Moral or Ethical Question: Flying C/J when family flies Y?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by General_Flyer, Nov 15, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. General_Flyer
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    General_Flyer Gold Member

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    A dilemma on my part really ensues in this issue..

    Am flying with my family for vacation next month, which includes my mom, dad, brother, and sister. We're flying Y from SE Asia to Europe which is a very long flight. My back and hip couldn't take a flight that long in Y, and I feel very uncomfortable in general flying for that amount of more than 13 hours 1 way due to the problem.

    I am faced with the question that puts me in a position where I'll be upgrading myself to C while the rest of my family is still back there.. Upgrading everyone is out of the question. What should I do? I feel wrong for doing this, but I also need to take care of my health in essence. Any comments and/or suggestions is most welcome.
     
  2. Jaimito Cartero
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    Jaimito Cartero Silver Member

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    I need a larger seat, so have done this on occasion. If I can upgrade family members, I do so. If not, then it's not the end of the world. If they want an upgrade tell them to get their own. :)
     
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  3. traveltoomuch

    traveltoomuch Silver Member

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    Would it perhaps cause them less distress for you to take a different flight, perhaps meeting them at a connecting point for the last segment? That way, no one has to see that you're in C.

    If you have to all be on the same plane, I'd still do the u-g. I would go ahead and tell them in advance; don't surprise them with this when you board. If they ask, tell them how you're doing it (miles/copay/etc.) and how they can do the same (e.g. buy miles or apply for the airline's credit card to get a burst of miles), and let them each decide if the cost is worth it. The important piece is for them to see that upgrading has a cost. And if you're paying with miles, it's important for them to see that miles have a cost, too.

    Alternatively, skip the u-g and actually buy C. Then they can very clearly see the cost and make their own decision about paying that price.

    In the last year, I've been on a couple of long hauls with me in C and Mrs. traveltoomuch in Y. I sent back a glass of wine and went back to say "hi" occasionally. She coped. Part of that is that she understands the value of the miles and made her own decision that paying for the u-g wasn't worthwhile. I've also done one long haul trip with my mother: I let her have the F seat while I stayed in C. She coped, too. :)
     
  4. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    If you have a legitimate difficulty, your family will know this and certainly couldn't object. If your problem only manifests itself on the plane (but you can golf, bowl, ski, or do other activities without issue), perhaps they'd raise an eyebrow at your difficulty.

    I presume upgrading everyone is out of the question because of capacity controls on miles upgrades. If you're really worried, might you be able to get two seats...and rotate them a bit?
     
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  5. cennas
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    cennas Gold Member

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    Tell them honestly beforehand the reason for you to be doing what you're doing and how are you going to do it. I'm sure they'll understand.

    I've done this before about 10 years ago, me in J (fully paid by my miles) and my mom was in Y with her friends. Although, to be honest, if she were without her friends I would just get a Y ticket and flew at the back with her.
     
  6. General_Flyer
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    General_Flyer Gold Member

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    Thank you all for the replies. The one thing that makes it difficult is that he's the one paying for everything. I just don't feel right flying in C even with miles upgrade while the rest sits in Y.

    This is my line of thinking too, the other thing that worries me is that they'll be offended by my sitting in C. I kept asking my dad if he'll allow my upgrade to C, he's been all quiet about it.

    My dad thinks that miles accrual are just an airline game with paying higher fares just for miles which to him doesn't make sense.

    I've asked them if they'll allow me to fly a different airline and meet them in europe, but my dad with his strong sense of 'togetherness' and not wanting to be separated from everyone just makes it all the more annoying when I asked him that.

    He can see the price alright, and having to pay full fare Y is already a pain for him, but that's his own fault for waiting this long.. Flying C where "we'll all get to the same destination anyways, why pay more" just doesn't make sense to him.

    I always have back problems and they know of it. Every time I'm done with sports, I always have back pain. But they just won't let me get away with flying C.

    The other thing about my family is, they won't fly in C even if I upgrade them to C. Hence, dilemma on every turn.

    To simply say, it's difficult for them to understand... To pay 2x for something that's (as I said above), "getting you there all the same anyways" just doesn't make sense to them..
     
  7. cennas
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    cennas Gold Member

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    Wow, I sure don't envy your position right now. I didn't think it would be this complicated. But I hope everything work out well in the end for everyone.
     
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  8. General_Flyer
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    I certainly hope so.. Personally if I weren't so dilemmatic I'd upgrade myself without notifying them.. Seems like the best way to do it with the 'no replies' I've been getting from my dad..
     
  9. cennas
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    Or maybe you could conspire with the check-in agent to make it look like you are the lucky recipient of an 'op-up' ?
     
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  10. General_Flyer
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    As if my dad would believe me.... But he's going to be ok I think. I made him a deal that if I can't get preferred seating, then I'd upgrade to C.
     
