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How to upgrade with UA miles on Star Alliance carriers

How to upgrade with UA miles on Star Alliance carriers

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Old Oct 17, 19, 5:33 am   -   Wikipost
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How to upgrade a partner flight using UA MP miles?
See UA's Star Alliance Upgrade Awards Key points
  • Only a few fare classes (and expensive) are eligible -- depends on the carrier
  • Needs to be native flight numbers, codeshares are not eligible
  • No waitlisting
  • Most can be requested after ticketing (NH/ANA & ET cannot be requested earlier than 8 weeks to departure) and must be done at least 24 hours prior to departure
  • Max of 4 passengers can be upgraded
  • Generally the available of award space is a good indicator of upgrade space (but not guaranteed) - typically requires (I) inventory
  • Upgrade request are made electronic
  • Upgrade requests are per segment
  • It may increase your chance of success to request only one segment at a time on the upgrade page, even though it allows you to enter two (YMMV).
  • For mileage requirements, see page 6 of Star Alliance Upgrade Awards chart.
See this thread for the no-longer-available award chart (disappeared from united.com as of October 2018): https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/unit...d-website.html

Error codes
  • "We were unable to complete your request due to a technical problem. In the U.S. and Canada call 1-800-UNITED-1 (1-800-864-8331) within the U.S. or Canada, elsewhere use the local phone number. (Error code: 110).
  • "We were unable to complete your request due to a technical problem. In the U.S. and Canada call 1-800-UNITED-1 (1-800-864-8331) within the U.S. or Canada, elsewhere use the local phone number. (Error code: 118)"
  • "The traveler has the same name as an existing traveler on this flight. Please contact the operating airline for the required information and try again. (Error code: 384)"
  • "Upgrade not available (Error code: 511)."
  • "The number of travelers indicated does not match the number of passengers in the reservation. Please correct your information and try again. (Error code: 528)"
  • "insufficient MileagePlus Balance (Error code: 2001)"
Mileage required? Capturing here the last known information, as information is disappearing, no guarantees how long this will be true

For UA operated flights see Using Miles to Upgrade on United
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Old Jun 12, 15, 6:03 am
  #421  
nux
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Join Date: Jun 2012
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You cannot upgrade from those discount economy fare buckets.

http://www.united.com/web/en-US/content/mileageplus/awards/upgrade/saua.aspx
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Old Jun 12, 15, 8:09 am
  #422  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: WAS/ BOM
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Posts: 1,521
upgrade help please

is the flight on United metal (plane) or Swiss metal? if it's on United metal, get the United PNR and log into Mileage Plus and they should have offers to upgrade with money or miles with money. if it's a Swiss plane, you might have to call and see what the upgrade price is. there might be a possibility that you could be offered a discounted upgrade during check in or at airport. but that is all dependent on what loads are on that flight and how generous Swiss ' s IT systems are. when you check into your Swiss miles and more account, there could also be an offer to upgrade with money. it's all speculation.
IADFlyer123 is offline  
Old Jun 12, 15, 9:06 am
  #423  
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Programs: UA 1K, BA Gold
Posts: 1,500
Swiss and UA will have different PNRs. As noted, you can (potentially) upgrade on those fares only if on UA metal. Star Alliance upgrades are rare and then only on certain expensive economy fares, and if upgrade space is available, which it usually isn't (I have never found it). But you can also upgrade on UA for miles only if R class is available, which it often is not, and if you waitlist online, it is just luck if any comes open. You can also monitor the price on Yapta and if the regular business fare drops at any point, you can just buy up for cash.
Artpen100 is offline  
Old Jun 14, 15, 8:49 pm
  #424  
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 19
Thank you to everyone who was able to give me some information. I guess I'll have to see what I can do from here.
TexAg07 is offline  
Old Jun 15, 15, 1:27 am
  #425  
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: London NW10
Programs: UA 1K 1.5MM, BA Blue, Wyndham Diamond
Posts: 214
I want to upgrade Singapore Airlines LHR-SIN Business Class (D fare) to First class using United miles. Alll aircraft on this route are either A388 or B773ER. There is one drawback: for some reason, United will not allow upgrades on these two aircraft types! Is there any way around this or do I have to grin and bear it?
Blutak is offline  
Old Jul 16, 15, 11:41 am
  #426  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: GRZ
Programs: UA 1K, LH FTL
Posts: 207
Originally Posted by Blutak View Post
I want to upgrade Singapore Airlines LHR-SIN Business Class (D fare) to First class using United miles. Alll aircraft on this route are either A388 or B773ER. There is one drawback: for some reason, United will not allow upgrades on these two aircraft types! Is there any way around this or do I have to grin and bear it?
I have the same question - anyone?
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Old Jul 16, 15, 12:12 pm
  #427  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
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Can a GPU be used on OS (part of Lufthansa group)? If so, does the ticket need to be a certain fare class (like Y/B)?
100% Green is offline  
Old Jul 16, 15, 12:40 pm
  #428  
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Originally Posted by 100% Green View Post
Can a GPU be used on OS (part of Lufthansa group)? If so, does the ticket need to be a certain fare class (like Y/B)?
Unfortunately, GPU can be used only on LH operated flights.
Kacee is offline  
Old Jul 23, 15, 7:36 pm
  #429  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: LAX
Programs: UA-P, and Chase-ing the sapphire dragon
Posts: 90
United Star Alliance Upgrade System Not working

Trying to get a SA upgrade on a BR flight, tried many times, it actually goes so far as saying it was successful and confirm the mileage deduction, at which point goes to a page saying systems error. Meanwhile the mileage was getting deducted in my account, but they were able to redeposit.

