Airline Upgrade Policies for Alaska, American, Delta and United

Scott Mackenzie has written a ‘compare and contrast’ post about the upgrade policies of Alaska, American, Delta and United Airlines.

Summarizing Differences between Airline Upgrade Policies

This is a complex topic, since policies vary for full-fare, discounted and award tickets, and between the various elite status levels that each airline’s frequent-flier program offers. Also, can you upgrade with FF miles? And finally, can your companion upgrade if you do?

This is a good reference, kudos to Scott for preparing it!

First Class Upgrade
First Class Upgrade

New Tool Searches for Widebody Airline Flights in USA

No, a “widebody” does not refer to an overweight person…it means a commercial aircraft with 2 aisles instead of 1. Widebody airliners always seem more comfortable to me than single-aisle aircraft.

A Boeing 777 is an example of a widebody airliner.

The Wandering Aramean has created a tool to show which routes in the United States will be flown by widebody aircraft. Only about 35 airports in the US are served by widebody airliners.

Where the Widebodies Fly

Because they are “fatter” than narrowbody aircraft, widebodies cause more air turbulence when they take off and land. This turbulence has the possibility of disturbing the aircraft that follows the widebody down the runway, so air traffic controllers have to allow extra time after a widebody takes off or lands.

The air traffic controller term for a widebody aircraft is “heavy.”

A Widebody Squirrel. Photo by James Marvin Phelps / Flickr

Fly Dallas to Atlanta, $82 on Southwest (free cancel) or $87 on Delta (no free cancel)…Which Would You Choose?

Southwest Airlines is so much more passenger-friendly than the other legacy carriers…free changes, free checked luggage, friendly staff.

In both cases the fares are from Love Field in Dallas to Atlanta Hartsfield and back.

And if you have a Southwest Airlines Companion Pass, your companion can accompany you for just $5.60.

Related: Atlanta to NYC La Guardia, $110 r/t on Southwest, $167 on Delta.

Airline Miles and Hotel Points, What Are They Worth?

There is no universal answer, because the value of a point/mile depends strongly upon whether you prefer to fly Coach, Business or First Class; whether you prefer upscale or downmarket hotels; and whether you have status in a particular program.

Given all that, here is the updated list of values from The Points Guy:

Airliner, Photo by shyb / Flickr