mspguy
Topic Author
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Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:49 pm

How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 12:28 am

Like the subject says. Just got a phone call from my wife, she got bumped off NW55 AMS-MSP today, but her co-worker got on. She's an gold elite with them (since 1992) and he isn't, you'd think they wouldn't bump they're loyal customers.
If it ain't broke, DON'T touch it!!!!
 
nkops
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RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 12:36 am

I guess you mean because the flight was oversold. It's usually (and I'm speaking only for my airline) the last one to show without a seat assignment will get bumped IF unable to get volunteers. I believe the compensation is different for each airline for volunteers, but invol is regulated by DOT (200% of one-way fare and booked on next available flight). However, I don;t know if this applies to flights originating out of the US...

hoped that helped a little.
Turn left heading 080 contact departure
 
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tjwgrr
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RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 12:41 am

She on a lower fare class and her co-worker a higher one? I know for a fact NWA looks at fare classes when they prioritize stand-by lists since it happened to my wife and I this past April.
Direct KNOBS, maintain 2700' until established on the localizer, cleared ILS runway 26 left approach.
 
HnlBoi
Posts: 128
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RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 1:12 am

Quoting Tjwgrr (Reply 2):

Sometimes when we are working the flight at the gate and we are trying to free up a couple of coach seats, we will either A) Look at our PERKS list and determine who has the highest rank Platnium, Silver, Gold etc......then upgrade them to F. or it we only have say GOLD frequent flyers, we will often look to see who paid the most for the ticket.It all depends to on the agent working the flight. I personnally try to upgarde our platnium frequest flyers as they are the ones that pay my paycheck.
 
TPAPDX
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:07 am

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 1:48 am

Usually, there are several factors involved in the boarding priorities in times of overbooking. Each airline has their own set of proceedures, some automated, some not, but generally:

1) Fare class (The higher the fare class value, the higher on the list you are)
2) FF Status
3) Time of Check-In (Checking-in late? A big problem for you if they are overbooked)
4) Failure to board prior to cut-off time (Don't board on time? A big problem for you if they are overbooked)
5) Customer Service Issues: Traveling with family?, Connecting to or from this flight? (Of lesser importance, but sometimes plays a factor)

And no, it usually doesn't matter how long ago you "bought your ticket", or where or how. I always love people screaming "I bought this ticket 7 months ago!", yes, but you showed up 3 minutes before the door is closing on your flight to London to board. Or a gate agent telling the passenger "If you would have bought your ticket from us, instead of your travel agent, this wouldn't have happened". A complete lie, but it gets the passenger to redirected his anger for the moment.

As flights continue to see record load factors, its extremely important to check-in early, to be at the gate early, and if possible, to check-in online 24-hours prior and print out your own boarding pass.
 
bakersdozen
Posts: 188
Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2006 12:24 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 1:55 am

You guys make it sound like it is the passengers fault for being bumped. That's nuts - they paid for their ticket the airlines are the ones who oversold, it's a dishonest practice.

Quoting TPAPDX (Reply 4):
yes, but you showed up 3 minutes before the door is closing on your flight to London to board

So what? they still made it on time, the door isn't close yet... they should still have their seat available, not some arragonent desk worker telling them b.s.
 
lincoln
Posts: 3133
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2004 11:22 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 2:30 am

Quoting Nkops (Reply 1):
I guess you mean because the flight was oversold. It's usually (and I'm speaking only for my airline) the last one to show without a seat assignment will get bumped IF unable to get volunteers. I believe the compensation is different for each airline for volunteers, but invol is regulated by DOT (200% of one-way fare and booked on next available flight). However, I don;t know if this applies to flights originating out of the US...

At NW, per the contract of carriage, involuntary denied boarding is based solely on checkin time. If someone without a seat assignment checks in before someone with a seat assignment, per NW's boarding priority, NW will yank the seat assignment and get the earlier checkin on board. (Exceptions being UMNRs, disabled, etc.)

This is not the case for all airlines -- as NKops mentioned. For example, CO will bump the last checkin w/o a seat assignment. Those with seat assignments are protected until 15 minutes prior to departure where they can be pulled (But if they aren't in the gate area, they aren't eligible for DBC anyway)

Lincoln
CO Is My Airline of Choice || Baggage Claim is an airline's last chance to disappoint a customer || Next flts in profile
 
NWBOS
Posts: 124
Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2005 11:01 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 3:05 am

Quoting Bakersdozen (Reply 5):
You guys make it sound like it is the passengers fault for being bumped. That's nuts - they paid for their ticket the airlines are the ones who oversold, it's a dishonest practice.

