Air Canada and booking codes

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Air Canada and booking codes Toxigal 1/21/12 7:50 AM
I am doing a search for star alliance airlines in booking classes B, C, or Y.  I am trying to get an upgradeable fare (Star Alliance upgrade) to japan.

The search returns Air Canada and ANA flights that are not in the designated booking classes. 

For example:
I did the following search:

From: PHL / f bc=c|bc=b|bc=y; -codeshare; alliance star-alliance
To: ITM / f bc=c|bc=b|bc=y; -codeshare; alliance star-alliance

Returns this:

Philadelphia (PHL) to Osaka (ITM) - Tue, May 29
Hide Details
Air Canada Philadelphia (PHL) to Toronto (YYZ) - Tue, May 29
Air Canada 341 Dep: 7:00am Arr: 8:32am 1h 32m Embraer RJ-175 Coach (W)  

Layover in YYZ
5h 38m  
Air Canada Toronto (YYZ) to Tokyo (NRT) - Tue, May 29
Air Canada 1 Dep: 2:10pm Arr: 3:55pm 12h 45m Boeing 777 Coach (W)  

Layover in NRT Wed, May 30 2h 0m  
ANA Tokyo (NRT) to Osaka (ITM) - Wed, May 30
ANA 2179 Dep: 5:55pm Arr: 7:10pm 1h 15m Boeing 777 Coach (H)  


  Osaka (ITM) to Philadelphia (PHL) - Sat, Jun 16

ANA Osaka (ITM) to Tokyo (NRT) - Sat, Jun 16
ANA 2176 Dep: 8:00am Arr: 9:15am 1h 15m Boeing 777 Coach (H)  

Layover in NRT
8h 5m  
Air Canada Tokyo (NRT) to Toronto (YYZ) - Sat, Jun 16
Air Canada 2 Dep: 5:20pm Arr: 4:10pm 11h 50m Boeing 777 Coach (W)  

Layover in YYZ
1h 49m  
US Airways Toronto (YYZ) to Philadelphia (PHL) - Sat, Jun 16
US Airways 3771 Dep: 5:59pm Arr: 7:30pm 1h 31m Canadair Reg. Jet Coach (T)

Any idea what is going on?

Re: Air Canada and booking codes Jacqueline N 1/23/12 4:40 PM
Hi Toxigal,

Unfortunately, booking codes are tricky and nuanced. Our "bc=" syntax chooses fares based on their prime booking code, and fares often, but not always, book into the prime booking codes.  The prime booking code and the actual booking code are even more likely to differ on trips involving multiple airlines.

In this specific example, the fares are industry ("YY") fares published by IATA that pay for travel between PHL and OSA.  They have a prime booking code of "Y", so they are selected by the "bc=Y" clause.  The trip is priced as a round-trip, with one fare paying for the three outbound flights (on two carriers: AC and NH) and the other fare paying for the three return flights (on three carriers: NH, AC, and US). The rules associated with these fares specify what booking codes they will use: W on AC, H on NH, and T on US.

I can see how this doesn't help you in your search for upgradeable fares though! We're always looking for ways to improve our products and will keep this feedback in mind.

Re: Air Canada and booking codes tjuchcin 1/23/12 7:43 PM
And for even more of the madness behind the method, I just found this: