Airlines

New US Airways Glitch: Elites Traveling Together Won’t Get On the Upgrade List

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We discovered a new glitch with the US Airways system this morning. Our upgrades hadn’t cleared in advance for our flight today and the online check in no longer offered the option of being added to the upgrade list. At the gate, first class was full, but just for fun I pulled up the upgrade list using the US Airways mobile site to see where we were on the list.

And discovered our names weren’t there. At all.

Even though there was little chance our upgrade would clear, Jeanne asked the agent to add us to the flight just in case. It was an AM flight, there was a chance a few people might oversleep.

That’s when the gate agent told her that there’s a glitch with their system. Elites traveling together will not be added to the list, even when they have the same level of status. That used to be the case if one person on a reservation didn’t have status, but it now affects everyone, even two Chairmen traveling together. As long as both people in the reservation were elite, they were both treated as having the higher level of elite status.  It is possible that this previously was a “glitch,” but that’s how they had been processing for us.

Since we will have the same status next year she advised us to book all our flights separately in the future if we want to be upgraded at the gate. (As a side note, this also helps with advance upgrades since US Airways will pass over pairs traveling together if only one seat opens up at a time. So if one seat opens up and another opens up 15 minutes later, the two people traveling together would be passed over for individuals next in line since the seats weren’t open at the same time.)

The agent was able to fix it by splitting our reservation, but this is a real bummer! Not the end of the world, but we prefer to book flights together in case of travel disruptions.

And this has an even bigger impact on people traveling with unequal statuses. In most cases, it will make sense to still book the ticket together in the hopes you will all clear during the advance upgrade window. But it does mean that none of you will clear at the gate.

A very disappointing development. 🙁

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8 Comments

  1. Jim F.

    December 8, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    Do you know whether USAirways is making any efforts to “cure” this glitch. My wife (Silver) and I (Chairmans) have transcon flights coming up in January.

    • Keri Anderson

      December 8, 2013 at 7:32 pm

      I wish I did! Jeanne & I only discovered it existed this morning 🙁

    • Jeanne Marie Hoffman

      December 9, 2013 at 1:59 pm

      Probably not, but for a transcon, you should watch the upgrades ahead of time. I have never cleared an upgrade at the gate with a traveling companion for a transcon, even before this glitch. What route are you taking, if you don’t mind me asking?

      My spouse is a silver too, and I usually end up upgrading us with points ahead of time.

  2. Mike Milzz

    December 8, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    Probably won’t be ‘resolved’ until merger w AA system 🙁

    • Jeanne Marie Hoffman

      December 9, 2013 at 1:56 pm

      Yup, it must have been going on for a while because I haven’t been able to put myself on the upgrade list at check in when traveling with other people, but a gate agent had told me it is automatic now (I have always cleared upgrades ahead as a solo traveler, so I couldn’t see when it was just me). It appears that gate agent was wrong and pairs of people do not go on upgrade lists.

  3. AR

    December 9, 2013 at 12:31 am

    This only applies to upgrades at the gate, right? Not upgrades in the 2/3/4/7 day advance windows? (Still sucks regardless…)

    • Jeanne Marie Hoffman

      December 9, 2013 at 1:54 pm

      Yes, upgrades in advance will be fine. They do pass over pairs of people when they are slowly releasing upgrades, but they’ve been releasing them in larger groups lately so that’s not a huge consideration.

  4. Pingback: Earning Miles Cheap With Money Orders, Big Miles for TV, and CorporateMergerSpeak: Bits 'n Pieces for December 9, 2013 - View from the Wing - View from the Wing

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