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General GPU earning & usage questions [Consolidated]

General GPU earning & usage questions [Consolidated]

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Old Mar 5, 19, 2:08 pm   -   Wikipost
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This thread is for general GPU usage questions. ----- Previous Thread was Specific GPU and RPU usage questions thread and Consolidated Global Premier Upgrade (GPU) Questions Thread [With Wiki]
Questions like "will my upgrade clear" are better placed in
[Consolidated] Chance of upgrade clearing on my flight [2016]

General comments on utility / value are better placed in
"Upgrade certificates are useless nowadays" - Hah!

Global Premier Upgrades (GPUs) are one-way, one-cabin upgrades, confirmable as early as time of ticketing on all UA/UX, Copa Airlines-operated, ANA/NH-operated flights and LH-operated flights systemwide. When used on a flight that is also RPU-eligible, their are usable on all paid fare. When the flight is non-RPU eligible, they are restricted to certain fares (Y, B, M, E, U, H, V, W ). See upgrade region chart for details.
For more on required fares and how to use see Global Premier Upgrades
For use on LH see the above link and Lufthansa GPUs Go Electronic
For use on NH (ANA) see this thread GPU may now be used at ANA
For LH & NH, GPUs can only used for a single segment and there is no waitlisting.
Using GPUs/RPUs on Copa Airlines.

GPUs are earned by elites -- (Re-)qualifying for Premier 1K/GS earns 6 GPUs good for the rest of the year, all of the next year and then thru 31 January of the following year. You can then earn 2 more GPUs for each additional 50K PQMs. Starting in 2019, United will provide 6 GPUs at 100k PQMs and 1 additional GPU for each additional 25k PQMs.

UA has offered to extend up to 2 unused GPUs for re-qualifying 1Ks to April in most years. Need to specifically request the extension -- the window for request usually opens in mid-Nov.

GPUs can be used for other individuals / friends / family but the upgrade priority is based on the status of the flyer not the earning elite.

RPUs require R PZ space to clear (except for GS RPUs which clear into PN space).

Note: the term journey is used here to denote travel between a pair of cities, with one or more layovers, and all segments of the journey are part of the same ticket, confirmation number, and record locator. A one way ticket has one journey. A round trip has two journeys. A multicity ticket has three or more journeys.

Can I apply a GPU to UA metal that is ticketed on non-UA ticket stock?
Yes -- there were some issues early post merger but seems to work well today -- however, if codeshare the equivalent UA fare classes still needs to qualify/
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/19321483-post23.html says you can.
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/19324013-post25.html says not always.

Can I use a GPU on flights operated by other airlines?
Yes, Copa, NH and LH.

On Copa, the rules are the same as for flights operated by UA. It can't be done online, so you have to call. The regular Premier desk can't do it, though, even though Copa uses MP as its loyalty program--you'll need to call (or be transferred to) the Star Alliance Help Desk to complete the process. (And it's an involved process for the agents--they have to duplicate the Copa PNR in SHARES and issue you a separate UA PNR. Betwen *A Desk hold times--no priority for Premiers--and the hassle it is for the agents, plan on 30-45 minutes to get this done. It may be simpler if you booked your Copa tickets through United.) Note that an RPU works anywhere on Copa that a GPU works, so don't waste GPUs unnecessarily.

On NH & LH, the process is completely different. See links above

I see GPUs for sale on Craigslist or eBay. May I buy them and use them? Should I offer my extra GPUs?
This is not recommended. If UA determines the GPU was sold, you risk having your M+ account terminated and loss of your miles, status, lifetime miles, etc.
Especially if you are the seller - MP Accounts Closed by UA Alleging Fraud/Misuse

If I have upgraded a flight with miles, cash, GPU, RPU, CPU, etc. from Y to J, may I upgrade to F with a GPU?
Policy does not allow this. However, once upgraded to business you may be offered a cash buy-up to F.

If I apply a GPU on a multi segment journey, what happens one or segments clear, and one or more do not?
The exact wording from united.com is:
New wording --- In most cases, the Global Premier Upgrade will be considered used if any segment of an itinerary is upgraded or flown. However, for travel which includes segments in United Polaris business class or United Polaris first class, the Global Premier Upgrade will be re-deposited if the United Polaris business class or United Polaris first class segment(s) could not be upgraded.

