I don’t have elite frequent flyer status with US Airways.
Frequently, on lesser booked flights, I’ll be offered a buy up to first class at check-in. For the US Airways shuttle it used to be $50, more recently I’ve been offered $60 buy ups. Basically any first class seat left would be offered for cash.
Now the US Airways Shuttle between DC and New York is a short hop and I usually won’t take it. But during peak times, ground waits can be much longer than the flight itself. I’ve taken them up on the offer a couple of times.
I found it interesting, though, the email I’ve just received. US Airways is offering to put me on a waitlist for upgrade now, which will clear if available two days prior to flight. The price for a short flight is higher as well.
US Airways silvers are eligible for upgrades 2 days in advance so presumably these non-elite paid upgrades will be processed after Silver elite complimentary upgrades.
But moving up the upgrade window for paid non-status upgrades seems like an interesting development, and in some ways a curious one since it must involve new computer programming — something I wouldn’t expect US Airways to be investing in in advance of moving over to the American Airlines reservation system (likely early next year).
I’m not taking them up on this offer, but it seemed like an interesting change.