Ah, so that’s why my “unlimited domestic upgrades” are clearing!

I’ve been incredibly happy with United’s “unlimited domestic upgrade” program. At first I thought my upgrade percentage would go way down, but it hasn’t. Doing the math, I’ve flown over 120 revenue segments on United since unlimited domestic upgrades began on March 19, and I’ve had two upgrades not clear. Upgraded 98%+ of the time? Score!

Anyway, no doubt the times I travel have something to do with that, though this coming weekend is proving to be quite the downer when it comes to upgrades. I’m flying four segments to get to Fleet Week and back, and only one upgrade has cleared. That first segment seems to be undergoing an aircraft swap (judging by the fact that it went from being wide open to being zeroed out), so I’m crossing my fingers that I won’t be downgraded.

I was most shocked by my second flight, a 757 (with 24 first class seats) from Washington to San Francisco. Admittedly it’s a tough route to upgrade, but not on a Saturday. The last time I took that exact flight on a Saturday, everyone cleared the upgrade. In this case, though, 18 of the 24 seats were already occupied a week out, with Economy Plus packed to the gills. That upgrade ain’t clearing!

The return looks even worse. Both flights were NF9 (meaning there were at least nine confirmable upgrade seats at the upgrade window), but I guess there were some high fare 1Ks that got the upgrade ahead of me. Fair enough.

The only upside is that all the flights are now packed to the gills, so I’m hoping for a bump.

Or did any of you pesky FlyerTalkers steal my upgrade? đŸ˜‰

Filed Under: United
  1. The last two times that vie flown iad-sfo, the upgrade list has had at least ten 1Ks waiting for the upgrade.. I do figure that fleet week might impact your upgrades a bit. My sfo-ord on Sunday nigh has not cleared yet..

  2. Sorry to hear that. Mine cleared right at their mark, but on an incredibly unexciting, pedestrian jaunt up & down the coast LAX-SFO-LAX.

  3. I always confirn IAD-SFO in advance. Too risky for such a long flight.

    Saturday is suprising. Did your upgrades process correctly (move from pending to waitklkisted at 1K window)?

  4. IAD-SFO is hub to hub and it’s impossible unless you confirm ahead of time, or if you get lucky (no pun inteded), even on a 777 or 767.

  5. @ FriendlySkies — Not sure in theory why it would have an impact since almost everyone attending is an employee, and I doubt I was beat out by an FTer, but who knows.

    @ Darren — Hey, I’d rather fly F on that route than the village on a transcon.

    @ Gene — Yep, all the upgrades show as waitlisted.

    @ ptahcha — I guess they call me lucky for a reason. I’ve flown IAD-SFO probably close to 100 times, and I’ve only sat in coach twice. And I don’t think I’ve ever used a confirmable upgrade instrument. For what it’s worth, I almost always fly on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

  6. I know what you mean about the return, as I was waiting hoping on the small chance I could actually get upgraded, since I go in to work immediately upon landing at home

  7. It seems to be a domestic Airline wide epedemic this weekend. All three of my segments are filled to the gills…other then LAX-SFO which is strange as I always fly on Saturdays and as a AA Gold I always get the upgrade by at least T5.

    Not so this weekend it seems…Dinner better be worth a transcon in Y Ben… đŸ˜€

  8. I don’t like UDU’s……there are too many people flying in First Class that shouldn’t be…..I liked it better when you had to use E500s and there were some empty seats in First……

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