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Club member/one-time pass access changes Nov 1, 2019 (same day BP on UA or partner)

Club member/one-time pass access changes Nov 1, 2019 (same day BP on UA or partner)

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Old Apr 12, 19, 5:51 pm   -   Wikipost
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If you paid cash for a lifetime Club membership and would like to join a potential class action due to this material change, please post your username here:
ctownflyer
hog Heaven
AAdmiral
nsx + 1
RichardInSF
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soartoday
lax2jfk2lax
libuser + 1
Xyzzy + 1
Buster CT1K
1K Student
Elitefreak
flyer austin + 1 (wiki-restricted member, added by IAH-OIL-TRASH)
Radonc1 + 1 (not a FT member but has LT membership)
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If you received a lifetime Club membership from the UA MM program and would like to join a potential class action, please post your username here:
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Old Mar 8, 19, 3:50 pm
  #286  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: CLE
Programs: UA GS+LT UC, AA LT PLT, Fairmont LT PLT, SPG PLT, Hilton Diamond, Hyatt Diamond, Avis CHM.
Posts: 3,536
UA will not be grandfathering in lifetime club members (though they did offer me a carve-out at my local UA club)

Accor took the same position recently with lifetime Fairmont accounts, but caved when I got lawyers involved. I guess we'll go down the same path here and see where it goes.
Amazing that UA is always happy to copy the bad of Delta but never their good.
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Old Mar 8, 19, 4:12 pm
  #287  
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: San Francisco
Programs: UA GS, UA 1MM, Hilton Lifetime Gold, Marriott Gold, Hertz Gold
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Originally Posted by ctownflyer View Post
UA will not be grandfathering in lifetime club members (though they did offer me a carve-out at my local UA club)

Accor took the same position recently with lifetime Fairmont accounts, but caved when I got lawyers involved. I guess we'll go down the same path here and see where it goes.
Amazing that UA is always happy to copy the bad of Delta but never their good.
Interesting I thought someone said they WERE going to grandfathering in LT million miller members. How are you a LT UC member? Miles? I like the local "carve-out" great people in CLE club.
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Old Mar 8, 19, 7:06 pm
  #288  
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: BOS<>NYC<>BKK
Programs: UA 4MM LT-GS; AA1MM; Amtrak S+; MAR LT TITAN; PC Plat; HIL DIA; HYA GLOB
Posts: 3,660
Anyone out there get their LT UC the same way I did? I have no recollection at all what was promised at the time! I bought it in ~1990 with 100,000 EA miles (Ionosphere Club). When ONEpass was created, it was absorbed into the CO Presidents Club network. Then with the UA merger, it became a LT Red Carpet Club and finally United Club membership. No complaints -- I've certainly gotten my miles' worth over 30 years!
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Old Mar 9, 19, 1:06 am
  #289  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco & Squaw Valley
Programs: Giants Ballpark Pass. Lifetime Ambassador Club. WN A+/CP, AS MVP, UA "fools Gold" (aka PresPlus).
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Originally Posted by ctownflyer View Post
UA will not be grandfathering in lifetime club members (though they did offer me a carve-out at my local UA club).
Delta did not make a decision for life members until the last minute, either. Iím optimistic that ultimately UA will follow suit. How many lifetime members can still be out there? The variable cost of food consumption and impact of crowding just canít be that great.
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Old Mar 9, 19, 6:46 am
  #290  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Programs: AS Gold, Hyatt Diamond, Starriott LTPP
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Originally Posted by ctownflyer View Post
UA will not be grandfathering in lifetime club members (though they did offer me a carve-out at my local UA club)

Accor took the same position recently with lifetime Fairmont accounts, but caved when I got lawyers involved. I guess we'll go down the same path here and see where it goes.
Amazing that UA is always happy to copy the bad of Delta but never their good.
Thanks for pursuing. I'm with you on fighting this to November and beyond.
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Old Mar 9, 19, 7:51 am
  #291  
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: SEA/YVR/BLI
Programs: UA "Lifetime" Gold and Silver Wings, AS MVPG75K, HH Diamond, IC Plat, Marriott Gold, Hertz 5*
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What I haven't seen mentioned here is the failure of two separate lawsuits against UA brought by "lifetime" members of Silver Wings.

I was one of two named plaintiffs in the first of the suits. We lost because we could not come up with any paperwork documenting the T&Cs of our original signup. The onus was on us rather than UA. Ironically, I finally found my old Silver Wings membership card just a few months ago, but even that didn't include T&Cs so I doubt it would have made a difference in the outcome.

In a subsequent suit, summary judgment was granted against the plaintiff. My last post on the topic is here.

Gary Leff wrote about the second suit here. He also went back to the Million-Mile-Flyer suit to quote two judges' colloquy with a UA lawyer:

Judge Hamilton: To understand the difference between lifetime and fingers crossed? That lifetime doesn’t mean lifetime?

United: That lifetime means lifetime unless…

Judge Wood: Unless we change our mind.

Judge Hamilton: Unless we change our mind.

