Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Airlines and Mileage Programs > United Airlines | MileagePlus
Reload this Page >

How to get residual/"future flight credit" from non-refundable flight

How to get residual/"future flight credit" from non-refundable flight

    Hide Wikipost
Old May 3, 21, 6:40 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: WineCountryUA
Wiki Link
FFC == "Future Flight Credit"

When re-booking 3-March 2020 purchased tickets, if the new ticket is cheaper you will receive an ETC (good for 24 months); starting April 2021, this is now a new form of FFC
However for tickets purchased 3 March or later, the fare rules now state there is no "residual value" meaning no ETC for the fare drop and if you have to rebook again the credit is just the value of the new ticket.
If the new flight is priced higher, the customer may change for no change fee but must pay the fare difference. If the new flight is priced lower, the customer may change without paying a change fee but no residual value will be given.
For pre-1 April 2020 purchased, FFCs will be good for 24 months from the original purchase date
  • New tickets must be reissued within 24 months from original ticket date
  • Rebooked travel must commence within 24 months from the original ticket issue date
And there are no change fees
Change Fees Are Gone For Good

For purchases starting 1-April, the lifetime of FFCs are returning to the traditional 12 months from purchase

In some cases of voluntary cancellations, FFCs may be convertible to ETCs (seems pre 1 August 2020 purchase is a factor) but this can only be requested on the phone and may take days/weeks. This may be a way to avoid the problem of "no residual credit" YMMV


Update 4 April 2020
We’re extending electronic certificates
To give you more flexibility when you travel, electronic certificates are now valid for 24 months from the date they were issued. This includes all currently valid electronic certificates and all new ones issued on or after April 1, 2020.

This policy change will automatically appear, but it may not be reflected everywhere right away. We’d appreciate your patience as we work to make that happen.
The below needs to be updated based on the changes above

This wiki discusses the for steps in using the "future flight credit" from a canceled non-refundable ticket. Note this is for the cancellation of an entire ticket -- the process is different for a partial flown ticket

- Note some tickets are non-changeable and have no residual value if not flown:
United's Basic Economy - Discussion, Q&A, ...
New UA/*A TATL -LGT Economy fare - first bag charged, no changes allowed

- Notify UA of the cancellation before the scheduled departure. An absolute must, if not done the entire value will be lost. But see note below about Travel Waivers

- Wait until you are ready to reschedule. When ready you will need to pay a change fee in new money - the fee varies and will depend on the fare rules of the original fare. Note in many cases there is no longer a change fee (BE and flights origining outside the USA may still have a fee)
  • The new ticket must be purchased within 1 years of the original ticket's purchase date (pre-April 2020 purchases receive 2 year FFC)
  • The new ticket will be good for 1 year from the exchange/re-scheduled date and travel must commence prior to the expiration of the original ticket (an exception is if the new travel is just a date change, in this case, a new ticket may not be issued and initial purchase date will still prevail)
  • The new ticket must be for the same named traveler
  • The portion of a ticket purchased with nonrefundable ticket credit will be nonrefundable regardless of the new ticket's fare rules
  • The change fee requires payments of new funds and cannot be funded from the original ticket's value
  • Any fare residual will issued as an ETC valid for one two year.

- If an ETC is issued, all of the funds in it must be used within one twos year of issuance.
  • The ETC can be used by anyone.
  • The one two-year limitation only limits purchasing, not travel - travel may be outside the 1 2-year limit.
  • There are no additional fees to use the ETC
  • The credit voucher can only be used for UA/UX operated flights (workaround - UA Electronic Travel Certificate & Codeshares/partner flights)

To get maximum ETC (or new type FFC), an option is to pay the change fee (if any) and book the cheapest possible OW fare and throw that ticket away -- how to find that cheap fare, see Cheapest possible flight (How do I redeem this flight credit?)

