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PanAm747LHR
Topic Author
Posts: 179
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 12:58 pm

Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Good?

Thu Oct 18, 2007 9:19 pm

Hi everyone-
I do quite a bit of non-revving in my free time and have found that some airlines are very good about upgrading staff, and others, well, not so much. I thought it'd be good to get a running list going and maybe help some people (including myself) figure out how best to get to their next holiday, or get home!
Generally, I find that the best time to get an upgrade is right when you get onboard - I always find that once I introduce myself to the cabin crew, even if I don't get upgraded, it ensures better treatment during the flight.

On the good list:
SAS - This is the only airline that has upgraded me BEFORE I got on the plane. My friend and I were called over to the gate and given business class boarding passes about 40 mins before departure and invited to use the lounge. Wonderful service from both SK's ground staff and cabin crew. I'd use them again in a heartbeat!

KLM, Qantas, Lufthansa, Alitalia, Mexicana, Aeromexico, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic have all offered me upgrades once on board, which I greatfully accepted. In general, I find that all of these airlines go out of their way to treat their non-revs well and I would definitely go out of my way to travel with them.

On the other hand, LAN, Emirates and China Airlines stick out in my mind as airlines that I've never been offered an upgrade on and it seems that they have a pretty rock solid policy about that. That said, all of these airlines have always gone above and beyond to treat me well in coach when I've used them.

The only airline I've had a negative experience on when non-revving is Air France, who made a Singapore-Paris-London trip absolutely miserable. I'd try very hard to avoid using them again.

And that's about all I can think of. I'm using Etihad to get out of Sydney next month, or maybe Cathay - how are they?

Any feedback/additions you might have are more than welcome!

Happy Flying to all!

Nick
 
Bongodog1964
Posts: 3542
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Thu Oct 18, 2007 9:37 pm

I can never quite grasp this principle of non revving

If you say worked at Walmart, would Target welcome you with open arms, and let you have a free trolley push round the store ? Of course they wouldn't, they would say "of course you are welcome to shop, and please pay the full price at the checkout"

I bet though you can't non rev on FR.
 
bullpitt
Posts: 757
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Thu Oct 18, 2007 9:38 pm

Hi all

Quoting PanAm747LHR (Thread starter):
The only airline I've had a negative experience on when non-revving is Air France, who made a Singapore-Paris-London trip absolutely miserable. I'd try very hard to avoid using them again.

This only proves that one trip has nothing to do with the next, I have never flown Air France but collegues of mines speak very good of them and have been UPG with them on several ocasions. By the way what made the trip with them so bad? I have been UPG only by my airline but that I imagine is because I normally fly with my son and I know even with my Own company they will not UPG CHD's.
These are my principles but if you don't like them I have others
 
B747-4U3
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Thu Oct 18, 2007 9:44 pm

I have also found BA to be very good with upgrading non-revs.

I have been upgraded on China Airlines once from BKK to HKG. I wasn't non-reving but I was travelling on the cheapest "normal fare".

I have flown on Cathay many times and never been upgraded. I has never bothered me that much though because I have only ever been on one Cathay flight that has been full. The others I have had several seats to myself.
 
kaneporta1
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Thu Oct 18, 2007 9:49 pm

I've only Non-Reved with OA and BA. I've been upgraded to business class on BA a couple of times, always before departure. On the other hand, it is OA policy to never upgrade Non-Revs to business. Having said that, OA will upgrade (by asking nicely one of the FAs) Non-Reving OA (only) staff to the best class there is. The flightdeck!!!
I'd rather die peacefully in my sleep, like my grandfather, not terrified and screaming, like his passengers
 
L410Turbolet
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Thu Oct 18, 2007 10:33 pm

Quoting PanAm747LHR (Thread starter):

KLM, Qantas, Lufthansa, Alitalia, Mexicana, Aeromexico, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic have all offered me upgrades once on board, which I greatfully accepted. In general, I find that all of these airlines go out of their way to treat their non-revs well and I would definitely go out of my way to travel with them.

Interesting, because here I was - naively - thinking an airline with slightest bit of common sense would upgrade the last fare-paying passenger before even thinking about upgrading someone who's just getting a free ride.
 
Transpac787
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Thu Oct 18, 2007 11:05 pm

Quoting L410Turbolet (Reply 5):
thinking an airline with slightest bit of common sense would upgrade the last fare-paying passenger before even thinking about upgrading someone who's just getting a free ride.

