ExpertFlyer Changes - Free Accounts and Other Improvements

Discussion in 'ExpertFlyer' started by ExpertFlyer Voice, Nov 9, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. ExpertFlyer Voice

    ExpertFlyer Voice Z Representative

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    We're excited to announce that ExpertFlyer released a significant update today. For the first time we now have a Free account level in addition to our Basic and Premium paid subscriptions.

    Many of you enjoy the advanced features that ExpertFlyer has to offer, however we wanted to extend the power of ExpertFlyer to those that may not need all of those advanced features. As such, we took the feature that we feel has the widest general appeal, Seat Alerts, and made it available and easy to use in a Free version of ExpertFlyer.

    Here are the details on the Free account and what this means to our paid subscriptions. Please note, what we called "Pending" alerts are now called "Active" alerts, to better reflect that they are actively searching for availability.

    Free Account:

    • With the Free account, you can only create Seat Alerts
    • 1 Active Seat Alert at a time is included with the Free account
    • This 1 included free alert can use the Any Window Seat, Any Aisle Seat, or Any Seat alert options. The Any Exit Row Seat, Any Two Seats Together, or Specific Seat alert options require a paid Seat Alert which is $.99
    • Additional Active Seat Alerts can be purchased for $.99 each and include all alert options.
    • If you sign up for a Free Account to start, you can at any time click the Upgrade button that you'll see after you log-in to start a 5-Day trial of our Premium service, or to reactivate your Basic or Premium subscription if you already had your 5-day trial.

    Basic Subscription:

    • In addition all existing features that Basic subscribers have enjoyed, Basic subscribers can now create Seat Alerts as well.
    • 4 Active Seat Alerts are included free of charge with a Basic subscription and include all alert options.
    • Additional Active Seat Alerts beyond the included 4 can be purchased for $.99 each.

    Premium Subscription:
    • Premium Subscriptions still include up to 30 combined Active Flight and Seat Alerts.
    • Flight Alerts are still a Premium subscription only feature
    • Additional Active Seat Alerts can be purchased for $.99 each if you already have 30 active alerts
    • We will soon add the ability to purchase additional Flight Alerts as well if you already have 30 active alerts.

    Note that if your Basic or Premium subscription isn't renewed at the end of your subscription term, the account will become a Free account and any Active Seat Alerts that weren't paid for will go into a "Paused" state. To un-Pause a Seat Alert, you can either renew your Basic/Premium paid subscription, or use the 1 included free Seat Alert.

    This also means that all existing accounts that were "inactive" until today, where the paid subscription (or 5-day trial) lapsed and had not been renewed, are now Free accounts. You are welcome to log-in and create your free Seat Alert, and you can upgrade the account back to a Basic or Premium subscription at any time.

    Please feel free to post any questions and please email us at customercare@expertflyer.com with any feedback or bugs you may find. Thank you for your support!
     
  2. boxedlunch
    Original Member

    boxedlunch Silver Member

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    Great add! I've wanted to use EF for years, but as a (relatively) in-frequent flyer...I couldn't justify maintaining a paid subscription. This new option closes the gap and offers a benefit I'd gladly pay $.99 to use.

    *edit* The free account lacks the inventory search feature. frown face
     
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  3. m124

    m124 Silver Member

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    So the free account cannot search for any award space, is that correct?
     
  4. ExpertFlyer Voice

    ExpertFlyer Voice Z Representative

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  5. benthelefty

    benthelefty Silver Member

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    So where's the true value here? I must admit I'm ignorant to this and just recently heard about it, but the open seat option is worthless w/o checking award seats. I'll have to do some more research..
     
  6. ExpertFlyer Voice

    ExpertFlyer Voice Z Representative

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    They are two separate features of ExpertFlyer. Regardless of if you pay for your ticket with miles or money, it doesn't guarantee you get the seat you want, that’s where Seat Alerts help. Most travelers pay for travel and just want to sit in a good seat without paying extra. The Free Account is for them.

    If you want to use ExpertFlyer’s Award & Upgrade search, it’s still there in the Basic & Premium subscriptions like it’s always been.
     
  7. alohastephen

    alohastephen Gold Member

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    I signed up for the free service and quickly created a seat alert.

    It gives me this message:
    "You have selected alert options which costs $0.99
    Click purchase to complete your alert."

    :confused::confused::confused:
     
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  8. ExpertFlyer Voice

    ExpertFlyer Voice Z Representative

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    In the original post, which you just quoted in your reply, it says:
     
  9. alohastephen

    alohastephen Gold Member

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    Sorry. I guess that I was too excited to read the fine print. :(
     
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  10. ExpertFlyer Voice

    ExpertFlyer Voice Z Representative

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    Not a problem. It isn't something we're trying to hide, we are very clear on what is and isn't free. The same information is also in our FAQ (http://www.expertflyer.com/expertflyer-support-faq) and on the help for the alert creation dialog.

    That aside, to put this in perspective, until this change we had no free account level at all and you needed to pay $10 per month for the duration of the Seat Alert. Now you only have to pay $.99, once, and only if you want advanced options or more then one alert active at a time.

    At the end of the day, paying at most $.99 to not get stuck in a middle seat, for example, is a no-brainer in our opinion.
     
  11. cvsara
    Original Member

    cvsara Gold Member

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    By saying that only one seat alert at a time can be selected, I interpret that to mean, as an example' only the outbound flight can be selected, and at a later time, the return trip of the roundtrip has to be selected the same way as the outbound?
    Also, if traveling with a second person, that person would also have to sign up for a free account to avoid the two-seat 99¢ cost?
    Do I understand that correctly?

    Has ExpertFlyer considered a reduced cost program for limited full access, such as limiting the number of flight/functions that can be used over the course of the year?
     
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  12. ExpertFlyer Voice

    ExpertFlyer Voice Z Representative

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    You can create as many Seat Alerts as you want at a time, but only the first one is free. Specifically the Any Seat, Any Window, or Any Aisle options. Each additional will cost $.99

    The only reason a second person you are traveling with would need their own account is if they want to create a different Seat Alert than yours. Note that one of the Seat Alert options is "Any Two Seats Together" if that's what you're looking for, only one Seat Alert would be required for that.

    Our Basic Account costs $4.99/month and includes 4 Seat Alerts at a time and 250 searches per month for our other functions. The only thing you can't do with the Basic account is flight availability alerts and fare searching. Those are too costly for us to make available at any other level than our Premium service.
     
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  13. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Agreed. I used to be a subscriber and liked it, but I just wasn't using it enough to justify the subscription. I just paid 99 cents to keep an eye on a specific seat. Certainly worth the time it will save me. That said, I wonder if it would be better for you if you offered a "deposit" feature where I could put, say, $10 into my account and then draw from it as I need. Should be less costly than 10 separate 99 cent credit card charges, no? (maybe we could split the savings?)

    I will also take a look at the Basic plan to see if that meets my goals. The price seems right.
     
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  14. dc_traveler
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    dc_traveler Silver Member

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    My thanks to ExpertFlyer for its free account -- it alerted me to the availability of aisle seats in E+ on United when I was stuck in a middle seat on E-. I might have found it on my own but getting the e-mail from ExpertFlyer was helpful.
     
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