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Consolidated Global Services Thread: Benefits, Questions [2018]

Consolidated Global Services Thread: Benefits, Questions [2018]

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Old Jan 15, 19, 3:13 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: flyerbjorn
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United Global Services ("GS") is the highest tier of MileagePlus elite status. It is by invitation only, reviewed annually -- the invite criteria is not public but seems to require substantial annual spending with UA both in terms of absolute dollar amounts and purchasing higher fare classes (higher cpm - cents per mile). There are also reports of GS status being comped by UA Marketing to VIPs in companies who sign corporate travel deals with UA, and also to those individuals that purchase an annual PassPlus enrollment of $50k or greater. The sole published way to qualify is to become a 4MM, having flown 4 million BIS miles on UA metal (plus additional grandfathered credits at the time of the UA/CO merger).

GS have enhanced services / benefits over 1Ks. There is little said publicly by UA on GS benefits and/or qualification.

Last years' thread, Consolidated Global Services Thread - Qualifications, Benefits and Q & A [2017]
Thread on 2017 Global Services Notifications
Thread on 2017 Qualifying Discussion

Known facts concerning qualification and eligibility from United:
Global Services recognizes the extraordinary dedication of our top flyers. We consider a number of factors beyond the usual Premier-qualifying criteria.
We look at your travel spend on United-operated flights relative to that of other top Premier flyers over recent consecutive years.
Usually, members invited to Global Services tend to consistently purchase premium cabins or fully refundable tickets.


Published Benefits
Full detail of published benefits can be found at https://mystatus.united.com/gs [MP credentials login required, existing GS only]
Shortlist (incremental/different to 1K):
  • Dedicated phone number, ​usually answered on the first ring, and generally by specially-trained GS agents. Some exceptions occur, especially during busy periods (such as when weather waivers are in effect)
  • Dedicated email address for MileagePlus and other inquiries, usually answered personally within hours
  • Dedicated check-in at main airport stations, including private Global Reception centers at major hubs, providing priority TSA security access. May bring guests/companions into Global Reception areas or dedicated GS checkin lanes who are traveling on same itinerary as GS member.
  • Instrument-supported upgrades (GPU/RPU) clear into PN class rather than PZ class for other elite tiers, which usually have much better availability. Instruments drawn from the GS member account and applied to other reservations will also clear into PN class.
  • Complimentary Premier Upgrades (CPUs) cleared beginning 120 hours prior to flight departure (versus 96 hours for 1K) for GS member and up to one other traveling on same PNR
  • Highest-priority when waitlisted for Upgrades, Award Travel, and Sold-out Flight Availability. GS members clear before any other status level or full-fare customers.
  • Priority Boarding, among the first to board the aircraft (currently after unaccompanied minors, people with disabilities and/or need more time boarding, Active-Duty Military, and now prior to families with children under age of 2)
  • Priority handling in event of IRROPS, including next flight guarantee in case of re-accommodation, overseen by dedicated team of location-based GS Customer Service Agents (identified via gold scarves/ties)
  • Mercedes-Benz Tarmac Transfer for tight connections between flights at major hubs (cannot be requested in advance)
  • Access to United Arrivals Lounge at SFO when arriving from international flight, regardless of cabin class (no guests permitted)
  • Access to Arrivals Lounge at LHR T2 when arriving from inbound UA-operated intercontinental flight, regardless of cabin (no guests permitted, must present Boarding Pass or physical GS card)
  • Access to Lufthansa / Swiss Welcome (arrival) Lounges in FRA and ZRH for same-day inbound UA intercontinental flight, regardless of cabin (no guests permitted, must present physical GS card)
Additional Known Award and Upgrade Benefits (many unpublished)

All benefits noted below require calling a GS agent:
  • GS can create saver economy award space (XN) if T inventory is available. United-operated flights only. Update 12 Dec 2018: Only for GS member + 1 companion.
  • GS can create saver business award space (IN) if PZ inventory is available. United-operated flights only.
  • GS can upgrade economy awards (XN or YN) into Business / First with a GPU if PN inventory is available, provided both instrument and miles drawn from GS member account. United-operated flights only.
  • GS can confirm any waitlisted instrument-supported upgrade within T-72 hours to flight departure provided at least 2 (two) J class premium seats remain for sale after the upgrade is processed and they are at the top of the waitlist.
  • GS are entitled to one Saver Award seat in the same class of service with their purchase of any premium cabin fare. GS agents can open space if it is not available provided that at least 2 seats remain for sale afterwards. United-operated flights only.
  • GS can upgrade a companion with an instrument (GPU/RPU) from Economy to Business / First when flying on a paid premium cabin fare, even if PZ or PN is not available, as long as J > 2 after upgrade processed. Companion needs to be ticketed in W class or higher on international cash fare itineraries, or ticketed in X/XN for upgrades from award tickets. GS can also open economy award space for the companion to allow for the upgrade with instrument, even if XN or T are unavailable.
  • (Note: Only ONE of the two above options can be exercised per premium fare purchased.)
  • GS can buy up from Basic Economy fares, which is usually forbidden
  • GS can access VIP Lounges (former Global First Lounges) in NRT, LHR, and HKG when booked in Polaris Business on an international itinerary. One guest permitted (two guests if a United Club member). Not accessed if booked in United Economy.
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Old Oct 13, 18, 5:57 pm
  #916  
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: SFO
Programs: UA GS 4MM, RCC life member (paid), SPG Lifetime Plat, Marriott Plat Prem, Hilton Silver. CLEAR
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Originally Posted by bluedemon211 View Post
Not sure if there has been a subtle change to a un-published GS benefit, but I thought I would ask the experts. Let me explain.

