After a fabulous flight in Lufthansa first class from Frankfurt to New York last Saturday, I wasn’t exactly thrilled about flying in Lufthansa economy from Los Angeles to Frankfurt yesterday afternoon.
I was booked on a rather pricey economy ticket which I thought would position me nicely for an upgrade on a Monday flight to Europe. Presenting my paper upgrade cert at check-in, I was hoping for the words, "Mr. Klint, we are pleased to confirm you immediately in business class."
Instead, I was told, "Sorry, it’s not going to happen today. We’re way oversold today in business. I’m not even going to add you to the waitlist." Ouch. I’ve never flown in economy on a longhaul Lufthansa flight and was determined not to break my perfect upgrade record.
I asked about routing through Munich instead. While business class was wide open on that flight, I was told that it would cost about $900 to change the ticket. Sorry, an upgrade is certainly not worth that much.
Nevertheless, I tried to find a sympathetic agent who would waive the change fee to reroute me. One felt sorry for me and did his best to help. His supervisor wouldn’t budge on changing the ticket, but suddenly I was told, "You’re upgrade chances actually don’t look all that bad."
Sure enough, the upgrade came through. It was a middle seat and Lufthansa Business Class is not what it once was cuisine-wise, but I was very thankful for the more comfortable seat and to be able to access the "Welcome Lounge" in Frankfurt this afternoon.
If you ever find yourself in a similar situation, never give up on upgrading and always insist on being added to the waitlist.