Presidential Plus Card Changes

Old Jul 20, 11, 6:07 pm
  #1  
Company Representative, United Airlines
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Chicago, Houston, or somewhere in between
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Presidential Plus Card Changes

Hi Everyone, as has already been mentioned, earlier this week we made some changes to a few of the benefits of our Chase Presidential Plus Card. These changes are announced today as we prepare to introduce a comparable card for the new United in 2012. Existing Cardmembers will receive information in the mail in the next few weeks. There are some great new Card benefits and some changes to existing benefits. Here’s an overview:

New benefits
  • Book any seat, any time, on any flight. If seats are available for sale, they can be redeemed at the EasyPass (or equivalent) reward level. There are no restrictions or blackout dates – a benefit that will be reserved for Cardmembers and Elite travelers beginning in early 2012.

  • Book reward seats close to your departure date without a fee. Spur-of-the-moment travel plans? No problem. Effective sometime in Q1 2012, we’ll waive the fee for booking reward tickets 21 days or less prior to departure. This benefit is reserved only for Cardmembers and certain Elite levels.

  • Double miles on United tickets. You currently earn two miles per $1 spent on tickets purchased from Continental. Now you’ll enjoy the same benefit on tickets purchased from United. In addition, you’ll continue to earn double miles on hotel stays and car rental purchases.

  • Inside Access From Chase. Access to exclusive events and unique activities with Inside Access from Chase.
Recently Introduced Benefits
  • Upgrades on Reward tickets for Elites. OnePass Elite members who are also Cardmembers are eligible to receive upgrades on domestic reward tickets already when traveling on Continental. This benefit will be available on United flights too in Q2 2012.

  • Free checked bags on Continental and United. Your first and second checked bags are already free on flights operated by Continental when you pay for your tickets with the Card. Now, you’ll enjoy the same benefit on tickets purchased from United.

  • No foreign transaction fees. Enjoy no foreign transaction fees on purchases made with the Card.
Continuing Benefits
  • Lounge membership. Receive full club membership, including President’s Clubs, Red Carpet Clubs and future United Clubs.

  • EliteAccess travel benefits. EliteAccess® travel services are now known as Premier Access travel services. You’ll continue to receive all the benefits of EliteAccess on Continental flights, including priority check-in, express security screening where available, priority boarding and baggage handling. Beginning Fall 2011, you’ll enjoy Premier Line travel services on United flights which include priority check-in, express security screening where available and priority boarding. The priority baggage benefit you currently enjoy on Continental will be available on all United flights.

  • The Luxury Hotel and Resorts Collection. Access to The Luxury Hotel and Resorts Collection, which offers exclusive cardmember amenities such as complimentary breakfast and space-available upgrades at a selection of over 700 of the finest hotels, resorts, lodges and spas around the world.

  • Premier travel and purchase protection. Access Premier travel and purchase protection, including primary auto rental collision damage coverage.

  • Miles don’t expire. Beginning January 1, 2012, this benefit will be exclusive to Cardmembers.

  • Concierge Services. 24/7 Concierge Services.
Benefit Changes
  • Flex Elite Qualification Miles (Flex EQMs) will have an expiration date. Flex EQMs earned after January 1, 2012 will expire 39 months after they are deposited. Specifically, Flex EQMs earned beginning after this date can be used at any time during the calendar year in which they were earned, plus three additional calendar years, and will then expire if not redeemed. Flex EQMs earned prior to January 1, 2012, will continue to have no expiration date.

  • Flex Elite Qualification Miles may not be applied beyond the 75K EQM threshold. Starting with the 2012 Elite program, Flexible EQMs can be redeemed to achieve up to Platinum Elite status (or equivalent). Flex EQMs earned prior to January 1, 2012, will continue to have no expiration date. The earning ratio remains the same (1,000 Flex EQMs for every $5,000 you spend with the Card).

  • Number of companions eligible for free checked bags. Free checked bags will apply to you and one additional person traveling on the same reservation effective January 1, 2012. This change does not apply to OnePass Elite members.

  • Elite mileage bonus to be removed. The 25% Continental flight mileage bonus for OnePass Elite members will be discontinued sometime in Q1 2012 (you will not get the bonus for flights after this date). In the interim, you will continue to receive this benefit only on Continental flights.
As always, please share your questions with us and we’ll do our best to answer.

Shannon Kelly
Director, Customer Insights & Metrics
United Airlines
UA Insider is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 6:13 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: NYC: UA 1K, DL Platinum, AAirpass, Avis PC
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I think the CO natives will get a little restless on this one.

25% bonus gone, flex EQM restriction, and same annual fee....

At least they're trying to preserve the integrity of 1K.