Old wording -- In most cases, the Global Premier Upgrade will be considered used if any segment of an itinerary is upgraded or flown. However, for travel which includes segments in United BusinessFirst or United Global First, the Global Premier Upgrade will be re-deposited if the United BusinessFirst or United Global First segment(s) could not be upgraded.
The new wording seems to remove the uncertainty on PS flights as PS flights are not considered Polaris flights.

Redeposits don't always happen automatically, and when you call, you might find agents are trained to follow the longest segment interpretation, whereby if the longest segment is upgraded, even if not BF or GF, then the GPU will not be deposited. See http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/21138703-post394.html of push back and eventual capitulation by UA.

Can I add myself to the wait list within 24 hours of departure?
No, all you can do is attempt to apply the GPU periodically until it clears into upgrade inventory if any opens up. The 1K desk cannot put you on the wait list inside 24 hours because SHARES transfers the flight to airport control.

Do the fare class restrictions apply to domestic flights?
No, you can use a GPU on any fare on any RPU eligible flights -- this included any domestic/ any CPU eligible flight.

Is there a maximum layover between segments of a journey?
the T&Cs say
Stopovers require multiple upgrade products. A stopover for a single, one-way trip within the U.S. or between the U.S. and Canada is defined as longer than 4 hours in the connecting city. A stopover for a single, one-way trip to or from all other destinations is defined as longer than 24 hours in the connecting city.
as long as a single ticket .
However http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/20453548-post221.html is an example of 38 hours, where the 1K desk applied it on behalf of the customer. What is interesting about this case is that 38 hours is well beyond a layover, which implies that in some cases, one GPU can be used for two journeys on the same ticket even if the two journeys are beyond 24 hours apart. Note12 hours was the pmUA rule fpr international flights , some agents mayclaim that is thepresent rule.

How is the waitlist prioritized?
United.com details the process in the "Upgrade confirmation priority" section of this page.
For non-CPU flights
If an upgrade seat becomes available, waitlisted customers are confirmed automatically based on the Premier® status of the redeeming account***, then fare class, then time of request.
For CPU flights, GS and YBM fares will be handled before GPU/Miles/RPU users and finally CPU requests. Within these groups upgrades are prioritized based on Premier® status of the traveler, then fare class.
If not cleared until gate, it is believe the time factor is based on check-in time.

***On 4/15/15 travelers will no longer inherit the status of the redeeming account and will instead be prioritized by the status of the highest premier member on the PNR they are traveling on.

What is the relative waitlist priority of GPU vs Miles
Appears the use of GPU vs Miles has no impact on the waitlist priority.

May I cross two oceans with one GPU?
Yes if the entire journey is on one confirmation number and the max layover rule (above) is met.

Can I avoid upgrade lottery by booking only flights that have upgrade inventory?
Yes, see Post 3-Mar-2012:How to find upgrade inventory [+how to see fare bucket availability]. Note that you have to wait for the flight to ticket, by which time upgrade inventory can disappear. If so, cancel (within 24 hours of booking, so no penalty) and try again.

My GPU is still valid, but my journey starts after the GPU expires. Can I use the GPU for that journey?
No.

My GPU is still valid, but my journey starts before the GPU expires, and ends after the GPU expires. Can I use the GPU for that journey?
Yes if the initial flight scheduled departure is prior to expiration.

Can I let someone else use my GPU?
Yes. They will be prioritized on the waitlist based on their own status (or lack thereof).

If I let someone else use my GPU, do I have to be on the same reservation, same journey and/or same flight?
No to all.

What happens if there are multiple pax on the same reservation confirmation number and the reservation is split; will the GPU(s) that is(are) waitlisted on one or more pax stay with the new reservation?
Yes.

Why do Non-Revs get assigned seats in First/Business instead of upgrading paying customers?
UA’s policy is paying customers have priority for upgrades. However, per UA’s employee benefit package, Non-Revs can have access to unassigned seats if there are no waitlisted paying customers. This Non-Rev benefit is part of the negotiated employee compensation.