United: Yes, that’s exactly right. That’s the case.
I have no idea if those judgments have any relevance to the lifetime club memberships but bring this up FWIW. I do wish the affected lifetime members well. I can empathize.
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Old Mar 9, 19, 7:15 pm
  #292  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: CLE
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Originally Posted by nomad420 View Post
Interesting I thought someone said they WERE going to grandfathering in LT million miller members. How are you a LT UC member? Miles? I like the local "carve-out" great people in CLE club.
Paid cash for it to CO in 2007.

Originally Posted by worldwidedreamer View Post


Delta did not make a decision for life members until the last minute, either. I’m optimistic that ultimately UA will follow suit. How many lifetime members can still be out there? The variable cost of food consumption and impact of crowding just can’t be that great.
I'm told this is UA's final decision after researching the issue for the past 5 months since I brought it to their attention.

Originally Posted by soartoday View Post
Thanks for pursuing. I'm with you on fighting this to November and beyond.
Do we have any lawyers that are lifetime club members?

Originally Posted by Fredd View Post
What I haven't seen mentioned here is the failure of two separate lawsuits against UA brought by "lifetime" members of Silver Wings.

I was one of two named plaintiffs in the first of the suits. We lost because we could not come up with any paperwork documenting the T&Cs of our original signup. The onus was on us rather than UA. Ironically, I finally found my old Silver Wings membership card just a few months ago, but even that didn't include T&Cs so I doubt it would have made a difference in the outcome.

In a subsequent suit, summary judgment was granted against the plaintiff. My last post on the topic is here.

Gary Leff wrote about the second suit here. He also went back to the Million-Mile-Flyer suit to quote two judges' colloquy with a UA lawyer:



I have no idea if those judgments have any relevance to the lifetime club memberships but bring this up FWIW. I do wish the affected lifetime members well. I can empathize.
​​​​​​​I don't think I ever got any paperwork from CO.

One thing in our favor is that the paid club membership had nothing to due with flying, We were allowed to access the club at any time, even if not flying.
The deregulation act shielded UA from other lawsuits that had to do with flying, but I would think this falls outside of that scope.
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Old Mar 9, 19, 8:02 pm
  #293  
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: HNL
Programs: UA 1K3MM, MR LT Plat, Hilton Gold
Posts: 1,617
Originally Posted by Fredd View Post
What I haven't seen mentioned here is the failure of two separate lawsuits against UA brought by "lifetime" members of Silver Wings.

I was one of two named plaintiffs in the first of the suits. We lost because we could not come up with any paperwork documenting the T&Cs of our original signup. The onus was on us rather than UA. Ironically, I finally found my old Silver Wings membership card just a few months ago, but even that didn't include T&Cs so I doubt it would have made a difference in the outcome.

In a subsequent suit, summary judgment was granted against the plaintiff. My last post on the topic is here.

Gary Leff wrote about the second suit here. He also went back to the Million-Mile-Flyer suit to quote two judges' colloquy with a UA lawyer:

I have no idea if those judgments have any relevance to the lifetime club memberships but bring this up FWIW. I do wish the affected lifetime members well. I can empathize.
Yeah, UA is very emboldened not losing any of the "lifetime" suits - and they'll simply argue in this case the members still have lifetime status, but access rules are changing - and they'll claim T's and C's allow them to do that. I think the CO paid memberships will need to show T's and C's that grant unlimited access for any reason and CO not having a right to make modifications to the agreement. Then again, November is still a long way away.

I think the bigger shoe that may drop in the future, and I think a decent possibility, is the 2MM fliers who got lifetime UC like myself get it revoked.....
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Old Mar 9, 19, 8:13 pm
  #294  
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I bought a lifetime membership from CO. I don't recall getting any paperwork. It was an on-line purchase and I know I didn't print whatever T&C that were displayed n the web site.
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Old Mar 9, 19, 8:38 pm
  #295  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: CLE
Programs: UA GS+LT UC, AA LT PLT, Fairmont LT PLT, SPG PLT, Hilton Diamond, Hyatt Diamond, Avis CHM.
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Originally Posted by HNLbasedFlyer View Post
Yeah, UA is very emboldened not losing any of the "lifetime" suits - and they'll simply argue in this case the members still have lifetime status, but access rules are changing - and they'll claim T's and C's allow them to do that. I think the CO paid memberships will need to show T's and C's that grant unlimited access for any reason and CO not having a right to make modifications to the agreement. Then again, November is still a long way away.

I think the bigger shoe that may drop in the future, and I think a decent possibility, is the 2MM fliers who got lifetime UC like myself get it revoked.....
The reason they won those suits was because of shielding from the deregulation act. We'll need to consult with lawyers, but there's a decent chance that a paid club membership that did not require any flight may not enjoy that protection.

UA may want to settle quickly if we can pierce that, as they don't want to set a precedent that can wind up hurting them in other cases down the road.

Originally Posted by Xyzzy View Post
I bought a lifetime membership from CO. I don't recall getting any paperwork. It was an on-line purchase and I know I didn't print whatever T&C that were displayed n the web site.
Same as my recollection. I have an email receipt for the purchase from 9/19/07, but that's it. Does anyone recall getting terms for their purchase?

