While everyone would love to fly first class, not everyone can afford it. However, with competition becoming stiffer day by day, airliners have come up with many alluring ways to win loyalties, and upgrades (paid or free) are one of best ways to do that. LayoverGuide.com has some tips and tricks to help maximize your chances of scoring a free First Class upgrade:
Enroll in frequent flyer programs
As frequent flyers bring regular business to the airlines, enrolled flyers are given preference when it comes to upgrades. However remember that your chances increase even more when you are a part of a less popular program; as the competition remains less.
Volunteer to be bumped
Even when it’s a gamble, it’s worth trying! People who volunteer to get bumped are given a consolation flight, which can be used at any time year round. If there are seats available, even first class seats, they prefer such passengers for upgrades.
Get the code
No, we are not talking about the Da Vinci code but just plain and simple codes by the ticket agents to indicate that you should be preferred for free upgrades. Many travel agents or booking staff will leave a code such as OSI (Other Significant Information), which indicates that you are a VIP or other eminent person.
Buy full fare tickets
Buying full fare tickets gets you all the comforts of the first class in economy. As you pay higher amount for the comfort, in a bid to win your loyalty, airlines will prefer you for the upgrades.
Stay proactive in asking for upgrades
As they say that a squeaky wheel gets the oil, stay proactive in looking for upgrades. As when checking in on your flight and if you see a vacant seat in the first class, ask the onboard staff for upgrades.
Use miles to buy upgrades
Airlines want to make profits and prefer selling upgrades than simply passing them for free. So if you have collected miles on your frequent flyer card, redeem them for upgrades.
Stay aware of the SPECIALS
Airlines run special offers throughout the year. Therefore, get yourself on their mailing list and stay updated.
Buy First Class Tickets Cheaply
The main reason for people to stay away from even inquiring about first class tickets is the fear of the high cost. However airlines identify seasons and in order to minimize losses, run discounts on first class tickets. Be ready for one of these.
Even though, there is no guarantee that these tips work all the time; they, however, increase the chances of being upgraded, thus let you save money, enjoy class seating and first class amenities.