Swissdiver - 14/08/2013 13:02 GMT
I was confident enough to accept flights in premium economy (the rest is good business but for some reason, business class travelling faced an absolute refusal). Now though I am stuck which annoys me for the night flight (even though it is a 6 hours one). I called BAEC a couple of weeks ago and was told points upgrades were not yet open and I should call back this week. Now the message remains pretty much the same: please call back. Three questions:
- What is the BAEC capacity adjustment frequency? I got conflicting pieces of information. Is daily or weekly or...?
- Are there flights where there is 0 seats available for upgrades? Here I should write I am Gold.
- Is there any trick I should be aware of?
Although calling in is always a good last resort, award availability is easily enough discovered online.
Upgrade seats come out of the same bucket as regular redemptions, so simply searching for Club World redemption space will let you know when to pounce for a UUA (Upgrade Using Avios).
There is no rhyme or reason to award availability, other than to say that I have noticed that around the three week mark can be lucrative, as can T-7 and T-3 days onwards.
But there are so many weird and wonderful revenue management tools at play here, it would be foolish to give hard an fast rules. The best advice is to check daily.
There are flights where there are 0 seats available, even if revenue seats are available. This may seem unfair, but there may well already have been redemption seats which have been snaffled - the early bird catches the worm, and BA is a profit focussed entity which quite rightly will seek to maximise revenue by selling seats where possible.
Being Gold *can* have an effect when calling up, but the formal position is that award space is only opened up in Y, or if you pay double avios in any cabin, or if you have a BAEC GGL "Joker".
Booking seats using the onbusiness scheme can also give access to seats which are otherwise unavailable, but I have found the base fares prohibitively expensive as to make it not worthwhile.
Remember that you can also upgrade using cash , and it may be worth checking Manage My Booking (MMB) regularly to see if you can upgrade this way, or enquiring at check-in.
Alternatively, just drug up for the flight and it will be over soon enough.
Swissdiver - 14/08/2013 14:00 GMT
Using MMB doesn't help to find availability since the message is "please call". But checking the regular miles availability is instructive: none in CW for the whole month :-/. Looks bad...
MMB won't show redemption availability, but it can sometimes offer the UUC (Upgrade Using Cash) option (which is also often offered at the time of booking) ; again, do check back at 3 weeks, T-7 and T-3.
I see lastminute award availability more often than not.
Take, for instance, the elusive London-Sydney route in F; 5 seats available tonight in Club World, 2 seats available in F on Thursday's flight, 2 seats in Club on Friday and 3 seats in both Club and First on Saturday......
It might be worth checking today and tomorrow's redemption availability in Club the route you are booked on opens up closer to the date of travel.
Swissdiver - 14/08/2013 15:30 GMT
B767... 24 seats in Business, no First... Today 6 seats available in CW... Of course I'll recheck but can't do it online (even with cash).
Ouch. A 767 is never a pleasurable prospect, though at least it should have been recently refurbed.
Swissdiver - 15/08/2013 07:28 GMT
Well, I don't mind the B767 in CW (love 1A). But of course the total of 24 premium seats only is limiting my options...
Swissdiver - 17/08/2013 11:07 GMT
I am still wondering whether the actualisation is done on a daily or a weekly basis and still get conflictual replies...
Swissdiver - 03/09/2013 08:14 GMT
It seems updates could even occur during the day. Keep trying although I might end up on an Eco+ seat :-(