We’ve all boarded the plane and then walked through first and business class to make it to economy and with a slight sinking feeling noticed just how different the three are. In business class you are treated to chairs that recline, three-course dinners with wine pairings, and so much more. In economy, it is basically like sitting on a crowded bus except for the only people who are bumping into you are the passengers sitting next to you trying to worm their way past your knees on their way to the toilets. It’s not exactly glamorous. But there are a few ways you may be able to score an upgrade free of charge.
If you show up to the airport in a tracksuit and trainers, chances are you are not going to be the first choice for first class. How you dress may actually contribute to whether or not you are selected for an upgrade. Business casual is usually a safe bet. No jeans with holes, flip flops or basketball shorts. Instead opt for nice slacks, a dress shirt or polo, or even a dress as long as it is not too revealing. Keep it classy.
Overbooked Or Inconvenienced
Occasionally a flight will be overbooked, if this happens and they try to suggest putting you on a later flight explain this is not possible as you have a special event or meeting and that you should be placed in business class for the inconvenience. With social media, the mode of choice for people being inconvenienced or experiencing bad customer service airlines are very image conscious and do not want bad publicity. But be respectful during the process.
There are times where being polite and simply asking if there are going to be any upgrades on the flight might get results. Don’t forget to say your ‘please’ and ‘thank yous’ as you do this. Never expect to be upgraded unless you have a credit card that makes you automatically eligible or a rewards system. But if you state that you would like to have your name put down this may make it more likely that you get upgraded.
Bid For It
It is hard to get an upgrade but if you are pretty sure that your 10-hour flight is going to be unbearable in coach you can opt to bid on business class seats for some airlines. You can sometimes shell out an extra couple of hundred dollars for the upgrade but it really depends on how many other people are bidding. If you collect points for a certain airline then you may also be able to redeem those.