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Consolidated "Waitlist for Award Seats Questions/Issues"

Consolidated "Waitlist for Award Seats Questions/Issues"

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Old Sep 12, 22, 4:06 am   -   Wikipost
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Waitlisting for awards

Click for the current rules from United
Waitlisting options
  1. Waitlist for alternative flights times / routing
  2. Waitlisting for a different cabin
From the above link on waitlisting for a different cabin: You may redeem miles for travel in United Global First, United First, United Business or United BusinessFirst, even if the space is not available. In these cases, United Economy in the same award type must be confirmed, and the front cabin will be waitlisted. If the courtesy waitlist does not clear, it will expire 24 hours before itinerary departure, and you will automatically be added to the airport upgrade standby list upon check-in. In these cases, you will be confirmed on a space-available basis by a United airport representative at the gate once the flight has closed for check-in. For United BusinessFirst and United Business travel awards, the difference in miles will be refunded when the United BusinessFirst or United Business class segment of the trip could not be confirmed. Waitlist requests may only be made over the phone with your local United Customer Contact Center.
Waitlisting can only be done over the phone, not online.
You can not book a standard award and then waitlist for a saver award.
If waitlisting for a higher cabin, best if done at the time of booking or soon afterward.
If done more than 24 hours after booking you may be charged an award change fee.
Generally, the waitlisted class mileage is deducted at time of request and will be refunded if unsuccessful
When waitlisting for a higher, state you are waitlisting for I (or IN if a plat or higher) -- do not use the word "upgrade", it may confuse the agent

If waitlisting for a segment when the rest of the segments are already in the higher cabin, there is no refund if unsuccessful

Member experiences:
  1. You must have a confirmed segment to waitlist for different cabin and/or a different flight.
  2. Can only waitlist for UA/UX operated flight, cannot waitlist for partner flights. Can waitlist for UA/UX flights on a mixed itin.
  3. The maximum number of WL segments in a PNR is 2.
  4. When confirmed segment is on a partner, you can waitlist for UA operated alternative.
At the airport, if you have not yet cleared for the higher cabin waitlist, you should be listed on the standby upgrade list (your priority on the waitlist is not well understood -- below are some conflicting theories)

Note: The correct priority term here may, in fact, be a code that is one of WAX, WBX, WCX, or WDX depending on status. The is per GG ONESTANDBY lines 32-55.

Originally Posted by hughw View Post
The agent should give you PR-1 status* which gives you top-priority status and moves you to the very top of the upgrade standby list, ahead of employees and everyone else trying to upgrade with miles+cash. If one agent wont put you on the list as a displaced Business class passenger with "PR-1 status"* then find another one who will. With this status, the odds of you getting a business class are very high if there are still open seats (or if anybody no-shows).

If the agents in the airport are all clueless you should direct them to look
up gg onestandby in their system (theyll know exactly what this is)
and look around lines 85-89 which spell out the details of the procedure for
this award.
Note: PR-1 status is given to those who "paid" the requisite miles for an upgraded seat (i.e. biz) when only the non-upgraded space (i.e. coach) was available. The PR-1* status is to clue the system (and agents) in so that it is clear that you have been "displaced." (NOTE: once you have obtained PR-1 status, should there be any change to your ticket, e.g., an involuntary reroute by UA due to missing a connection, the PR-1 status will most likely get dropped and you must have it reattached (esp. before any UGs are given to others).
* note "PR-1" may not be the correct term, see the Wxx note proceeding this section

Unfortunately at T-24, many GAs do not get this concept. Use the above to plead your case but be prepared to be unsatisfied. One method that can get you to a higher level of understanding is the UC. Their staff seems to not only have a better understanding of the issues, but they can contact the gate and exert some influence on the less informed GAs, AND they seem to have more of an interest in helping PAX. If you can get into the UC, it will be worth your while.

**Note: If you get the UG on the long haul, the higher level of award miles you are using (like with the GPU) are considered used up regardless of the short haul. You will not be charged the lower level # of miles (i.e. refunded the diff between the lower level and the higher level you paid in advance), rather the higher level award miles will be considered spent. That is the risk you take when you do Plan B.

Related thread - Understanding the United Upgrade List Comprehensively

Archive of past posts - Consolidated "Waitlist for Award Seats Questions/Issues [ARCHIVE]
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Old Jan 4, 19, 1:51 pm
  #556  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Montrose, CO
Programs: United 1K MM, Marriott LTPP
Posts: 537
Standby List Priority and Domestic CPU versus IN

1) My wife and I are checked in for a flight that leaves South America in 6 hours, well within 24 hours. I am on a paid U with a GPU applied and am currently number 1 on the standby for Polaris list. My wife is on an IN waitlist ticket (originally XN) and is showing number 3 on the list. Shouldn't she be number 1 since she is technically displaced and I am just an instrument upgrade?