Earlier threads
Consolidated Global Premier Upgrade (GPU) Questions Thread [Archive]
United SWUs {GPUs} refunded if only domestic leg clears [policy change Sept 2011]
Specific GPU and RPU usage questions thread
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Old Nov 9, 18, 4:44 am
  #946  
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
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I'm booked into confirmed M there is only waitlist available although there are buckets available J9/C9 etc...when I had a friend of mine try and apply a GPU they said it was only available on miles, that seems odd, has something changed where you can no longer apply a GPU to a waitlist?
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Old Nov 9, 18, 4:49 am
  #947  
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Originally Posted by macdonaldj2 View Post
I'm booked into confirmed M there is only waitlist available although there are buckets available J9/C9 etc...when I had a friend of mine try and apply a GPU they said it was only available on miles, that seems odd, has something changed where you can no longer apply a GPU to a waitlist?
Are you within 24 hours of departure?
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Old Nov 9, 18, 4:56 am
  #948  
 
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Are you within 24 hours of departure?
No, departure is next week.
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Old Nov 9, 18, 5:35 am
  #949  
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Originally Posted by macdonaldj2 View Post
No, departure is next week.
Assuming this is a UA operated flight, there is no restriction. If an agent said otherwise, the agent was mistaken. Should be able to apply online.
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Old Nov 9, 18, 9:50 am
  #950  
 
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Originally Posted by macdonaldj2 View Post
I'm booked into confirmed M there is only waitlist available although there are buckets available J9/C9 etc...when I had a friend of mine try and apply a GPU they said it was only available on miles, that seems odd, has something changed where you can no longer apply a GPU to a waitlist?
Kacee is absolutely correct, try again. If they confirm you, which is doubtful, make sure you get the seat assignment from them at the same time and wait to see it confirm on the app / email before you hang up given what I just went through.
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Old Nov 9, 18, 6:42 pm
  #951  
 
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Sorry if a similar question has been answered in this super long thread.

Husband and I are both 1K. I have requalified for 2019. He will requalify in late December.

We are planning flights for March and there is upgrade space open to confirm at booking.

All my GPUs expire in 2020 (from requalifying). Husband has GPUs that expire January 2019. I know he can extend 2 of them once he hits 100K in December.

Can i confirm the upgrade space with my 2020 GPUs, and then swap them out for his 2019 ones once they get extended? Will upgrade space have to be open at that time to pull my GPU and apply his?
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Old Nov 9, 18, 9:48 pm
  #952  
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Originally Posted by Toronto1970 View Post
...Can i confirm the upgrade space with my 2020 GPUs, and then swap them out for his 2019 ones once they get extended? Will upgrade space have to be open at that time to pull my GPU and apply his? ...
While it is not standard process, can it be done, yes BUT
the real question is, will you be able to find a agent capable and willing to do this (if PZ space s not available).
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Old Nov 11, 18, 1:23 am
  #953  
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Originally Posted by Toronto1970 View Post
Can i confirm the upgrade space with my 2020 GPUs, and then swap them out for his 2019 ones once they get extended? Will upgrade space have to be open at that time to pull my GPU and apply his?
Why not just confirm the upgrade using your husband's 2019 GPUs? I think they need to be valid at the time of applying for the upgrade, not at the time of the flight.

HTB.
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Old Nov 11, 18, 2:28 am
  #954  
 
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Originally Posted by htb View Post
Why not just confirm the upgrade using your husband's 2019 GPUs? I think they need to be valid at the time of applying for the upgrade, not at the time of the flight.

HTB.
No, the GPU needs to be valid on the date of flight
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Old Nov 12, 18, 8:53 pm
  #955  
 
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For some reason I can't seem to be able to apply a GPU to my round trip flights to London from Pittsburgh:

PIT -> IAD (can apply), Class K
IAD -> LHR (cannot apply), Class K

LHR -> EWR (cannot apply), Class S
EWR -> PIT (can apply), Class S

They're showing up as United flights, not partners or anything. Booked using some merged ETF certificates, but otherwise I can't figure out why it will only let me apply to the short legs? Granted, I've never used a GPU before... there's no PZ space, but using them due to the amount of open first class seats currently.

