Reciprocal Upgrades IT Flaw on US Airways for American Elites

Reciprocal UpgradesUS Airways has always been known to have a horrible IT system, but their IT flaws have just caused me a first class upgrade. I used The Jetsetter’s Homestead’s guide to reciprocal upgrades for American elites flying on US Airways to upgrade to first class, or to at least request an upgrade. It’s a great guide on how to upgrade successfully when flying US Airways.

I have a flight to PDX tonight on US Airways and last night my friend and I both checked in as soon as check-in became available. Unfortunately, no first class seats were available at the time of check-in. My friend and I both signed up to be placed on the airports upgrade list for first class.

I was first on the list, my friend was second. Both of us are American elite members. Earlier today he decided to check where he stood on the list and noticed an open seat in first class. He rushed to take the seat and succeeded in claiming it.

Thankfully, it was my friend who got the seat and not somebody else who was unknown to me and checked in after me. US Airways’ IT is quite laughable, how someone can jump the list and claim a first class seat is beyond me. I understand they are still working out the “kinks” with the merger but at least finish the enhancements you make.

When I reached out to US Airways on Twitter they thought the issue was “curious” and asked that I contact US Airways directly via their contact us form online.

I’m shorter than my friend so I was already planning on giving him my upgrade anyway but this sort of flaws drive me bonkers. What bothers me the most is the potential for this happening when flying alone or to someone else who requests an upgrade but has it taken from under their nose due to an IT flaw.

Have any of you had a similar experience with reciprocal upgrades?


About Adam (509 Articles)
Lawyer. Immigrant. Frequent Flyer. Scuba Diver. Travel Blogger. [Follow me on Twitter: @iAdumb]

3 Comments on Reciprocal Upgrades IT Flaw on US Airways for American Elites

  1. What happened to me was even worse. There was a FC seat available when I checked in at T-24 but I couldn’t grab it. I called and was told it’s under airport control. Magically, it was gone 5 hours later as OCI just randomly started working. No recourse.

  2. Platinum and Dedicated // September 5, 2014 at 5:54 pm //

    Was aware of this, and had used it to my advantage many times to get transcon upgrades as a lowly AAdvantage Plat. Went so far as to check in once next to an EP who was asking how to get an upgrade – whose name I recognized as previously ahead of me on the upgrade list, but who was ultimately in coach while I enjoyed first.

    Really sad to see this become common knowledge – this “broken” system effectively awards seats to those who spend the time and energy to monitor the situation. Some would argue these people care most about the upgrade. Sad to see this be surfaced.

    • It doesn’t “effectively award seats” to those who keep checking because if you are told you *will be* added to the standby list then you don’t have to keep checking, however, the broken system allows for someone who checked in late to simply snatch an upgrade. It is unfair and deceiving to those who truly deserve it based on check-in time.

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