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Rules for Open Jaw & Stopover Award Flights (Consolidated)

Rules for Open Jaw & Stopover Award Flights (Consolidated)

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Old Jan 4, 15, 10:06 am   -   Wikipost
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Last edit by: WineCountryUA
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Presented as Q&A format (Originally posted by Alex_B)

Q: What is a stopover?
A: A stopover on an international itinerary is any break in your air travel for more than 24 hours except at the destination.

Q: What is an open-jaw?
A: An open-jaw is where you travel by your own means (either land, sea or a separate air ticket) between two points in a journey.

Q: How many stopovers am I allowed on a roundtrip award?
A: One stopover, in addition to the destination, is permitted (an unlimited number of stops less than 24hours is allowable).

Q: How many open-jaws are allowed on a roundtrip award?
A: Two open-jaws are permitted. These must be at the stopover, destination or origin.

Q: Can I have a stopover or open-jaw on a one-way award?
A: No

Q: Can I have a open-jaw at both the stopover and destination?
A: Yes, plenty of posters have reported success in booking this

Q: Can I transit my destination multiple times (e.g. fly to JNB, fly to CPT and then return home via JNB)?
A: Yes, plenty of posters have reported success in booking this. You can only stop in your destination for > 24 hours once though.

Q: Can I cross both oceans?
A: Yes. The rule that prohibited crossing both oceans appears to have been removed from both MP and *A award rules. There are many many successful examples of people booking these itineraries.

Q: Is EWR-PVG transatlantic or transpacific?
A: US-East Asia/South East Asia is always transpacific no matter what geography might suggest.

Q: Do I pay more for a stopover or open-jaw?
A: Typically no additional mileage is required but additional taxes or fees are often payable (especially in UK with high Air Passenger Duty). Extra mileage will often be required if an open-jaw or stopover adds a higher cost region into the itinerary. Also awards wholly within CONUS, Canada and Alaska (formerly known as Series 0 awards) require additional mileage (10K miles) for a stopover of >4 hrs.

Q: What's this about a free one-way I can get on awards?
A: The concept of free one-ways is a misnomer and often confuses people, it is better to consider it a stopover in the city of origin. If you have a simple roundtrip award without a stopover, you can often create a stopover and open-jaw at your origin on the return leg to add an addition flight. E.g. I wish to book EWR-LHR (destination)-EWR which is a roundtrip US-Europe award. I could also book this as EWR-LHR (destination)-EWR (stopover)-SFO for the same mileage (and a few dollars of extra tax). The EWR segment would need to be within 330 days of booking and would be subject to the usual change fees.

Other notes:
  • The open-jaw portion must be smaller (in miles) than any other leg. -While technically true for revenue fare construction this is not strictly enforced on awards.
  • For awards between CONUS/Canada/Alaska and South Asia award regions the maximum number of segments is 5 segments each way on a round-trip and 4 segments on a one-way. (Note that many FTers report recently being read a memo that imposes an eight segment maximum on a roundtrip (4 each way). It is unclear whether this eight-segment maximum is limited to South Asia routings through Europe or North Asia, or has broader application.)
  • Stopovers and open-jaws are NOT additive. You do not get extra stops included in your itinerary simply by making an open-jaw out of it.

Seeing your fare construction on an already booked award ticket:
In order to see your award fare construction to see where your stopovers and destination are, follow these steps.

Go to http://www.saudiairlines.com/

Then hit "Manage My Bookings" and select "E-Ticket"
Enter your UA ticket number (hint: 016 will go in the first box, and then everything else in the second box). Then your last name and hit "Retrieve My Booking". On the next page you'll see a line like this under "Fare Calculation":

CHI LH X/FRA LH ROM0.00CSM/YB52 /- FLR LH X/FRA LH X/DUS LH CHI UA SEA

This example is:
ORD-FRA-FCO
Open Jaw at Destination
FLR-FRA-DUS-ORD
Stopover at origin
ORD-SEA
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Old Feb 27, 13, 4:18 pm
  #751  
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 749
Originally Posted by jacisme View Post

ATL-HKG (stopover)
HKG-MEL (1st open jaw)
SYD-ATL
ATL-SEA (3 months later) (2nd open jaw?) - not being counted as an open jaw

Total: 160k miles + 25k miles for first class one way for ATL-SEA? What am I doing wrong?
I almost forgot, and I'd like to add:

While technically possible to do a 2xOJ with a stopover in your origin (for the "free" one way) it is often times not possible to get this to ticket. I ran into this problem in December, then again in Jan, and again just today. With that said, what prices ok online, or is within the rules, and what actually books and tickets is not always the same. So, for that reason if you don't need the one way, don't even worry about it, and definatly don't lose sleep over not getting to "use it" as doing so (via your orgin city) would probably not be worth the hassles it inevitably would cause.
Stubtify is offline  
Old Feb 27, 13, 4:42 pm
  #752  
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 5
Hello, I am fairly new to flyertalk so sorry if I missed something in reading though earlier posts. Can you confirm that the following routing in valid in Y for 42.5k miles? LAX-PTY-LIM/UIO-PTY-IAD(stopover)-HNL. The return does satisfy MPM+15% so this isn't a problem.
climber1 is offline  
Old Mar 1, 13, 1:49 pm
  #753  
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 60
Question about stopover rules

I was pricing out an award ticket on UA like this:

origin(us)-connection1(asia)-connection2(asia)-destination(asia)
(repeat for return)

This comes out to an awesome 65k which is great, but I am wondering what the rules are for stopover and if it will allow me to convert one or both of those connections into stopovers instead so I can visit that place for a couple of days?

I tried to do this online by using multiple destinations, but the engine shows no availability between the connections, even though when I search origin-destination, the connections are there (unavoidable).

The reason I am not using specific cities is because there are multiple choices for which connections I can take, although always that same setup with 2 connections.

Thanks for the help!
naseefc is offline  
Old Mar 1, 13, 4:40 pm
  #754  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: London, UK
Programs: BA Gold, UA Nobody, Hilton Gold
Posts: 2,310
Originally Posted by naseefc View Post
I was pricing out an award ticket on UA like this:

origin(us)-connection1(asia)-connection2(asia)-destination(asia)
(repeat for return)

This comes out to an awesome 65k which is great, but I am wondering what the rules are for stopover and if it will allow me to convert one or both of those connections into stopovers instead so I can visit that place for a couple of days?

I tried to do this online by using multiple destinations, but the engine shows no availability between the connections, even though when I search origin-destination, the connections are there (unavoidable).

The reason I am not using specific cities is because there are multiple choices for which connections I can take, although always that same setup with 2 connections.

Thanks for the help!
You're allowed one stopover on a roundtrip award. Stopovers count as >24 hrs at your connection point, so you can get a free quick look around a city if the airport and tourist sights are close.

Also you may consider additionally using an open-jaw at your destination if you're happy to pay out of your own pocket for a low cost intra-asia flight with another carrier.

For example:
Origin - Conn 1 (stopover)
Conn 1 - Conn 2 (Open jaw)
Conn 2 - Intended Destination (BOOKED AND PAID FOR SEPARATELY)
Destination - Origin (via any route but with no connections >24hrs)

I would suggest researching the flights you want (and noting down the availability, flight numbers, dates etc). Then book the straight roundtrip online and call United within 24hrs to create any stopovers or open jaws that you require.
alex_b is offline  
Old Mar 1, 13, 6:04 pm
  #755  
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 60
@alex_b

Thanks
So I could just do a simple round trip if I wanted only 1 stopover:
origin - conn1 (stopover) - conn2 - destination - conn2 - conn1 - origin

Except the stopover cannot be booked online so I would have to do it by calling, is that right?
naseefc is offline  
Old Mar 1, 13, 6:11 pm
  #756  
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 749
Originally Posted by naseefc View Post
@alex_b

Thanks
So I could just do a simple round trip if I wanted only 1 stopover:
origin - conn1 (stopover) - conn2 - destination - conn2 - conn1 - origin

Except the stopover cannot be booked online so I would have to do it by calling, is that right?
Looks good. You can try to book it online, using Multi-City search. Be very careful, and input the exact days and each one way connection. Example:

Orgin-Conn1
Date of travel

Conn1-Conn2
Date of travel (days later of course)

Conn2-Conn1 (or try just conn2-origin, but sometimes that doesn't work though)
date leaving to head home

Conn1-Origin
Day connecting flight takes off.
Stubtify is offline  
Old Mar 1, 13, 8:35 pm
  #757  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: London, UK
Programs: BA Gold, UA Nobody, Hilton Gold
Posts: 2,310
Originally Posted by naseefc View Post
@alex_b

Thanks
So I could just do a simple round trip if I wanted only 1 stopover:
origin - conn1 (stopover) - conn2 - destination - conn2 - conn1 - origin

Except the stopover cannot be booked online so I would have to do it by calling, is that right?
Yep, if you can't book via multicity search as suggested by Stubtify.
alex_b is offline  
Old Mar 2, 13, 5:22 am
  #758  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 13
Another Newbie, here. Here's what I want to do, and since I cannot book it online and will need to call, I'd like to know I am asking for something valid. I'm Premier Silver and I want to book a Saver award with the fewest miles possible.

