What Happens If You Want to Downgrade An Upgraded Flight?

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This weekend I needed to change my plans last minute and book a different flight back to DC. With US Airways’ $200 change fee it wasn’t worth trying to change my original return, so I decided to just eat the cost.

However, I had used 6,000 miles to upgrade that flight to first class, and though I was willing to let the ticket go I kinda wanted my miles back. So I called up customer service and learned something interesting.

To get your miles back fee-free, the original class of service has to be available. So if only more expensive economy fare classes are available, you have to pay the difference in price. Good to know.

Note: I did not tell the agent I was not going to be using that ticket, I just told her I had originally used miles to upgrade but now wanted to downgrade the ticket back to economy. I was a little surprised she didn’t question this decision, but I guess they get a lot of requests for different things 🙂


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Heels First is the travels and tribulations of two twenty-something frequent fliers jumping into the world of travel. Join Keri and Jeanne as they tackle mileage runs, elite status, and of course–the perfect travel accessories.

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