haven’t yet seen the “Cowbell” skit from Saturday Night Live, you’ve
missed a classic! In the skit,
Christopher Walken plays record producer, Bruce Dickinson. He is talking to the band Blue Oyster Cult in
their younger years and to put them at ease, he tries to assert himself as a
“regular guy.” He fails
guys, I think we’re ready to lay this first track down. By the way, my name is
Bruce Dickinson. Yes, the Bruce Dickinson. And I gotta tell you: fellas…
you have got what appears to be a dynamite sound!
Eric Bloom: Coming from you, Bruce, that means a lot.
Buck Dharma: Yeah. I mean, you’re Bruce Dickinson!
Alan: It’s incredible!
Bobby: I can’t believe Bruce Dickinson digs our sound!
Bruce Dickinson: Easy, guys, I put my pants on just like the rest of
you – one leg at a time… Except; once my pants are on, I make gold records!
Almost without exception, people always ask me the same question when
they find out I’m a frequent traveler: “Dude, you always get upgraded, I always
ask but they never give me an upgrade.
Do you buy first class tickets or what?
How can I get an upgrade?” I
tell them, “Hey, I buy the same
tickets that you do… cheapest available.
Except… once I buy my ticket, they see that I’m Platinum!”
Let me state this once and for all.
If you want a free upgrade, you need elite status. Period.
There is no shortcut. Upgrades
are given to Platinum fliers, then to Gold fliers, and if there’s any leftover,
the dregs are handed to the Silver fliers.
The chances of any first class seats being leftover after that are
extraordinarily slim, but if there are, you MIGHT be able to schmooze one from
the gate agent but I wouldn’t count on it.
There’s no shortcut to elite status, you just have to earn it. The benefits to elite status are
numerous. Most of the benefits are
little things, but they always seem to be “just the right thing at the
right time.” Platinum fliers get
free companion upgrades, so my wife always flies first class with me. I can fly standby for early flights and I
still get upgraded. I have a private
“Platinum Only” number that gets me to an actual reservation agent at
the airline who can help me when flights get canceled, etc.
It’s a New Year, so it’s a great time to get a head start on your status. NWA has some ridiculous sales on several
“high mileage” flights right now.
You can go to
for $194! Spend the night, drink some Heineken
buy some tulips and come home. Bam,
there’s 16,000 miles and you’re over halfway to Silver for less than $500 and
you got to see Amsterdam in the process.