2) Also, she is on an award ticket, is 1K and has a Chase Explorer card, so shouldn't she be eligible for a CPU on the domestic segment that we also have? She doesn't show on the domestic upgrade list at all, even though her reservation showed "CPU Requested". The folks on the phone said the miles would be considered used if only the domestic segment cleared in IN since we are coming from South America and not over an ocean, so I removed the IN waitlist from the domestic segment.

I tried to resolve this on the phone and have been given the run around for a couple of hours, everything from it being outside of 24 hours to being within 24 hours and a system change 2 weeks ago that changed everything. I wish this stuff wasn't always such a headache, it's great when it works.
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Old Jan 4, 19, 2:53 pm
  #557  
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Join Date: Jun 2007
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Originally Posted by AirMiles2001 View Post
1) My wife and I are checked in for a flight that leaves South America in 6 hours, well within 24 hours. I am on a paid U with a GPU applied and am currently number 1 on the standby for Polaris list. My wife is on an IN waitlist ticket (originally XN) and is showing number 3 on the list. Shouldn't she be number 1 since she is technically displaced and I am just an instrument upgrade? ...
The latest thinking, is waitlisted awards are treated similar to waitlist upgrade instruments -- and then status, fare, .... It is unclear if this prioritization is a change from the past but it does seem to fit many recent experiences

So as both 1Ks, the award fare class is lower than the paid fare class. your were higher.
And another 1K on a paid fare class with a waitlisted upgrade could have been placed in between

Originally Posted by AirMiles2001 View Post
.... 2) Also, she is on an award ticket, is 1K and has a Chase Explorer card, so shouldn't she be eligible for a CPU on the domestic segment that we also have? She doesn't show on the domestic upgrade list at all, even though her reservation showed "CPU Requested". The folks on the phone said the miles would be considered used if only the domestic segment cleared in IN since we are coming from South America and not over an ocean, so I removed the IN waitlist from the domestic segment. ...
Was the South American segment a Polaris segment (Peru, Brazil, Argentina, Chile?) if so, you got bad advice, if the waitlist award did not clear on the Polaris segment but did clear on the non-Polaris segment, your miles would have been refunded.

As for the award ticket, is she the primary cardholder? Whose miles were used?
The CPU Requested does suggest the CPU was applicable to the award ticket
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Old Jan 4, 19, 4:08 pm
  #558  
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 91
I''m glad to share my experience today, which is similar to what @lancelot21 said above. I booked an XN award from PEK to ORD and called in to waitlist for business class. It took a while for the agent and the supervisor to figure out how to process but eventually my reservation ended up with the "I Class Waitlisted" message. About 5 hours later the WL has cleared, though United did not send out email notifications. Looking at the seat map it's also a Polaris-retrofitted 772. Thanks everyone for the info. Woohoo!
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Old Jan 4, 19, 5:37 pm
  #559  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Montrose, CO
Programs: United 1K MM, Marriott LTPP
Posts: 537
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
The latest thinking, is waitlisted awards are treated similar to waitlist upgrade instruments -- and then status, fare, .... It is unclear if this prioritization is a change from the past but it does seem to fit many recent experiences

So as both 1Ks, the award fare class is lower than the paid fare class. your were higher.
And another 1K on a paid fare class with a waitlisted upgrade could have been placed in between

Was the South American segment a Polaris segment (Peru, Brazil, Argentina, Chile?) if so, you got bad advice, if the waitlist award did not clear on the Polaris segment but did clear on the non-Polaris segment, your miles would have been refunded.

As for the award ticket, is she the primary cardholder? Whose miles were used?
The CPU Requested does suggest the CPU was applicable to the award ticket
Thanks for the reply, useful.

It really makes more sense that the IN is lower on the standby list than paid with GPU. Hopefully its applied equally.

The award ticket is using my miles but she indeed has her own card and normally has no issues getting on the upgrade list, sometimes even above me which is odd but we make it work.

I will have to see if they can help at the airport. I fear another battle.
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Old Jan 5, 19, 6:30 am
  #560  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Montrose, CO
Programs: United 1K MM, Marriott LTPP
Posts: 537
I forgot to add that it is indeed a Polaris flight, so guess I got bad info, again.

The domestic segment ended up clearing, it just never showed her name on the list, annoying.

Thanks
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Old Jan 5, 19, 11:54 am
  #561  
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Originally Posted by AirMiles2001 View Post
.... The domestic segment ended up clearing, it just never showed her name on the list, annoying.
Glad it all worked out.
Yep, for the past few months, those that clear before the gate do not show on the gate list. They did in the past for CPU flights, but no longer.
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Old Jan 7, 19, 7:23 am
  #562  
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: BOS
Posts: 152
Good morning all - sorry if this is posted somewhere else on the 120 pages of this thread, but I have a question regarding a flight I am looking to book.

We are going from BOS-TYO this summer and ORD-TYO shows open IN availability on ANA but no Saver is available for the BOS-TYO routing; I only found the ORD-TYO routing by searching direct options (ORD-TYO, IAD-TYO, etc).

