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EYKD
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Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 4:57 pm

Hopefully, this topic won't be found inappropriate and was not discussed yet (at least, I failed to find it).

I make arrangements for my business trip and need an advise.

Here's my situation: I'd like my wife to accompany me during my business trip to the USA. My company will pay trans-Atlantic business class fare for me but not for my wife. We don't have enough money to pay for her business class.

Well, I would give up my business class seat to economy just to fly together, but my colleague proposed me another plan. Let my company pays for my business class, we'll pay for my wife's economy seat and then we'll just ask an airline (I believe it's going to be Delta) to swap us. So my wife will enjoy a trip in business class (that she never experienced before) while I will relax in a coach.

The question is: Will an airline swap us?
 
TG992
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 5:28 pm

I believe it varies from airline to airline. We at Air NZ usually frown on it, but I believe the 'unwritten rule' at most US airlines is one swap is permissible (ie, once you swap, you can't swap back).
-
 
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scbriml
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 5:47 pm

My family and I have done this several times on different airlines. We normally just ask the cabin crew when we board if we can swap seats. Never been a problem before (and I don't see why it should be).
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AJMIA
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 9:19 pm

What a nice guy giving your wife the business class seat.

In my experience I don't even ask. I just make the swap. I am sure the flight crew in economy won't even notice and when the business class flight attendant asks your wife how she changed her sex from male to female she can just explain what a nice husband you are sitting in economy. Just have her hold on to the boarding pass with the business class seat assignment.

I have done cabin seat swaps several times myself with both nonrev/nonrev and nonrev/revenue tickets. As long as you advise the flight crew when they ask or start to look suspicious they won't mind. Last summer I was flying nonrev with the mother of a friend on a revenue ticket who was very sick with cancer. When I got the nonrev first class seat I gave her my F boarding pass and I took her seat in Y. When the flight attendant asked what was going on when we swapped seats, I explained the situation to him. He thought I was being so nice flying her up to New York to be with her family one more time that he gave me free drinks and snacks in economy and waited on her hand and foot in first class.

AJMIA
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sprout5199
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 9:33 pm

Quoting EYKD (Thread starter):
Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

So I could have been upgraded if I gave them my Ex? Now you tell me.  Sad

Dan in Jupiter
 
BigAppleCoder
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 9:49 pm

Quoting Sprout5199 (Reply 4):
So I could have been upgraded if I gave them my Ex? Now you tell me.

Nah, ex-spouse trades generally result in a downgrade  Wink
 
roseflyer
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 10:10 pm

I would recommend that you do it on the plane and not try to do it at check in. They'll probably not let you or have a lot of trouble switching your two official seat assignments in different classes.

I've seen it where the flight attendant will say how nice it is to your wife that you gave up the seat and might even give you a free drink for being a gentleman. I haven't run across many flight attendants that would enforce a policy like you have to take the seat and you can't give it up to your wife. Flight attendants are people, and most US flight attendants, especially the types that are flying transatlantic on Delta, will just give your wife a smile and remind her how good of a husband you are.

I would recommend however that you don't go up to socialize with her in business. She should come back to you in economy if you two want to talk during the flight. One way to keep flight attendants providing good service is to not make them do things that they don't want to do. They don't want to go up to a husband talking to his wife and say that you have to go back to economy.

[Edited 2007-05-10 15:15:01]

[Edited 2007-05-10 15:16:29]
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terryb99
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 10:16 pm

I have done it twice. As a NW Platinum, I get the automatic upgrades on NW and CO. On a recent 2 segment trip, I was upgraded on both segments, but gave up my upgrades so I could sit with my wife in Y.
When boarding the second segment, someone was in my seat, and I found out they had re-upgraded me, lol. I sent my wife up to first to sit. She came back after take off and told me to take the seat up front. At 4'11" and 95 pounds, she said the big seat was a waste, lol. Flight atendents did a double take when I sat down, and I just said this was my original seat, and my wife and I traded again, lol.
 