There have been multiple instances where when booking as a GS on to an international flight that is P9, either immediately or within 24 hours the GPU clears into PN (although PN=0 via EF). I have benefited 4-5 times from this phenomenon. My last 3-4 trips I have sat with P9 and no clearing into business. Eventually P0 became the status and I had to play the waiting game (and did not clear 2 of the flights)

The current situation is on UA 29 SFO-SIN departing in January. It is at P9 with all J buckets being =9. For what it is worth, only 2 seats are taken on the seat map (yes, I know it is not definitive of real load, but the agent said there was "over 45 business seats for sale"). I booked the flight a week ago and still nothing. Normally SFO-SIN is a challenging clear, so I try to only book it when PN>0. Has anyone else seen this un-published benefit no longer happening? Thanks for your help.
I can only talk about my experience since last December. I have about 15 flight segments that showed P9 PN0 at time of reservation. The 6 international flights my GPU had the following results:
Clear into PN within 24-48 hours: 2.
Clear into PN several weeks later (but at least a week prior): 2
Call GS within 72 hours when J =>3: 1
Failed to clear within 24 hours (I used cash upgrade not wanting to play the lottery at gate), 1

For the 9 or so domestic flights (SFO<->EWR, SFO<->IAD) I used some RPU and some miles+copay:
Clear into PN within 24-48 hours: 0.
Clear into PN several weeks later (but at least a week prior): 1
Call GS within 72 hours when J >=3: 1
Clear at Gate: 3
Failed to clear: About 10.
PanAmWT is offline  
Old Oct 13, 18, 9:52 pm
  #917  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Programs: Mileage Plus 1K 2MM
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Originally Posted by PanAmWT View Post
I can only talk about my experience since last December. I have about 15 flight segments that showed P9 PN0 at time of reservation. The 6 international flights my GPU had the following results:
Clear into PN within 24-48 hours: 2.
Clear into PN several weeks later (but at least a week prior): 2
Call GS within 72 hours when J =>3: 1
Failed to clear within 24 hours (I used cash upgrade not wanting to play the lottery at gate), 1

For the 9 or so domestic flights (SFO<->EWR, SFO<->IAD) I used some RPU and some miles+copay:
Clear into PN within 24-48 hours: 0.
Clear into PN several weeks later (but at least a week prior): 1
Call GS within 72 hours when J >=3: 1
Clear at Gate: 3
Failed to clear: About 10.

Thank you, that is very helpful!
bluedemon211 is offline  
Old Oct 15, 18, 12:08 pm
  #918  
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Join Date: Apr 2017
Programs: UA Gold
Posts: 14
Could any past/current/aficionado GS folks disclose what kinds of non-travel benefits that are available to GS members? Sources about it seem to be far and few, aside from a WSJ or Newser article, or Paula's strange requests being granted in the "Flying Exclusive with United Global Services" Youtube video (sorry, not allowed to post links).

Is it an enhanced version of, say, Amex Platinum Concierge? Or are non-travel requests simply restricted to 1MM+ members and not just any GS member?