If the reason for the change / cancellation is due to medical issues or death of a close relative, see Consolidated "Refunds/Cancellations Due to Illness/Death" Thread [Merged] for the process to get a refund of the change / redeposit fee.

Other cases for "free" changes are:
1) if the flight is covered on the day of departure by a waiver (WX related or other reasons). Note there may be a limited time frame for the change fee waiver.
2) or by an airline's change in schedule

What if it is 1 year from the original ticket purchase date and I am not ready to buy another United ticket using my canceled ticket's funds? Buy a throwaway ticket on the cheapest fare you can find. United will issue an Electronic Travel Certificate for any unused funds. That ETC is valid for one year from issuance (see https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/unit...policy-34.html). If you do this on the expiry date of your original ticket, you effectively extend the availability of the funds for an additional year at the cost of a throwaway ticket.

What if I purchase a refundable ticket with the credit from the non-refundable ticket, can I then cancel and get a refund? No, the funds from a non-refundable purchase remain non-refundable even if used to purchase a refundable fare.

Cannot find the canceled reservation online?
Go to Manage Reservations and look in both "Current" and "Cancelled" tabs
Find the appropriate reservation and look for "Use Future Flight Credit"

After rebooking a canceled ticket, is there a new 24-hour window for fee changes?
No, the 24-hour flexible change only applies to the original /new booking and does not extend to rebooking of canceled / changed tickets.
United’s 24-hour cancellation / flexible booking policy

What if one leg is a refundable fare and another leg is non-refundable?
For a single ticket, the most restrictive fare rule applies to the entire ticket. So a refundable segment paired with a non-refundable segment makes the entire ticket non-refundable. Same with the change fee, the segment with the highest change fee applies to the entire ticket.

Archive thread: How to get residual/"future flight credit" from non-refundable flight {Archive}

Other related threads
Changing/Canceling/Replacing a ticket costing less than the change fee?
Print Wikipost

Old Jun 4, 18, 5:29 am
  #31  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 124
Not taking flight, Credit any useful after?

Hi Everyone,

Quick question for the crowd,

I have a MAD-MTY tomorrow that I do not plan on taking due to work changes, After missing the flight does the ticket get canceled or does it stay active for 365 days with the opportunity to pay a change fee and re-fare to another travel day?

Cheers
pmlflyer is offline  
Old Jun 4, 18, 6:12 am
  #32  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 50,270
What do the fare rules for your ticket state.

This could be anything from fully refundable, meaning that you may have the full sum refunded to your original form of payment to wholly inflexible in which case the ticket will be cancelled and will have $0 value.

Most likely for a typical discounted penalty fare is that if you cancel prior to departure, you will have a credit for the full ticket price and will then pay a penalty in cash at the time you use the credit. The size of the penalty will be in the fare rules for your ticket. For most fares, if you do not cancel prior to departure, you lose the value of the ticket even as a credit.

Do keep track of the flight. If it is cancelled or substantially delayed, you are entitled to a full refund, but must do that prior to your cancellation.

So, starting point is to let us know what the fare rules are for your ticket.
Often1 is offline  
Old Jun 4, 18, 7:28 am
  #33  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 124
Its on a K fare so no refund if canceled in advance. In the past I have missed a flight and was able to go back later and change it to a further date for a 250 usd change fee. Dont remember if this was an agent doing me a favor or if that was the regular policy.

Cheers
pmlflyer is offline  
Old Jun 4, 18, 7:31 am
  #34  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: GVA (Greater Vancouver Area)
Programs: DREAD Gold; UA 1.021MM; Bonvoy Au-197; PCC Elite+; CWC Au-197; CCC Elite*; WoH Dis
Posts: 50,058
In general, if you don't cancel before departure, your ticket has zero value. If you do cancel, you will be able to use the value by paying the change fee. See the second paragraph of Often1's post above.
mahasamatman is offline  
Old Jun 21, 18, 1:34 pm
  #35  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: SEA, OGG(I wish)
Programs: was UA 1K now Gold, cuz UA 1.3 MM; HA,DL,AS (no status in these), Marriott Gold
Posts: 1,238
Split residual value of a cancelled TPAC among more than one domestic trip

