If you are looking for a way to get an upgrade on your next flight to business or first class, here are some tips from the experts. You do not need to throw tantrums or chat up the check-in staff to get to first class or business class.
If you have great, flight upgrade stories or tips, please share in the comments section at the bottom of the page. Another great site to book business class flights is skyclub.com.
Travelling in Low Peak Seasons
When you book your long-haul flight during holidays and other times when the business people do not often fly, you have a greater chance of upgrading to business class, according to Alex Smith, who works as a senior marketer at CheapFirstClass.com.
Matthew MacFadyen, who is a Project Manager, says he got an upgrade on British Airways. He is not sure why they got the upgrade but believes it is because they spent $1600 on baggage.
Stay loyal to your airline and the loyalty program will reward you. Always ensure that you get a loyalty card, every time you travel.
Get to the Airport Early
You can take your chances by arriving quite early for your flight. You may find that the flight has a few spaces available in the other classes. If this works, you will be given first priority, but if it backfires, you will have a whole lot of idle time at the airport. For Developer, Sergey Minin, this worked for him and his wife. When they got to the airport, they were quite early, and the check-in staff informed them that there were two first class seats available, which they could take for free.
Get to the Airport Late
Although this is a dangerous game, it might grant you the perfect upgrade to first or business classes. You should arrive late, without any seat reservation. If you find the flight overbooked, you might get a premium class ticket. According to Joe Broke, this mainly works during the busy times. However, you might also end up missing your flight all together, because the airline might have sorted the overbooking issue, by giving away the spaces available to the other passengers, who got to the airport before you.
Check Emails Prior to Departure
Make it a habit to check your mail before departure time. Joe, says that he has missed an upgrade opportunity twice for failing to check his email. Later on, he would discover that Air France was sending emails asking him if he would love a cheap upgrade to first class. On one occasion, he recalls, even calling the airline to ask for any deals, and they said no. Close to the departure time, the airline sent emails with upgrade deals. It is, therefore, important to check mails just a few hours before your check-in time.
Get Worked Up
There are instances when getting mad will help you get the perfect spot in the premium class. Advertising Manager, Mike Swarm saw this work, as her mum got angry at Qantas because they overbooked their flight, twice in a row. Mike was going to Canada to see, their dad, who had been working there for about a month. When they overbooked the flights twice, his mother got so mad, that they ended up being booked in first class on Singapore Airlines flight, and they got to their destination in good time.
You can use emotional blackmail to get to premium class on your flight. According to Jon Hamm, a Marketer, when a drama queen sheds tears, this will cause the staff to sympathise and may bag you a premium class seat.