How common are free flight upgrades?

How common are free flight upgrades?

Are the days of trying to sweet-talk check-in staff to get a free upgrade to premium economy, business, or first class, long gone? Many airlines now sell spare upgrade capacity at the desk. So we want to see how common free upgrades are.

Please answer the closest to your situation for flights IN THE PAST TWO YEARS.



Results

Not applicable to me (1054 votes)
I've not flown in the past two years 304 votes (29%)
I've only flown on airlines with one flight class (eg, budget airlines) 632 votes (60%)
I always pay to upgrade/fly a higher class anyway 118 votes (11%)
No free upgrades - though it could've happened (5661 votes)
I've never asked/tried to get one 3491 votes (62%)
I've asked a few times but to no avail 1767 votes (31%)
Not had one even though I have significant status with its frequent flyer scheme 403 votes (7%)
I’ve had a free upgrade - and I DIDN’T have significant status with its frequent flyer scheme (1214 votes)
The flight was overbooked, I agreed to wait so got an upgrade 97 votes (8%)
They gave me an upgrade - no questions asked 742 votes (61%)
When I got to my seat it was broken/someone was in it, so I was upgraded 61 votes (5%)
I have a friend/family member who works for the airline 80 votes (7%)
I was on my honeymoon/getting married/celebrating 64 votes (5%)
I asked, or simply talked them into it 94 votes (8%)
It’s happened a few times in a number of the ways above 76 votes (6%)
I’ve had a free upgrade - and I DID have significant status with its frequent flyer scheme (613 votes)
The flight was overbooked, I agreed to wait so got an upgrade 37 votes (6%)
They gave me an upgrade - no questions asked 415 votes (68%)
When I got to my seat it was broken/someone was in it, so I was upgraded 16 votes (3%)
I have a friend/family member who works for the airline 22 votes (4%)
I was on my honeymoon/getting married/celebrating 12 votes (2%)
I asked, or simply talked them into it 26 votes (4%)
It’s happened a few times in a number of the ways above 85 votes (14%)

                   8,542 votes received.

We try to use technology to limit voting to one per person. Occasionally, this may erroneously block a few people's votes (eg, from shared offices). Apologies for that.