Had booked a TPAC for this past January using cash plus a GPU, but had to cancel after being caught up in the (then) flu epidemic. GPU expired, but am left with a residual cash value of approx $2k. Have a Doctors note that should obviate the $200 change fee. Rather than trying to re-book the TPAC (say, using the $$ plus miles to upgrade) can the cash value be applied to more than one "new" domestic trip? In other words, is this a essentially a "prepayment" balance that can be tapped until exhausted?
BH62 is offline  
Old Jun 21, 18, 1:47 pm
  #36  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: MSP
Programs: DL PM, UA Gold, WN, Global Entry; +others wherever miles/points are found
Posts: 11,346
Yes. Barring very unusual fare rules, you can use the coupon value toward any new travel on 016 stock, and you will get an ETC for any remaining difference. However, I am speaking generally and you should probably consult with an agent regarding your particular ticket.
findark is offline  
Old Jul 5, 18, 4:46 pm
  #37  
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 584
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
2 Hours is the formal rule but talk to an airport agent and they might go for it.
Have you flown any portion of the itin?

United's FAQ on Schedule Changes
Thanks for the reply. It was a RT ticket. I flew one way already but the return was delayed 1.5h, so I drove back instead.
At the time that I canceled, I was having trouble hearing the phone agent since there was a bad connection.

In fact, I'm having trouble figuring out how to use the credit at all since there is nowhere for me to select rebook once I login on United.com.
Travelchurner is offline  
Old Jul 5, 18, 5:53 pm
  #38  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: BOS/EAP
Programs: UA 1K, MR LTT, HH Dia, Amex Plat
Posts: 26,221
Originally Posted by Travelchurner View Post

In fact, I'm having trouble figuring out how to use the credit at all since there is nowhere for me to select rebook once I login on United.com.
Go into the cancelled tickets tab ... then use the rebook function
zchapk9 likes this.
cfischer is offline  
Old Jul 5, 18, 6:54 pm
  #39  
Moderator: United Airlines; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: SFO
Programs: UA Plat 1.85MM, Hyatt Discoverist, Marriott Plat/LT Gold, Hilton Silver, IHG Gold
Posts: 53,970
Originally Posted by Travelchurner View Post
Thanks for the reply. It was a RT ticket. I flew one way already but the return was delayed 1.5h, so I drove back instead.
At the time that I canceled, I was having trouble hearing the phone agent since there was a bad connection.

In fact, I'm having trouble figuring out how to use the credit at all since there is nowhere for me to select rebook once I login on United.com.
As mentioned. assuming your cancelled properly, you will need to go to Manage Reservation and find the Cancelled reservations tab. Once there this will be treated as a flight change -- there will be a $200 fee (new money -- not a deduction from your credit) for most domestic economy non-refundable tickets.

If there is more than $200 of value, then it can make sense to use the credit. The online flight change can sometimes unhelpful or give strange prices for the new inti. If it seems odd, just call --- there will be no additional fee for calling.

There is a chance, due to the original issues, you might get the agent to waive the change fee but that can only be done with a live agent. Hopefully, the agent doing the cancellation marked the cancellation as due to the delays.

Last edited by WineCountryUA; Jul 5, 18 at 7:00 pm
WineCountryUA is offline  
Old Jul 8, 18, 5:21 pm
  #40  
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 584
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
As mentioned. assuming your cancelled properly, you will need to go to Manage Reservation and find the Cancelled reservations tab. Once there this will be treated as a flight change -- there will be a $200 fee (new money -- not a deduction from your credit) for most domestic economy non-refundable tickets.

If there is more than $200 of value, then it can make sense to use the credit. The online flight change can sometimes unhelpful or give strange prices for the new inti. If it seems odd, just call --- there will be no additional fee for calling.

