Odds are good that as you read this, I’m on a plane somewhere. It will be a long over and back for 8,000 Elite qualifying miles on United, but at $250+/- I couldn’t pass it up.
And the bump opportunities are fantastic. The agent in Savannah shook her head in amazement when I asked how many oversold on the ORD-IAD segment. And the numbers are 25 over on IAD to LHR. There are currently 4 empty first class seats and 14 in business. Yours truly in #1 on the volunteer list for both segments.
I realize I’m probably in line for an operational upgrade, but may be better off actually getting bumped as I think I can get the flights re-ticketed and then they may qualify for the Double Elite promo. That would be quite the feat, fly over in first with a voucher in my pocket and earn DBEQM on a $251 Priceline ticket.
Update from Washington
Uneventful trip up from Savannah to Chicago. Nicole informed me of the oversold conditions and I gladly listened to the iPod until I fell asleep.
The layover in Chicago was spent catching up on emails, playing a few games of online poker and double checking my flight options for my inevitable bump on the flight to IAD. It did happen, but not as I expected.
As always, I got to the gate early and pronounced my presence to the male gate agent. He was certainly not too impressed with having a volunteer and indicated that they would not be taking any. I ask about upgrades and was informed that there were 16 people purchasing upgrades and he would see what was available when done with the cash paying customers. I was eventually called up for the free upgrade to IAD which I gladly accepted, but still somewhat disappointed that they were not oversold.
At the ten minute mark before boarding I noticed the new sign board now asking for volunteers and from my typical place close to the podium I offered myself again as the perfect candidate with carry-on only and flexible travel plans.
The agent indicated he could not put me on the next flight to Washington and still stay on the 7:09 PM departure to LHR. I agreed. It was too tight. I could fly on to London on a non stop from Chicago leaving at 4:30 PM in coach or be accommodated on a later flight out of IAD again in coach.
At this point I finally asked what the compensation would be and was disappointed to hear, just a free domestic ticket.
So I boarded my flight to Washington in Business and enjoyed another short nap and the cheese plate.
I may regret the decision not to bump in ORD, but I have 21J across the pond and another oversold situation in Washington. I’m looking for an upgrade on the long leg and willing to spend the night in IAD if I have to get it.
If I fly out tomorrow morning and come back Monday it still gets me home around the same time as my original itin has me overnight in Chicago anyway.