There are no saver domestic available for BOS-ORD the same day, except one at night that will miss the connections.

The lowest BOS-TYO mileage option is 80k standard Economy.

If I book the 80k standard Economy flight and call for the waitlist upgrade, will the ORD-TYO clear right away and the BOS-ORD be the waitlisted leg? From what I understand reading this thread if it were on UA metal it would clear. Do IN waitlists work the same way with codeshare partners?
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Old Jan 7, 19, 9:47 am
  #563  
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Originally Posted by lem144 View Post
Good morning all - sorry if this is posted somewhere else on the 120 pages of this thread, but I have a question regarding a flight I am looking to book.

We are going from BOS-TYO this summer and ORD-TYO shows open IN availability on ANA but no Saver is available for the BOS-TYO routing; I only found the ORD-TYO routing by searching direct options (ORD-TYO, IAD-TYO, etc).

There are no saver domestic available for BOS-ORD the same day, except one at night that will miss the connections.

The lowest BOS-TYO mileage option is 80k standard Economy.

If I book the 80k standard Economy flight and call for the waitlist upgrade, will the ORD-TYO clear right away and the BOS-ORD be the waitlisted leg? From what I understand reading this thread if it were on UA metal it would clear. Do IN waitlists work the same way with codeshare partners?
You cant waitlist on partner metal, and it wouldnt work the way I think you want anyway. Youd end up paying the Everyday business rate for USA-Japan.

Try multi-city search, BOS-ORD-TYO. That should price out as international partner Saver Business plus domestic Everyday economy (or Everyday first, if you prefer to use the extra miles).

In order to get BOS-TYO for the USA-Japan Saver Business price, youd need to be able to confirm a Saver award on the domestic leg.
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Old Jan 7, 19, 10:14 am
  #564  
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: BOS
Posts: 152
Originally Posted by jsloan View Post

Try multi-city search, BOS-ORD-TYO. That should price out as international partner Saver Business plus domestic Everyday economy (or Everyday first, if you prefer to use the extra miles).
I've done that and it just adds the two legs together.

Does Saver domestic ever become more available as it gets closer to the travel date?
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Old Jan 7, 19, 10:18 am
  #565  
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Originally Posted by lem144 View Post
I've done that and it just adds the two legs together.

Does Saver domestic ever become more available as it gets closer to the travel date?
Yes, it will add the two legs together, but thats still a lot less than youd pay if you had to book an Everyday Business award from BOS to TYO.

Yes, UA may open Saver space closer to departure if sales fail to meet their projections, but there are no guarantees. Even if they do, the ANA space may be gone by then.
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Old Jan 13, 19, 6:43 pm
  #566  
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: San Francisco
Programs: 1K 2.2MM
Posts: 2,232
Booked SFO-ORD-CDG today in saver business. The sfo-ord booked in Y, the ORD-CDG in Polaris. I have called 3 times now to ask to wait list the domestic outbound to First. Been told all three times, some after long holds, that it's not possible. Confirming I should keep asking? Any secret code word here?

Also, would I be able to waitlist for SFO-CDG non-stop or is routing change not allowed as a waitlist?

Last edited by 1k-all-the-way; Jan 13, 19 at 7:21 pm
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Old Jan 13, 19, 8:52 pm
  #567  
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"Waitlist for IN class" is about all it takes for me, assuming you're 1K. You may waitlist for the nonstop, but may encounter issues trying to have more than one alternative on the same PNR.
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Old Jan 15, 19, 4:33 pm
  #568  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 2
Confirmed SFO-HKG-SIN in saver business. Is it possible to be on waitlist for First Class on SFO-HKG sector.
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Old Jan 15, 19, 4:55 pm
  #569  
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Originally Posted by flightchaser View Post
Confirmed SFO-HKG-SIN in saver business. Is it possible to be on waitlist for First Class on SFO-HKG sector.
No; United doesn't offer first class.
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Old Jan 21, 19, 9:40 pm
  #570  
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 833
Another data point

I was flying saver award in business and already confirmed on the international leg. I called to get "PR-1" status as a displaced business passenger using "GG-Onestandby." Agent had no idea what I was talking about.

After some amount of time, she tells me that another agent is showing her what to do. After what seemed a very long time, she gets back on the line and tells me everything is set. However, she then asks me if this is the UG that clears at 24h. Before I have a chance to respond, she tells me that it is called "PR-I" status, i.e., the letter I (and not PR-1).

Result: I had been babysitting the rez and saw that seats dipped to one about 10d out. Then, at T-2, I saw there were 4 open seats (I had 3 in my PNR) and so I thought there was a chance. At T-2h, I saw that there was only one seat left and that nothing ever cleared, which was confirmed by a later TA. As it turned out, even with GE, we misconnected due to gov't shutdown--the lines were crazy long, and I thanked every customs agent/TSA agent I interacted with.
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