Qantas will allow frequent flyers to upgrade their seats at the gate following a trial of the new system launched in May.
Previously, processing of upgrade requests stopped a few hours before flight, meaning that any premium seats left vacant by last-minute cancellations, no-shows or missed connections remained empty.
Qantas Loyalty chief Lesley Grant said the decision to adopt the new process followed customer complaints. “Our members [told] us it is a source of frustration when their upgrade request is denied only to find there are empty seats on the aircraft when they boarded,” Ms Grant said in a statement.
Under the new system, frequent flyers will also be able to receive an upgrade for a single segment of a multi-leg flight, whereas previously the upgrade was denied if the seat was not available for the entire flight.