Tried calling MP (since they did away with their SAU line), and they experienced the same thing. One agent did tell me she was told the error has been there a while, the management knows about it, but hasn't spent the resources to fix.

Anyone have any experiences with this? Totally wrong to advertise this system when it doesn't work and have people spend extra $$ on full fare tickets.

Anyone know of any fixes?

Thanks!
PacificStandTime is offline  
Old Jul 24, 15, 9:23 am
  #430  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 3
Hi PST..

I am having the same problem as you but with Aeroplan (Air Canada) trying to upgrade a B class seat on EVA Air from Toronto (YYZ) to TPE. Today is Friday and I've been trying to get this upgrade since Monday with multiple calls but even the senior supervisors at Aeroplan have given up. They say it is a problem with the Star Alliance system and they can't fix it. Im a techie and know that "someone knows how to fix this" but no one wants to find that person. Our flight is on Wednesday (in 5 days).

Anyway... Here is what I have learned...

I purchased a B class ticket for three people YYZ-TPE-KUL outbound; SIN-TPE-YYZ return; I only want to upgrade the long haul segments (YYZ-TPE and TPE-YYZ). At first the flights were not upgradable because the error message "married segments".

I called EVA Air and they were kind enough to "divorce the segment" which normally that request should come from the Star Alliance partner who is trying to upgrade the segment.

Then that worked and I could see that there was upgrade availability from Economy-Business; so I selected the upgrade and receive a "general failure error 057.SAU" and it says to call technical support; but they don't know what that error means and only transfer you over to customer service; who have now given up.

I select the upgrade, it processes, it fails; my account transactions show mileage out and redeposited again. Aeroplan customer service says just try tomorrow. Great.. (sarcasm).

So I called EVA Air and the rep was kind enough to confirm that there are more than 4 SAU seats available (not only their InfinityMileageLands upgrades).

I even had my wife separated from the reservation so I could try upgrading only her and only one segment from YYZ-TPE. Same errors.

So yes the system is broken; the airlines keep passing us back and forth and still no one knows who to call to sort this out.

I'm still trying but thanks.. it was (somewhat) good to see that you are having the same issue on UA.

Good luck

Last edited by snolan02; Jul 24, 15 at 9:29 am
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Old Jul 24, 15, 10:46 am
  #431  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: LAX
Programs: UA-P, and Chase-ing the sapphire dragon
Posts: 90
Good luck snolan! I'll post if I get any progress, please do the same - did the mileage redeposits happen automatically, or did you have to call an agent for that as well? I've literally spent over 8 hours on hold between being passed around.

Also trying to upgrade just the long legs, but abroad now, so I think all the LD calls will add up to a RL seat if I keep up the pace.

Good luck to you as well.

Anyone having this for any other airlines?
PacificStandTime is offline  
Old Jul 24, 15, 11:05 am
  #432  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 3
Hi PST.. yes I will update you if I get ant result and yes, the miles automatically redeposited without having to call Aeroplan's customer service.

TIP: If you have a smartphone (iPhone/Android) you might want to use a mobile calling app (like Skype or other) to make calls over WiFi to save on LD charges. Just a thought. Safe travels
snolan02 is offline  
Old Jul 24, 15, 6:50 pm
  #433  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: LAX
Programs: UA-P, and Chase-ing the sapphire dragon
Posts: 90
Hi snolan,
As of Friday morning, still the same....
Again, sounds like the airlines have known of this problem, and had another supervisor fill out another support ticket.
To add to "there's got to be a tech solution", it's an airline, there's also got to be a contingency plan since the show goes on....maddening/frustrating! Equally frustrating of the time it takes to explain this complex issue every call!

Also, try logging on here and filing something....I figure the more people that let them know, hopefully they'll do something about it. Also twitter *A, again lets try and build something here.

http://www.staralliance.com/en/conta...&subCategory=1

Cheers,
PST
PacificStandTime is offline  
Old Aug 20, 15, 6:14 am
  #434  
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: New York
Programs: Delta SM
Posts: 51
How many miles needed to upgrade TK flight?

I'm going to be buying a cheap ($800~) ticket for TLV-ORD through IST for Christmas this year. Finding a lot of differing info about how much it'll be to upgrade with United miles from Economy to Business and was hoping some of you might be able to help sort that out for me.

Thanks!
ruby&carlos is offline  
Old Aug 20, 15, 7:35 am
  #435  
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Moved over to the good folks of the UA forum as it concerns UA miles.

starflyergold
TK M&S forum moderator
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