View Poll Results: No longer transfer Chase UR→UA @ 1:1 ratio (or at all)? What to do? What to do?
[NO] UA Card, [NO] Ultimate Rewards Card → [NO CHANGE] I still don't want any UA/UR Chase product
7.73%
[✓] UA Card, [NO] Ultimate Rewards Card → [NO CHANGE] I keep my UA card and [DO NOT] carry UR card.
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[NO] UA Card, [✓] Ultimate Rewards Card → I [ADD] a UA card and I [CLOSE] my UR card.
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1.03%
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2.58%
[✓] UA Card, [✓] Ultimate Rewards Card → I [CLOSE] my UA card(s) and [KEEP] my UR card(s).
23.71%
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United pushes JPM on Sapphire Reserve

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Old Jun 27, 19, 8:56 am
  #1  
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United pushes JPM on Sapphire Reserve

Today's Wall Street Journal has the article (pay wall - https://www.wsj.com/articles/sapphir...d=hp_lead_pos6 )

TLDR: "United executives have told JPMorgan they believe the Sapphire Reserve card is competing directly with the airline’s cards and siphoning off customer spending, according to people familiar with the matter."
6 more years on the current deal and more than half of the company's cash earnings over the next 5 years will come from the card (why UAL is worried about the attrition).

My take is if they hadn't devalued their own card benefits (boarding, people can buy the same benefits ala carte), United wouldn't have this issue.
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:09 am
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Interesting. Shows you why Citi has had so much reported trouble adding AA to their Thank You Rewards program.

Unless you value the benefits (free bag, priority boarding), there's no reason to have the UA card over the Reserve or Sapphire. And if you're elite, there's no reason to value those benefits.

What shouldn't be overlooked is that Chase is still buying the points when people transfer to United. Be curious if they pay a higher rate for transfer vs. miles earned on the UA card.

And an interesting tidbit I didn't realize: "United also gets a cut of the swipe fees merchants pay when customers use the [United-branded] cards."
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:09 am
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Originally Posted by QS Dreamer View Post

My take is if they hadn't devalued their own card benefits (boarding, people can buy the same benefits ala carte), United wouldn't have this issue.
Yup. The United cards offer poor value after all the devaluations, with possible exception of UC membership (which UA is also devaluing with cuts to the product).

UA management needs to look in the mirror. Consumers are more savvy than they think.
Originally Posted by danpeake View Post
What shouldn't be overlooked is that Chase is still buying the points when people transfer to United. Be curious if they pay a higher rate for transfer vs. miles earned on the UA card.
Transfer to UA increasingly makes no sense. The same awards are available for less through other programs, particularly AV, NH, and AP.
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:14 am
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In my view, there are already too many CC holders getting undue benefits (Group 2 boarding, club passed, etc.), and culling the herd would only help. That being said, it is true that I never use my United Presidential Plus card for travel - I earn more points on the Sapphire Reserve. It does get all of my non-food/travel spend, but I can see how the Explorer cars would not be used for much of anything (unless you really need that spend waiver).
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:14 am
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Transfer to UA increasingly makes no sense. The same awards are available for less through other programs, particularly AV, NH, and AP.
Of course, what UA could do is entice people to redeem miles to MP by making their program more competitive. God forbid they'd look at it that way!
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:14 am
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While the deal lasts for another six years, according to people familiar with the matter, United President Scott Kirby has said publicly that the airline has had tough conversations about the JPMorgan partnership and wants to get more money out of it.
I have to wonder if Kirby can look at anything without seeing dollar signs.
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:19 am
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Maybe United should focus on being an airline. If Chase is the primary focus, let them rename the airline. "Thank you for flying JPM Chase today. We value the credit card you have used, so much so we have decided to block anything but ours."
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:24 am
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Transfer to UA increasingly makes no sense. The same awards are available for less through other programs, particularly AV, NH, and AP.
AV is a Citi ThankYou partner. AeroPlan and ANA are AMEX partners. None are Ultimate Rewards partners. So, you're asking people to change issuers as well. Moving from Chase to Citi might be sensible for some people. AMEX, on the other hand, is a completely different type of product.

I suspect that I may end up using the Chase travel portal more frequently than transferring to UA, as I suspect 1.5 cents per point on a PQD-earning fare is likely to be more attractive than a UA dynamic award, unless I need a top-off.
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:32 am
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
Moving from Chase to Citi might be sensible for some people. AMEX, on the other hand, is a completely different type of product.

