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Check Your UA Itineraries for Schedule Changes and what to do after one

Check Your UA Itineraries for Schedule Changes and what to do after one

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Old Jul 2, 22, 4:51 pm   -   Wikipost
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UA typically updates schedules on late Wednesday & Friday evenings into the next day morning (USA Central Time).

United's FAQ on Schedule Changes webpage is no more vague but the follow seems to be the present policy

-- reschedule flexibility for 30 minutes or more changes
  • Your origin and destination will have to be the same as on your original itinerary.
  • If you have a connection, you may be able to choose a different connecting city or airport.
  • Alternative flights must be operated by United or our United Expressģ partners.

-- refunds for 2 hours or more changes
--- we may be able to offer you a refund:
  • The scheduled departure or arrival time changes by two hours or more.
  • The change causes issues with the overall length of the trip, such as making the connection time too short or significantly longer than it was originally.
  • If we are unable to accommodate you in the same cabin as purchased Ė refunded either the full price or the difference in fare.
If you're not satisfied with your new itinerary and one of the above scenarios applies, please don't accept the itinerary in Manage Reservations. Instead, you can request a refund online.


Generally, UA is pretty good about being flexible if you are adversely affected by a schedule change. Most reasonable requests will likely be honored. Best to do some self-research prior to calling. Including opening up award space on UA operated flights. If you had a cleared upgrade on UA operated flight, UA will generally honor that in the rescheduling if space is available (but not requiring upgrade inventory space on the new flights)

During this weekend change period and sometimes for a day later, there can be weirdness in displayed aircraft or seating maps, such as Strange/Impossible Aircraft Assignments After UA's Weekend Schedule Update

Early in the COVID pandemic, UA initially change the policy for refund to require 24 hour change, but quickly walked that back to 6 hours. Under DOT and public pressure, UA returned to a 2 hour policy on 6 June 2020. 30 minute change is still the threshold for flexible rebooking

More specific information is found in UA's guidance to TA's (on Jetstream) on re-scheduling
  • Any segment goes from a non-stop to a connection
  • Misconnecting itinerary
  • Change to originally scheduled arrival or departure time of at least + / - 30 minutes
Change to alternate flight (original operating carrier or carrier permitted as noted in fare rule) or UA operated flight. If itinerary includes UA operated segment, UA schedule change rules apply to that segment {meaning changing only to UA operated flight}.
Same booking class. If original booking class unavailable, book lowest available (higher than original booking class, same cabin) up to and including M class. Contact UA if required class of service is unavailable.**
Change fee and add/collect waived - see "Additional parameters for flights impacted by schedule changes" below the chart.
For 2 hours or more, refunds are an option unless you can be rescheduled to be under the 2 hours
Change to original arrival or departure time of 2 hours or more or cancelled flight with no protection
or
Additional parameters for flights impacted by schedule changes
  1. Non-stops may go to connecting flights, and connecting flights may go to non-stops
  2. Connecting hub may be changed
  3. If original day of departure is unavailable, may depart 7 days prior to or after original departure date. If outbound flight is impacted, subsequent flights on same itinerary may be changed to maintain original length of trip.***
  4. Alternate airports within a 250 mile radius of the original origin or departure airport***
    • Change may apply to origin and destination, but must be changed at the original time of ticket reissue
    • Customer is responsible for any additional expenses incurred
Please see footnote below regarding the handling of United Basic Economy fares booked in "N" class.

***Continuing or return travel dates may be voluntarily changed on UA segments only in the original inventory class to maintain the original length of stay prior to the re-accommodation. Changes to the return flight must be in the same PNR and be made in the same transaction as the re-accommodation of the outbound flight. The change fee and add/collect will be waived for changes made to the return (original class of service only).

**United Basic Economy fares booked in "N" class must remain in "N" class when eligible for self-service rebooking due to unacceptable schedule changes or irregular operations. If "N" class is unavailable, please contact Unitedís Customer Contact Centers for assistance. Rebooking into an ineligible booking class may result in the issuance of a debit memo. For non-Basic Economy fares, do not rebook into "N" class.
================= older information =======================
The peak-time for changes is roughly 3-4 months prior to departure but changes occur anytime -- especially aircraft changes within an aircraft family (such as 777-200s or 737-800 vs 737-900).

Schedule changes
Rebooking options if a schedule change has affected your itinerary

If your scheduled departure or arrival time changes by 30 minutes or more, we're happy to try to find other available flight options that meet your needs. Please keep the following in mind when you call:
  • Your origin and destination will have to be the same as on your original itinerary.
  • If you have a connection, you may be able to choose a different connecting city or airport.
  • Alternative flights must be operated by United or our United Expressģ partners.
If we aren't able to find any other flights that meet your needs, requesting a refund may be an option. See the section below for more information.

