Lonely Planet Writer

Want to get a free airline upgrade? Why not try being nice?

Polite airline customers are set to be rewarded by UK airline Monarch for their good behaviour with free upgrades.

A free airline upgrade could be just a 'thank you' away.
Nice passengers could be rewarded with a free airline upgrade. Image by Hinterhaus Productions

The low-cost airline’s customer service agents are now empowered to give a limited number of upgrades every week, which include priority booking and seats with extra leg room, some of which have a value of upwards of £100. These upgrades will be available to customers who speak to Monarch’s agents over the phone.

The incentives are part of Monarch’s campaign to make 2017 the ‘Year of Nice’, designed to encourage respect and courtesy among passengers. Any customer lucky enough to be awarded one will have them applied to their entire booking as well, meaning their family and friends will benefit from their polite behaviour too.

The airline also commissioned a study which found that being nice led to an increase in happiness, feelings of relaxation,success and in the person’s perception of their health. As part of their tests, they also found that Monarch staff “scored significantly higher on levels of agreeableness and empathy”.

Nils Christy, Chief Operating Officer of Monarch said “Everyone benefits from niceness. Planes depart more punctually, staff and customers are happier and it improves the travelling experience for everyone. Our customer services staff are already nice – now they can reward those who are positively nice to them too.”

Next time you need to call an airline about a problem, don’t forget to say ‘thank you’; it could lead to a free airline upgrade (and will make you feel happier!)

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