Trying out Austrian Airlines Bid for an Upgrade Option

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I snagged several tickets during the recent sale on Wideroe that had tickets to Europe selling for as little as $350 R/T. One of those tickets is on Austrian Airlines.

So when I was accessing my itinerary in the hopes of selecting decent seats, I came across their Smart Upgrade program. I’d heard about it before but since I’ve never flown Austrian and had no plans to, I didn’t pay much attention.

Now faced with 19 hours in coach over a weekend, I’m much more interested!Austrian Airlines Smart Upgrade Program

A quick scan of the rules indicated you can make/edit/cancel your bid up to 72 hours before your flight. At some point in the 72 hours before your flight they’ll let you know whether or not your bid has been accepted.

And just as I research how much to bid on Priceline through sites like and, I checked to see if anyone had suggestions on what winning bids were going for.

I found a thread on Flyertalk, and though I’m still not clear as to whether the likelihood of having your bid accepted is based available seats in Business Class or how full (or not) both Business and Economy is, I at least have a better sense of winning bids for DC to Vienna.

Austrian Airlines Smart Upgrade Bidding Form

I still have a couple of months, so I think I’m going to set a reminder to check back a few weeks before departure to see if there’s any new data points and then place my bids. Looks like the lowest possible bid is 250 Euros ($~340), and winning bids have been $400-$500, so I need to think through how much I can afford for a lie-flat bed.


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