Air India Business Class Upgrade

Now request an Air India Business Class upgrade using miles, cash as well as bidding. The upgrade request is available for the airline’s non-stop flights to the US, Australia, and Europe. 

This article will provide you with detailed instructions on how to upgrade your booking to a premium class. 

Not just that, we will help you understand how you can upgrade to Business Class using miles. Plus, you can also request a bid to get a business class upgrade. 


Pre-Conditions/Restrictions to Air India Business Class Upgrade

Air India Business Class Upgrade

Air India upfront upgrade is applicable to all passenger types – Adult, Infant, Child, and Senior Citizens. The said offer is valid for all ticket holders i.e Revenue and Non-Revenue tickets. 

Award tickets, Companion free tickets, and concessional tickets are considered non-revenue tickets. 

Just like that, there are other modalities that you should fulfill before requesting a Business Class upgrade – 

  • Upgrades are allowed from Economy to premium classes  as well as from Economy to First Class. That means switching an existing reservation by two cabin classes. Fare difference would be applicable accordingly. 
  • Only Revenue tickets come with complimentary access to the airport lounge as part of a paid upgrade offer.
  • Only Revenue tickets come with complimentary access to the airport lounge as part of a paid upgrade offer. 
  • The Business Class upgrade Air India cannot be transferred to another passenger. 
  • The airline does not allow you to re-use an upgrade on your next booking if you’re requesting an Air India flight change.
  • The offer is valid for selected flights only.
  • On the upgrade amount, a 12% tax would be applicable other than the airline penalty and fare difference.
  • At the time of making this offer, no child/infant/senior citizen discount is permitted.

Please note: There is no discount on the upgrade for infants with or without a seat. The cost of an upgrade would be the same as an adult.


Air India Upgrade To Business Class Using Miles

Flying Returns (FR) members can use their points to upgrade eligible revenue tickets on Air India’s domestic and international networks. 

The FR rewards points required for business class upgrades vary with the booking class. But, it typically ranges from 60 to 190 % of normal economy class. Just like that, there are other terms and conditions that you should know before requesting an Air India Business Class upgrade – 

India Business Class Seat
  • Upgrades are valid on all domestic and international flights if requested up to 2 hours before departure.
  • The cabin and booking class of (RBD) purchased will determine the number of FR points earned, not the upgraded cabin of service.
  • Upgrades from Economy to First Class using miles are not permitted.
  • FR points can be pooled with a spouse. 
  • You can also purchase additional Top-Up FR points to complete the said request.
  • Air India upgrade using miles is not permitted on the code-share or interline agreement partner flights. You cannot redeem miles for a Business Class upgrade on the Air India express flights.
  • The FR member is responsible for paying any applicable upgrade class taxes.
  • FR members must have a valid confirmed revenue ticket in the original booked class.
  • Tickets purchased on discounts with third-party travel agencies or online travel portal travel are not eligible for miles upgrade. 
  • Passengers can only use miles to upgrade to Business and First Class.
  • When the passenger requests Air India flight cancellation more than 72 hours before the scheduled departure, 200 USD plus 20% deduction in FR points used at the time of redemption would be applied. 
  • No-shows are charged a 100% cancellation fee and no FR Points are redeposited back to the account. 

Points To Be Redeemed For Air India Upgrade Using Miles

To redeem the miles in order to upgrade to Business Class, it varies with the travel routes, such as – 

Flights Between India and Europe, North America, South Africa

Travel Class BookedBooking ClassUpgrade inMiles (Per Passenger)Fee (In USD)
EconomyB, YBusiness35,000300
BusinessC,DFirst50,000250

Flights Between India, and the Middle East, the Caucasus, North Africa, Central Africa

Travel Class BookedBooking ClassUpgrade inMiles (Per Passenger)Fee (In USD)
EconomyB, YBusiness25,000300
BusinessC,DFirst35,000250

Flights Between India and Central Asia, Oceania, the Far East, Australia, New Zealand

Travel Class BookedBooking ClassUpgrade inMiles (Per Passenger)Fee (In USD)
EconomyB, YBusiness30,000300
BusinessC,DFirst45,000250

Flights Between India and North America

Travel Class Booked Booking ClassUpgrade inMiles (Per Passenger)Fee (In USD)
EconomyB, YBusiness60,000300
BusinessC,DFirst75,000250

In case your travel route is included in the above-section, you can calculate your miles by clicking here


Free Upgrade to Business Class Air India

Upgrades to business class for free are extremely rare. To get the discounted Business Class fare, contact Air India Booking phone number. 

Free Upgrade to Business Class Air India

You can use the following tips to request Air India Economy Class to Business upgrade for free – 

Flying Return Membership program 

Sometimes, when you are a frequent traveler, it is worthwhile to commit to the miles membership program.  As a result, every time you travel, you can earn air miles. These miles can be used to upgrade to a Business and First Class cabin. 

In addition, Air India is also a member of a Star Alliance. It implies that the airline will honor the miles from the other airlines. 

At the time of upgrade with miles, you would be asked to pay 200 USD as a processing fee. 

Branded Credit Card

To access Air India free upgrade, you can take a membership of a debit/credit card that allows you to accumulate bonus reward points at every qualifying purchase. At the time of sign up, you get the bonus air miles that can help you get complimentary access to  – 

  • Business Class lounge
  • Additional weight on the checked baggage 
  • Priority boarding
  • Economy Class to Business Class

You can earn air miles while shopping for non-travel essentials too. Following are the credit cards program you can apply for to get a major boost to your reward balance. 

