How To get a Free Flight/Hotel Upgrade
Do you ever wonder what goes on behind the drawn curtain separating Business/First Class cabin from the Economy cabin? Collapsible, wide and leather seats, gourmet food served in proper plates (not plastic), welcome champagne,high end amenity kits and the general air of "Very Important People". It usually cost an arm, a leg and maybe an ear to get this. Now imagine you can get an upgrade so you can enjoy all that without breaking the bank or possible for nothing! All that will taste a lot better if you are not paying any extra for it.You can get that upgrade for little or nothing if you follow this guide and have a bit of luck on your side. Read for the tip and please, do not hesitate drop any tip you have that is not include here, we'd greatly appreciate it.
- Join a frequent flyer program.You will more likely be upgraded if you have a relationship with the airline, pledging your loyalty to the airline can be considered a great relationship, additionally the high you climb u that loyalty ladder by logging more and more miles, the more like it is that you will get that upgrade. This is an investment that might not yield dividends immediately or in the sure run but surely will in the long run. You can actually be able to use accumulated points from the logged miles to get an upgrade or a fresh ticket depending on how many miles you have accumulated.
- Subscribe to the airline's email newsletter and follow them on social media, the airlines contact you close to the flight date you offer cheap upgrades, Qatar air is popular for this.
- Long Haul fights offer so much value for money or points so don't shell out those hard earned points for short city hops.
- There are often staff perks that you can take advantage of so if you have family or friend working for an airline, it is time to ring them.
- If you are celebrating a milestone like birthday, wedding or anniversary, let the airline staf know, have your travel agent put a comment on your booking to indicate that the trip is an anniversary get-away. They might have heard this a million times from several others so you might want to have a proof with you, you might just get that upgrade.
- Do you have a professional title? If you can precede your name with Doctor or Professor, ensure that you have proof for the title, there's just a chance you might get that upgrade.
- Being nice to the airline staff might not guarantee an upgrade but being nice and friendly with a smile to the check-in counter staff can help.
- Business/First class usually have folks who are at the top of their fields of endeavor, the rich and beutifful so you might want to dress like you are one of them so you don't look odd, that increases the chances of getting the upgrade.
- Don’t pre-order a special meal if you can do without it. If you order a special meal, it rules you out of an upgrade as flights usually do not care spare special meals, you can be in Business class and eat economy class meal.
- It is helpful to be flexible. When a flight is full, airline staff might “push” passengers onto the next flight. This move might be a lucrative one. Incentives for accepting the move might include an upgrade. If you can afford to to be pushed, don't forget to inform the airline staff during check-in.
- Discreetly inform the gate attendant!
- Be first in the line. When the flight gets overbooked, it may just be a case of first-booked, first-pushed. However, the opposite might just be the case. There’s no sure way of predicting this in advance. When a flight is overbooked, the last passengers to check-in may just find themselves in the stretched seats.
- Arriving a little late, but not very late, could help too. You’re expecting the economy seats being filled already.
- You need to be strategic when choosing your flight times. Early morning flights are common with business travelers so it's more unlikely to get an upgrade on such flights, however your chances of upgrading are higher if the flight is for later in the day. Also During school holidays, top holiday destinations will be busy but maybe not in all classes. Hard pressed families will most probably be in economy class and this frees up space in business/ first class.
- Fights during Bank Holidays and other lower times of the year when business travelers usually don't travel is a good time. Don't just consider US or UK holidays, consider your origin and destination country. Check out what's happening like Conventions and expos, these are periods you should avoid as the business travelers keep the business/first class cabins filled up.
- If you’re really want to get an upgrade, do a bit of research, you can actually find the air plane seat configuration on seat guru, from there you can tell the flights with more business/first class seats and target those as you have higher chances with them.
- Look up your flights a day before departure to see how full it is. A sold out flight might just mean that the airline will look for volunteers to push to the next flight, this presents a nice opportunity to negotiate for an upgrade.
- Have some cash with you on your travel date. You can inquire at the counter how much an upgrade will cost, since it's a last minute upgrade you might just get a very good deal.
- Travel alone. If you are by yourself without any child or partner,it'll be easier to get an upgrade, if there are two of you but only one stretched seat, they will usually skip you and look for a single traveler.
- It is quite rare for a family to get an upgrade but you can increase your chances by ensuring that your children are well behaved, you can push things further by making separate bookings for each family member, that way even when there are few seats, some of you can get them.
- If a cabin crew asks you to move to create space for another passenger, please do so. There might just be a stretched seat upfront that they'll move you to.
- If there’s an issue with your tray table, seat or any other thing, politely and discreetly tell the cabin crew, if there isn't a a free seat in economy class cabin, you might just be moved to business/first class cabin.
- The rules her are quite similar, sign up for the hotel's loyalty program.
- Ensure that you are subscribed to their news letter and follow them on their social media channels.
- Don’t book the cheapest room, go for the second and next in line. As far as the hotel is concerned, the jump to a suite will not be as far as it will from the cheapest room type.
- Do not be too specific about your booking. If you are flexible with the room type, you most likely will not be assigned to a room until you are about to check-in and which time you can nicely ask.
- As the case with flights, let them know how important the trip is. Is it a honeymoon, life event, wedding anniversary, birthday etc Inform the hotel about this at the point of booking(you can easily put a remark to inform them), even if you don't get an upgrade, you can actually get other freebies.
- Be polite and friendly. If there's a problem with your booked room, explain nicely you might just get that upgrade if the same room class is no longer available.
- Make your booking directly with the hotel, you can do the on their website or by writing them an email or even calling them.
- Do a bit of research before booking, you can tell them you saw a cheaper price online and negotiate the upgrade based on that as they will naturally try to better the offer.
- Travel out during low season. Boutique hotels in particular (hotel that cater to business travelers) are more likely to have available rooms when the business travelers are not there.
- Conversely, during high season most of the the cheaper rooms in the hotel may be occupied so the hotel can bump you into more comfortable room.
- It is generally easier to get an upgrade for shorter stays, one or two nights ideally.
- Arrive late. Rooms may free up during the course of the day and the hotel will be keen to fill them up. You also want to speak to a staff that has the power to upgrade your room who will usually close at about 5pm so don't leave it for too late.
- Search out new hotels or hotels with new management. They’ll be working hard to impress you and get your referrals.