Quoting TPAPDX (Reply 4):
yes, but you showed up 3 minutes before the door is closing on your flight to London to board

So what? they still made it on time, the door isn't close yet... they should still have their seat available, not some arragonent desk worker telling them b.s.

It's the passenger's responsibility to accept the carrier's conditions of carriage, or -- choose not to purchase the ticket. There are clear guidelines for boarding. As far as involuntary denied boarding, it is published that customers are denied boarding in reverse check-in order (if the airline is unable to find volunteers). On flights that become weight restricted at the last minute, passengers are denied boarding in reverse boarding order. We make every effort to avoid involuntarily denying boarding to passengers with special needs and elite passengers, and never deny boarding to an unaccompanied minor.

As far as the people who think you can expect to just show up 3 minutes prior to departure and board your flight, I suspect you haven't spent much time in an airport.

Oversales are a reality of any business from hotels to car rentals to restaurants. Would you rather that 100% of tickets be completely non-refundable in the event of cancellation or no-show?
 
mspguy
Topic Author
Posts: 183
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:49 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 3:23 am

You'd really think they'd bump an non-elite before an elite. They got their status by flying with the carrier a lot. By bumping your cash cow paying business fares you risk loosing that business for a person that flys every now and then paying discounted fares.
If it ain't broke, DON'T touch it!!!!
 
lincoln
Posts: 3133
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2004 11:22 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 3:39 am

Quoting MSPGUY (Reply 8):
You'd really think they'd bump an non-elite before an elite. They got their status by flying with the carrier a lot. By bumping your cash cow paying business fares you risk loosing that business for a person that flys every now and then paying discounted fares.

In order to do that, though, they'd have to change their Contract of Carriage/Domestic General Rules...while it's possible, it's not up to the agent at the gate to go "I like you better, you get on". That's a perfect way for them to loose a lawsuit (and befined by the DOT, and...)
CO Is My Airline of Choice || Baggage Claim is an airline's last chance to disappoint a customer || Next flts in profile
 
bakersdozen
Posts: 188
Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2006 12:24 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 3:44 am

Quoting NWBOS (Reply 7):
It's the passenger's responsibility to accept the carrier's conditions of carriage, or -- choose not to purchase the ticket. There are clear guidelines for boarding. As far as involuntary denied boarding, it is published that customers are denied boarding in reverse check-in order (if the airline is unable to find volunteers). On flights that become weight restricted at the last minute, passengers are denied boarding in reverse boarding order. We make every effort to avoid involuntarily denying boarding to passengers with special needs and elite passengers, and never deny boarding to an unaccompanied minor.

Sure there are some valid reasons such as overweight or whatnot. But overbooking and regularly bumping people who paid for their seat and giving it away to someone else is not.

Quoting NWBOS (Reply 7):
As far as the people who think you can expect to just show up 3 minutes prior to departure and board your flight, I suspect you haven't spent much time in an airport.

What's with the attempted personal attack? I do travel a lot for business (and am tired of spending wasted time in airports) but that is besides the point, what are you trying to get at? So if I did spend a lot of time in airports then I would see that it is okay if an airline bumps a customer who paid for a seat on that specific flight and who technically arrived to board on time.

Just because it's the way they do it doesn't make it ethically correct.
 
nkops
Posts: 2213
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2005 10:09 am

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 3:46 am

Quoting Lincoln (Reply 6):
Those with seat assignments are protected until 15 minutes prior to departure where they can be pulled

Wow... ours is 30 minutes... if you are holding a seat but have not checked in 30 mins prior , your seat is released to a standby pax or another pax. We do not check-in within 30 mins of dept, which I beleive is pretty standard (except maybe at big airports like ATL which might be 45 mins.)

Quoting Bakersdozen (Reply 5):
That's nuts - they paid for their ticket the airlines are the ones who oversold, it's a dishonest practice.

Dishonest or not , it happens all over the travel industry and not just airlines...

Actually, if you do a search, I believe there was a thread not too long ago on overbooking... it was actually a pretty interesting read.
RE: Overbooking Article At NYT.com (by Ironramper May 31 2007 in Civil Aviation)

edit: to add previos oversell post

[Edited 2007-06-27 20:53:17]
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lincoln
Posts: 3133
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2004 11:22 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 3:54 am

Quoting Nkops (Reply 11):
Wow... ours is 30 minutes... if you are holding a seat but have not checked in 30 mins prior , your seat is released to a standby pax or another pax.