Last edited by WineCountryUA; Mar 9, 19 at 11:12 pm Reason: merging consecutive posts by same member
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Old Mar 9, 19, 9:06 pm
  #296  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Cleveland, OH, USA
Programs: HHonors Diamond; United 1K (domestic). Hertz Presidents Circle
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Originally Posted by ctownflyer View Post
The reason they won those suits was because of shielding from the deregulation act. We'll need to consult with lawyers, but there's a decent chance that a paid club membership that did not require any flight may not enjoy that protection.

UA may want to settle quickly if we can pierce that, as they don't want to set a precedent that can wind up hurting them in other cases down the road.
I'm not a lawyer, but given previous holdings on the ADA and the broad preemption language "...may not enact or enforce a law, regulation, or other provision having the force and effect of law related to a [...] service of an air carrier that may provide air transportation under this subpart." (49 USC 41713(b)(1) and (b)(4)(A))

I think it's pretty tough, especially in light of previous holdings on the ADA to argue that the Clubs aren't a "service" of an air carrier -- its not inconceivable that the "service" at play here can be distinguished from the "service" in, e.g., American v. Wollens -- but it doesn't seem like it's that easy of a distinction to make -- both the FQTV program and Club are clearly ancillary services that aren't intrinsic to the basic air transportation. A further nail, from my perspective, is that Wollens cites Morales v. TWA as "...defin[ing] the 'relating to' language in the ADA preemption clause as 'having a connection with or reference to airline `rates, routes, or services'."

Clearly the primary purpose of the clubs is to attract/retain and make comfortable certain customers of the airline service and I think that would pull it in to the "relating to..." preemption language in that it has a connection with and reference to the airline services. (The fact that UA has been requiring a BP on any airline for the past couple years would seem to strengthen that relationship, IMO)

Not that I agree with the "lifetime isn't lifetime" posture (and I really don't like the move for the couple times a year I can't fly UA for whatever reason) but I don't think getting around the ADA is likely to be a successful endeavor.
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Old Mar 9, 19, 9:34 pm
  #297  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
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Originally Posted by lincolnjkc View Post
I'm not a lawyer, but given previous holdings on the ADA and the broad preemption language "...may not enact or enforce a law, regulation, or other provision having the force and effect of law related to a [...] service of an air carrier that may provide air transportation under this subpart." (49 USC 41713(b)(1) and (b)(4)(A))

I think it's pretty tough, especially in light of previous holdings on the ADA to argue that the Clubs aren't a "service" of an air carrier -- its not inconceivable that the "service" at play here can be distinguished from the "service" in, e.g., American v. Wollens -- but it doesn't seem like it's that easy of a distinction to make -- both the FQTV program and Club are clearly ancillary services that aren't intrinsic to the basic air transportation. A further nail, from my perspective, is that Wollens cites Morales v. TWA as "...defin[ing] the 'relating to' language in the ADA preemption clause as 'having a connection with or reference to airline `rates, routes, or services'."

Clearly the primary purpose of the clubs is to attract/retain and make comfortable certain customers of the airline service and I think that would pull it in to the "relating to..." preemption language in that it has a connection with and reference to the airline services. (The fact that UA has been requiring a BP on any airline for the past couple years would seem to strengthen that relationship, IMO)

Not that I agree with the "lifetime isn't lifetime" posture (and I really don't like the move for the couple times a year I can't fly UA for whatever reason) but I don't think getting around the ADA is likely to be a successful endeavor.
Except that when we bought CO Lifetime memberships there was zero requirement for any boarding pass and if you were not flying, CO would issue a gate pass so that you could use the lounge at any time.

A frequent flyer program involves miles earned from travel. A Club that is accessible regardless of if you are flying is very different.

GG Check Point line 53 even lived on post merger for several years, making it clear that club members did not have to be flying:


Last edited by ctownflyer; Mar 9, 19 at 9:40 pm
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Old Mar 9, 19, 9:59 pm
  #298  
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Further to the point of the preceding pst, the stated reason for discontinuing gate passes for members who were not traveling was that the TSA was clamping down, not that UA had any problem in issuing them. In fact, one of the reasons I ended up buying my membership was to get gate passes to go airside and visit a club when I wished to do so.
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Old Mar 9, 19, 10:11 pm
  #299  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
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Originally Posted by ctownflyer View Post
Except that when we bought CO Lifetime memberships there was zero requirement for any boarding pass and if you were not flying, CO would issue a gate pass so that you could use the lounge at any time.

A frequent flyer program involves miles earned from travel. A Club that is accessible regardless of if you are flying is very different.

GG Check Point line 53 even lived on post merger for several years, making it clear that club members did not have to be flying:

Actually, this just gets you a gate pass to get through security. But ability to get gate pass reflects the membership. And as we all know, UA has a hard time synching all their rules.
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Old Mar 9, 19, 10:17 pm
  #300  
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Originally Posted by IAH-OIL-TRASH View Post
Actually, this just gets you a gate pass to get through security. But ability to get gate pass reflects the membership. And as we all know, UA has a hard time synching all their rules.
In order to get the gate pass one had to show a club membership card. Often agents would call the club to verify access to the club. The two were absolutely cnnected.
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