Ughhhh......how many times do we have to hear this???

You are entitled to your opinion, and that is fine. I am sure I'll never be able to persuade you to another point of view, so all I will say is.......nonrevs are given first and business class ahead of regular pax. Those pax that want to upgrade will get that opportunity. If there are no more upgrade requests, those seats are given to nonrevs. And, that is the end of it!!!!! You can argue to the contrary all you want, the fact is nonrevs are given seats in premium cabins ALL THE TIME. Let's drop it now, shall we??

Quoting Bongodog1964 (Reply 1):
If you say worked at Walmart, would Target welcome you with open arms, and let you have a free trolley push round the store ?

Ridiculous example.  Yeah sure

The difference is, Walmart and Target sell tangible goods (99% at least). Airlines sell a service of travel (obviously). The difference is, the planes are going to fly anyway, so if a seat is open, why not give it to your own employees for free, or sell it to offline employees for a small charge??

But, I'm sure, that will raise quite the controversy, so I'll just leave it at that.

Quoting PanAm747LHR (Thread starter):
On the good list:

I've nonrevv'ed internationally on NW and AA. AA was excellent, and prompt to give me business class, but I'd say that NW is probably better. This past May I flew GUM-NRT on a NWA 742, and at check-in they gave me top-deck World Business Class.....they didn't even make me wait until I got to the gate for the premium cabin. Recently I did DTW-CDG in World Business Class again on NW, and the gate agents were again very helpful. The flight was considerably more full, so I had to wait until 45 minutes prior to departure to get my seat, but again I was given my own row in C-class.

In a few weeks I'm hoping to go back to NRT, this time on UA though. We'll see how that goes.....the flights are wide-open in F and C, so I'm hoping it won't be too much of a hassle.

Quoting PanAm747LHR (Thread starter):
have all offered me upgrades once on board

I didn't know this was common practice!! I've only ever been offered an on-board upgrade once, and it was for a domestic flight. I had listed for First Class, but at check in the automated kiosk printed me a boarding card for coach. I got the exit row, so I was fine with that. But, before pushback, the gate agent walked on and told me there were still F-class seats available if I'd like to sit up there  Big grin

Quoting PanAm747LHR (Thread starter):
or maybe Cathay

I've personally never been on them, but I hear they treat nonrevs pretty well.

Let us know how it goes!!
 
UncleBuck
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Fri Oct 19, 2007 4:11 am

Quoting Bongodog1964 (Reply 1):
I can never quite grasp this principle of non revving

If you say worked at Walmart, would Target welcome you with open arms, and let you have a free trolley push round the store ? Of course they wouldn't, they would say "of course you are welcome to shop, and please pay the full price at the checkout"



Quoting L410Turbolet (Reply 5):
Interesting, because here I was - naively - thinking an airline with slightest bit of common sense would upgrade the last fare-paying passenger before even thinking about upgrading someone who's just getting a free ride.

sigh. civillian jealousy.
 
AlexPorter
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Fri Oct 19, 2007 9:58 am

I'm an upperclassman supply chain management major in the second-best undergraduate SCM program in the United States. One of the mantras of that field of business is that customer service is paramount in business, followed by cost savings, i.e. "the highest possible customer service at the lowest possible cost." I have to agree that it is best to upgrade paying passengers over non-revs, except that poorly-dressed or other "questionable" passenger should not be upgraded (as this is a customer disservice to other paying premium passengers. The reason passengers come first is simply because they paid for their ticket. They are the source of revenue. Upgrading them inherently exceeds their expectations and is a very strong incentive for them to fly with that airline again. This is also why when going through the list that full-fare Y passengers come first on the upgrade list because they are more important when it comes to revenue. There is no revenue benefit for enticing non-rev passengers to fly the airline again, because first of all they are more or less captive to your airline or your partners, and secondly because they do not provide revenue. Now, it's fine to maybe reward a high-performing employee or a long-time employee with an upgrade here and there as a thank you gift for their exemplary performance or long-time loyalty, but putting non-revs above non-elite Y-passengers is not a good practice in general. Upgrading fare-paying passengers indirectly increases revenue by encouraging customer loyalty, while upgrading captive non-fare-paying passengers does not increase revenue. What sounds like a better choice in an industry with often volatile profitability?
Last Flight: SCX701 MSP-PHX B738 8Jan2008
 
PhilSquares
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Fri Oct 19, 2007 1:16 pm

Quoting L410Turbolet (Reply 5):
Interesting, because here I was - naively - thinking an airline with slightest bit of common sense would upgrade the last fare-paying passenger before even thinking about upgrading someone who's just getting a free ride.