You have to be onboard the aircarft / in the gate area available to board at T-15, I think checkin closes at T-30, but with online checkin being as prevalant as it is, I think that's the rule that winds up being used more often.

For reference, Northwest's contractual boarding priority from their DGR (Which can be found at http://www.nwa.com/plan/contract2.pdf) is in Rule 245 (C) (page 116):

C) BOARDING PRIORITIES
IF A FLIGHT IS OVERSOLD (MORE PASSENGERS HOLD CONFIRMED RESERVATIONS THAN THERE ARE SEATS AVAILABLE), NO ONE MAY BE DENIED BOARDING AGAINST THEIR WILL UNTIL NW PERSONNEL
FIRST ASK FOR VOLUNTEERS WHO WILL GIVE UP THEIR RESERVATIONS WILLINGLY IN EXCHANGE FOR A PAYMENT OF NW'S CHOOSING. IF THERE ARE NOT ENOUGH VOLUNTEERS, OTHER PASSENGERS MAY BE DENIED BOARDING INVOLUNTARILY IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE BOARDING PRIORITY AS SET FORTH BELOW.
UNACCOMPANIED MINORS 17 YRS. OLD OR YOUNGER ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR VOLUNTARY DENIED BOARDING COMPENSATION.
1) CONFIRMED PASSENGERS WHO ARE PHYSICALLY HANDICAPPED TO AN EXTENT THAT FAILURE TO CARRY WOULD, IN NW'S OPINION, CAUSE A SEVERE HARDSHIP, OR UNACCOMPANIED MINORS 17 YRS. OLD OR YOUNGER.
2) PASSENGERS NOT NAMED IN 1) WILL BE ACCOMMODATED IN THE ORDER THEY HAVE CHECKED IN.


Since this thread is not about CO, I won't quote CO's policy here but if you're interested in comparing it, look at Rule 25(A)(2) on pages 35-36 of their Contract of Carriage at http://www.continental.com/web/en-US...ontract_of_carriage.2007060101.pdf

Lincoln
CO Is My Airline of Choice || Baggage Claim is an airline's last chance to disappoint a customer || Next flts in profile
 
TPAPDX
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:07 am

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 4:43 am

Quoting Bakersdozen (Reply 5):
Quoting TPAPDX (Reply 4):
yes, but you showed up 3 minutes before the door is closing on your flight to London to board

So what? they still made it on time, the door isn't close yet... they should still have their seat available, not some arragonent desk worker telling them b.s.

Rules are rules, like them or not. Upon your purchase you agreed to abide by the carriers "Conditions of Carriage", and rules and restrictions of the applicable fare paid. Most airlines require a minimum 15-45 minute "be-onboard by" rule prior to scheduled departure time. The world does not revolve around your personal schedule, and if you decide to be at the gate 3 minutes prior to departure, then you'll have to accept whatever happens as a result.

Just because you "paid" your fare, doesn't mean you decide the rules. The airline does, period. You may not like them, but its not your choice to ignore them without expecting potential consequences of your actions.
 
JAAlbert
Posts: 1979
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2006 12:43 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 4:50 am

If you can, best to check in a day ahead on line. I love that feature!
 
L410Turbolet
Posts: 6129
Joined: Wed May 05, 2004 9:12 am

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 4:58 am

Quoting TPAPDX (Reply 4):
Usually, there are several factors involved in the boarding priorities in times of overbooking. Each airline has their own set of proceedures, some automated, some not, but generally:

1) Fare class (The higher the fare class value, the higher on the list you are)
2) FF Status
3) Time of Check-In (Checking-in late? A big problem for you if they are overbooked)
4) Failure to board prior to cut-off time (Don't board on time? A big problem for you if they are overbooked)
5) Customer Service Issues: Traveling with family?, Connecting to or from this flight? (Of lesser importance, but sometimes plays a factor)

Just out of curiosity: Ticket for a NW flight paid for using non-NW freq. flyer miles (SkyTeam). How low/high does it rank on the fare class value "ladder"?
 
NWBOS
Posts: 124
Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2005 11:01 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 5:12 am

Quoting L410Turbolet (Reply 15):
Just out of curiosity: Ticket for a NW flight paid for using non-NW freq. flyer miles (SkyTeam). How low/high does it rank on the fare class value "ladder"?

It really only comes into play if that passenger ends up being involuntarily denied. The passenger is not elgible for cash compensation, but instead is given the last offer given to volunteers (usually free dom. tkt or max. TCV $$ amount). Other than that, a person traveling on miles is not treated any differently.

