G. Ha! Or, make it $20 (instead of $10) and include wifi. I'd pay $20 if it included wifi for the duration of the flight.

    Oh, one other thing i just thought of: the crazy dude next to me found a power outlet under the seat while he was doing sit-ups in the aisle (that's a whole different story!). Not sure if those are under every seat, but i saw he had his ipod plugged in for the last 2 hours of the flight so i guess the outlet worked. Weird that he had to climb under the seat to find it.
     

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