I'm asking this because, if it's true, it's a potentially good reason for me to aim for the status someday.
DBam is offline  
Old Oct 15, 18, 1:08 pm
  #919  
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Originally Posted by DBam View Post
Could any past/current/aficionado GS folks disclose what kinds of non-travel benefits that are available to GS members? ....
At the top of this thread is the thread's wiki, where many of these benefits (published and unpublished) are listed. it is a rather long list, so easier to refer to the wiki.
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Old Oct 15, 18, 1:35 pm
  #920  
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
At the top of this thread is the thread's wiki, where many of these benefits (published and unpublished) are listed. it is a rather long list, so easier to refer to the wiki.
The list is a good overview/outline. On top, "going the extra mile" by individual agents (phone, airport, CS, MP desk) in particular situations can result in outstanding treatments, which constitute additional benefits (annecdotal/unpublished).
cesco.g is offline  
Old Oct 15, 18, 2:59 pm
  #921  
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: New York
Programs: UA GS, Hilton Diamond, Marriott & SPG Platinum
Posts: 1,939
I'm fairly certain this is the case but haven't tried it - does the ability to open up saver award space, or to force an instrument upgrade, apply to domestic flights as well? I've done this a lot, but only on international itineraries.
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Old Oct 15, 18, 3:32 pm
  #922  
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: SFO
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Originally Posted by villox View Post
I'm fairly certain this is the case but haven't tried it - does the ability to open up saver award space, or to force an instrument upgrade, apply to domestic flights as well? I've done this a lot, but only on international itineraries.
It does use it often for East Coast / Hawaii / Mex trips. Nice burn of RPUs.
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Old Oct 15, 18, 4:26 pm
  #923  
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
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Originally Posted by villox View Post
I'm fairly certain this is the case but haven't tried it - does the ability to open up saver award space, or to force an instrument upgrade, apply to domestic flights as well? I've done this a lot, but only on international itineraries.
Absolutely!!
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physioprof is offline  
Old Oct 16, 18, 6:52 am
  #924  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: IAH
Programs: UA Global Services 2MM, SQ Kris Flyer, AAdvantage, Marriott Rewards Lifetime Premier Plat
Posts: 991
I was just told by a GS rep that PN class can't be opened on "short-haul flights" as of June or July; only international or cross-country. This is why she (supposedly) could not force an upgrade at T-72 (IAH-DCA) even though F is only booked 4/12. Is it possible someone is ahead of me on the waitlist and she couldn't do it for that reason but made up an alternative explanatiom?
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Old Oct 16, 18, 7:06 am
  #925  
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Originally Posted by st530 View Post
I was just told by a GS rep that PN class can't be opened on "short-haul flights" as of June or July; only international or cross-country. This is why she (supposedly) could not force an upgrade at T-72 (IAH-DCA) even though F is only booked 4/12. Is it possible someone is ahead of me on the waitlist and she couldn't do it for that reason but made up an alternative explanatiom?
I've had PN opened many times recently on domestic flights. My understanding of the rule is: Within 72 hours of flight time, GS can be cleared into the upgraded cabin if two revenue seats will remain after all GS have been cleared off the W/L.
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Old Oct 16, 18, 7:13 am
  #926  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: IAH
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Posts: 991
Originally Posted by wxguy View Post
I've had PN opened many times recently on domestic flights. My understanding of the rule is: Within 72 hours of flight time, GS can be cleared into the upgraded cabin if two revenue seats will remain after all GS have been cleared off the W/L.
What happens if there is a GS ahead of you who hasn't asked for the manual upgrade?
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Old Oct 16, 18, 7:21 am
  #927  
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Originally Posted by st530 View Post
I was just told by a GS rep that PN class can't be opened on "short-haul flights" as of June or July; only international or cross-country. This is why she (supposedly) could not force an upgrade at T-72 (IAH-DCA) even though F is only booked 4/12. Is it possible someone is ahead of me on the waitlist and she couldn't do it for that reason but made up an alternative explanation?
It was my understanding they can no longer force a CPU at T-72hrs but can force it if the upgrade is supported with a RPU/GPU/mileage. Uncertain how this plays out if there are more than 1 GS on the list.
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Old Oct 16, 18, 7:42 am
  #928  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: IAH
Programs: UA Global Services 2MM, SQ Kris Flyer, AAdvantage, Marriott Rewards Lifetime Premier Plat
Posts: 991
Originally Posted by J.Edward View Post
It was my understanding they can no longer force a CPU at T-72hrs but can force it if the upgrade is supported with a RPU/GPU/mileage. Uncertain how this plays out if there are more than 1 GS on the list.
Thanks. By way of clarification this is an RPU-supported upgrade.
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Old Oct 16, 18, 8:28 am
  #929  
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Originally Posted by J.Edward View Post
It was my understanding they can no longer force a CPU at T-72hrs but can force it if the upgrade is supported with a RPU/GPU/mileage. Uncertain how this plays out if there are more than 1 GS on the list.
My experience last year on this subject was that I wanted to clear my wife and myself into PN on SFO-SIN with 8 seats remaining at exactly the 72 hour mark. We were 4th and 5th on the upgrade priority, so the phone agent cleared everyone in front of us, as well as the two of us, which left 3 seats open in J, and thus followed their guideline for inventory management.
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Old Oct 16, 18, 9:32 am
  #930  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: IAH
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Posts: 991
So I HUCA'd and the second agent cleared it no problem. I have no idea why the first agent said what she said.
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