Please do not assume all employees travel "free". There are many fares available to airline employees (ID75) that are substantially more expensive than the heavily discounted economy fares available. How do you reconcile a situation like that? Do you penalize the airline employee and give the lowest fare paying passenger an upgrade?

Quoting Bongodog1964 (Reply 1):
If you say worked at Walmart, would Target welcome you with open arms, and let you have a free trolley push round the store ?

Please see above response. It's not quite as "black and white" as you would have everyone believe.

This situation goes on every day. Like it or not, that's the way life is. The discussion can go on ad nauseum, but the simple fact remains, it appears as though it's an issue of someone getting something for nothing and other people are offended because they don't get the same opportunity. My adivce, get a job working for an airline then see how you like it!
Fly fast, live slow
 
AlexPorter
Posts: 1655
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2006 11:10 am

RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Fri Oct 19, 2007 4:44 pm

Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 9):
Please do not assume all employees travel "free". There are many fares available to airline employees (ID75) that are substantially more expensive than the heavily discounted economy fares available. How do you reconcile a situation like that? Do you penalize the airline employee and give the lowest fare paying passenger an upgrade?

I didn't mention this before because it was late and I forgot about these fares, but ID75 passengers should be an exception to what I said above. ID75 passengers often work for other airlines that are not necessarily partners with those passengers' employers. As a result, although the fare is a base fare, those passengers provide revenue and in many cases specifically chose the airline so it is important to satisfy those customers too - but due to the relatively low fares they pay, they should generally come after more high-fare customers, but there is also the factor of airline employees being more professional / properly dressed / etc that can provide a reason to upgrade them before someone with a base Y-fare for instance.
Last Flight: SCX701 MSP-PHX B738 8Jan2008
 
stratosphere
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Wed Oct 24, 2007 4:06 pm

Quoting PanAm747LHR (Thread starter):
KLM, Qantas, Lufthansa, Alitalia, Mexicana, Aeromexico, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic have all offered me upgrades once on board, which I greatfully accepted. In general, I find that all of these airlines go out of their way to treat their non-revs well and I would definitely go out of my way to travel with them.

I find that hard to believe about KL. I found them impossble to upgrade. Hell their own employees cant ride in J or F unless you are a pilot. Also NW was always horrible to OAL employees in my time with them. I never saw a NW agent give an OAL an F upgrade hell it was tough for me also being an NW employee. Way back when I used to fly DL because they always upgraded me when they could even though I worked for NW. UA was good as well I always got upgraded with them. I know there are exeptions to the rule but my experience then was as I have stated. I used to have Off line employees ask me why NW would not upgrade them even though F was empty especially when their airline would upgrade us. It always embarassed me. I used to tell them they don't treat us any better than you. Don't get me wrong I flew a lot of F legs in my career but it became harder as time went on. However, my observation of offline employees was that we (nw) employees got better treatment flying with other airlines than we ever did for them.
 
TG992
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Wed Oct 31, 2007 7:31 pm

NZ won't upgrade other airline staff, which may be slightly unfair to other airlines that do upgrade us (UA is particularly good in this respect). However, due to New Zealand tax laws, staff travel on OTHER airlines is expensive for us (ID75 only), so we generally don't use other airlines a lot for subload travel.

If we recognise CREW on staff travel, we may upgrade them after the door closes, and on occasion ground staff that we know well, but employees from other departments generally don't get upgraded either. NZ employees all have the option of purchasing a subload business class ticket (simply double the price of the applicable staff rate for economy), so can freely elect to travel in J for cheap if they wish.
-
 
isitsafenow
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Wed Oct 31, 2007 7:56 pm

This is easy. When I was a gate agent, the person who would get moved up in stand by or upgraded to F was
always the Blonde in a short skirt that smelled good.

nuff said.
safe
If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
 
bobnwa
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Thu Nov 01, 2007 5:13 pm

I have flown non-rev on KLM dozens of times and have never been upgraded nor seen anyone upgraded including their own employees. We at Northwest are joint venture partners with KLM, and upgrade their non-revs quite frequently.
 
