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

Flex fare vs Unrestricted fare. Refundability? Translation please?

Flex fare vs Unrestricted fare. Refundability? Translation please?

    Hide Wikipost
Old Jan 28, 19, 7:32 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
UA's definitions -- in red added editorial comments
Basic Economy (most restricted) ---- Our most restricted fare:
Seat assigned prior to boarding
No group or family seating
No carry-on bag, just a personal item
Earn award miles only, no Premier® qualifying credit
Upgrades and Economy Plus® are not available
No refunds or changes
Economy ---- Our standard Economy fare:
Seat selection at booking, if seats are available
Enjoy other options for customizing your travel
Non-refundable -- fee to change, credit toward future flight
Economy (flexible) ---- Our flexible Economy fare:
Refundable fare; cancellation and change fees may apply
Seat selection at booking, if seats are available
Enjoy other options for customizing your travel
Economy (unrestricted) ---- Our unrestricted Economy fare:
Fully refundable fare; no cancellation or change fees
Seat selection at booking, if seats are available
Enjoy other options for customizing your travel
First (lowest) ---- Our lowest fare in First:
Personalized inflight service
More spacious seating and extra legroom
Expanded dining experience
Non-refundable -- a fee to change, credit toward a future flight
First (unrestricted) ---- Our unrestricted First fare:
Fully refundable fare; no cancellation or change fees.
Personalized inflight service
More spacious seating and extra legroom
Expanded dining experience
Refundability
o Some tickets are refundable but with a change / cancellation fee
o In the fare rules, words like "CHANGES PERMITTED" or "CANCELLATIONS PERMITTED" indicate refundability

related thread -- How to book a refundable ticket on UA
Print Wikipost

Old Sep 21, 12, 10:00 am
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: EWR
Programs: UA Pl, Hyatt Expl
Posts: 117
Flex fare vs Unrestricted fare. Refundability? Translation please?

Grammar notwithstanding, this is a pretty basic question (I hope):

Was looking to buy a cheap refundable fare, and right now I'm finding one in "U" class when going through United's website. (MKE-ALB)

Wanted to verify/confirm that U class is indeed fully refundable before I purchase (this would be my first time buying one)...

Last edited by bakster21; Sep 21, 12 at 10:19 am
bakster21 is offline  
Old Sep 21, 12, 10:26 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: What I write is my opinion alone..don't read into it anything not written.
Posts: 9,588
Sare, some are not. If the fare basis code has an "N" in it, it is not refundable outside of the initial 24 hours (all tickets bought thru UA are refundable witin 24 hours.)

The booking code does not tell the fare rules, it is just an inventry allocation. It is the fare basis code that contains the fare rules.
fastair is offline  
Old Sep 21, 12, 10:45 am
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: EWR
Programs: UA Pl, Hyatt Expl
Posts: 117
Thanks...It did not have an N in it, so I'm guessing it was a straight fare.

I'll recheck the basis code - I just would prefer not to buy it and then be stuck if I end up needing to cancel.
bakster21 is offline  
Old Sep 21, 12, 11:07 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: SFO and OAK
Programs: FAF, Hyatt <>, SPG PLT
Posts: 2,240
You should read the fare rules. It will tell you what penalties/fees apply to changes or refunds.
Beerman92 is offline  
Old Sep 21, 12, 11:45 am
  #5  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 42,895
Originally Posted by bakster21 View Post
Thanks...It did not have an N in it, so I'm guessing it was a straight fare.

I'll recheck the basis code - I just would prefer not to buy it and then be stuck if I end up needing to cancel.
Don't guess. Click on the fare basis code and it will extract the rules.
Often1 is online now  
Old Sep 21, 12, 12:45 pm
  #6  
Moderator: United Airlines; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: SFO
Programs: UA Gold 1.85MM, Hyatt Discoverist, Marriott Plat/LT Gold, Hilton Silver, IHG Gold
Posts: 47,607
There is in general three class of tickets
non-refundable / with change fees
"flexiable" -- less change restriction and some case refundable by with a fee.
fully refundable

The flight search tools can help to find appropriate fares but a read of full fare rules (or a validation by a phone agent) is highly recommended.
WineCountryUA is offline  
Old Sep 21, 12, 2:06 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: BOS and any place close to a lav
Programs: UA 1K (1.5MM)
Posts: 5,409
Question about Changeable/Flexiable Fares (PHX-BKK)

My parents want to fly PHX-BKK. The know roughly when they want to leave, but they do not know when they want to return. That's the problem.

