Advice for newly statusless

Old Jan 28, 12, 4:42 pm
  #1  
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Advice for newly statusless

After more than 10 years with status on UA (and status on some airline since the 90s), a combination of circumstances resulted in my losing all status -- I now find myself among the kettles and gomers, with no status and no likelihood of getting any for the foreseeable future.

Mrs. PTravel and I have two trips we know we'll take this year, SNA/NYC and LAX/HKG (or, perhaps LAX/SHA or LAK/PEK). Between us, we have a couple of hundred thousand miles banked.

Here are my questions:

1. I can put up with regular coach for SNA/NYC. I'd like to fly into EWR and out of JFK or LGA. Because I don't expect to qualify for status in 2012, I'd prefer non-stop flights for us. We'll probably just buy our tickets, rather than burn miles. If we stay on UA metal, does anyone know what the approximate buy-up cost to E+ would be?

2. Mrs. PTravel usually flies out to China ahead of me, and I follow. Similarly, I'll usually return before her (she visits friends and family when I'm not there). She usually will buy a consolidator ticket and fly Air China. The though of spending a 15-hour flight in coach is too daunting for me. I suppose I could manage in E+ (I've done it before), but my preference would be to fly in C or F. Given I'm relatively flexible with departure dates, and do not mind flying SNA/SFO/PEK, rather than LAX/PEK (I assume UA still flies that route), how hard would it be to snag C or F for miles? If I can't snag C or F on an award (preferably a Saver award), would I be better buying a year's worth of E+ access for myself and paying for E+ for Mrs. PTravel on the New York trip? If I buy E+, do I get the same access to the seats as elites, or do I only get to book what's left over?

Ugh. This is terrible.

Thanks for any advice.
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Old Jan 28, 12, 5:00 pm
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E+ annual is available at time of booking.
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Old Jan 28, 12, 7:29 pm
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For a few days in Feb, at least, the SNA-EWR nonstops don't have E+
Coming back from JFK you would have E+ for JFK-SFO on a p.s. flight.
If you want to find the E+ buy-up then just start making a reservation with real or imaginary passenger info and then select E+ seats to see the charge.
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Old Jan 28, 12, 7:36 pm
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If you are flexible on dates, I would just award ticket in C or F to PEK. I know I'm in the minority, but I do full fare and not saver tickets if savers aren't available and it sounds like you have enough miles for this year.

If not that then E+ plus access and I don't know the particulars on that.
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Old Jan 28, 12, 7:38 pm
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For the domestic flights, fly ps to JFK & you will get E+ at no additional charge.

LAX
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Old Jan 28, 12, 7:44 pm
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I feel for you. Going back to kettle is not easy. Happened to me once March - October 2006. Brutal . Good luck in getting status back
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Old Jan 29, 12, 12:18 am
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Buy-up to E+ is not all that bad in the continental US, should be about $100, maybe a tad more. No idea what it would cost TPAC. Suggest you do a fake booking to check whether a la carte is cheaper than buying a year's worth on E+.
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Old Jan 29, 12, 12:48 pm
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Originally Posted by Sprezzatura View Post
Buy-up to E+ is not all that bad in the continental US, should be about $100, maybe a tad more. No idea what it would cost TPAC. Suggest you do a fake booking to check whether a la carte is cheaper than buying a year's worth on E+.
That is an excellent suggestion and what I would probably do if (hopefully very low probability) that I lose status ever again.
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