There is a chance, due to the original issues, you might get the agent to waive the change fee but that can only be done with a live agent. Hopefully, the agent doing the cancellation marked the cancellation as due to the delays.
No canceled tab when I check there. Looks like I have to call in.
Travelchurner is offline  
Old Jul 8, 18, 5:37 pm
  #41  
Moderator: United Airlines; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: SFO
Programs: UA Plat 1.85MM, Hyatt Discoverist, Marriott Plat/LT Gold, Hilton Silver, IHG Gold
Posts: 53,970
Originally Posted by Travelchurner View Post
No canceled tab when I check there. Looks like I have to call in.
You should see


tabs at Manage Reservations

Check Past if nothing in Cancelled
WineCountryUA is offline  
Old Jul 8, 18, 8:15 pm
  #42  
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 584
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
You should see


tabs at Manage Reservations

Check Past if nothing in Cancelled
Thanks, I do see the past flight, under the past tab. However, no option to rebook.
Travelchurner is offline  
Old Jul 8, 18, 8:40 pm
  #43  
Moderator: United Airlines; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: SFO
Programs: UA Plat 1.85MM, Hyatt Discoverist, Marriott Plat/LT Gold, Hilton Silver, IHG Gold
Posts: 53,970
Originally Posted by Travelchurner View Post
Thanks, I do see the past flight, under the past tab. However, no option to rebook.
You will need to call, as it appears it wasn't marked as canceled (prior to departure) and you will need to convince UA you properly canceled.
WineCountryUA is offline  
Old Aug 18, 18, 7:08 pm
  #44  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Vancouver Island
Programs: UA G, *G, Global Entry, Marriott, Hilton, Fairmont, Hyatt, Starwood etc
Posts: 302
Refund for flight I cancelled

Apparently I canceled a flight last year and completely forgot about it (very complicated). Have flown UA many times since. There was no indication anywhere obvious that I had potential funds to be applied to purchases, I only realized this today when an agent mentioned it as I was making other reservations for two of us. She didn't volunteer to apply it, and I didn't think to ask her to. She then totally screwed up what she was supposed to do, and I wasted about an hour getting another agent to correct; but I digress).

When I then went to check it out myself, it appears that I can only apply the refund (minus the change fee) to a ticket for myself.
Is this true?

I don't know that I will fly another itinerary in the remaining time that would use the entire refund for myself. So am I SOL, or is there a way to apply a refund to two tickets?

If I were to go now and try to ticket myself using my refund and then hubby separately, I assume the latest prices would apply and not what I managed to get earlier?
Thanks.

Last edited by WineCountryUA; Aug 18, 18 at 8:15 pm Reason: moved to master thread
landrew is offline  
Old Aug 18, 18, 7:34 pm
  #45  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: SFO
Programs: COdbaUA Platinum 2MM
Posts: 5,090
Originally Posted by landrew View Post
Apparently I canceled a flight last year and completely forgot about it (very complicated). Have flown UA many times since. There was no indication anywhere obvious that I had potential funds to be applied to purchases, I only realized this today when an agent mentioned it as I was making other reservations for two of us. She didn't volunteer to apply it, and I didn't think to ask her to. She then totally screwed up what she was supposed to do, and I wasted about an hour getting another agent to correct; but I digress).

When I then went to check it out myself, it appears that I can only apply the refund (minus the change fee) to a ticket for myself.
Is this true?

I don't know that I will fly another itinerary in the remaining time that would use the entire refund for myself. So am I SOL, or is there a way to apply a refund to two tickets?

If I were to go now and try to ticket myself using my refund and then hubby separately, I assume the latest prices would apply and not what I managed to get earlier?
Thanks.
If your tickets were issued within last 24 hours, you can cancel get a full refund. Then rebook using your credit.

How to get residual/"future flight credit" from non-refundable flight
1KChinito is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: