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Changes To UA MileagePlus Coming On NOV 15, 2019 (Dynamic UA Awards - No More Chart)

Changes To UA MileagePlus Coming On NOV 15, 2019 (Dynamic UA Awards - No More Chart)

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Old May 12, 19, 7:59 am   -   Wikipost
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Award travel updates

Introducing a broader range of award prices

Updates to award travel are on the horizon. For flights on or after November 15, 2019, we’ll no longer publish an award chart listing the set amount of miles needed for each flight.

The details:
  • Some award prices will be lower than what’s currently published in our chart. You may have already seen these prices, and you’ll be able to get them immediately.
  • Other award prices may be higher than what you see today, especially if you’re traveling at a popular time. These prices will take effect immediately for travel November 15 or after.
  • Starting November 15, we’re removing close-in fees, so you won’t be charged the extra fee of up to $75 for booking last-minute award travel.
  • A flexible award travel calendar is available on united.com or in our app.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is changing?

    For travel on or after November 15, we will no longer publish an award chart listing the set amount of miles needed for award flights. Award pricing will now fluctuate based on a variety of factors, including demand. Additionally, starting November 15, we will no longer charge a fee of up to $75 for award flights booked within 21 days of departure.
  • When will these updates take effect?

    The award pricing changes apply immediately to flights on or after November 15, 2019. Until then, award prices will be the same as or lower than what’s currently published in our award chart.
  • How many miles will I need for award travel after November 15?

    Award prices will now fluctuate based on a variety of factors. Some air awards will be available for less than what’s listed in our chart, which you may have already noticed. After November 15, award prices may also be higher, especially if you’re traveling at popular times. Use our flexible award calendar to get a monthly view of the award prices for a specific destination.
  • Why are you making these changes?

    Increasing award prices for the most in-demand flights allows us to offer better returns for our shareholders. If your award travel is flexible, these updates will help you make the most of your miles.
  • How will these updates affect award travel availability?

    United MileagePlus members with Premier® status and qualifying United Chase Cardmembers can continue to book award travel without blackout dates. For other members, most award flights that are available today will continue to be available after these updates take effect.
  • Do the lowest-priced awards have any extra flight restrictions?

    No. Our lowest priced awards do not have any added restrictions; the fare rules for all award travel apply.
  • How can I find the lowest priced award for my travel?

    The award calendar on united.com or in our app will continue to show the lowest available price for your destination.
  • Will I earn miles on my flight if I book an award?

    No. As with current award bookings, award travel in the future will not be eligible to earn miles with MileagePlus or any other loyalty program.
  • What if I need to change my existing award?

    If you need to change your award ticket, you will be issued a new ticket for which new pricing and additional fees may apply.
  • What if I purchase a close-in award before November 15

    The close-in booking fee will still apply to all tickets booked within 21 days of departure prior to November 15, 2019. We will not refund fees paid prior to November 15, even if travel occurs on or after November 15.
https://www.united.com/ual/en/us/fly...l-updates.html
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:06 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Feb 2007
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Changes To UA MileagePlus Coming On NOV 15, 2019 (Dynamic UA Awards - No More Chart)

Big changes to MileagePlus coming on 11/15/2019:
  • Starting today, award charts will no longer be published for travel on or after November 15, 2019
  • There will no longer be a minimum or maximum mileage price for United flights
  • Mileage pricing will not be tied to a specific dollar amount
  • Partner award pricing will remain unchanged for now, but there will be no separate award chart for partner flights
  • Close-in award fees will not be charged on or after November 15, 2019
  • United flights will credit nearly instantly
More details on my blog. (disclaimer)

I spoke to Luc Bondar for 35 minutes concerning these changes. I'll have more on this later (and we'll see what United puts out), but wanted to get the news out right away.
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:10 am
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Join Date: Oct 2001
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Originally Posted by MatthewLAX View Post
I'll have more on this later (and we'll see what United puts out), but wanted to get the news out right away.
Least surprising news ever, between the missing chart for P+ and the introduction of the 5K saver awards.

