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Have a Simple Question About United Airlines/MileagePlus? Ask Here [2019]

Have a Simple Question About United Airlines/MileagePlus? Ask Here [2019]

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Old Jan 6, 19, 4:25 am   -   Wikipost
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Welcome to this thread to ask your basic, simple questions about United Airlines, its operations, or the MileagePlus program. We know that the airline is complex and weíve created this thread for new and veteran members to ask those basic questions about United Airlines that you think must have an easy answer but just canít find it or arenít sure where to look.

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Ocn Vw 1K, l'etoile, J.Edward, goalie, Pat89339, WineCountryUA

These are the two rules for this thread:
  1. Use this thread for a simple, basic question. Moderators may move posts to a new / existing thread if appropriate.
  2. Any member who can post a constructive, patient answer is welcome to reply.

Generally, there are not long discussions of an issue in this thread. If it appears that is needed, the posts will be moved to an existing thread or used as the start of a new separate thread.

Additional tools for members seeking information about MileagePlus:

United MileagePlus Master Wiki

"New" United Airlines Forum Glossary

Here is a link to recent previous threads:
Have a Simple Question About United Airlines/MileagePlus? Ask Here [2018]

Have a Simple Question About United Airlines/MileagePlus? Ask Here [2017]

Have a Simple Question About United Airlines/MileagePlus? Ask Here [2016 Part II]

Have a Simple Question About United Airlines/MileagePlus? Ask Here [2016 Part I]

Have a Simple Question About United Airlines/MileagePlus? Ask Here [2015 -Part II]...

Have a Simple Question About United Airlines/MileagePlus? Ask Here [2015 Thread]...
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Old Mar 23, 19, 6:52 am
  #316  
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 84
Interesting. Well, a few hours ago there were only two seats left in First, and all of a sudden there are five. Same upgrade price. I'll keep my eye on things and see what happens. Thanks.
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Old Mar 23, 19, 7:04 am
  #317  
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Austin, TX
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Originally Posted by Flyz View Post
Interesting. Well, a few hours ago there were only two seats left in First, and all of a sudden there are five. Same upgrade price. I'll keep my eye on things and see what happens. Thanks.
Understand that the price may go up as well as down.

Upgrade prices appear to be based roughly on inventory, which you can see if you activate Expert Mode and search for the flight in question. (There's a thread on Expert Mode on the board). United's domestic first fare classes are, in order from most to least expensive, J JN C D Z ZN P PN PZ IN I. The further down the list that you see the last non-zero value, the lower the upgrade offer is likely to be. (There are no guarantees). So, if you see J5 JN5 C5 D4 Z2 ZN2 P1 PN1 PZ1 IN1 I1, your upgrade offer probably won't get any lower. If it's J5 JN5 C5 D4 Z2 ZN0 P0 PN0 PZ0 IN0 I0, it might.
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Old Mar 23, 19, 8:35 am
  #318  
Moderator: Budget Travel forum & Credit Card Programs, FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: YYJ/YVR/SEA
Programs: UA lifetime MM / *A Gold
Posts: 13,274
Originally Posted by jsloan View Post

Understand that the price may go up as well as down.

.....
This

If you really want to fly up front, there is only one way to guarantee it - families have been known to snap up FC space. Yes, not common, but .....
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Old Mar 23, 19, 10:00 am
  #319  
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: UA 1K 1MM; AS MVPG75K; Marriott Titanium; Hilton Diamond (Aspire); Hyatt Refugeeist
Posts: 41,440
Originally Posted by Flyz View Post
I'm not asking so much whether that's a good price — more whether, if seats are still available the morning of the flight (flight leaves at 6:30 am), the price will go down in the last few hours before takeoff. Or are people automatically upgraded that morning, so no seats will be left when I arrive at the airport?
You would get more meaningful answers if you shared the flight details. Because then we could tell where it falls in the range for that route.

In any event, you are not going to see a fire sale prior to departure. Odds are that (1) price will increase closer to departure, and (2) UA will CPU the cabin down to 2, 1, or zero F seats somewhere within T-96 hours.
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Old Mar 23, 19, 11:10 am
  #320  
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Programs: BA Bronze, United 1K, HH Gold, SPG Platinum, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 3,468
Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
You would get more meaningful answers if you shared the flight details. Because then we could tell where it falls in the range for that route.
FTers who only infrequently come to post don't realize that the more information you provide, the more meaningful the answer. I did try to get that information in my first answer.
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Old Mar 23, 19, 5:25 pm
  #321  
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 84
Really, I have reasons for not specifying the route, which would be a distinctive one, having to do with keeping a certain person from identifying me online and learning my movements. It's not just my general cluelessness. Probably said too much there, even. What I was most hoping to learn was whether there are patterns to how this works, and I understand more now. Thank you all.
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Old Mar 24, 19, 8:09 pm
  #322  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: New York City
Programs: UA Gold, *AG, Hilton Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 72
Goal: 3.1K PQM needed
Option 1. F EWR-ORD for ~2.8K PQM and not hit needed PQM
Option 2: Y for ~1.4K and buy 2.5K Miles Premier/Award Accelerator to hit needed PQM

Basically, is buying the accelerators for an additional $263 ($63 for miles, $200 for PQM) worth it?

