Old Nov 8, 15, 12:01 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: drewguy
For complimentary premier upgrades, United explains how they are handled for itineraries with more than one passenger:

Companion policy

One companion traveling on a paid ticket on the same reservation as a Premier member is eligible for Complimentary Premier Upgrades on select flights, and may be confirmed with the same priority as the Premier member, even on the day of departure. If the companion is a Premier member, the upgrade will be processed according to the highest Premier status level in the reservation.

If a reservation includes three or more travelers, and only one is not a Premier member, the Complimentary Premier Upgrades will be processed according to the lowest Premier status level in the reservation. If two or more travelers on the reservation are not Premier members, it will not be processed automatically. In these cases, Premier members should call the Premier Priority Desk to request a separate reservation for themselves and the eligible companion.
https://www.united.com/ual/en/us/fly.../upgrades.html

For elites, an itinerary for multiple passengers will remain together until ~T-24. If the upgrades clear before then, the PNR remains together. If they have not cleared by then, the PNR will be "split" when you check in for purposes of upgrades, with waitlist priority in accordance with above. The splitting has consequences regarding eligibility for "inherited status" - i.e., baggage allowances, upgrade priority, boarding priority for passengers with lower status than the highest status passenger. I.e., as a formal matter the benefits of inherited status are lost (although E+ seats are usually retained or can be gotten back, baggage is usually granted, one can board with highest priority passenger). This also matters for the return.

This thread explains various scenarios and considerations as to whether it is desirable to split the PNR before T-24 and the consequences of having it happen.

Questions to consider:
1) Do you mind if not all passengers are upgraded? If you are willing to have some people remain in coach, then splitting increases your chances of an upgrade before T-24 because sometimes only one upgrade seat becomes available at a time. In such scenarios a group of 2+ will be skipped. If you can't be separated, don't split until forced to do so. If you really can't be separated, consider a call to UA to ask to be marked not for upgrades.
2) Once you get inside T-24 your PNR will be split, unless you make a special request that it not be. Each passenger will be placed on the upgrade list in accordance with the above. This doesn't matter much on the outbound flight unless there are IRROPS, in which case it may be tougher to get accommodation for all passengers.
3) On the return flight(s) the companions may no longer have the highest level of status of all passengers, including baggage allowances (E+ seats are usually retained). However, some recent reports are that companions retain the status of the highest passenger on the original PNR, even after it is split.

related threads
The stupid PNR auto-splitting at T-24 needs to stop

Splitting up partner airline award reservation
Print Wikipost

To split or not to split PNR

Old Oct 16, 13, 5:22 pm
  #61  
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Originally Posted by maple
I learned a ton from your comments - thank you! And I am sure many others after me will learn as well from your post.

Will I be able to call in to link the 2 PNRs, and put my companion back on the CPU list piggy-backing on my premier status? Or do I have to wait until checkin at the airport?

I remember reading here that the auto-split at 24h led to members having to manually request PNR-link ups at the airport in order for non-elite companions to be put back on the upgrade waitlist; not sure if this can be done on the phone.
You'll have to add companion at the gate. There's no way to get your companion back on pre-airport list.

Good luck!
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Old Oct 18, 13, 1:47 pm
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To Split Or Not To Split

My wife and I are on the same PNR. I am Gold and she is Silver. In order to be eligible for CPU I understand I have to split the PNR. While I normally don't like to split PNRs I would if she could "piggyback" off my status for the CPU.

Is there anyway to split the PNR at check-in yet still have my Silver wife get my Gold status?
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Old Oct 18, 13, 1:56 pm
  #63  
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Originally Posted by milemonkey
My wife and I are on the same PNR. I am Gold and she is Silver. In order to be eligible for CPU I understand I have to split the PNR. While I normally don't like to split PNRs I would if she could "piggyback" off my status for the CPU.

Is there anyway to split the PNR at check-in yet still have my Silver wife get my Gold status?
You are not correct. You do not have to split to be CPU'd. However, when you check-in, and are not yet upgraded, you will have to split to get the battlefield upgrade.

If you do split, your wife will still be upgraded behind you. It's the return then that causes issues. Look at the current threads on splitting.
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Old Oct 18, 13, 2:08 pm
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So if we do not get CPU before checkin then neither of us will get CPU? I dont want to split if her status stays Silver
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Old Oct 18, 13, 2:25 pm
  #65  
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Originally Posted by milemonkey
So if we do not get CPU before checkin then neither of us will get CPU? I dont want to split if her status stays Silver
You might get the battlefield upgrade, but you have to split to do so.

Why does the Silver/Gold status matter? It's only for upgrade purposes - her E+ seat is saved, and baggage allowances can be managed with the check-in agent?
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Old Oct 18, 13, 2:45 pm
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Originally Posted by aacharya

Why does the Silver/Gold status matter?
I doubt a Silver would be upgraded but two Golds might be.
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Old Oct 18, 13, 3:59 pm
  #67  
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Originally Posted by milemonkey
I doubt a Silver would be upgraded but two Golds might be.
You haven't read the other thread. Even after the split, she'd be a Gold Companion, and right behind you in CPU priority. It is on the inbound that folks experiences have ranged from "last in the Premier level" to "not on the list at all".
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Old Oct 18, 13, 5:06 pm
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1K+GM on one PNR

Stay together until check-in and then if upgrades not processed split and GM will be 1K companion on list. If I split before check-in GM is SOL for CPU. Do I have this right?