It looks like I have a couple of options:
1) Book award tickets from my account (1K), which permits no cost changes provided that the class of service (saver vs standard) is available.

2) Book the lowest available fare, take a rough guess as when they want to return and hope it works out. Otherwise, pay the 250.00 change fee and the fare difference.

3) Book what united.com calls a "flexiable fare" which may waive the change fee (supposedly it "varies" according to the help box that pop's up, so I'll have to carefully read/interpret the fare rules).

4) Book a fully refundable fare (aka "unrestricted fare").


Some of my thoughts, can someone check my logic on this?
Option 4 seems horrifyingly expensive.

Option 3 only makes sense (to me) if the flexiable fare that waives the change fee is less than $250.00 more than the lowest available fare (option 2).

Option 1 seems like the best solution, but there's no saver business available. So, I'd have to either do economy or standard business. I was planning (with the revenue tickets), to use Miles+Copay to upgrade them. Also, my parents don't get PQM's (fka EQM's) on the award tickets.

I'm leaning towards Option 2 right now and rolling the dice... Anyone else have any other ideas?

Thanks in advance...
warreng24 is offline  
Old Sep 21, 12, 2:11 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Seattle, WA
Programs: DL Diamond, UA 1K MM, SPG Plat For Life, Marriott Plat, Nexus/GlobalEntry
Posts: 9,198
Originally Posted by warreng24 View Post
My parents want to fly PHX-BKK. The know roughly when they want to leave, but they do not know when they want to return. That's the problem.

It looks like I have a couple of options:
1) Book award tickets from my account (1K), which permits no cost changes provided that the class of service (saver vs standard) is available.

2) Book the lowest available fare, take a rough guess as when they want to return and hope it works out. Otherwise, pay the 250.00 change fee and the fare difference.

3) Book what united.com calls a "flexiable fare" which may waive the change fee (supposedly it "varies" according to the help box that pop's up, so I'll have to carefully read/interpret the fare rules).

4) Book a fully refundable fare (aka "unrestricted fare").


Some of my thoughts, can someone check my logic on this?
Option 4 seems horrifyingly expensive.

Option 3 only makes sense (to me) if the flexiable fare that waives the change fee is less than $250.00 more than the lowest available fare (option 2).

Option 1 seems like the best solution, but there's no saver business available. So, I'd have to either do economy or standard business. I was planning (with the revenue tickets), to use Miles+Copay to upgrade them. Also, my parents don't get PQM's (fka EQM's) on the award tickets.

I'm leaning towards Option 2 right now and rolling the dice... Anyone else have any other ideas?

Thanks in advance...
Read the fare rules of the flexible fare. Usually it will allow you to make change to the return..as long as they are made after the outbound flights are flown...without a change fee but the same booking code will have to be available (more than likely it'll be a Q, H, or M fare..not Y or B), and they can't exceed maximum stay requirements.
SEA1K4EVR is offline  
Old Sep 21, 12, 2:16 pm
  #9  
KVS
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Worldwide
Posts: 12,783
Arrow

Originally Posted by bakster21 View Post
Was looking to buy a cheap refundable fare, and right now I'm finding one in "U" class when going through United's website. (MKE-ALB)

Wanted to verify/confirm that U class is indeed fully refundable before I purchase (this would be my first time buying one)...
Originally Posted by fastair View Post
Sare, some are not. If the fare basis code has an "N" in it, it is not refundable outside of the initial 24 hours (all tickets bought thru UA are refundable witin 24 hours.)

The booking code does not tell the fare rules, it is just an inventry allocation. It is the fare basis code that contains the fare rules.
There are currently 2 U-Class Fares on that route -- UA0KY is refundable (and cheaper!), UE73FN is not:

[KVS Availability Tool 7.0.5/Diamond - Galileo: Fares/PSH/RU]
Code:
MKE  Milwaukee General Mitchell WI US [KMKE]
ALB  Albany NY US [KALB]
R/T  01 Oct 2012 | All

Carrier    From    To    Fare      Cur   AdvanceP  Min  Max  Fare Basis | Travel Period
---------  ------  ----  --------  ----  --------  ---  ---  --------------------------
UA         MKE     ALB       263   USD    10 Days            TA10KS       28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB       331   USD     3 Days            WA3KS        27 Aug-02 Oct
UA         MKE     ALB       369   USD    10 Days            WAP10KS      28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB       396   USD    14 Days            VA14KN       28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB       480   USD     7 Days            QA7KN        28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB       576   USD        ***            UA0KY        28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB       613   USD     7 Days            UE73FN       28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB       891   USD    14 Days            MA14FN       28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB       937   USD     7 Days    1       ME71FN       28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB       992   USD     7 Days            MA7FN        28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB      1048   USD        ***            MA0FN        28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB      1224   USD        ***            BA0FN        28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB      1807   USD        ***            H2UPY3       28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB      1937   USD        ***            FUA          28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB      1937   USD        ***            YUAUP3       28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB      2166   USD        ***            Y            28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB      2560   USD        ***            YUA          28 Sep-14 Feb
UA         MKE     ALB      3053   USD        ***            F            28 Sep-14 Feb
KVS is offline  
Old Sep 21, 12, 2:30 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: BOS and any place close to a lav
Programs: UA 1K (1.5MM)
Posts: 5,409
Originally Posted by SEA1K4EVR View Post
Read the fare rules of the flexible fare. Usually it will allow you to make change to the return..as long as they are made after the outbound flights are flown...without a change fee but the same booking code will have to be available (more than likely it'll be a Q, H, or M fare..not Y or B), and they can't exceed maximum stay requirements.
Only the Y & B fares don't seem to have a change fee!

Am I reading this right, even an M fare (MFX0ZUMB) has a $250.00 change fee?
CHANGES
ANY TIME
CHARGE USD 250.00 FOR REISSUE/REVALIDATION.
WAIVED FOR SCHEDULE CHANGE.
warreng24 is offline  
Old Sep 21, 12, 2:37 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Seattle, WA
Programs: DL Diamond, UA 1K MM, SPG Plat For Life, Marriott Plat, Nexus/GlobalEntry
Posts: 9,198
Originally Posted by warreng24 View Post
Only the Y & B fares don't seem to have a change fee!

Am I reading this right, even an M fare (MFX0ZUMB) has a $250.00 change fee?
Yep that's right.. looks like you'd have to go big to get free flexibility.
SEA1K4EVR is offline  
Old Sep 22, 12, 7:25 am
  #12  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 42,895
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
There is in general three class of tickets
non-refundable / with change fees
"flexiable" -- less change restriction and some case refundable by with a fee.
fully refundable

The flight search tools can help to find appropriate fares but a read of full fare rules (or a validation by a phone agent) is highly recommended.
Again, the mistake is using terms such as "in general." There are specific and unique rules applicable to each 5-character fare basis. Those are available both online and by a call to CS. They can change over time and there are thousands of FT posts about "why my Aunt Tilly got a refund on X just 3 months ago and I can't get one now."
Often1 is online now  
Old Sep 26, 12, 1:15 am
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: EWR
Programs: UA Pl, Hyatt Expl
Posts: 117
Thanks Everyone - the option I'm looking at right now in U class is:

MKE-CLE-ALB
Fare basis code: UA0KY
Current fare listing at $352

Based on comments above, it looks as though this fare class is refundable.
bakster21 is offline  
Old Apr 22, 14, 10:49 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 606
Flex fare vs Unrestricted fare. Refundability? Translation please?

I'm not sure if there's another thread or other page for this. Please direct me.

With UA, can somebody please explain the differences between H and B fare to me? Thanks. I read the rules and regulations which only send my head spinning. If only the rules and regulations could read in plain English or some other vernacular tongue!

Specifically, what is the difference between H, B, etc if plans change and the passenger needs to cancel before the flight? How liquid do the funds become to rebook a new totally different itinerary? What happens with change fees, etc?

Thanks.
Long Zhiren is offline  
Old Apr 22, 14, 10:57 am
  #15  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Bay Area, CA
Programs: UA Plat 2MM; AS MVP Gold 75K
Posts: 34,940
It's going to vary by the rules specifically, but in general, an unrestricted ticket is unrestricted -- you can change dates, times, etc., and it will generally not change in price. There is no advance purchase requirement, you can call up 2 days before the flight and change to a different one, since you already paid the unrestricted fare, if that bucket is available, it's likely going to be available at the same price.

A flexible fare generally allows you to change without a fee, but your new ticket that you change to has a higher chance of being a price increase since you bought a fare that may have had an advance purchase requirement. For example, if the H fare requires a 10 day advance, and you try to change to a flight 3 days out, it will likely not be available in H. There will be no change fee, but you'll be charged the difference to the higher fare (usually the unrestricted fare at that time).

Again, this is all generally speaking. There are markets with low fares close in, flexible fares with short advance purchase requirements, etc.

But the concept, in general, is that when you make a change, you're subject to refare, so when they change an unrestricted, you're not as likely to be refared.
channa is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread