Upgrade opportunity at kiosk during check-in?

Discussion in 'American Airlines | AAdvantage' started by scrow595, Apr 17, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. scrow595

    scrow595 Active Member

    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    4
    Status Points:
    90
    Sometimes when I check in at the AA kiosk I am given the opportunity to upgrade to First for a relatively low fee. This happened yesterday flying from IAH to OKC. It doesn't happen every time so I am wondering if anyone knows how the airline decides when to give us this opportunity and when it doesn't. Thanks for your thoughts.
     
    zpaul and DeltaExpert like this.
  2. jasher926

    jasher926 Silver Member

    Messages:
    77
    Likes Received:
    70
    Status Points:
    235
    I think it happens when First seats are available and there isn't anyone on the waitlist for upgrades. They let you buy 500-mile stickers for $30 a piece if you have at least Gold status or have a full-fare economy.
     
    DeltaExpert likes this.
  3. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
    I think what the OP is actually referencing is called a Load Factor Based Upgrade (LFBU). These are offered when there is space in first or business class and all expected last minute purchases and upgrades are expected to be accommodated. You don't need any status whatsoever to be offered these. You can even upgrade an award ticket with these, or upgrade on international flights TATL or TPAC.

    More information here!
     
    MyTravels and scrow595 like this.
  4. DeltaExpert
    Original Member

    DeltaExpert Gold Member

    Messages:
    2,086
    Likes Received:
    7,598
    Status Points:
    6,570
    How does everyone like this feature on AA?
     
  5. aamilesslave
    Original Member

    aamilesslave Silver Member

    Messages:
    104
    Likes Received:
    97
    Status Points:
    310
    For those of us with status that request sticker/SWU upgrades and/or that travel at peak times, it's really a non-factor.
     
    DeltaExpert likes this.
  6. scrow595

    scrow595 Active Member

    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    4
    Status Points:
    90
    Thanks DestinationDavid. That is exactly what I was looking for. Appreciate the link!
     
  7. kw335
    Original Member

    kw335 Silver Member

    Messages:
    737
    Likes Received:
    1,706
    Status Points:
    975
    Having flown almost 75 segments year-to-date, I have yet to be offered LFBU when checking in on a kiosk. YMMV i guess :)
     
  8. Eloy Fonseca Neto
    Original Member

    Eloy Fonseca Neto Silver Member

    Messages:
    843
    Likes Received:
    1,024
    Status Points:
    870
    You can also request 24 hours prior if you're a gold member...
     
  9. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
    Just to be clear for those in the future who read this - LFBUs cannot be requested by anyone regardless of GLD, PLT, or EXP status. They're only offered to passengers at check-in and there is no mechanism to request them prior to that.

    What Eloy is referring to is the upgrade process by which GLD and PLT members can use the 500 mile stickers they've earned or bought to upgrade. In those cases, GLD members can request the upgrade when they buy their tickets. The 24 hour limitation on GLD members refers to the earliest time at which AA will approve the upgrade request. So upgrades can be requested at the time of purchase, but GLD members won't be upgraded prior to the 24 hour mark.

    Just want to make sure there is no confusion. :)
     
  10. Eloy Fonseca Neto
    Original Member

    Eloy Fonseca Neto Silver Member

    Messages:
    843
    Likes Received:
    1,024
    Status Points:
    870
    And Platinum 72hrs and EXP 100hrs... That's it David!!!
     
  11. anabolism
    Original Member

    anabolism Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,403
    Likes Received:
    1,771
    Status Points:
    1,120
    Thank you, DestinationDavid. Being clear on different services is helpful. Just to add one more clarifying nit: LFBUs are only offered at the kiosk; you can't get one via an agent.

    There are many different types of upgrades (e.g., miles/copay, VIP/SWU, segment, operational) and each have their own conditions for who gets it, under which circumstances, when, etc.
     
  12. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
    Aren't LFBUs available from agents outside of the US since they don't use kiosks? I've seen signs posted that list upgrade prices in NRT and PEK before.
     
  13. miamigrad
    Original Member

    miamigrad Silver Member

    Messages:
    134
    Likes Received:
    179
    Status Points:
    395
    No, I believe that those upgrades are separate from LFBUs. You may be referencing "International Airport Upgrades":
    http://www.travelingbetter.com/forums/showpost.php?p=27706&postcount=27
     
  14. FetePerfection
    Original Member

    FetePerfection Silver Member

    Messages:
    454
    Likes Received:
    981
    Status Points:
    700
    Not being a FF with status on AA, I appreciate the opportunity for an upgrade which I usually take full advantage of, depending on hours in the air.
     
  15. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
  16. anabolism
    Original Member

    anabolism Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,403
    Likes Received:
    1,771
    Status Points:
    1,120
    One distinction is in who decides when to offer the upgrade; another is who gets offered the upgrade.

    As I understand it, LFBUs are offered by the kiosk based on an algorithm, while international airport upgrades are decided based on a local decision by operational people. Another difference may be who is eligible. As far as I know, if you purchase coach and use a VIP or miles to upgrade to business, you won't be offered a LFBU to first, whereas when I've seen signs selling upgrades at international stations, IIRC they offered Y-J and J-F.
     
  17. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
    I'm not sure you added much more then what was in the link miamigrad provided. I'll just reiterate what I said before: I see that there are differences between the two but at the end of the day they're still very similar. :)
     
  18. MyTravels
    Original Member

    MyTravels Silver Member

    Messages:
    482
    Likes Received:
    352
    Status Points:
    570
    Has anyone seen LFBU's offered when performing online checkin or only at kiosk?
     
  19. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
    They can be offered during either.
     
    anabolism, JonNYC and MyTravels like this.
  20. MyTravels
    Original Member

    MyTravels Silver Member

    Messages:
    482
    Likes Received:
    352
    Status Points:
    570
    Confirmed, but still didn't see an option to pay for checked bags during online checkin.
     
  21. zpaul

    zpaul Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,071
    Likes Received:
    2,816
    Status Points:
    1,445
    I fly out of SCL regularly, and only the kiosk check-in offers these LFBUs, usually for $500 from Y to J. Not a bad price considering the other upgrade option I have is 25,000 miles + $350. Once when I only had cash (long story) I checked-in at the kiosk, then requested the upgrade at the counter when I dropped off my luggage, and then again at the AC. Both times they told me they were kiosk-only and not available from an agent.

    They do seem to be rare, but I keep checking-in at the kiosk hoping for the best.
     
  22. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
    Yup, not an option at the moment. :)
     
  23. MyTravels
    Original Member

    MyTravels Silver Member

    Messages:
    482
    Likes Received:
    352
    Status Points:
    570
    Definitely a nice to have, but agree with AA's priority that an online upgrade offer takes priority
     

Share This Page