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  11. Flyer1976
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    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    If they're all buying Full Fare Y and aren't upgrading on the cheap... I find that morally questionable =)
     
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  12. General_Flyer
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    They are flying full time Y, but on SQ it's difficult to do upgrades..
     
  13. NYCAdventurer

    NYCAdventurer Gold Member

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    Very fair question, but I think you have to do what works for you. Especially if it is due to a health issue then anyone you are traveling with should understand. There are of course people out there, no matter who they are to you, will give you grief. To those people, they need to get over themselves and let you live. As long as you are supporting yourself and your upgrade no one should have any negative thoughts or words. Be good to yourself and be comfortable! Enjoy your flight and stop worrying so much about others.
     
  14. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    Oh clearly you are not related to my people:D; who would fly Y, and then revel in the opportunity to bitch about it through the whole vacation and for months after!
     
  15. cennas
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    cennas Gold Member

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    By preferred seating you mean the emergency exit seat on SQ? The legroom is very good for these seats, so if you cannot get a C seat at least you get something :)
     
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  16. General_Flyer
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    Out of respect to my parents, it makes me unable to do so. Which is why its all the more difficult. If they allowed me to fly on a different carrier in the first place and meet them somewhere then I won't have any problems at all.

    :p

    That's true.. For only IDR 900,000 or $100 R/T isn't bad at all.. :)
     
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  17. NYBanker
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    You are really in a pickle.

    How do these two statements reconcile? Is the extra few inches of legroom enough to make your back and hip ok?
     
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  18. Bluto
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    Bluto Silver Member

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    Solution: Pay your dad for your ticket. Then you can upgrade without that on your conscience. If you cannot afford to pay him for your ticket, then I think you have to simply choose which is more uncomfortable: your back, or your discomfort from a disgruntled family. My family wouldn't care if I upgraded. On the other hand, I am going to give up 2 F seats on a Cathay ORD-HKG trip to some lucky couple in J just so that my son and I can sit in J with my wife and daughter. I see no problem with you upgrading, but I also see no problem with declining to do so because you think it'll be less painful to deal with a non-envious family.

    Alternate solution: Offer to pay for your ticket. If dad declines, offer him your upgrade. If he still declines, well you have done enough to be worry free.
     
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  19. General_Flyer
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    Yes I am..

    Well lets put it this way, the seat is the problem.. My back just can't handle being in a sitting position for so long.. The one thing I really hate is when I have heavy tingling sensation on by backbone which can get extremely uncomfortable. When that happens, I can't sleep nor do anything. Legroom will give me some extra room to just slide out a little bit which would make it less painful..

    He and my mom doesn't want the upgrade, and never willing to accept any, which is the hard part. They are ok with me flying up front, but they feel that I am healthy enough and have no problems sitting in Y, which I pointed out to them for several years now that I just can't handle that.

    On the other hand, I'm trying to respect my family by sitting in Y in all the uncomfortableness of it. Wished I could just fly on another airline and meet with them someplace than having to deal with this in the first place..
     
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  20. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Probably not going to fly this time around, but in the future why not insist that you have to fly another airline/day due to work schedule or in order to earn status or ...
     
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  21. General_Flyer
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    Tried.. reasoning with them in terms of visa application.. My dad gave me a solution I never expected.. Should've tried harder..
     
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  22. cennas
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    Yep, I always go for preferred seating whenever I have to fly SQ's 'new' Y nowadays. The old seats aren't bad but the 'new' ones just don't have enough leg room to stretch out comfortably.

    I'd say, if it's available you should just take the preferred seating option, and better yet, you should pay it out of your own pocket. :)

    Anyway, will your dad decline a preferred seat also for himself and the whole family?
     
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  23. General_Flyer
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    That's a great idea! :)

    He declined preferred seating as usual. He's waited for so long to buy the tickets only to purchase full fare Y. I don't really mind since I get 150% on LH anyways, but he thought having to pay that much was already more than he can stomach.

    He's just a very busy guy who can't seem to figure vacation days until he's almost then and there and well.. Prices are already sky-high..
     
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  24. traveltoomuch

    traveltoomuch Silver Member

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    Something isn't adding up here.

    This thread was started on November 15th saying this is for travel "next month". Two+ weeks out does not tend to equal last minute. Lower-than-Y fares, in my experience, tend to be available at least through 3 days before departure unless, perhaps, you're only buying a one-way ticket.
     
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  25. General_Flyer
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    It is when the seats are filled out and only Y fare is available. Mid-December is always the busiest travel time from SE Asia to European destination for tourism, hence why prices are at that level at least on SQ. This is of course a R/T tickets, but if you checked their website, from Dec 16 to 18 there are no more seats left from SIN to most European destinations that are usually where tourists go.

    Its the same thing from the US to Asia in general during these times. Tickets are roughly at the $2K level minimum and most have been sold out.
     
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