Amtrak BidUp (Bidding for Upgrades - Business Class, First Class, and Sleepers)

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Amtrakfflyer

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This will be interesting. At current prices high bucket minus 50 percent is still too high for the poor service for me to considerate it a value. I have a feeling accepted bids will be more in the 15 percent range unfortunately.

Suggestion maybe we could start a thread just on our bids. See what’s being accepted and what’s not? Give others an idea on what to bid and see what others paid.
 

Sidney

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I got a $50 Coach seat from Lax-Pdx in June. I put a bid in for $45 to upgrade to BC. Water, and a better chance not to have a seatmate and quieter surroundings are the amenities. Said my chances were fair. So,either way it will be fine.
 

Cal

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I got a $50 Coach seat from Lax-Pdx in June. I put a bid in for $45 to upgrade to BC. Water, and a better chance not to have a seatmate and quieter surroundings are the amenities. Said my chances were fair. So,either way it will be fine.
Did you get it with the 50th anniversary sale? I thought we didn't qualify for an upgrade, since I also got Starlight tickets off of that sale. I would love to be able to bid to upgrade to a roomette (is that possible?)

Also, is it possible to upgrade from a roomette to a bedroom by bidding?
 

Sidney

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The website let me bid. I also thought there were no upgrades allowed at that special fare,but I thought I'd cry. I looked at roomette prices for my trip. $700. The bidding site gave me a "good" chance at $600. If I can get BC,I'll be happy. Not sure about roomette to bedroom. It's a good idea. I've seen many empty bedrooms on my trips.
 

Barb Stout

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Bidding to upgrade. Where on the website would one try to do that? I haven't made a reservation at all, so can't test/play with it, but am curious. I'm also curious about how you found out about it.
 
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AmtrakBlue

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Bidding to upgrade. Where on the website would one try to do that? I haven't made a reservation at all, so can't test/play with it, but am curious. I'm also curious about how you found out about it.

I think they email you close to your trip. It might also show up on your app though I'm not sure about that.
 

zephyr17

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I think they email you close to your trip. It might also show up on your app though I'm not sure about that.
According to the FAQS on that link, an email and/or push notification to the app is sent 4 days prior to the departure. Bidding closes 37 hours prior to departure for sleepers, 2 hours before for Acela First and Business Class.
 

Cal

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Well it seems that it does let you bid to upgrade to a room if you bought your coach fare doing the 50th anniversary sale. Might try to upgrade
 

lordsigma

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My trip is in a couple weeks and is available on bid up (though I only have roomettes on one leg and currently there’s no available bedrooms - but I can still bid presumably in case of a cancellation. ) just put in res # and last name and it will tell you.
 

daybeers

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Well it seems that it does let you bid to upgrade to a room if you bought your coach fare doing the 50th anniversary sale. Might try to upgrade
I have a multi-city trip in September all in coach bought during the sale. I tried entering the reservation # and it said it wasn't eligible for the BidUp program. Too complicated for Arrow I guess 🤣
 
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Cal

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I have a multi-city trip in September all in coach bought during the sale. I tried entering the reservation # and it said it wasn't eligible for the BidUp program. Too complicated for Arrow I guess 🤣
I have a trip upcoming on the CARD and SWC, it said it wasn't eligible for the program either and we got that on no sale. So.
 

PaTrainFan

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On my Pittsburgh-Washington-New York-Pittsburgh trip I was fortunate to get the free AGR upgrade to Acela First Class. But I played with bid up to see how it works if needed and it, too, said the trip was ineligible. I don't get the rules. Someone at AGR said the rules are something like 4 pages.
 

AmtrakBlue

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I think there’s a time frame for bidding up. You might not be eligible till a few days before your trip - when they know they have available seats/rooms to bid up to.
 

Cal

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I think there’s a time frame for bidding up. You might not be eligible till a few days before your trip - when they know they have available seats/rooms to bid up to.
It's letting me bid up for mid August and not late July.
 

Ryan

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The number of available rooms almost certainly drives that decision as well. No reason to bid up on the last room for a trip 6 weeks in the future when someone may come along and pay full price for it.
 

jebr

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The number of available rooms almost certainly drives that decision as well. No reason to bid up on the last room for a trip 6 weeks in the future when someone may come along and pay full price for it.
Based on the way it seems to be implemented, the amount of rooms sold shouldn't impact whether someone can place a bid. It appears to look at the inventory 36 hours prior to departure (for sleepers) and then fill up available rooms as inventory allows. I'm not sure if they will keep inventory open for last-minute purchases or if they'll fill up every room, though. But if the train is sold out, all the bids would simply be discarded - so there shouldn't be a reason for Amtrak to refuse people placing bids in case inventory becomes available down the line, leaving sleepers open at the 36 hour mark.
 
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jebr

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I successfully did an upgrade from coach to roomette with the BidUp process. Bid $75 (the lowest allowed) for a roomette from CHI - MSP. Was notified basically at the 36-hour mark on the dot (so around 2:15 AM the day before.) I had initially paid the standard saver fare for the trip. Worked out pretty well since coach is sold out on the train (checked on the Amtrak app and they aren't selling coach tickets from MKE - MSP on either 7 or 27 - completely sold out.)
 

jebr

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I have a trip upcoming on the CARD and SWC, it said it wasn't eligible for the program either and we got that on no sale. So.
I just took a look at a trip booked on the sale from MSP - MKE on the Empire Builder, and it's giving me the option to bid up to either a roomette or bedroom. I'm wondering if the program doesn't work with connecting itineraries yet, and that's what's throwing it off for some people.
 

Cal

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I just took a look at a trip booked on the sale from MSP - MKE on the Empire Builder, and it's giving me the option to bid up to either a roomette or bedroom. I'm wondering if the program doesn't work with connecting itineraries yet, and that's what's throwing it off for some people.
That could be it.
 
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