Have you ever walked through first class on route to the common person’s seating, and pictured reclining in those massive seats, flute of complementary champagne in hand? Yep, rest assured, we are very much the same. But what if we told you that you didn’t have to imagine anymore? That getting a promotion to those cushy chairs didn’t always need to involve flashing the cash? Read on to find out how; our 6 IDEAL insider tips on how to get a flight upgrade.

PS & QS

Airports are without exception chaotic places full of stressed and often brusque people. Make yourself stand out. Be polite, courteous and to the point, peppering your interaction with pleasantries whilst not wasting anyone’s time. Indeed, you can tell a lot about someone by the way they speak to those behind the check in desk and at the bar. So, keep karma on your side by always being as lovely as possible, and reap the rewards in the most honest way possible. In doing so, you’ll be the automatic first pick for perks.

IT’S TIME TO BE BRAVE

There’s no point beating around the bush, deploying insinuation and innuendo hoping to be offered something in return. Instead, put your demand on the table. If you don’t ask, you don’t get, right? Your bravery may well be rewarded, and if not, at least you’ll have practiced your blagging skills for next time.

BEFRIEND A FLIGHT AGENT

Underhand perhaps? A quick, convenient route to first class, certainly. If you frequently travel and interact with the same agent, flight attendant or check in desk employee repeatedly, take the time to learn their name, their passions and the rest. In doing so, you’ll be the first person to come to their mind when the opportunity for an upgrade comes available. It’s a two way street; you give a little, you get a little, so work with a flight broker to request an upgrade on your flight. Simples.

CLAIM COMPENSATION

If you’ve had an unpleasant experience with the same airline previously, but it hasn’t totally put you off flying with them, then consider requesting an upgrade as compensation. If the airline is responsible (and in tune with modern marketing and PR methods), then they’ll likely readily cede to your request. 

CHECK YOUR SEAT FOR PROBLEMS

Sneaky, maybe, but also a perfectly legitimate reason to request a seat change. So, check the tray table, tiny tv, and the seatbelt of your seat for issues. Should something be faulty or not functional, request firmly but fairly to be moved up front, suggesting that you’d be happy to forget the matter should they accept this solution. Keep the power in your hands. What’s the worst that could happen?

JOIN AN AIRLINE LOYALTY CLUB

Though they’ve received a little negative publicity of late, many airlines still offer exciting discounts and deals to frequent travellers or those who are members of loyalty clubs. Along with many other benefits, like access to airport lounges, you’ll have the privilege of first option on flight upgrades. And that’s what you’re here for, right?

Should you be seeking more advice on living the luxe life for less, than check out our 5 IDEAL tips on doing just that.