Sponsor Message:
Civil Aviation Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
CO Reservation Question  
User currently offlineMcmahonsmr From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 318 posts, RR: 0
Posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day ago) and read 1907 times:

Hopefully a CO junkie can help me out here. My girlfriend is in Geneva and sent me a frantic email today saying that she was looking up her reservation on Orbitz and tried to change her seat. Orbitz then said to her that seat selection was unavailable any more. BUT, that she lost her seat assignment.
Knowing that I'm the aviation nut she called asking for my help.

Brought up the seat map for her AMS/EWR flight and saw some open seats, mostly for elites, but some for the masses. Tried to bring it up on continental.com but got a message that itinerary was not ticketed. Very weird.

Reluctantly I called Continental Reservations asking for help. Not surprisingly the agent wasn't very eager to help a person calling on behalf of someone else. But, I persuaded him that I had all the necessary info, with a PNR, ticket number etc. He told me that the only assignable seat was a middle seat (but somehow aisle and windows were showing on the screen in front of me) but that he could not assign it because the flight was "restricted."

I'm not a big CO traveler so I really don't understand any of this. I'm lucky I understand AA, BA and EI. So, for the experts on this forum -
1. What is a "restricted" flight?
2. I know there are different reservation systems and inventories but all of the ones I checked, itn.net and galileo, had the same open seats. What gives here?
3. Any suggestions - besides calling Orbitz - already did that too.

Thanks,
MCMAHON/SMR

10 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineCO/ba From United States of America, joined May 2001, 399 posts, RR: 3
Reply 1, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 1872 times:

Restricted means the flight will have to go with some empty seats.

User currently offlineCO2BGR From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 558 posts, RR: 4
Reply 2, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 1860 times:

The Ams-Ewr flight is not weight restricted as it is a 777. With the elite access CO has been blocking some isle and window seats.

If I understand you correctly she tried to change her seat through orbitz?



There are too many self indulgent weiners in this town with too much bloody money" Randal Raines- Gone in 60 Seconds
User currently offlineVS11 From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 1111 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 1841 times:

CO's reservation system is SHARES (same as Virgin's but different version of it). In the context of your friend's reservation, "restricted" most likely means that the agent sees the available seat but is not allowed to pre-assign it.

In the parlance of SHARES, it is called "B-Blocked". The seat cannot be used until the control agent normally at the day of departure releases the seat. This can happen for a variety of reasons: bulkhead seats are normally never given in advance, kept for medical cases or families with kids. Same for exit row seats. Also, depending how far in advance the flight is, there simply could not be a relevant seat map in the reservation system. There is normally also a percentage of seats that can be preassigned (at least with Virgin), in other words, there still might be seats available but simply not made available until check-in time at the airport.

Although SHARES is VERY old, CO has been quite IT innovative in that respect. In addition to the old command-prompt interface, they utilize graphical interface to it, when used on a PC workstation, and also the CO employees have access to it via the CO website coair.com, where they have JAVA access to SHARES. When I was shown this, I was quite impressed with CO (from a purely IT pespective).

The airline industry by the way has always been an early adopter of technology, information and otherwise. The ubiquitous SITA network is the first packet switching network in the world, something of a grandfather of the Internet (or at least so the SITA website claims)

Hope that helped,

VS11


User currently offlineMcmahonsmr From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 318 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 1824 times:

CO2BGR -Yeah, she tried to change through Orbitz. Never used Orbitz before - only expedia, travelocity, and airline sites. She's not the most computer literate - probably user error. But, I just looked at the orbitz seating system and I'm not overly impressed.

VS11 - Interesting stuff, very interesting. The tech stuff/reservation software I find fascinating. You are correct that the agent saw the seat open, but was unable to reserve it. Thus, left to the "control agent" who will check her in at GVA for GVA-AMS-EWR. It's really out of my hands now, and I have advised her that she avoid the B, E, and K seats. Funny you mention the exit row/bulkhead thing. CO agent did not see exit/bulkheads open on the 777. Nor did ITN. But, Galileo had them open strangely enough at 16 and 32.

Any guess on why coair.com said her itinerary was not ticketed? Saw the 005 on the flight coupon....computer glitch/error?

Thanks folks! Insight really appreciated!


User currently offlineCO2BGR From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 558 posts, RR: 4
Reply 5, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 1796 times:

005 is COs airline number assigned by someone I forgot. It is printed on all tickets and is not a glitch. I might be mis understanding you. This seems really confusing. I would try to talk to a live person at both CO and orbitz. Sorry I cant be of any more help.


There are too many self indulgent weiners in this town with too much bloody money" Randal Raines- Gone in 60 Seconds
User currently offlineVS11 From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 1111 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 1768 times:

Just a tiny clarification - Coair.com is for CO employees only. General public is referred to continental.com.

