Complimentary upgrades to first class are a perk of having elite frequent flyer status with an airline. A single upgrade can increase the value of a ticket by more than double the original purchase price.
But as more travelers return to the skies for business and pleasure, first-class cabins fill up and free upgrades become harder and harder to find. Some airlines are also lowering the prices of paid first class upgrades to encourage economy class travelers to take the plunge.
With the summer coming to an end and Americans more comfortable with the plane, I wanted to see how difficult it was to nab a coveted upgrade to first class on a recent trip.
I booked Delta on a recent flight from New York to Mexico City, Mexico to see how I would behave as an elite status holder. Here is what I found.
One thing I’ve learned when booking flights in the hope of getting an upgrade is that it helps to be strategic. When looking for flights to Mexico City, for example, I opted for a flight on a jumbo jet as these planes often have a higher number of first-class seats than single-aisle planes.
The flight was delayed for about half an hour due to maintenance issues on the aircraft. But we were soon on our way and we went to Mexico.