Return is not an issue as its a ow.
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Old Nov 3, 13, 10:27 pm
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Split a PNR or not?

When i travel with my SO (I am UA Gold, she has no status) we try to stay on the same PNR for a number of reason. However, is there a good reason to?

I am looking at an upcoming holiday to Colombia and have 2x $200 gift cards. Seeing that I can only use one per reservation is it worth keeping us on the same record and using the other gift card on another reservation or splitting into two reservations? I would rather use the gift cards now, but it isn't a big issues if I don't.

I am looking at a Z fare, so a few of the perks of having her on my reservation (E+, etc) matter less.
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Old Nov 3, 13, 11:26 pm
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Originally Posted by anc-ord772
1K+GM on one PNR

Stay together until check-in and then if upgrades not processed split and GM will be 1K companion on list. If I split before check-in GM is SOL for CPU. Do I have this right?
Yeap.

Originally Posted by jalm1
When i travel with my SO (I am UA Gold, she has no status) we try to stay on the same PNR for a number of reason. However, is there a good reason to?
Handy in IRROPS so the computers know you're together. You can both upgrade.

I am looking at an upcoming holiday to Colombia and have 2x $200 gift cards. Seeing that I can only use one per reservation is it worth keeping us on the same record and using the other gift card on another reservation or splitting into two reservations? I would rather use the gift cards now, but it isn't a big issues if I don't.
You sure you can't use 2 gift cards on two people on the same PNR? "reservation" may not mean the same thing on the gift card as it does when we're talking about a single travel record.

I am looking at a Z fare, so a few of the perks of having her on my reservation (E+, etc) matter less.
If you're already buying business, the only real advantage to being on the same PNR is IRROPS handling, but even then, you'll get accommodated pretty well if you have business seats. The biggest advantage is normally upgrades, which obviously aren't an issue here.
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Old Nov 5, 13, 7:27 am
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Splitting PNRs for GPU chances - retain E+ for non elites?

(Apologies - posting from phone and can't seem to search properly for prior threads on this. Please redirect/merge if appropriate)

I am travelling in December/January SFO-LAX-LHR-ORD-SFO with the family (so +4) and plan on using GPUs to upgrade. I can currently confirm upgrades on the return (LHR-ORD-SFO) when I ticket, but LAX-LHR on the outbound is currently waitlist only. As a 1K, I can get us all into E+ on that outbound flight but only if I book under a single PNR, so heres my question..

If I split the PNR into 2 (or 3? Advice??) will my family members still be able to retain their E+ seats on the outbound if the GPUs dont clear? What are the chances of getting swept out of E+ and if they are, can I call in and get their E+ seats reinstated?

I recall that some had luck with this strategy in the PMUA days, but any experiences with COdbaUA?

Thanks

GroundStop
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Old Nov 5, 13, 7:28 am
  #72  
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Odds of a "sweep" reseating them are virtually nil. Odds of an equipment swap causing issues are somewhat higher.
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Old Nov 5, 13, 7:45 am
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Yes, if something goes horribly wrong and your seats get reorganized, you can call and have your family members put back in E+. Up to 8 companions of a 1K member, on separate reservations but the same flight, get free Economy Plus, per http://www.united.com/web/en-us/cont...myseating.aspx .

Note that the not-on-the-same-PNR part of this perk is not published anywhere but is generally assumed to be true. There have been occasional scary moments where agents have asserted otherwise.
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Old Nov 5, 13, 7:57 am
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I believe that, technically, the E+ companion benefit applies only if the elite is flying in the same cabin.

I have been rejected when trying to get a non-PNR work colleague into E+ "with" me, when I was upgraded.
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Old Nov 5, 13, 8:26 am
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Originally Posted by sbm12
Odds of a "sweep" reseating them are virtually nil. Odds of an equipment swap causing issues are somewhat higher.
Thanks - I haven't heard of many "sweeps" of late on here. Equipment swap is always a risk, but hopefully any swap would be a like for like 777 on that single plane route....could still screw everything up though!

Originally Posted by mherdeg
Yes, if something goes horribly wrong and your seats get reorganized, you can call and have your family members put back in E+. Up to 8 companions of a 1K member, on separate reservations but the same flight, get free Economy Plus, per http://www.united.com/web/en-us/cont...myseating.aspx .

Note that the not-on-the-same-PNR part of this perk is not published anywhere but is generally assumed to be true. There have been occasional scary moments where agents have asserted otherwise.
I guess it would be a HUACA moment....

Originally Posted by drewguy
I believe that, technically, the E+ companion benefit applies only if the elite is flying in the same cabin.

I have been rejected when trying to get a non-PNR work colleague into E+ "with" me, when I was upgraded.
I've also experienced this recently. Been told that if I hadn't already been upgraded I would have been able to bring a colleague with me into E+, but as we would now be in separate cabins my colleague was SoL.

Now, what's the sage advice on splitting? Five single PNRs, or Two, Two, One or Three, Two?
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