Also, what others have mentioned about checking in online up to 24 hours before departure would, in almost all cases, eliminate your chances of getting involuntarily bumped.
 
474218
Posts: 4510
Joined: Mon Oct 10, 2005 12:27 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 7:55 am

Quoting NWBOS (Reply 16):
Also, what others have mentioned about checking in online up to 24 hours before departure would, in almost all cases, eliminate your chances of getting involuntarily bumped.

Are you saying that if you check in on line 24 hours prior to departure, then don't show up until 3 minutes before the cabin door closes, you still get a seat. I would assume that you would have to check in at the airport in some fashion 30 minutes prior to departure. How can the airline know at just because you checked in on line the day before you are actually their at the gate waiting to board?
 
TPAPDX
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:07 am

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 8:27 am

Quoting 474218 (Reply 17):
Are you saying that if you check in on line 24 hours prior to departure, then don't show up until 3 minutes before the cabin door closes, you still get a seat. I would assume that you would have to check in at the airport in some fashion 30 minutes prior to departure.

You are correct. If you check-in online, print your own boarding and such, you still have to be "onboard" the aircraft, within the specified time limits of the transporting carrier. Most carriers its 15 minutes or more prior to "scheduled" departure time.

However, I was just recently on NW PDX-NRT non-stop earlier this month, and they actually moved-up the departure time by 20 minutes in order to get a more favorable departure route over the Pacific to NRT while passengers were still checking-in for the flight. I'd assume if there were late arriving passengers, they simply would have had to hold the flight - even though many announcements were made - as they key word is "scheduled" departure time. Even though NW would like to leave early, it would not have been able to impose any penalties against passengers not following the original schedule.
 
L410Turbolet
Posts: 6129
Joined: Wed May 05, 2004 9:12 am

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 4:53 pm

Let's say a long-haul flight originating in the US (eg. SFO-CDG) is overbooked and they ask for volunteers. You happen to be able to arrive home later. Is it worth it volunteering to be bumped off the flight? What is the typical compensation offered by the airline nowadays?
 
N801NW
Posts: 558
Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2004 8:56 am

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 6:50 pm

NW's top international bump offer is an Electronic Credit Voucher for $750 US. $300 is the domestic max or you can choose a free ticket anywhere in the Continental US or Canada. AK and HI are excluded.
 
RebelDJ
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu May 03, 2007 3:27 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 7:35 pm

Quoting JAAlbert (Reply 14):
If you can, best to check in a day ahead on line. I love that feature!

I have always been curious about this facility - it seems like it is entirely beneficial to the passenger, but what is the downside for the passenger, or the benefit for the airline?
I guess if you have checked in on line and some last minute changes to your travel is necessary, you will get no refund -is this correct? I guess also that the airline benefits by having smaller lines at check in, fewer counter staff, is that all?
 
lincoln
Posts: 3133
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2004 11:22 pm

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Thu Jun 28, 2007 8:58 pm

Quoting RebelDJ (Reply 21):
I guess if you have checked in on line and some last minute changes to your travel is necessary, you will get no refund -is this correct?

At least with a refundable/changable fare, being checked in for your flight and then making changes is not a problem. In the past few months I've done exactly this (on NW and CO) with no problems whatsoever. (I have not tried cancelling after being checked in, but I don't see a problem with this either)

Quoting RebelDJ (Reply 21):
I guess also that the airline benefits by having smaller lines at check in, fewer counter staff, is that all?

This is the primary gain for the airline -- fewer staff (less salary, benefits, sick/vacation time, etc.), less counter space, etc.
CO Is My Airline of Choice || Baggage Claim is an airline's last chance to disappoint a customer || Next flts in profile
 
TPAPDX
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:07 am

RE: How Does NW Determine Who It Bumps?

Fri Jun 29, 2007 2:24 am

Quoting RebelDJ (Reply 21):
I guess if you have checked in on line and some last minute changes to your travel is necessary, you will get no refund -is this correct?

Recently I purchased myself a round-trip ticket on Air Canada thru a travel agency to travel PDX-YVR-HKG 1-day prior to departure. After I was issued the ticket, I proceeded to check-in online and printed my boarding passes.

However, later that afternoon my business meeting was cancelled. I simply called Air Canada reservations and they guided me thru a process to un-check me in online. The travel agency was able to then void the ticket - all at no cost.

So, while I don't know about the processes of all the airlines, I would assume you can uncheck yourself in, as travel plans do often change, even last minute.

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