I would not trust any of these travel website's information for many reasons. In the first place, you have a huge system of networks and databases, and it depends how and when communication between them happens to reflect latest changes, provided all changes are supposed to be reflected in what essentially is a travel agents' system.

While these websites offer interfaces and features that would be ideal from a user/pax perspective, often there is only dummy data to be shown, or data that is not current. Also, you have to have in mind that while technology has advanced enormously, any airline can choose what private data to be publicly displayed and made available to outsiders (such as expedia, orbitz, etc.). Some times airlines would not let other airlines to overbook a flight, even when the overbooking is normally at a very good fare - either full fare or at least at what is called a FIM (Flight Interruption Manifest) fare, which is normally pre-negotiated but still higher that sale fares.

In the third place, there is a multitude of players in the reservation/data providers space. You have the Global Distribution Systems providers such as Galileo, Amadeus, etc, and all the other usual suspects such as ISPs, SITA, long distance carriers etc., and they would all charge on a traffic basis, meaning that the more traffic between networks the more expensive it is to process requests for data such as a request from a website to display information on a Continental flight seat map - that request would have to pass at least 3-4 networks before it reaches the CO SHARES system, and then back to a web browser.

The reason for the not ticketed itenarary could be most likely "miscommunication" between networks. Many times, if not always the CO system would not transmit the last segment of a trip, when there are more than 3 legs in each way e.g. BOS-LHR-DXB-CMB, even though the pax would have the tickets properly issued. In this case the networks of three airlines would be involved (CO, VS, EK) so it is easy for data to be dropped if it does not comply with communication formats.

If you have a ticket for a flight you are all set to go regardless of what the airline system says. The 005 on the flight coupon indicates that the ticket was issued on a CO ticket stock, although it does not have to be for a CO flight. Any airline whose flight number appears on that ticket stock would have to carry you as the ticket is a contract unless the airline says that the ticket stock is blacklisted, meaning invalid due to being either stolen or falsified or any other reason that would make it illegal. Some airlines can still offer you transportation though as they will most likely assume the pax is unaware of the irregularity. Electronic tickets take care of that. Another reason an airline can refuse travel to a pax with a ticket is due to fare evasion but I do not want to go into the intracacies of ticketing, and I am not really that well familiar with it.

Regards,
VS11


User currently offlineVS11 From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 1111 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 1758 times:

Another clarification(s)

- "control agents" usually work behind the scences and would not be the agents checking in. Normally, the check-in agent would have to ask the contol agent to release the seat  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

- a restricted flight mostly refers to a flight that is no longer open for check in. If you arrive late for a flight, you may not be able to checkin because the flight is restricted - no more checkins allowed. If time permitting, it could be unrestricted for you but if they tell you the flight is closed - you are out of luck. They would not reopen a closed flight.

VS11


User currently offlineArtsyman From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 4745 posts, RR: 34
Reply 8, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 1738 times:

Whats her last name, and when is she flying, I'll have a look at it for you

Jeremy


User currently offlineMcmahonsmr From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 318 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 1690 times:

Artsyman -

Last name is Barbera on CO71 AMS/EWR, 10th Jan.

Thanks a lot.

VS11-
Again, an information filled response which I enjoyed reading immensely. Just when I thought I was reasonably versed in the matter I realise I know very little at all.

Thanks

MCMAHON/SMR


User currently offlineArtsyman From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 4745 posts, RR: 34
Reply 10, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 1658 times:

Mcmahonsmr

I have sent you an email on this...

J


Top Of Page
Forum Index

This topic is archived and can not be replied to any more.

Printer friendly format

Similar topics:More similar topics...
A CO Operations Question posted Wed Aug 16 2006 22:34:25 by NorthstarBoy
Award On QF From CO OnePass-Question posted Mon Jun 19 2006 01:23:43 by Astrojet707
CO 757 Question? posted Thu Jun 15 2006 08:34:11 by BoeingFever777
CO BusinessFirst Question posted Sat Jan 14 2006 20:06:23 by HotelEchoFox
Reservation Question (US) posted Thu Feb 3 2005 13:49:04 by Pilatusguy
CO Upgrade Question posted Mon Jan 10 2005 14:33:45 by Geoffm
CO 63 Question posted Thu Jun 10 2004 21:34:29 by JBLUA320
CO Meals Question posted Fri Jun 4 2004 04:30:33 by JBLUA320
DL/AF/CO Mile Question posted Mon Feb 9 2004 05:48:10 by COEWRNJ
CO Cargo Question posted Mon Dec 1 2003 19:01:54 by Ntspelich