Although I have flown over 750'000 miles (that's roughly 1.2 million kilometres or 3.1 times the distance to the moon) with Swiss, if I recall correctly I have received only 2 upgrades in 17 years so this is definitely not America 😉
I very much enjoy flying with Swiss although their prices on long haul are often prohibitive when compared to "owner-airline" Lufthansa or British Airways that heavily discounts flights out of Switzerland via the UK.
Most of my flying is for my work and probably 20% is for personal and family trips.
I recently got very upset with Swiss as they have a recent and very frustrating bad habit of what we call "random reseating". This is performed by a piece of software in their IT backend that reseats passengers independently of their purchasing class or Status or even if a family is on the same booking. This usually happens when when one of the following scenarios happens: aircraft change (e.g. A320 to A319 or A321) or configuration change (larger or smaller business class / moving of the divider curtain). Note that on short haul flights the aircraft changes are frequent, however on one of my usuals routes (GVA-ATH-GVA) the aircraft is always the same since the introduction of the CS 300 Bombarider in June 2017.
There are TWO major issues with Swiss IT systems:
1) If a Senator or Hon Circle status passenger makes a booking for family member (and not travelling on the same flight) we can still select seats that would require payment for non-status passengers, however that option is not presented when making the booking, example below:
The seats changed several times (with NO NOTIFICATION from Swiss) and on the Zurich-Athens leg the originally booked seats 4C and 4B became 11D and 11E without notice, and eventually became 28A and 28B at the time of check-in. Only after I called Swiss CS was I "permitted" to pay CHF 25.- per passenger to secure 6A and 6B which were changed to 4A and 4B at the time of boarding.
This has happened several times and more recently I booked our family vacation trip to Athens for July 2018 and a few days after booking the seats together ("+* seating on the CS300, we were separated and assigned new seats - Same booking though!)
This is happening more often than ever randomly and friendly Swiss customer service does not want to admit or recognize or even resolve this issue whether one is a Status passenger or not.
Some of the responses from CS include:
On our European routes, it is possible to reserve a seat in a specific category with specific characteristics. However it does not guarantee a specific row or seat number. The categories available are Standard, Preferred (any seat in the first four rows directly behind Business Class) and Extra Legroom seats (A321 European fleet only). The location of preferred seats is subject to change depending on the traffic in Business Class. It is therefore possible that changes may take place at short notice.
or this one
We are as of this time unaware of any particular system faults affecting the seat maps on web boookings. However I thank you for sharing your observations and have referred your comments internally to be investigated by our web development team.