Thanks for passing the word along.
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:16 am
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: New York, NY
Programs: UA, AA, DL, Hertz, Avis, National, Hyatt, Hilton, SPG, Marriott
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Overall... this cannot possibly be a good thing.
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:19 am
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: DCA
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interesting, economy to Australia in Nov only 40k each way on some flights.....some intl business is 70k. Maybe offseason this is a GOOD thing...
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:23 am
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Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: NYC (Primarily EWR)
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Gross. Way to copy something DL does that truly sucks...
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:23 am
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Originally Posted by dcsnowwake View Post
Maybe offseason this is a GOOD thing...
Not really, unless you're so point-rich that you never bother comparing the cash cost to the point cost. They'll decrease the award costs at times when cash fares would also be low. Previously, you might have chosen to pay cash for those tickets and save your miles for a more valuable use. Now, they're going to gut those more valuable uses.
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:27 am
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Join Date: Oct 2006
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
Not really, unless you're so point-rich that you never bother comparing the cash cost to the point cost. They'll decrease the award costs at times when cash fares would also be low. Previously, you might have chosen to pay cash for those tickets and save your miles for a more valuable use. Now, they're going to gut those more valuable uses.
Didn't think about that....DOH
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:32 am
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Chicago - NYC - Naples
Programs: UA 1K, Hyatt Explorist, Hilton Diamond, Marriott Plat, Amex Plat
Posts: 267
Among multiple other reasons this is really going to hit home as I've been saved many times when a last minute emergency comes up and I can grab a "reasonably" priced award flight within 24 hours vs paying an exorbitant walk-up $ fare.
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:34 am
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Join Date: Oct 2001
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Originally Posted by MatthewLAX View Post
  • Close-in award fees will not be charged on or after November 15, 2019
  • United flights will credit nearly instantly
I guess the close-in award fee elimination is a nice change -- except you'll basically just be paying the close-in fee in extra miles, most likely.

Also, this devalues the United Club credit card, since that also waived the (non-existent after 11/15) fees.
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:39 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Programs: Mileage Plus 1K; Marriott Platinum; Hilton Gold
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How will this change affect the additional inventory available to elite members of Mileage Plus? How would that inventory price out in miles?
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:39 am
  #11  
Moderator: United MileagePlus
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Clinging to the edifices of a decadent past. (IAH, DEN, YKF)
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A few years ago I shifted my spend away from co-branded credit cards (e.g. Chase's UA Club Visa) to bank point ones (e.g. Sapphire Reserve, AX Plat) to escape being held hostage to a specific loyalty program and whatever changes they decide to make.

Points earned in UR / MR / etc. remain flexible and carry a par value of sorts. Plus with cheap F fares being what they are, using points to have the bank just buy you the flights you want often cost about the same in terms of points as redeeming an award.

Anyways the takeaway for me is to drop the co-branded financial products in favor of those that earn a point that can be transferred to multiple partners or cashed out.
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Last edited by J.Edward; Apr 5, 19 at 11:45 am
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:40 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
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Originally Posted by msg75 View Post
Among multiple other reasons this is really going to hit home as I've been saved many times when a last minute emergency comes up and I can grab a "reasonably" priced award flight within 24 hours vs paying an exorbitant walk-up $ fare.
Which is precisely something they would rather do away with.

The name of the game is removing the “outsized” benefits associated with mileage redemption.
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:40 am
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Virginia, USA
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I can't get too excited about this as I see both advantages and disadvantages for my specific situation. But it will be a major disadvantage for travelers locked into specific popular dates and seasons as well as award booking services looking for the best deals for their clients.
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:41 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
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The only way this could be of any good is if it frees up availabilty to use instruments. I doubt that will happen. Seems like a massive devaluation of UA miles. Guess Kirby can't be happy until we're all unhappy.
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Old Apr 5, 19, 11:43 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
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So as a GS I get a saver award in the ticketed cabin I’m in...wonder how that will work going forward?

this is going to suck. Soft product going down the tubes, cutting FAs, meh
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