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New(?) United Airlines dining program via OpenTable (not RN)

New(?) United Airlines dining program via OpenTable (not RN)

Old Oct 24, 10, 7:27 pm
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New(?) United Airlines dining program via OpenTable (not RN)

The new United Airlines Mileage Plus Shopping program has a dining component. To see the list of restaurants, first log in with your United Airlines Mileage Plus frequent flyer number.

So far, my klutzy computer system has not been able to access a list of restaurants in my area. So I don't know if this is the same list and/or the same program as that of Rewards Network (iDine). Hopefully it is United's effort of doing an end around iDine, offering a better deal to restaurants. Whatever it is, it is certainly worthy of discussion here.
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Old Oct 24, 10, 7:40 pm
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pgary, unless I'm missing something, the dining component you are referring to is a reservations system powered by OpenTable. Instead of earning OpenTable Points (and cash rewards), you instead earn 60 miles for a completed dining reservation.

OpenTable has a far broader (and better) offering of restaurants than Rewards Network, at least here in the DC area.

Something interesting I just discovered: I had an upcoming lunch reservation booked directly through OpenTable (outside the United program) that would not earn any OpenTable points. However, the same reservation through United earned 60 miles. Not exactly an earth-shattering discovery, but for those of us who hate to dine out without earning any miles, it's a tiny step in the right direction.

Last edited by bob12403; Oct 24, 10 at 7:49 pm
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Old Oct 24, 10, 7:41 pm
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Looks like a new program powered by OpenTable, which credits you when you make a reservation.
Normally, on opentable, you get 100 of OpenTable points (which can be redeemed at 1cent/$ in Dining checks), vs 60 UA miles.

Good opportunity to double dip with iDine, if the restaurants in the two programs overlap.

I think you have to be logged in before it lets you select restaurants.
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Old Oct 25, 10, 5:31 pm
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Regular OpenTable dines earn 100 O/T points = $1.00 in Rewards vs. 60 UA miles = Take your pick.

However, some Opentable dines (principally high end dining establishments at certain times) earn 1,000 O/T points. In the latter case, go thru the regular O/T portal to make your reservations.
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Old Oct 25, 10, 7:56 pm
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Originally Posted by NJUPINTHEAIR View Post
Regular OpenTable dines earn 100 O/T points = $1.00 in Rewards vs. 60 UA miles = Take your pick.
Very true, NJ, but as stated above, some OT dines actually earn zero regular OT points (usually lunch, in my experience). So booking through United at least earns a few miles for the points scroungers among us.
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Old Oct 26, 10, 9:53 am
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Originally Posted by bob12403 View Post
Very true, NJ, but as stated above, some OT dines actually earn zero regular OT points (usually lunch, in my experience). So booking through United at least earns a few miles for the points scroungers among us.
Bob -

Is it that the restaurant just fails to record the dine? If so, there is a report problems section on O/T so that you can get credited for your missing dines/points.

Also, since there is no e-mail confirm of your upcoming United dine at the restaruant, what proof does one have that they indeed made a reservation thru United?

In addition, one has to wait 6-8 weeks for the miles to post. Of course, they may post in a shorter time period, but if not, keeping track of one's dines could prove onerous or just a pain.

Finally, since there is no e-mail confirm, unlike the regular O/T site where there is a way to cancel your reservation, here there is apparently no way to do it online. Moreover, there is no statement as to a penalty, if any, for not canceling one's reservation.

Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of earning United miles and hope it spreads to AA and others, but bookeeping could be a very big problem as the offering stands presently.
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Old Oct 27, 10, 4:25 am
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NJ, my paltry experience thus far with the United booking system has been trouble-free, and almost the equivalent of the regular OT system.

To answer your zero points question: No, it's not that that the restaurant fails to record the dine, it is that for some dines (as I said, usually lunch) some restaurants do not offer points via regular OpenTable, even though they are participants. Booking with regular OT becomes nothing more than a convenience without any other reward for those dines. That's why I said that at least with United you can get something for a dine.

I have never had a problem getting points credit for dines booked via regular OpenTable, and the points post almost immediately. I have not had a dine booked via United, so tomorrow will be a first for me. I will be sure to report back as to posting time.

As to confirmation emails--not sure what your experience has been, but I just booked, changed, and changed again a reservation via United. Every one of these events was immediately confirmed via email (as happens with regular OT). The email even indicates in large type "60 Miles". The only thing I could not do via United that I can do via regular OpenTable is send a copy of the reservation with an accompanying note to my guest.

I hope this helps clarify what little I have learned about the system thus far. More to come.

Originally Posted by NJUPINTHEAIR View Post
Bob -

Is it that the restaurant just fails to record the dine? If so, there is a report problems section on O/T so that you can get credited for your missing dines/points.

Also, since there is no e-mail confirm of your upcoming United dine at the restaruant, what proof does one have that they indeed made a reservation thru United?

In addition, one has to wait 6-8 weeks for the miles to post. Of course, they may post in a shorter time period, but if not, keeping track of one's dines could prove onerous or just a pain.

Finally, since there is no e-mail confirm, unlike the regular O/T site where there is a way to cancel your reservation, here there is apparently no way to do it online. Moreover, there is no statement as to a penalty, if any, for not canceling one's reservation.

Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of earning United miles and hope it spreads to AA and others, but bookeeping could be a very big problem as the offering stands presently.

Last edited by bob12403; Nov 21, 10 at 8:31 pm
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Old Oct 27, 10, 4:43 am
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Originally Posted by bob12403 View Post
[As to confirmation emails--not sure what your experience has been, but I just booked, changed, and changed again a reservation via United. Every one of these events was immediately confirmed via email. The email even indicates in large type "60 Miles". The only thing I could not do via United that I can do via regular OpenTable is send a copy of the reservation with an accompanying note to my guest.

I hope this help clarify what little I have learned about the system thus far. More to come.
Thanks, had not done it yet, good to know.

Final question. Have you received miles for the dines already, and if so, how long did it take?

Thanks,

NJ
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Old Oct 27, 10, 7:25 pm
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Forgive me, but I try to be very precise when I put up a detailed post, and I'm not sure you read my post in its entirety:

"I have never had a problem getting points credit for dines booked via regular OpenTable, and the points post almost immediately. I have not had a dine booked via United, so tomorrow will be a first for me. I will be sure to report back as to posting time."

As they say, stay tuned....

UPDATE #1: The completed dine showed up in my regular OT account summary the same day as the dine. No special United designation, it simply indicates the dine was completed and that I earned zero regular OT points for the dine. Meanwhile, my United OT account shows no confirmation of the dine having taken place, only the reservation as it existed prior to the dine. More to come....


Originally Posted by NJUPINTHEAIR View Post
Thanks, had not done it yet, good to know.

Final question. Have you received miles for the dines already, and if so, how long did it take?

Thanks,

NJ

Last edited by bob12403; Oct 28, 10 at 8:50 pm
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Old Feb 7, 11, 10:24 am
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Posting for this seems to be extremely slow, here is a posting for a dine on November 23, 2010:

Purchase Date Posting Date Description Amount Award Miles Status
11/23/2010 2/1/2011 Open Table $0.00 (84) PENDING
11/23/2010 2/3/2011 Open Table $0.00 60 PENDING
11/23/2010 1/7/2011 Open Table $0.00 84 PENDING

So they posted the wrong amount in early January and fixed it and posted the right amount, but they're all still pending and nothing has posted to the UA account yet.

This is a nice way to keep my wife's little used UA account active though.
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