I suspect that I may end up using the Chase travel portal more frequently than transferring to UA, as I suspect 1.5 cents per point on a PQD-earning fare is likely to be more attractive than a UA dynamic award, unless I need a top-off.
How so, to your Amex comment? I do agree with you on your 2nd point though.
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:34 am
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
I have to wonder if Kirby can look at anything without seeing dollar signs.
That's kind of his job. Unless you know of a way to barter customer good will for jet fuel.
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:41 am
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I think what has really done this is that we're at a high-water mark for rewards rates on cards, especially premium cards. The pathetic 1-2x UA miles on purchases hasn't changed in a very long time, whereas there has been a constant escalation of per-spend benefits on the 450 card portfolio (Citi and Amex now at 5x in their currencies in major categories). The airline cards haven't kept up, probably because it's unprofitable, and I do think this is just one more domino falling in an eventual rollback of some of the best card benefits.

Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
I suspect that I may end up using the Chase travel portal more frequently than transferring to UA, as I suspect 1.5 cents per point on a PQD-earning fare is likely to be more attractive than a UA dynamic award, unless I need a top-off.
I love the Chase portal at 1.5 cpp because you don't need to hoard large piles of points on the off-chance your travel patterns and availability will align for a redemption before the next devaluation hits. You can redeem part of a ticket, and it continues to earn qualifying miles for that travel too

Very miffed about Citi killing even 1.25 for TYP and that along with effectively ending 4NF means my Prestige is getting canceled next year.

Originally Posted by krazykanuck View Post
How so, to your Amex comment? I do agree with you on your 2nd point though.
Amex has always offered a much less lucrative benefit portfolio (at least to the average consumer not doing FT levels of games on the benefits) and focused on offering more intangible services for a fee rather than fungible benefits like the direct travel credits on Citi/Chase. See the airline fee waiver, which was always intended to ease the cost of ancillary fees (because apparently Amex's best customers still fly Y ) and not as the airfare credit it's been manipulated into on FT. Their original business model was earning by people paying money up-front simply for the convenience and prestige of carrying an Amex, and they have given ground on that only grudgingly over the last 40 years.
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:44 am
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This explains a lot of the questions in the MileagePlus survey I took this morning, there was a lot about which program/status benefits I valued and their interaction with credit card benefits. While it would be nice if they redoubled their efforts to increase the value of their miles and benefits based off my feedback that I've switched to AS as my primary airline and the CSR as my primary card I won't be holding my breath....
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:48 am
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Originally Posted by krazykanuck View Post
How so, to your Amex comment?
Unless I've missed something, AMEX doesn't offer a Visa or a Mastercard (which are, for the most part, interchangeable). So, you can't necessarily use them everywhere. Also, most AMEX cards are charge cards, not credit cards. That's not necessarily a bad thing -- credit card interest isn't usually a great deal -- but it's still a separate product.
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Old Jun 27, 19, 9:51 am
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Originally Posted by findark View Post
Amex has always offered a much less lucrative benefit portfolio (at least to the average consumer not doing FT levels of games on the benefits) and focused on offering more intangible services for a fee rather than fungible benefits like the direct travel credits on Citi/Chase.
I can't agree with this. AMEX cards (particularly Plat and Hilton Aspire) offer a wide range of extremely lucrative benefits.
Originally Posted by findark View Post
See the airline fee waiver, which was always intended to ease the cost of ancillary fees (because apparently Amex's best customers still fly Y ) and not as the airfare credit it's been manipulated into on FT.
??? You don't have to fly Y to incur change fees, purchase wifi, or buy award tickets. I get fee waivers from three separate AMEX cards, fly almost exclusively premium cabin, and manage to burn all three waivers on UA every year without playing any games at all (unless you consider purchasing a wifi subscription a "game").
Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
Also, most AMEX cards are charge cards, not credit cards. That's not necessarily a bad thing -- credit card interest isn't usually a great deal -- but it's still a separate product.
That's no longer true. I have three AMEX credit cards - SPG, DL, Hilton.
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Old Jun 27, 19, 10:01 am
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United and Chase have only themselves to blame. I applied for the much-vaunted Explorer Card, and my application was declined. I even phoned Chase to find out why and got a non-answer. I then immediately applied for a Chase Sapphire Card — exact same application details as before — and was approved. Go figure.

All of this because Hilton decided to change from Citi Visa to Amex, and I needed a Visa card to use in Europe with no foreign currency transaction charges, because Amex is much less accepted in Europe outside big cities than people would have you beieve. My legacy United Chase Visa card does not have that facility.)
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