But as a high level elite may make sense just to keep Amex Plat and use the $200 credit toward United Club membership.
cerealmarketer is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 6:14 pm
  #3  
 
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^ For the continuing lounge access, but To the expiring flex miles and getting rid of the extra RDMs on flights.
dinoscool3 is online now  
Old Jul 20, 11, 6:17 pm
  #4  
Moderator: United MileagePlus
 
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Arg! They're doing away with the 25% RDM bonus -- that was the *best* feature of the card!
J.Edward is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 6:27 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2011
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UA Insider,

Can you address the following quote from the website?

https://www.continental.com/web/en-U...splus/faq.aspx

1,000 Flex Elite Qualification Miles (Flex EQMs) for every $5,000 spent up to $25,000
Is there an actual mileage limit to the Flex EQMs now (you can only earn up to 5,000 flex miles)?
edcho is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 6:39 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
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Originally Posted by UA Insider View Post
[*]Miles don’t expire. Beginning January 1, 2012, this benefit will be exclusive to Cardmembers.
So miles are going to start expiring otherwise?
downhillcrasher is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 6:41 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: May 2011
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Originally Posted by downhillcrasher View Post
So miles are going to start expiring otherwise?
Yes -- 18 months after last account activity.
edcho is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 6:55 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: IAH
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Hmmm. I already have another CO CC (The old Visa) which gives 2 miles per $ on CO, and an AMEX Plat so in the future I will get as a 1K:

$175 benefit from membership ($375 for PC - $200 AMEX credit)

Upgrades on domestic reward tickets (minimal value)

Reduced Flex EQM's (Only to 75K level so not good for a down year only a really down year). Also cant be used to top off to next set of SWU/CR1 etc, and expire.

I put the value of that card at ~$200 for a 1K (or possibly GS). If there is a significant discount I might keep it, but otherwise I cant see paying its current (full) price. For a 2P/Silver who either spends some years with no status or wants a bump to 1P/Gold it might be worth it, but then again $395/yr is a lot for that type of customer.

Maybe they will give 1K's a discount as most of the card benefits dont apply to a 1K anyway.
Red_Rob is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 7:04 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
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This stinks!

No 25% rdm bonus, expiring flex eqms, 75k limits, 1 companion baggage benefit limit.
They've taken away the key benefits of card and added nothing of value
ctownflyer is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 7:34 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
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Originally Posted by ctownflyer View Post
This stinks!

No 25% rdm bonus, expiring flex eqms, 75k limits, 1 companion baggage benefit limit.
They've taken away the key benefits of card and added nothing of value
Agreed, not sure I'm going to keep this card...
NYCFF is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 8:07 pm
  #11  
RNE
 
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It's clear this card is "targeting" semi-frequent-flying non-elites who want "Bronze Elite" status and lounge access at the equivalent of elite prices, which suits me fine. The abject loss of the elite 25% bonus is a slap in the face to elites. Sorry, friends. At least there's no mention of FEQMs ceasing after $25,000 spend.

RNE, addressing elite card holders, "Get out your scissors."

P.S. Don't think you've heard the last of the changes. Nothing ever stays the same. Not for long, anyway.
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Old Jul 20, 11, 8:22 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
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As I'd rather spend my money on a SkyClub membership than United Club membership, this pretty much seals the deal for this card going in the trash when the renewal fee comes around. As an elite, the only benefits I'd get in addition to being an elite are not worth the 1%+ cash back I'd get on another (fee free) card.

The limitations on the flex-EQMs are especially annoying.
raehl311 is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 8:33 pm
  #13  
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
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Was there a way to pay miles for the Presidents Club in the past? If not, this card was the cheapest way to get in given that you are going to have another airline card in particular. That was my calculation (well, and I got the first year free... but I was close to pulling the trigger for the thing anyway when I got the offer...).

So, if you can buy a United Club membership with miles in the future, this card is likely worthless in any case. If you are going to have to pay cash, the question will be whether card fee for the alternate (mileage plus explorer advertised on the side panel right now for example...) + membership cost in cash > presidents card fee. If so, the card remains economically worthwhile unless you plunk down for lifetime or something. If not, the card will be worthless.
dabblah is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 8:46 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
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" Book any seat, any time, on any flight", does this mean that non-elites and silvers can select exit row at purchase without the additional fee?
rcodey is offline  
Old Jul 20, 11, 8:55 pm
  #15  
 
Join Date: May 2011
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Originally Posted by rcodey View Post
" Book any seat, any time, on any flight", does this mean that non-elites and silvers can select exit row at purchase without the additional fee?
Not sure -- I think UA Insider is talking about how award flights are capacity controlled on CO (which is not true via UA). It is going UA's way -- if there's a seat available, then you can book your flight with miles. Of course, if that means that you can also get ELR or E+ seating for free, then errrrrrrrrrrrrr....

edcho is offline  

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