  • American Airlines AAdvantage Shopping Credit Card
  • British Airways Avios eStore Credit/Debit Card
  • United Mileage Plus Shopping Credit Card
  • Delta Skymiles shopping Credit Card

How to Upgrade To Business Class On Air India?

You can check online how many miles or cash you need for the upgrade. All Air India Business Class upgrade requests can be completed with the airlines. 

Follow these steps to learn about the class of service upgrade, including how much cash or Flying Returns (FR) points are needed, and sign up for alerts and automatic upgrades:

  • Enter the flight information to check how many FR points you need to upgrade to Business or First Class using the online booking portal. 
  • Check to see if the travel route you have booked allows being upgraded with the miles
  • Set up the alert so that when the said offer becomes available, your FR points will be utilized to upgrade to the available class. 
  • Sign up for Air India upfront upgrade alerts so that the airlines notify you via email or text when the upgrade becomes available.

Upgrade to Business Class via Call

Call the Air India Customer Service phone number at +1-877-311-7484. Provide your booking details and check with the airline’s executive how many FR points or cash are needed to complete the said request. When requesting an upgrade with cash, the flight change fee and the fare difference may apply. 

Upgrade to Business Class at Airport

The said upgrade is offered on the First Come First Serve basis. It is only offered in the form of the physical appearance of the passenger at the airport counter. Passengers need to complete the request up to one hour before the scheduled departure.


Air India Business Class Upgrade Bid

One of the cheapest ways to get upgraded to Business or First Class is you can place a bid with the airlines. This is how it works – 

  • Check whether you’re eligible for the upgrade via the Manage Booking section. You need to enter the booking reference and the last name of the passenger.
  • Make a bid for an upgrade. You can void, alter and submit your bid request up to 72 hours before the scheduled departure. 
  • You would not be charged any fee upfront. But you have to enter the card details. The payment would be automatically charged when the bid would be successful. 
  • Check your email at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled departure to find out whether your bid has been accepted. 

To be able to participate in the bid program, the passenger must have – 

  • A valid ticket that starts with ticket stock number 098
  • Seats must be available in the requested class of service

The Air India Business Class upgrade team may reject a bid, if – 

  • Passenger does not hold a flight ticket which is operated and marketed by the Air India
  • You are booked on other airlines
  • When there is a group of more than 9 passengers on the Air India reservation
  • Passenger is traveling with infant
  • The reservation is not ticketed
  • The requested flight is within 72 hours of scheduled departure

Air India Business Class Upgrade Cost

Business Class upgrade fee can be availed by any passenger who holds a confirmed revenue ticket on any Air India flight. The upgrade can be requested at a fixed fee up to 4 hours before the scheduled departure at the airport. 

Here’s the overview of the Air India upgrade to Business Class cost – 

Travel RoutesOne-Way Fee(in USD)
Taipei / Guangzhou / Jinjiang / Xiamen200 /250
Hong Kong250 /300
Macau / Shanghai / Beijing /Kuala Lumpur / Bangkok / Guam300 /350
Berlin/ Munich/ Paris /Prague / Warsaw/Zurich350 /400
Jakarta400 /500
Fukuoka / Nagoya400 /550
NewYork (JFK) / Chicago O’Hare/Washington Dulles (IAD)/Baltimore/ Houston(IAH)450/550
Barcelona/Madrid500
Lisbon500/600
Cairo/Istanbul/Durban500/650
Christchurch/Brisbane/Perth/Sydney850/950
Honolulu1,100/1,350
Los Angeles / San Francisco /Toronto1,300/1,500

In conclusion, when you wish to travel in some of the best premium-class cabins, Air India has some of the best options to offer. Plus, there are several ways to upgrade to Business or First Class using miles, bidding, or using cash). 


Air India Business Class Upgrade – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

You can request an upgrade with miles using the following options – 

  • Sign up to your Flying Returns (FR) membership and retrieve your existing reservation to request an online upgrade.
  • Call Air India Customer Service phone number at +1-877-311-7484
  • Within 24 hours up until 2 hours before the departure, you can make a class upgrade request at the check-in counter.

Upgrades to business class for free are extremely rare. To get the discounted Business Class fare, contact Air India flight booking phone number. You can get access to complimentary Business Class upgrade – 

  • By using miles reward points.
  • By placing an upgrade bid with the airline.

Call the Air India Customer Service phone number. Provide your booking details and check with the airline’s executive how many FR points or cash are needed to complete the said request. 

The said upgrade is offered on a First Come First Serve basis. It is only offered in the form of the physical appearance of the passenger at the airport counter. Passengers need to complete the request up to one hour before the scheduled departure.

The airline charges an upgrade fee of 200 USD per passenger each way. However, it may vary with the travel routes. For instance, to make a Business Class upgrade between New York and London, the airline may charge 800 USD each way per passenger.

The upgrade offer cannot be transferred. The offer is only valid for passengers who have confirmed Air India tickets.

There may be a possible reason for this. Such as – 

  • No seats available in the higher class
  • Booking is not confirmed
  • You may not be holding a valid ticket
  • The fare rules associated with your booking do not support the upgrade or any change request.
  • You have booked your flight within 7 days of scheduled departure.

Passengers who accept the upgrade offer will not be entitled to lounge access. You need to purchase lounge access with the airline. You can do so via the ‘Manage Booking’ section or by calling the airline.

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