Madrid Hotels Articles

August 17, 2010

How to get a flight upgrade

Despicable? Probably. Selfish? Most certainly. Comfortable? Yes, definitely.

There are several truly below the belt ways to get that upgrade if you really need it. Or if you really, really want it. It isn’t pretty. But neither is that fat slob sitting next to you in coach class.

OK, so I’m not going to win any awards for being a peace ambassador between airlines and their customers. But it’s tough going out there in the travel world, and many travelers insist, no, they demand that they will only fly business class on international flights. And this applies to non-business travelers as well. Some will go to great lengths to secure that coveted upgrade to business or even the promised land of First Class.

Here are three things that I personally admit to doing, and yes, they have worked. Did I already say that they are despicable? I did? Oh, good.

Once, some time ago, I had a cheap coach ticket from San Francisco to London. It was a pleasure trip only, but good God it’s a long, long flight involving an overnight and I wasn’t about to spend twelve hours in the midst of steerage.

I had some time on my hands, about two weeks before I was to leave. I decided to fire up the laptop and fire off a letter to my airline. In this letter, I presumed to be the head of a travel services advisory company quite wonderfully named after myself. And, in this letter I wrote to a Mr. Nameless Airline Executive, and asked him where on God’s green earth have you left my GOLF CLUBS? I swear I checked them on that recent flight from Austin, TX to SFO. But where are they? I’m having to borrow my wife’s clubs and I look a right fool out there with pink driver covers!

Maybe you could make it up to me by doing me the honor and privilege of having me enjoy your transcontinental business class service?

It worked. I had sunk to a new low. But in a fortnight I was feeling a little better at 38,00 feet emptying the business class cabin of its best clarets.

Another time I had to fly from Madrid to Singapore. Yes, that’s an odd route. But it was business and my clients, the cheap bastards that they were, wouldn’t pony up the business class fare, but that’s another story. After a hard day at work in Madrid and several harder hours drinking with the same feisty Spanish business execs I really was in no mood to spit up in the spartan and low-end economy class lavatories. As the airline I was to fly was a partner of a domestic U.S. one I often used I devised a plan.

At check

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