Easy Business Upgrade?

Sun Oct 08, 2000 6:45 am

Which airline offers the easiest and cheapest(free?) upgrade from economy to business-class at the check in ? In former times , it was no problem to get an upgrade, when being a frequent flyer or something, but nowadays its difficult. Who knows a good trick for that?
Posts: 168
Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2000 3:14 am

RE: Easy Business Upgrade?

Fri Oct 27, 2000 7:26 pm

Be nice to the agent at the gate. When you ask for an upgrade don't be pushy about it. If they ask you to wait when boarding starts sit quietly until they call your name. If you're flying alone there is a better chance of you getting an upgrade. Also, if you don't get an upgrade at the gate ask the flight attendant.
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Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2000 3:58 pm

RE: Unlikely

Sat Oct 28, 2000 3:58 pm

Unless you are a higher tier frequent flyer, it's going to be hard to get an easy (free) upgrade. Some airlines do offer paid last minute upgrades.

Eg, on Lufthansa, first they will go to LH Senators, then to Star Golds (non LH) and then to LH FTLs, then to other Star Silvers, then to plain old FFs and then to non FFs. By the time you got to LH FTLs, you probably would have easily eaten up the whole of business class!

For more info, goto (bulletin boards) - best travel board, IMHO. Or try



RE: Easy Business Upgrade?

Wed Nov 01, 2000 11:57 am

Woody's advice is good but I doubt it will work. The only time I have ever been upgraded was when my original flight was cancelled and the next flight was full in coach. Even as a Star Silver FF, I am never just put in Business/First; you have to be a Star Gold. Good luck and let us know if you are successful.
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Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 1:28 am

RE: Easy Business Upgrade?

Thu Nov 02, 2000 5:20 am

If you want to be always upgraded with Swissair you need to be a circle member. To be a circle member you need to be invited and you must fly at least 200'000 miles a year on Swissair.

If you are a circle member there is a strong possibilty that you will be always upgraded.

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RE: Easy Business Upgrade?

Sun Nov 05, 2000 11:50 pm

What are my chances of getting an upgrade with Star Alliance silver to biz on United Domestic? What about Singapore say....SIN-SYD?


RE: Easy Business Upgrade?

Mon Nov 06, 2000 11:23 am

TB, I am afraid they are slim. I've been a UA Premier for close to five years and have never been upgraded to Business with out confirming using miles or upgrading at the counter with certificates. Even on a Saturday afternoon, Business is full. UA tends to upgrade 1K and Premier Executives and then fill their Business cabin with deadheading UA employees. As there tend to be a ton of these in any of the cities where they fly their widebodies, your chances are slim. It can happen but I wouldn't bet on it.
Posts: 257
Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2000 1:59 am

RE: Easy Business Upgrade?

Tue Nov 07, 2000 12:50 pm


Think your chances on singapore e.g. SIN-SYD are very slim too - I've worked for SIA previously at Changi Airport and know a bit their their upgrade - you see, Singapore is SIA's hub/home airport and their stricter than in other cities and lots of red-tape etc too... You'll probably only stand a good chance in coach is really fully (and I mean overbooked), or else it's difficult - even their PPS don't get usual upgrades like that. However, if you want to try your luck, of course you may ask, but one other tip - try and dress well - I don't mean to tell you how to dress, but try and take the flight in jeans/t-shirt etc - try at least a business shirt, trousers and "proper" business shoes - SIA do tend to look out for "well dressed" pax for their "upgrade list"

Hope the info helps - good luck!
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Joined: Tue Aug 29, 2000 2:04 am

RE: Easy Business Upgrade?

Tue Nov 07, 2000 2:45 pm

It is pretty hard to upgrade to first class or bis class from coach if you are not a high frequent flyer holder. however from what people have been saying about the airlines they fly it seems that Northwest and Continental has the best deal because with only 25,000 flight miles in a year that will get you silver elite status which entitles you to free first upgrades on both domestic and international flights at the time of boarding or you can call a day ahead of your flight and upgrade over phone for free. But besides being at least a silver member on an airline or having a terrible flight or being delayed for a day I dont think you will have much success.

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Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 2:45 pm

RE: Easy Business Upgrade?

Tue Nov 14, 2000 2:34 am

Alaska does 50 CANDIAN! Dollars for an upgrade to first class!! Gotta love it!
Posts: 600
Joined: Tue Sep 07, 1999 6:13 am

RE: Easy Business Upgrade?

Sat Nov 18, 2000 5:54 am

It's even better for silver elite on NWA domestic now - the reservation system automatically upgrades members when space is available in first class. So you don't even have to call. Very cool.

They did that for me on DTW-CHS and return a couple of weeks ago - cheers NWA!!!

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