**UPDATE**
Answered my own question, I didn't read the graph beforehand as I figured I'd have no problems applying them. I'm pretty clueless when it comes to fare types, I just assumed buying a normal economy ticket would've been fine but apparently these were designated as discounted fares.

Last edited by WineCountryUA; Nov 15, 18 at 12:16 am Reason: merging consecutive posts by same member
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Old Nov 12, 18, 8:58 pm
  #956  
 
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Originally Posted by cmatthews11 View Post
Answered my own question, I didn't read the graph beforehand as I figured I'd have no problems applying them. I'm pretty clueless when it comes to fare types, I just assumed buying a normal economy ticket would've been fine but apparently these were designated as discounted fares.
It should be possible to buy up to W fare if you want to apply the GPU...all is not lost if you don’t want it to be!
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Old Nov 12, 18, 8:59 pm
  #957  
 
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Originally Posted by cmatthews11 View Post
Answered my own question, I didn't read the graph beforehand as I figured I'd have no problems applying them. I'm pretty clueless when it comes to fare types, I just assumed buying a normal economy ticket would've been fine but apparently these were designated as discounted fares.
You can call in to upfare to the W fare class (probably about $400 per direction), if you'd like to use an upgrade certificate. Technically that should incur a change fee in addition to the fare differential, but it will usually be waived.

If you wish to do that, be sure to check that PZ has inventory availability beforehand.
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Old Nov 13, 18, 1:21 am
  #958  
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Originally Posted by StuckinITH View Post
I'm assuming that you are traveling on UA since it seems that GPUs can be used to upgrade P fares to First Class on LH.

I don't know if they still offer TODs for those seats at check-in or did those disappear when they stopped selling Polaris First?

Supposedly, UA was going to put a system where they would automatically move to those seats the passengers with high status having paid the highest fares but with a P fare I doubt that would happen and I don't know if they started doing that. There is still a slight chance if they have oversold Economy, then they would need to move some passengers from the Business seats to the First seats but I would assume that they would choose passengers having paid the highest fares.

So, let us know what happens when you check-in.
About 10 days before my IAD-FRA flight I was checking my seat and found that the F cabin was open for selection! So I grabbed a row 1 seat. I'm 1K 1MM if that matters. It was a great flight and the service from the FA's was indeed first class, even if the meals were business class. It was quite a difference from previous Polaris business flights I've taken. I slept very well. That will probably be my last time in those seats. Unless UA decides in 5 or 10 years to bring back Intl F.

I should also mention this was a very cheap P ticket. I think the IAD-FRA leg was about $700 PQD.
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Old Nov 13, 18, 4:07 am
  #959  
 
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
You can call in to upfare to the W fare class (probably about $400 per direction), if you'd like to use an upgrade certificate. Technically that should incur a change fee in addition to the fare differential, but it will usually be waived.
Earlier this year I booked a T fare on ORD-LHR and decided to upfare to W and got a refund of $8.65!
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Old Nov 13, 18, 4:53 am
  #960  
 
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Originally Posted by stimpy View Post
About 10 days before my IAD-FRA flight I was checking my seat and found that the F cabin was open for selection! So I grabbed a row 1 seat. I'm 1K 1MM if that matters. It was a great flight and the service from the FA's was indeed first class, even if the meals were business class. It was quite a difference from previous Polaris business flights I've taken. I slept very well. That will probably be my last time in those seats. Unless UA decides in 5 or 10 years to bring back Intl F.

I should also mention this was a very cheap P ticket. I think the IAD-FRA leg was about $700 PQD.
Yes, in October (maybe October 20th) UA changed the system and allowed Business Class passengers to take one of those seats in the First Class area. That day I also chose a seat in Row 1 for a return flight in December. It's supposed to be only for GS or 1K passengers but on that first day there was a glitch and some lower status passengers managed to get one of those seats.

Good that you enjoyed it!
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