ZED and an upgrade when traveling?

wzgrza

Well-Known Member
Just wondering.

Has anyone been upgraded before while traveling on a ZED fare for no charge?

Like you are about to get on the flight, and they give you a First or Buis. class seat since there are still some available, although you bought a ZED for economy.

I am asking about international flights mostly.

Gonna be traveling out soon intl. and it would be awesome to get first or buisness, but at the same time I can't afford to spend the extra money on booking it that way to start with.
 

Alchemy

Well-Known Member
No. Don't count on it, it's probably very rare. On most airlines I don't even think they'd give you first if it had empty seats but coach was sold out. It also might be spelled out in the pass agreement between your airline and the one you are traveling on.
 

RWH1986

Some Guy
I did on South African from CPT-FRA last year. They also offered in FRA-CPT if there were any open but there wasn't after it checked in full. I guess it all depends on several circumstances though.
 

kellwolf

Piece of Trash
Depends on the airline. I've heard the international ones are pretty good about it, but like Alch said, don't count on anything. I know a lot of guys that flew on Virgin when I was at SWA that took advantage of our "over the counter" agreement with them. They hardly ever flew coach.
 

sorrygottarunway

Well-Known Member
It happened to me a few times on Lufthansa, but then I came prepared in uniform AND with fresh baked goods for the cabin crew as well as speaking the native language. But that being said, wouldn't count on it or even expect it. Sometimes the ZED rules are flexible, sometimes not depending on the carrier.
 

E_Dawg

Moderator
I've done a fair amount of international ZED travel, and not once has anyone offered an upgrade.

But, I keep it low key. I don't ask, don't say hi to the crew, and am in biz casual nonrev attire NOT a uniform :)

Best way if you want first or biz is to list for it if you are able (some ZED fares are coach-only)
 

wzgrza

Well-Known Member
I'll probably be taking either LOT Polish or Lufthansa depending on loads.

I also have heard lots of times that if you bring some sort of goodies for the crews that you are much more likely to get an upgrade and get treated well. But I have no experience with things like this.

Too bad the days are gone where there is a mutual respect between airline crews, and things like this being more common as a show of that respect.

Not a big deal, but sometimes it's the small little things like this that make you feel/look a little differently about your profession.

I have gotten upgraded before here in the U.S, but never non-reved intl yet.
 

Cav

Former Maddog Whisperer
I use ZEDs on intl' flights occasionally and have never once been offered first either. I've heard the occasional story but it's never happened to me. More often than not, if coach is full and seats are available in first, the carriers will just upgrade a high fair coach passenger to make room for you...at least that's what JAL and Thai did...as it should be IMO. I was just happy to get a seat.
 

RWH1986

Some Guy
I've done a fair amount of international ZED travel, and not once has anyone offered an upgrade.

But, I keep it low key. I don't ask, don't say hi to the crew, and am in biz casual nonrev attire NOT a uniform :)

Best way if you want first or biz is to list for it if you are able (some ZED fares are coach-only)
I don't think I would ask in the US or North America but I would probably anywhere else in the world. Employees are treated much nicer in other countries. Lufthansa treats employees well in my experience and everybody I know that has traveled with them has no complaints.
 

Cav

Former Maddog Whisperer
I'll probably be taking either LOT Polish or Lufthansa depending on loads.

I also have heard lots of times that if you bring some sort of goodies for the crews that you are much more likely to get an upgrade and get treated well. But I have no experience with things like this.

Too bad the days are gone where there is a mutual respect between airline crews, and things like this being more common as a show of that respect.

Not a big deal, but sometimes it's the small little things like this that make you feel/look a little differently about your profession.

I have gotten upgraded before here in the U.S, but never non-reved intl yet.
All true but consider one thing. On a long haul international flight there are probably some non rev employees who work for XYZ carrier traveling with you in economy. It's my understanding that the foreign carriers charge their employees a lot more for first class travel than the US carriers do. It certainly wouldn't be fair to take a ZED passenger and give them a first class seat over an employee of XYZ carrier. Remember on a ZED you are generally the same pass classification as a buddy pass rider. Sometimes lower.
 

Cav

Former Maddog Whisperer
I don't think I would ask in the US or North America but I would probably anywhere else in the world. Employees are treated much nicer in other countries. Lufthansa treats employees well in my experience and everybody I know that has traveled with them has no complaints.
Personally I'd be embarrassed to ask. But that's just me. Nothing worse than a nonrev with a sense of entitlement. Not accusing you RWH1986, just saying.
 

E_Dawg

Moderator
I don't think I would ask in the US or North America but I would probably anywhere else in the world. Employees are treated much nicer in other countries. Lufthansa treats employees well in my experience and everybody I know that has traveled with them has no complaints.
There seems to be less variability abroad among gate agents. ie They actually know what they're doing.

Which means the chances of getting an upgrade with the gate agent are slim to none. On the flip they will probably know what a ZED fare is, and be able to speak English.

So if you're going to ask, you're probably better off asking the cabin crew. I'm also embarrassed to ask, though. I take my seat and keep my mouth shut. :)
 

wzgrza

Well-Known Member
All true but consider one thing. On a long haul international flight there are probably some non rev employees who work for XYZ carrier traveling with you in economy. It's my understanding that the foreign carriers charge their employees a lot more for first class travel than the US carriers do. It certainly wouldn't be fair to take a ZED passenger and give them a first class seat over an employee of XYZ carrier. Remember on a ZED you are generally the same pass classification as a buddy pass rider. Sometimes lower.
I agree. If there are non-rev employees of that company, then they should be first to get an upgrade. But lots of times there arent. And if a seat is available it would be a nice gesture of mutual respect if they offered you an upgrade. Especially when now'a'days you get treated like a tool by your airline, as opposed to an asset. Stupid things like this could do wonders to boost morale, when you feel like a second class citizen.

And also I think we deserve it, much more so then the priority member in coach who is probably flying on company buisness anyways, and didnt pay a dime for his ticket, or even choose the airline.

I also don't think I would ask. Although your chances probably go up if you ask politely.
 

RWH1986

Some Guy
Although your chances probably go up if you ask politely.
Exactly. I learned that when you fly nonrev to always mind your manners an be polite and your treated better. Common courtesy. I have seen the other side when a pass rider is angry they didn't get first or even on the plane. Like once a wife and kids were left behind when me and my friend got the last two seats.
 

Screaming_Emu

Joe Conventional
Exactly. I learned that when you fly nonrev to always mind your manners an be polite and your treated better. Common courtesy. I have seen the other side when a pass rider is angry they didn't get first or even on the plane. Like once a wife and kids were left behind when me and my friend got the last two seats.
Absolutely. I've ridden as a jumpseater transatlantic on NWA and a little BSing with the crew before departure I was sitting in business even though I believe their policy is that jumpseaters can only ride in business if econ is full. Then ironically enough when I was heading back from that trip I ended up with the same cabin crew. There are really some awesome people in this industry.
 

Derg

New Arizona, Il Duce/Warlord
Staff member
Oh, well, that's a changin' purdy soon! Fill biz/first class first and then coach is just around the corner.
 

Screaming_Emu

Joe Conventional
Oh, well, that's a changin' purdy soon! Fill biz/first class first and then coach is just around the corner.
Yeah, I'm waiting for the NW flights to be included in our nonrev agreement here at ASA. Obviously not that high of a priority in the grand scheme of the merger (nor should it be), but that'll be nice.
 
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