I’m scratching my head as I sit in the Philadelphia Red Carpet Club this morning. I’ve got a meeting in Boston today and am traveling from PHL-IAD-BOS. Last night, I got a text message from United that my upgrade from IAD-BOS cleared. Great! Usually when an upgrade clears after you check-in, you have to be offloaded and re-checked in at the airport to get the upgraded seat assignment.
This morning I explained what happened to a familiar agent while checking in and she nodded her head in understanding, telling me she would take care of it. Well, it took her about five minutes to print out the BPs. I didn’t think too much of it because I know UA’s reservation system is a relic of antiquity, but I should have glanced down at the BPs before moving on.
The BPs were placed in a ticket jacket and I didn’t take a look at the IAD-BOS one until I got to the RCC. I was still in economy…
I mentioned what had happened to the RCC agent and she tried to offload and check me back in, but I was still registering in economy class. Moments later she said, "That’s funny. I’ve never seen anything like that before. They gave you the upgrade and took it away. Here take a look."
I peered at her computer screen and saw a notation that my upgrade had been cleared at 9pm last night and then taken away sometime after. The IAD-BOS flight is "way oversold" in the back but has only 16/24 seats booked in first class. For whatever reason, I’m back on the waitlist.
I know I’ll clear (again) and look forward to the explanation of what happened when I inquire again at IAD.
Ouch. You know, as a former UA employee, the file number (agent ID) of the person who moved you back to coach is in the record locator. It could have been “the system”, too, which would also be noted. Anytime anything changes on your reservation, those changes are logged in the history of the PNR. Anyone at UA CAN find out who did it, or that the system did it. Whether they will tell you is another story.
The pearl in this for you today is the oversell situation if you actually can take advantage of it. Maybe not because of your meeting, but hope you can.