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Neat trick on United Airlines

October 16, 2011 3 comments

Thanks to everyone for a great PASS US – I had a lot of fun at the conference.

Today, I am heading to Japan. My ticket is an economy ticket, and it is a long flight (around 12h). The price for a business class ticket (two weeks ago) was simply too high – 10K USD. Of course, I am not thrilled about such a journey in cramped conditions. But fortunately that is not what is going to happen: I will be lying down sleeping all of it. Here is how:

First, I asked for a potential upgrade at the check-in counter (hint: always be friendly to the girls there, and never sign up for specialized meals). I am only Silver Member on Star Alliance – but they bumped me up to Economy Plus – 5 more inches of legroom. So far so good…

Second, I asked at the gate itself for an upgrade to business. Because the plane is not full, they sell the final upgrade real cheap: 600 USD for upgrade from Economy Plus to Business.

Result: Trans-Pacific flight for the price of Economy + 600 USD. I will be enjoying my champagne and priority boarding in a few minutes.

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