Accelerators = $263
Y = $412 (~1.4K PQM - T fare)
F = $602 (~2K PQM - P fare) or $802 (~2.8K PQM - C fare)

My guts tells me option 1 since I actually hit my goal, but my wallet tells me buying miles/pqm isn't worth it in this case...
What do you think?
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Old Mar 24, 19, 8:43 pm
  #323  
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
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Originally Posted by risenmyth View Post
Goal: 3.1K PQM needed
Option 1. F EWR-ORD for ~2.8K PQM and not hit needed PQM
Option 2: Y for ~1.4K and buy 2.5K Miles Premier/Award Accelerator to hit needed PQM

Basically, is buying the accelerators for an additional $263 ($63 for miles, $200 for PQM) worth it?

Accelerators = $263
Y = $412 (~1.4K PQM - T fare)
F = $602 (~2K PQM - P fare) or $802 (~2.8K PQM - C fare)

My guts tells me option 1 since I actually hit my goal, but my wallet tells me buying miles/pqm isn't worth it in this case...
What do you think?
Why are you buying PQMs at this point of the year?
Do you not have further plans to fly this year?
What difference will buying the PQMs now make?
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Old Mar 24, 19, 9:04 pm
  #324  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: New York City
Programs: UA Gold, *AG, Hilton Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 72
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
Why are you buying PQMs at this point of the year?
Do you not have further plans to fly this year?
What difference will buying the PQMs now make?
It's a roadmap to hit Gold by the beginning of September. No further trips after September are on my schedule at this moment.
The PQM's would just get me over the threshold for 50K PQM for Gold.
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Old Mar 24, 19, 9:10 pm
  #325  
Moderator: United Airlines; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Originally Posted by risenmyth View Post
It's a roadmap to hit Gold by the beginning of September. No further trips after September are on my schedule at this moment.
The PQM's would just get me over the threshold for 50K PQM for Gold.
Personally, if there is any chance of additional flights, I would put off buying PQMs as long as possible. If the additional trip happened, the early purchase would be wasted money. If nothing pops up, the price should not be materially different until December or late November.

The other option would be to SDC to add extra miles to present trips and/or look for cheap opportunities to upfare (where you also get the upgraded travel experience for the money). Might as well get the most for the $$$ and give UA as few $$$ without extra benefits as possible.
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Old Mar 24, 19, 9:26 pm
  #326  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: New York City
Programs: UA Gold, *AG, Hilton Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 72
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
Personally, if there is any chance of additional flights, I would put off buying PQMs as long as possible. If the additional trip happened, the early purchase would be wasted money. If nothing pops up, the price should not be materially different until December or late November.

The other option would be to SDC to add extra miles to present trips and/or look for cheap opportunities to upfare (where you also get the upgraded travel experience for the money). Might as well get the most for the $$$ and give UA as few $$$ without extra benefits as possible.
Thank you for the advice! I'll abstain from buying any miles at this time - I'll go ahead and book a flight that would fit my current situation best then.
How does doing an upfare work, exactly? I currently have three F flights booked (March, June, July).
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Old Mar 24, 19, 9:29 pm
  #327  
Moderator: United Airlines; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Originally Posted by risenmyth View Post
.... How does doing an upfare work, exactly? I currently have three F flights booked (March, June, July).
Upfaring or cash upgrades are for going from economy to premium cabin (for a better seat and PQM bonus). If you are in First, that option is off the table -- but SDCing a segment to 2 segments to pick up extra PQMs is still an option. Get a little here and a little there.
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Old Mar 24, 19, 9:40 pm
  #328  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: New York City
Programs: UA Gold, *AG, Hilton Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 72
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
Upfaring or cash upgrades are for going from economy to premium cabin (for a better seat and PQM bonus). If you are in First, that option is off the table -- but SDCing a segment to 2 segments to pick up extra PQMs is still an option. Get a little here and a little there.
Sorry, not 100% on the lingo.
When you say SDC, that is SDC as in ticket purchase date or date of flight? Assuming there's a fee for those who aren't status holders...
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Old Mar 24, 19, 9:45 pm
  #329  
Moderator: United Airlines; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Posts: 47,641
Originally Posted by risenmyth View Post
....
When you say SDC, that is SDC as in ticket purchase date or date of flight? Assuming there's a fee for those who aren't status holders...
SDC=Same Day Change
Free for Gold & higher and also free at a connecting airport (flying AAA-BBB-CCC, free at BBB)
$75 for others
A method for changing flights -- as long as origin and destination of the trip remain unchanged -- allows for routing changes.
UA Same-Day Travel Change (SDC) Fees/Questions (with Wiki)
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Old Mar 24, 19, 10:44 pm
  #330  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Las Vegas
Programs: United Platinum, IHG Spire Ambassador, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 231
Applied a single REGIONAL premier upgrade to a flight home from HKG. You might think it's awful, but the timings of the flights (and the PQMs) work out well for me.

I'm a little confused how the upgrade was applied to my flights though. (I'm premier platinum if that matters, but I don't think it does.)

My flights are:
UA 116 HKG-GUM
UA 200 GUM-HNL
UA 534 HNL-LAX

I thought it would be applied to the HNL-LAX portion (none available, waitlisted, but I don't fly much domestically so I thought I'd use the upgrade on the waitlist.)

Instead I see:
HKG-GUM "Upgrade Requested" ("Your upgrade to United Business has been requested using a Regional Premier Upgrade.")
GUM-HNL "Upgrade Confirmed" ("Your upgrade to United Business has been confirmed.")
HNL-LAX shows regular economy, followed by...
HNL-LAX "Waitlisted" ("You will be automatically confirmed on this flight if space in your requested class United First (PZ) becomes available.")

I...really don't think I'm supposed to be able to upgrade all 3 segments on this trip with ONE regional upgrade.

Am I?
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