A Novel Approach to Scoring an Upgrade

Years ago Zillow came up with the idea of allowing homeowners to list a “make me move” price on their house. Essentially, this was a selling price that would motivate them to sell on the spot.

I’m not sure how many have actually sold their home this way, but at least one traveler seems to think the “make me move” concept might just have wings:

I used a gold upgrade certificate (thanks Scott) to get 2c from LAX to SEA. I board last and notice a guy is seated in my spot, seatbelted in, ready to go and sipping on a FC cup of water.


I politely asked the FA to boot him, but the gentlemen comes up to the cockpit door and starts trying to negotiate with her for my seat. ~seekinghelp

Upon reading seekinghelp’s story, SamuelS asks the not-so-obvious question:

How much would you have taken, out of interest?

What a great question. The flight was from Los Angeles to Seattle on Alaska Airlines if you would like to play along.

For that flight, $500 would have done it for me unless it was for a middle seat. ~Doc Savage

I would take $200 if the exchange seat was an isle, $300 for a window and $500 for a middle seat.


Anyone heading to ONT next week? I will pay $100 cash for your FC seat. ~seekinghelp

Are you thinking what I’m thinking? Who wants to go in with me on Downgrademe.com?

Read the thread in its entirety: First weird FC moment

Image: “Money Hand Holding Bankroll Girls” by Steven Depolo. CC BY 2.0.


  1. I was returning from LAS a couple of years on a UA flight to IAH connecting to BOS as my final destination…I was sitting in E+ for the LAS-IAH segment and a FA came to my seat with a FC boarding pass. The gentleman next to me offered me $200 for the seat…I was rather ragged and beatdown from a bachelor party and politely declined but in hindsight that certainly would have helped the bottom line hah.

  2. It’s a great idea but it seems doomed long term as the folks willing to basically trade seats for a fee are going to be mostly those that got a free upgrade. Eventually the airlines would keep track and end your free upgrades I would think. They would also start strictly enforcing what seat you are assigned I’m thinking. So on a small scale it would work but if it got widespread it would end. That said count me in 🙂 Looks like that domain is for sale for $799’ish.

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