GVA>SFO (dest1)
RNO> either DEN or LAX>NYC (dest2)
IAD>GVA
  1. So, is this a valid combination - one stop-over and two open jaws?
  2. Also, many of the RNO>NYC flights connect in SFO, but my impression from what I read here is that those will not work. Is this correct?
  3. Is there a limit to the number of flights I can waitlist? I don't like the current RNO>NYC availability and am hoping something better opens up.
  4. Does it make sense to try to waitlist portions of the RNO>NYC leg separately? i.e., RNO> DEN, DEN>NYC?

Thanks for your help! My family had never done the research to realize that we could do a stop over and open jaws on award round trips - this opens lots of new options for us.
mjsinch is offline  
Old Mar 3, 13, 8:01 am
  #759  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 90
Originally Posted by 5khours View Post
That would make sense to me. If you could use the origin/destination for transit, then you could effectively book 2 RTs for the price of one.
is that true?

i'm not stopping over at my origin on transit. so i dont think it counts as two RT.

for example, if my origin is SIN, does it matter if i transit at SIN or BKK to get to my next destination?

if the system doesnt allow it, then it just forces us to do another routing. but changes nothing in terms of destinations.

have another question on connecting flights

is there a time constraint for connecting flights? like within 4 hours for domestic and 24 hours if arriving via an international flight?

is there a rule that we must take the earliest connecting flight possible?

for example, from AAA -> BBB (another country) onwards to CCC (domestic flight, same country as BBB)

when i land at BBB can i opt to take a later flight but within 24 hours so that i can squeeze in some sightseeing?



likewise for a domestic flight, must be it within 4 hours or the next earliest domestic flight?

thank you!

Last edited by iluv2fly; Mar 3, 13 at 9:02 am Reason: merge
fumo is offline  
Old Mar 3, 13, 8:43 am
  #760  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: London, UK
Programs: BA Gold, UA Nobody, Hilton Gold
Posts: 2,310
Originally Posted by fumo View Post
is that true?

i'm not stopping over at my origin on transit. so i dont think it counts as two RT.

for example, if my origin is SIN, does it matter if i transit at SIN or BKK to get to my next destination?

if the system doesnt allow it, then it just forces us to do another routing. but changes nothing in terms of destinations.
If you read back through the thread people have reported being able to route back through JNB multiple times per trip, but that was destination not origin. There doesn't appear to be anything in the rules, but you still may struggle to book it.

Originally Posted by fumo View Post
have another question on connecting flights

is there a time constraint for connecting flights? like within 4 hours for domestic and 24 hours if arriving via an international flight?

is there a rule that we must take the earliest connecting flight possible?

for example, from AAA -> BBB (another country) onwards to CCC (domestic flight, same country as BBB)

when i land at BBB can i opt to take a later flight but within 24 hours so that i can squeeze in some sightseeing?



likewise for a domestic flight, must be it within 4 hours or the next earliest domestic flight?

thank you!
You can do as many <24hr stops as you like to get in mini-stopovers, read back through this thread for some crazy examples. Domestically you can only get <4hrs (or next flight, whichever is longer), but by domestic United mean "the US" so you could do a domestic connection in say NZ with 24hrs in Auckland.
alex_b is offline  
Old Mar 4, 13, 8:34 am
  #761  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 90
Originally Posted by alex_b View Post
If you read back through the thread people have reported being able to route back through JNB multiple times per trip, but that was destination not origin. There doesn't appear to be anything in the rules, but you still may struggle to book it.



