Any experienced business traveler knows that flying can be stressful, especially when it comes to trying to get an upgrade to first class or even business class. While some travelers assume that they can’t score a seat upgrade, there are ways to make this happen more often than you think! According to flight attendants, here’s how to up your chances of getting a promotion for a smoother flight experience.
The Loyalty Test
If you fly often, you might be wondering how you can score a free upgrade to first class. Well, according to flight attendants, you can do a few things to increase your chances. For starters, try to fly with the same airline often. The more loyal you are, the more likely it is that they’ll show appreciation by giving you an upgrade. So try booking your tickets with the same airline as often as possible. Another tip is to dress well and be polite when you check in and board the plane.
The Timing of Your Request
Certain times are better than others when it comes to asking for an upgrade. The best time to ask is when you first check in. The second-best time is at the gate, right before boarding begins. Avoid asking during boarding, as the attendant is busy and may be unable to accommodate you. If you’re asked if you want an upgrade during boarding, say yes! Gate agents generally give priority to frequent flyers, so you need to make sure you’re familiar with your airline’s membership upgrade policies. Nevertheless, if no other names are on the upgrade list, it may be your lucky day.
Be Grateful and Polite
When your flight attendants come around, remember to make eye contact with them and thank them for their service. Be polite when you ask for an upgrade. Smiling and making eye contact go a long way—flight attendants are people, too! The more accommodating you are, the better your chances of getting that comfortable seat you want. Other measures to get an upgrade include calling the attendant by name, letting them know that you’re traveling for a special occasion, or traveling with a baby. If you want to go above and beyond, consider presenting a small token of appreciation to the flight attendants – it will be returned to you in the form of free drinks or snacks. A simple candy bar or chapstick can do wonders in terms of getting a favorable response and that coveted business class seat.