The Joys of Being an MVP Gold

Discussion in 'Alaska Airlines | Mileage Plan' started by dgreen12, Feb 22, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. dgreen12
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    dgreen12 Silver Member

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    To share information amongst Golds, and to perhaps motivate MVPs to "strive for more", I thought I'd share from my experience yesterday on a quickie GEG-SEA-GEG trip to meet with a client.

    My perception of the Joys of MVP Gold status:

    1. Bought two one-way tickets for the meeting (on the Alaska Visa, to qualify for the 1,000 mile booking bonus per trip). No change fees on tickets for Golds meant no risk, and an extra 1,000 miles.
    2. Could have bypassed the normal security line in GEG (didn't, because no one was in the regular security line). Ahh, Spokane!
    3. Fine-tuned the arrival/departure flights at 12:01 a.m. the day of travel via the website (Golds can switch flights day of travel online or in person, same routing, without fee or fare adjustment).
    4. Bypassed the normal security line in SEA on the return.
    5. Meeting finished early - was able to standby for an earlier flight back to GEG --- 18 total people on the standby list, I was number 3 of 18, the top four made it on the flight. Made it home two hours earlier than ticketed.
    Any other Joys to share?
     
    davew-krdm, dave1013, intueri and 2 others like this.
  2. sniklec
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    sniklec Silver Member

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    Being as I'm only MVP and have never had the need or occasion to change a ticket, please forgive a naive question: are you saying there was no fare difference; or are you saying there was a fare difference, but you did not have to pay it on account of your gold status?
     
  3. gba
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    gba Silver Member

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    On day of travel, Golds can do "confirmed same day changes" for no fare difference or change fees (assuming space is available on the alternate flight). Prior to day of travel, change fees are waived but fare differences are still collected.
     
  4. dgreen12
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    dgreen12 Silver Member

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    http://www.alaskaair.com/as/www2/help/faqs/Same-Day-Confirmed-Change.asp

    Golds are exempt from the $25 fee, and also exempt from the 6 hour window --- meaning that same day changes can be done just after midnight to tweak a flight that might not be scheduled to depart until the evening.

    It's a nice perk --- especially if you're in a market where there's frequency of service, like SEA-GEG or SEA-PDX.
     
  5. Lalala
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    Lalala Silver Member

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    I am about to cancel a MR tomorrow. Lovely to have the full credit to apply to the next ticket I book. Weepy that my out and back upgrades cleared. I have never thought about buying two one ways to get the extra 1k booking bonus, I think my brain doesn't work that way. I guess it adds up over time.

    If you are WL for a BOS upgrade tomorrow, today may be your lucky day.
     
    jackal likes this.
  6. beckoa
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    beckoa Gold Member

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    Now it seems that an MVPG still has to wait to be within 6 hours of departure to SDC from OLCI... unless something has changed recently. The software has not kept up with the policies- however one can still SDC at the airport and standby for other flights of the same routing AFAIK. Wish we could take a slightly different routing though.
     
  7. jackal
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    jackal Gold Member

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    I still think the same-day restriction is silly, given how many red-eyes AS operates. If I'm booked on the 12:50 ANC-PDX, I have virtually no options. Heck, even if I'm on one of the four post-midnight ANC-SEA flights, I have no real options, since by the time I am given the option to change, I already have to be at the airport anyway. So if I have something I need to do before leaving, I can't count on getting it done before leaving, since I won't know until 00:01 whether I can SDC or not.

    Not to mention having to set an alarm for 11:58pm in order to be ready to SDC at 12:01am has disturbed my sleep patterns while traveling multiple times... :rolleyes:
     
  8. beckoa
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    beckoa Gold Member

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    I thought that for redeyes departing between midnight and 4 am could sdc the day before on flights 4 PM and later- but think this needs to be done at the airport and might be only for those with status, or on higher fares. I think there's something written in the fare rules along those lines.
     
  9. dgreen12
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    dgreen12 Silver Member

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    I was able to do two SDCs during OLCI --- the original flights were scheduled for 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. The interesting part is that you have to start the OLCI process --- the ability to make changes comes during the process (links in the upper left portion of one of the pages to change to an earlier/later flight).
     
  10. Seacarl
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    Seacarl Gold Member

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    It used to be amazing - you could do OLCI 24 hours before flight time, and do SDC to a flight 23 hours earlier - the day before - or to a later flight the same day.
    Now it seems to me that you can only change to flights within 6 hours of the time you are accessing OLCI. At 12:01am, I don't think you can SDC to any flight that day - only flights between 12:01 and 6:01. If you want a 9am flight, you'd have to do it at 3am. I haven't experimented enough to be sure. I don't know how it works for changing to a later flight, but if you are an hour from the airport and have to return a car, if the 6-hour restriction applies, you don't have a lot of flexibility unless you are willing to risk missing your existing flight.
     
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  11. dgreen12
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    dgreen12 Silver Member

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    I was able to move my 7 a.m. flight to a bit later in the morning. The 9 a.m. return changed to a 7 p.m. return.

    The flexibility is there for a Gold (or is supposed to be). Both flights were changed just after midnight day of travel.
     
  12. Seacarl
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    Seacarl Gold Member

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    Of course the downside of changing flights on the day of travel is that you virtually always lose your upgrade, if you had one.
     
  13. dgreen12
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    dgreen12 Silver Member

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    <sigh> Every seat on QX is first class!

    But that's a whine about the current state of travel between GEG and SEA. And I'm not going there because as much as I'd rather not fly QX, I'd rather not fly WN and UA even more.

    If AS mainline had the frequency on the big boy planes, it would be a factor. Not so much anymore. And I'd rather have the frequency (every hour!, pretty much) than not have the frequency.
     
  14. CDKing
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    CDKing Gold Member

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    About a month or two after the whole change, I wanted to stay an extra day and was excited there was a possible bump opportunity. They ended up not needing volunteers but the agent said " Your a gold all you had to do was ask to be on tomorrows flight" I was then switched to the same flight 24 hours later for no charge

    I'm a price sensitive leisure traveler. MVPG has been great. I never realized how much i wanted to make changes until i had the ability without a fee. I also like that it makes award booking much easier. You can change routing and destination and airline when ever you want.

    *edit* It came in handy again last night. I was telling a friend my travel plans for april and she asked if i was going to be there for her bday. It turned out i was coming a day late. As we were sitting in the restaurant, I pulled the website up on my phone and changed my outbound a day earlier for a mere $20 more in fare.
     
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  15. todd-r
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    todd-r Active Member

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    Have been doing this for years. It's one of the best-kept secrets around!
     
  16. Lalala
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    Lalala Silver Member

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    not anymore.
     
  17. dgreen12
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    dgreen12 Silver Member

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    I'm not sure it was ever a "secret". The general public usually thinks of buying round-trip tickets when purchasing travel.

    The two one-ways concept works because
    • AS went to one-way pricing a few years back
    • AS is nice enough to its Golds to waive change fees
    • AS has a great relationship with Bank of America and wants to drive traffic to the BofA AS Visa card, where AS reaps some financial benefits
     
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  18. beckoa
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    beckoa Gold Member

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    Agree. Ever since AS stopped putting any benefit with RT ticketing, the majority of my itineraries are OW. The lone exclusions are with the BoA companion certificate, or a discount code taking a percentage off an itinerary.
     

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