Transpac787
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Fri Nov 02, 2007 5:12 am

Just did my first ever international nonrev flight on UA the other day, and they were great!! Made me wait awhile to get it, but I finally got First Class on SEA-NRT. It was my first ever international flight on a 777 too, so not a bad day!!
 
aa61hvy
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Joined: Fri Nov 05, 1999 9:21 am

RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Fri Nov 02, 2007 5:53 pm

In the big scope of things, most airlines have interline agreements, so its like if you scratch my back we'll scratch yours.
I still need to non-rev-I've yet to do so and I work for an airline   

As a side note, I've heard ATA and SW are good domestic non rev options-of course no F though...

[Edited 2007-11-02 10:54:24]
Go big or go home
 
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fxramper
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Sat Nov 03, 2007 8:07 am

I used non-rev on 131,940 miles in 2006 and am on track to break that this year.

93% of flights I upgraded in 2006.

81% of flights I upgraded in 2007 (thus far).

60% of the time I used AA in 2007.

18% of the time I used WN in 2007.

7% of the time I used CO in 2007.

6% of the time I used BA in 2007.

3% of the time I used AF in 2007.

2% of the time I used NW in 2007.

2% of the time I used LH in 2007.

1% of the time I used UA in 2007.

1% of the time I used B6 in 2007.

91% of the time I made my exact travel dates in 2006.

93% of the time I made my exact travel dates in 2007.

There is no science to non-reving. Dress appropriately, never assume, and be patient.

Five times this year I was seated in Y and when they saw my FX crew badge I was reseated in J or F.

Last flight, 1 Nov. ORD-FCO, "We love FX employees!" - AA International F/A.

Quoting AA61Hvy (Reply 16):

What the deuce Ryan. Blast on down to AUS on WN to hang out. Only $44!

 rotfl 

Happy flying folks.

 airplane 
 
aa61hvy
Posts: 13021
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Sat Nov 03, 2007 4:35 pm

Quoting FXramper (Reply 17):
Blast on down to AUS on WN to hang out. Only $44!

Why would I want to go down there?!  Wink

Nah I'm looking to take AA to JFK soon-as they have all 762's all day. Should make for getting on there fairly easy....a couple of work buddies were talking of heading out to Asia on one of the directs out of LAX and go play some golf over a weekend.
Go big or go home
 
dinker225
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Wed Nov 14, 2007 5:10 am

Ah the jealousy begins! I just left my job as an airline employee to pursue another aspect of the aviation industry. I've only been without flight benefits now for just over 2 months and I can't hardly stand it! In 8 months I traveled well over 80,000 miles. Two trips to Australia, SEA, PDX, ORD, LAX, SFO, JFK, ORD, MSP. Ah those were the days.

I usually always flew United. However I did ride F9 a few times, tried NW a few times, got F with them on a flight and Y the other. Alaska a few times as well. Never tried any other international carriers. Really upset now that I never got the opportunity. Oh well. I sure will miss the convenience and flexibility of non-reving.


Quoting FXramper (Reply 17):
There is no science to non-reving. Dress appropriately, never assume, and be patient.

Couldn't agree more. I don't have stats on my flights like you but I had nearly the same luck. Only spent one night in an airport. But it's something that you prepare for.

Good luck to you all in your non-reving adventures. I'll be on your side at the gate from now on.

Dinker
Two rules in aviation, don't hit anything and don't run out of gas, cause if you run out of gas yer gonna hit something.
 
Transpac787
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Wed Nov 14, 2007 4:20 pm



Quoting FXramper (Reply 17):
There is no science to non-reving.

Not a science, but definitely an art!! Nonrevving also teaches a bit of a life-lesson with the ever-present need to have backup/contingency plans!!!
 
lamedianaranja
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RE: Airlines Upgrading Non-Revs - Who's Good/no Go

Thu Nov 15, 2007 9:48 am

Here at AMS/KL we have to upgrade nonrevs before commercial passengers, it's THE RULE  Cool This applies only when Economy Class presents an overflow of course.

If there's no overflow the Gate Agent will speak to the purser to see if any inflight upgrades are possible. This is not always the case but mostly you get lucky.
I wish that all skies were orange and blue!!

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