For lost luggage
File a report at the airport and get the local number for the lost-baggage office, not the national 800 number.
Get the most for your frequent flyer miles
If you cannot get what you want online, talk to a live person, even if you have to pay an extra fee. Airline reservation agents can access inventory from partner airlines and can try different routings using connecting flights or alternative airports. Booking ahead is useful; most airlines make sets available 330 days in advance. However, frequent-flyer inventory is not always loaded that far in advance; three to six months ahead is the best time to book.
Upgrade your seat without paying more
In most cases, you can buy a first-class seat for just a little more than for a coach seat. Search for a fare code of “Y-up” or “Q-up” using FareCompare.com.