You can do as many <24hr stops as you like to get in mini-stopovers, read back through this thread for some crazy examples. Domestically you can only get <4hrs (or next flight, whichever is longer), but by domestic United mean "the US" so you could do a domestic connection in say NZ with 24hrs in Auckland.

alright! thanks! very helpful!

i do read back, but not all the pages
fumo is offline  
Old Mar 4, 13, 6:29 pm
  #762  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 47
Hi All,

Considering a trip to SE Asia in November as a good use of my miles. This is the routing I'm considering:

Washington DC -> Hanoi (Stopover)
Hanoi -> Bangkok (Destination)
Overland, ending up in Phnom Penh (Open Jaw)
Phnom Penh -> Washington DC

Is that a valid roundtrip? Or do I need to break it up into one-ways?

I've done some searching on the United site and I can find availability for each leg when I look at each as a one way, but the site seems to refuse to accept the itinerary if I put it in as a multi-city trip. Is this a trip that I would also have book over the phone?

Also, I'd love to do this as a Saver 1st class trip, but there isn't a ton of saver first class availability. (Although there are plenty of saver business class options) Any chance saver first opens up over time? Or am I pretty much restricted to what I see on the United site now?

Also -- I've noticed that there are options to go transpacific and via Europe... do I have to pick one and go that way on both ends to avoid paying for a round-the-world award ticket?

Thanks!
SidewinderX is offline  
Old Mar 4, 13, 6:32 pm
  #763  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Baltimore, MD
Programs: UA Silver/Marriott Gold/SPG Gold/Club Carlson Gold
Posts: 534
Originally Posted by SidewinderX View Post
Hi All,

Considering a trip to SE Asia in November as a good use of my miles. This is the routing I'm considering:

Washington DC -> Hanoi (Stopover)
Hanoi -> Bangkok (Destination)
Overland, ending up in Phnom Penh (Open Jaw)
Phnom Penh -> Washington DC

Is that a valid roundtrip? Or do I need to break it up into one-ways?

I've done some searching on the United site and I can find availability for each leg when I look at each as a one way, but the site seems to refuse to accept the itinerary if I put it in as a multi-city trip. Is this a trip that I would also have book over the phone?

Also, I'd love to do this as a Saver 1st class trip, but there isn't a ton of saver first class availability. (Although there are plenty of saver business class options) Any chance saver first opens up over time? Or am I pretty much restricted to what I see on the United site now?

Also -- I've noticed that there are options to go transpacific and via Europe... do I have to pick one and go that way on both ends to avoid paying for a round-the-world award ticket?

Thanks!
I just booked a similar trip a week or two ago and couldn't get it to price out on the website. I needed to book the overseas portions and then add the stopover on the phone. They didn't charge me a fee and it was a quick and easy process. Just make sure you know exactly what flights you want and feed them to the agent.
Majikow is offline  
Old Mar 5, 13, 1:01 am
  #764  
formerly known as Tad's Broiled Steaks
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: @BuildingMyBento
Programs: Metro-North Rubbish, Keisei Skinflint, KCR Headphones, Kopaja Platinum
Posts: 5,261
OW J Award to CGK; Stopover?

Hi FTers,

I'm looking to go to CGK (Jakarta) very soon, and thought that even with a OW award, a stop over <24 hours was permitted.

For example, I'm looking to do a J booking, perhaps NYC-TYO-CGK. Am I not allowed to make the dates thus: 10MAR JFK-NRT (landing either in the mid-afternoon or at night), 12MAR HND-SIN-CGK (departing HND around 06:30 in the morn')?

Really, I'm just looking to split up the OW somewhere, anywhere, but to also keep the miles ceiling at around 60K.

Thanks,
BmB
BuildingMyBento is offline  
Old Mar 5, 13, 3:08 am
  #765  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Here today gone tomorrow
Programs: *G, ow Saph
Posts: 2,847
Originally Posted by BuildingMyBento View Post
Hi FTers,

I'm looking to go to CGK (Jakarta) very soon, and thought that even with a OW award, a stop over <24 hours was permitted.

For example, I'm looking to do a J booking, perhaps NYC-TYO-CGK. Am I not allowed to make the dates thus: 10MAR JFK-NRT (landing either in the mid-afternoon or at night), 12MAR HND-SIN-CGK (departing HND around 06:30 in the morn')?

Really, I'm just looking to split up the OW somewhere, anywhere, but to also keep the miles ceiling at around 60K.

Thanks,
BmB

Landing on the 11th, departing on the 12th will be no problem. You may have to call to book it though as the system may well choke on the airport transfer and layover.
MKE-MR is offline  

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