AJMIA
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 10:28 pm

Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 6):
I would recommend however that you don't go up to socialize with her in business. She should come back to you in economy if you two want to talk during the flight. One way to keep flight attendants providing good service is to not make them do things that they don't want to do. They don't want to go up to a husband talking to his wife and say that you have to go back to economy.

Good point!
Once you are on stay in your ticketed cabin.

AJMIA
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UAL4ever
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 11:16 pm

I do it all the time on the plane whenever I am travelling with one of my relatives who soes not have status on UA as I do. I will try to upgrade both of us but if only I clear for the upgrade I will tell them to take the seat and I take their seat. Most recently I was flying PSP-ORD with my sister and only I was upgraded. WHen the FA asked my sister, who was sitting in first class, about it she explained and there was no problem. The FA thought it was so nice that he brought me free drinks even though typically for coach passengers it is $5.00.
 
zrs70
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Thu May 10, 2007 11:35 pm

Is your company paying full business class? There are lots of deals out there that offer "twofers," so you can get two C class tickets for the price of one. But this only makes sense if the paid ticket is full fare, as discount business class is often less than half the price of full fare.
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CupraIbiza
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Fri May 11, 2007 9:28 am

Had the same scenario a few motnhs ago. After checkin/boarding whilst walking down the skybridge we swapped boarding cards. Simple as that -
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scbriml
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Fri May 11, 2007 3:47 pm

Quoting CupraIbiza (Reply 11):
After checkin/boarding whilst walking down the skybridge we swapped boarding cards. Simple as that -

In these days of paranoia heightened security, it might be best to do this after boarding with the cabin crew's knowledge.

Whenever I'm in business or first, the cabin crew always address me by name. Might be odd if Mr Smith is a lady, possibly more of an issue if Mrs Smith is a man.
Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana!
There are 10 types of people in the World - those that understand binary and those that don't.
 
eajpecrca
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Fri May 11, 2007 9:23 pm

Just do it! I had used miles to upgrade to First Class on a PHL-SFO US flight. Spouse's employer had paid for her economy seat. When we boarded she sat in FC and I went in economy. FA greeted her as Mrs. EA. Nothing else said. No problem at all.

Nice of you to do that.
 
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EYKD
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Fri May 11, 2007 9:49 pm

Quoting Eajpecrca (Reply 13):
FA greeted her as Mrs. EA.

We have gender difference for most of our last names in Russia. So the last name of my wife differs by 1 letter from mine. We couldn't be mistook for each other even on the paper.  Smile

Quoting Zrs70 (Reply 10):
Is your company paying full business class? There are lots of deals out there that offer "twofers," so you can get two C class tickets for the price of one. But this only makes sense if the paid ticket is full fare, as discount business class is often less than half the price of full fare.

My company travel policy encourages to consider low fare alternatives. But it wouldn't work anyway since all cost savings due to voluntary downgrades in class of service belong to my company. Which means that it will pay for my ticket only in any case.
 
lincoln
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RE: Would An Airline Swap Classes For Spouses?

Fri May 11, 2007 10:06 pm

Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 6):
I would recommend that you do it on the plane and not try to do it at check in. They'll probably not let you or have a lot of trouble switching your two official seat assignments in different classes.

Yeah, the times I've seen this happen (I've never done it -- I'm tres single) the two passgnegers just swapped boarding passes. In 99% of the cases once you're on the plane as long as you have a boarding pass for the seat you're in and no one else is trying to sit there they don't care who is where. I've also seen a couple cases where the couple swapped seats at about the half-way point to be "fair" to eachother.

I would recommend however that you don't go up to socialize with her in business. She should come back to you in economy if you two want to talk during the flight. [/quote]

And keep the disruption caused by the socialization in Economy to a minimum. In one of the cases where the swapper as seated next to me in Economy the spouse (it changed about 12 way through the flight) kept coming back, spending 20 minutes crouched in the asile loudly chatting with their spouse blocking the asile and generally annoying the people around them...then going back up front waiting 20-30 minutes then repeating throughout much of the flight. It just seems a little rude to me, but that could just be me.
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