Ticket refunds

When a schedule change happens, we try our best to provide you with options that minimize the disruption to your travel plans. In cases where the new flight options don't work for you and one of the following scenarios applies, we may be able to offer you a refund:
  • The scheduled departure or arrival time significantly changes.
  • The change causes issues with the overall length of the trip, such as making the connection time too short or significantly longer than it was originally.
  • If we are unable to accommodate you in the same cabin as purchased Ė refunded either the full price or the difference in fare.
If you're not satisfied with your new itinerary and one of the above scenarios applies, please don't accept the itinerary in Manage Reservations. Instead, you can request a refund online.
It is reported that agents will now (12 March 2020) process refunds for 6-hour changes (down from the original new 25+ hours that replaced the previous long practice of 2-hours)
JetStream - Agency Rebooking Parameters


Related thread: Schedule change refund policy changed from 2+ hrs to 25+ hrs now 6+ hrs 12 March 2020

Archive Thread - Check Your UA Itineraries for Schedule Changes and what to do after one [Archive]


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Old Apr 30, 21, 1:13 am
  #121  
 
Join Date: Feb 2021
Posts: 69
Hey guys, would appreciate some advice and any successes recently using the 100 mile airport rule.

Seems like I just got hit by a midweek change.

Iím flying end of June from DEN - IAH - SJU. I was rerouted thru EWR to an earlier flight that leaves during the work day, basically a 6 hour difference now. I was planning on taking an evening flight/red eye to save on a day of vacation. My choices now are basically leave in the middle of the day or at a hellish morning hour. I canít leave later in the evening as my previous flight was one of the last ones out; and leaving the next day would make me loose my rental car reservation which are slim pickings now.

I was looking at better routings through COS and even PUB if I ended up needing to leave earlier or during the day as DEN is a longer drive. I could leave a day earlier but then Iíd have to get 2 extra hotel nights.

Anyone have success in changing the airport? Both I believe are less than 100 miles away.
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Old Apr 30, 21, 5:12 am
  #122  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: PIT
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Originally Posted by MechMachine View Post
Hey guys, would appreciate some advice and any successes recently using the 100 mile airport rule.

Seems like I just got hit by a midweek change.

Iím flying end of June from DEN - IAH - SJU. I was rerouted thru EWR to an earlier flight that leaves during the work day, basically a 6 hour difference now. I was planning on taking an evening flight/red eye to save on a day of vacation. My choices now are basically leave in the middle of the day or at a hellish morning hour. I canít leave later in the evening as my previous flight was one of the last ones out; and leaving the next day would make me loose my rental car reservation which are slim pickings now.

I was looking at better routings through COS and even PUB if I ended up needing to leave earlier or during the day as DEN is a longer drive. I could leave a day earlier but then Iíd have to get 2 extra hotel nights.

Anyone have success in changing the airport? Both I believe are less than 100 miles away.
I was able to change my destination airport after a change this week. It took HUCA, and the second agent, when she talked to rates, was told there would be a fare increase. I mentioned the nearby airport rule, and she went back to rates and was able to get the change processed. I would imagine itís easier if you change the origin, so you might have a better time of it.
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Old Apr 30, 21, 11:54 pm
  #123  
 
Join Date: Feb 2021
Posts: 69
Originally Posted by dinoscool3 View Post
I was able to change my destination airport after a change this week. It took HUCA, and the second agent, when she talked to rates, was told there would be a fare increase. I mentioned the nearby airport rule, and she went back to rates and was able to get the change processed. I would imagine itís easier if you change the origin, so you might have a better time of it.
Thanks! I was able to call in and change with the agent over the phone on the first try. Gave him the segments I wanted and got what I needed. Was super nice and knew what I was talking about with the 100 mi rule. Also because my flight changed by more than 7 hours it was classified as a "Significant change" and the agent said over the phone I was granted additional flexibility by being able to change either segment in either direction +/- 7 days (didn't know this) or cancel with full refund. I am glad I called; the app/website was showing limited availability; only 1 day changes, and wanted a fare difference of more than $400+ to change the airport. Saved me alot of time and money for this to be no charge. Glad I checked on here first; United is definitely being stingy by not explaining the full picture on their website or even showing customers all the flexibility available to them on their reservation; but such is business I suppose.
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Old May 1, 21, 9:01 am
  #124  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: ORF, RIC
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Posts: 5,402
Originally Posted by dinoscool3 View Post
I was able to change my destination airport after a change this week. It took HUCA, and the second agent, when she talked to rates, was told there would be a fare increase. I mentioned the nearby airport rule, and she went back to rates and was able to get the change processed. I would imagine itís easier if you change the origin, so you might have a better time of it.
The 100-miles rule is flexible enough. My last two changes were for IAD->RIC (99 miles) and BWI->RIC (121miles). The more severe the schedule change was, the more likely an agent allowed for a destination change.
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Old May 1, 21, 11:44 am
  #125  
 
Join Date: Feb 2021
Posts: 69
Originally Posted by dinoscool3 View Post
I was able to change my destination airport after a change this week. It took HUCA, and the second agent, when she talked to rates, was told there would be a fare increase. I mentioned the nearby airport rule, and she went back to rates and was able to get the change processed. I would imagine itís easier if you change the origin, so you might have a better time of it.
Originally Posted by Kmxu View Post
The 100-miles rule is flexible enough. My last two changes were for IAD->RIC (99 miles) and BWI->RIC (121miles). The more severe the schedule change was, the more likely an agent allowed for a destination change.
I thought about this after the fact but do you know how this process affects MP earnings and flexibility? My previous routing was to earn around 2K miles. Previous fare code was in K for all segments. After the change I am in Q now; which I believe is higher. Both earn 100% if Iím not mistaken. In my reservation before changing my earnings displayed perfectly fine. I waited overnight but now it shows ďOne or more segments arenít eligible for MP earnings.Ē Also this appears now at the top of the fare rules: NONREF/0VALUEAFTDPT/CHGFEE. I booked in March with the COVID waiver in effect. Now it says the flight was ticketed May 1. Did I loose on the waiver for future changes?

I
did save a lot of money and I am happy with the change all things withstanding I donít think Iíll need to make any other modifications, but some miles would be nice to top up on so I can redeem an award later this year and burn the rest of my MP balance. Anyone have experience with a Original Routing Credit (ORC) after the fact with a situation like this? Or should I wait and maybe it will populate closer to departure. If I donít get the miles thatís fine; was just wondering.
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Old May 1, 21, 12:56 pm
  #126  
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Originally Posted by MechMachine View Post
I thought about this after the fact but do you know how this process affects MP earnings and flexibility? My previous routing was to earn around 2K miles. Previous fare code was in K for all segments. After the change I am in Q now; which I believe is higher. Both earn 100% if Iím not mistaken. In my reservation before changing my earnings displayed perfectly fine. I waited overnight but now it shows ďOne or more segments arenít eligible for MP earnings.Ē Also this appears now at the top of the fare rules: NONREF/0VALUEAFTDPT/CHGFEE. I booked in March with the COVID waiver in effect. Now it says the flight was ticketed May 1. Did I loose on the waiver for future changes?

I
did save a lot of money and I am happy with the change all things withstanding I donít think Iíll need to make any other modifications, but some miles would be nice to top up on so I can redeem an award later this year and burn the rest of my MP balance. Anyone have experience with a Original Routing Credit (ORC) after the fact with a situation like this? Or should I wait and maybe it will populate closer to departure. If I donít get the miles thatís fine; was just wondering.
if you credit to MP the fare class and all of that no longer matters. Your PQP is determined based on what you paid and your RDMs are determined based on the PQP and your status. Rebooking into Q will likely give you a higher upgrade priority, but that's about it. The change fee does not matter here ,,, this is a generic line that you see on the ticket.
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Old May 1, 21, 1:08 pm
  #127  
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Originally Posted by MechMachine View Post
I thought about this after the fact but do you know how this process affects MP earnings and flexibility? My previous routing was to earn around 2K miles. Previous fare code was in K for all segments. After the change I am in Q now; which I believe is higher. Both earn 100% if Iím not mistaken.
If you're crediting to MileagePlus, keep track of what you were expecting, and if the total that is posted is lower, you are likely to be able to get the difference posted as a correction. Ignore any particular value, as they may allocate the fares differently between the flights you're on. Look only at the total.

Originally Posted by MechMachine View Post
In my reservation before changing my earnings displayed perfectly fine. I waited overnight but now it shows ďOne or more segments arenít eligible for MP earnings.Ē
Website display errors are common. Are all of your flights operated by United?

Originally Posted by MechMachine View Post
Also this appears now at the top of the fare rules: NONREF/0VALUEAFTDPT/CHGFEE.

That's standard.


Originally Posted by MechMachine View Post
I booked in March with the COVID waiver in effect. Now it says the flight was ticketed May 1. Did I loose on the waiver for future changes?

No.
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Old May 1, 21, 4:18 pm
  #128  
 
Join Date: Feb 2021
Posts: 69
Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
if you credit to MP the fare class and all of that no longer matters. Your PQP is determined based on what you paid and your RDMs are determined based on the PQP and your status. Rebooking into Q will likely give you a higher upgrade priority, but that's about it. The change fee does not matter here ,,, this is a generic line that you see on the ticket.
Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
If you're crediting to MileagePlus, keep track of what you were expecting, and if the total that is posted is lower, you are likely to be able to get the difference posted as a correction. Ignore any particular value, as they may allocate the fares differently between the flights you're on. Look only at the total.


Website display errors are common. Are all of your flights operated by United?


That's standard.


No.
2 of my flights are United Express, 2 are mainline. I have noted my original expected MP earnings and am crediting to united. Will look into it after the trip if it doesnít match up.

Thanks!
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Old May 4, 21, 4:59 am
  #129  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 323
When a significant change occurs, and we have the +/- 7 day window, do the routing rules still apply or is there flexibility?
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Old May 4, 21, 5:24 am
  #130  
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Originally Posted by deskover54 View Post
When a significant change occurs, and we have the +/- 7 day window, do the routing rules still apply or is there flexibility?
YMMV. Anything reasonable is certainly a go. If you want BOS-EWR via SFO ... that won't fly
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Old May 7, 21, 6:52 pm
  #131  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
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Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
YMMV. Anything reasonable is certainly a go. If you want BOS-EWR via SFO ... that won't fly
Sometimes it would in the past with SDC on the app :-)
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Old May 9, 21, 10:36 pm
  #132  
 
Join Date: May 2003
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Anyone have any luck in getting a biz-class seat for a reduced price/miles when the PE seat you had booked disappears due to a plane change? United's 777 situation has caused them to sub a whole lot of 787-9s, which don't yet have PE seating. I got my outbound SFO-CDG switched to SFO-EWR-CDG (direct flight was cancelled, and auto-rebook SFO-ORD-CDG put us in bad seats in E+ on a packed 737 to ORD... the new routing is PE both segs). Didn't notice that the FRA-SFO segment on the return had switched from a 787-8 (version with PE) to a 787-9 (version without). Looks like no reasonable alternatives to get PE all the way back.
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Old May 9, 21, 11:48 pm
  #133  
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Originally Posted by Mike Jacoubowsky View Post
Anyone have any luck in getting a biz-class seat for a reduced price/miles when the PE seat you had booked disappears due to a plane change? ....
You can try but not aware of any reports like that.

When is the flight? The far out the better. Chances for further swaps, chances for more 789 conversions, chances for some 777PWs to return to service.
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Old May 10, 21, 10:23 am
  #134  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Redwood City, CA USA (SFO/SJC)
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
You can try but not aware of any reports like that.

When is the flight? The far out the better. Chances for further swaps, chances for more 789 conversions, chances for some 777PWs to return to service.
The return is 7/19. Almost wonder if buying a 100% refundable fare (which this was) could work against you, when talking with agents, since they can always tell you no problem, you can get a complete refund if you want. :-) Also, current tickets are 3x what the went for at the end of February. So applying the value of the current ticket against anything current would be a really bad thing.

I'll also check to see what it would cost to simply change to a paid-for biz class ticket on the return, since they're presently pricing biz class tickets very slightly above economy ($1950 vs $3000).

Last edited by Mike Jacoubowsky; May 10, 21 at 10:51 am
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Old May 18, 21, 11:56 pm
  #135  
 
Join Date: Feb 2021
Posts: 69
Originally Posted by MechMachine View Post
2 of my flights are United Express, 2 are mainline. I have noted my original expected MP earnings and am crediting to united. Will look into it after the trip if it doesnít match up.

Thanks!
Looks like my flight had another schedule change on the return. Instead of leaving on the last day of vacation later in the day around 3 I am now returning earlier at 8am. I don't want to have to have my last day cut short; nor return the rental car early and possibly incur some fees. Changing the rental car reservation at this point would cost me much more.

From SJU there is later departures at 12:30 to IAD and 4:00 to EWR; however connections back to the departure airport would require an overnight in either city. Do you think an agent would allow a stopover greater than 6 hours (ex: get a hotel for the night and explore the city following day) before flying back in the afternoon? Technically against the fare rules - anyone have any luck or experience with this in the past?

I can't change my reservation online or in the app at this point as the previous schedule change and rebooking seemingly was reticketed into Q which whenever I try and change again there are no flights available supposedly with this class; so I am forced to call again.
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