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Change Fees "Gone For Good"(WW ex-USA,non-BE), credit for lower fare!, Intl&BE waiver

View Poll Results: What do you think of the recent UA changes in Changes fees?
Good idea: No Domestic Change fee w/ no rebooking residual AND No Standby fee/Free SDC all elites
148
64.35%
Good idea: No Domestic Change fee w/ no rebooking residual but NOT No Standby fee/Free SDC all elite
25
10.87%
Good idea: No Standby fee/Free SDC all elite but NOT No Domestic Change fee w/ no rebooking residual
18
7.83%
Neutral /don’t care about either
30
13.04%
Don’t like / think either is a good idea
9
3.91%
Voters: 230. You may not vote on this poll

Change Fees "Gone For Good"(WW ex-USA,non-BE), credit for lower fare!, Intl&BE waiver

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Old Jul 25, 22, 5:43 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: DELee
Wiki Link
Latest Update: 23 December 2021:

"Change fees are gone" (change fee waiver): https://www.united.com/ual/en/us/fly...ngefeesaregone
We've permanently gotten rid of change fees for most Economy and premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S., or between the U.S. and Mexico or the Caribbean. There also won't be change fees for other international travel originating in the U.S. Learn more

For all other standard Economy and premium cabin tickets, change fees are waived through January 31, 2022. Basic Economy tickets can only be changed if they’re issued by December 31, 2021, for travel commencing by December 31, 2021. See terms and conditions
(change fee waiver) Terms and Conditions: https://www.united.com/ual/en/us/fly...ChangeFeeTerms

Tickets: Applies to standard fare tickets issued between March 3, 2020, and January 31, 2022, and Basic Economy fare tickets issued between March 3, 2020, and April 30, 2021, or Basic Economy tickets issued between May 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021 for travel commencing between August 11 and December 31, 2021.

Changes/Cancellations: Customers with Basic Economy fare tickets issued between March 3, 2020, and April 30, 2021, or between May 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021 for travel commencing between August 11 and December 31, 2021, or standard fare tickets issued between March 3, 2020, and January 31, 2022, will be permitted to change without paying a change fee. If the new flight is priced higher, the customer may change for no change fee but must pay the fare difference. If the new flight is priced lower, the customer may change without paying a change fee, and standard fare tickets may be given residual value in the form of a future flight credit. If you purchased your ticket from a third-party agency, please check with the issuing agency for the rules of your ticket. Contract fares such as special bulk fares sold by travel agencies (e.g., opaque) may not be eligible for free changes. Any changes or cancellations must occur prior to ticketed travel date.

Please note: As of August 30, 2020, we no longer have change fees for most Economy and premium cabin tickets for flights within the U.S., or between the U.S. and Mexico or the Caribbean. We also no longer have change fees for international travel originating in the U.S. For more information visit united.com/changefee.

Fare validity: This applies to all standard fare tickets issued through January 31, 2022, all destinations, all points-of-sale, all travel dates available for sale, provided ticket number starts with 016. It also applies to Basic Economy fare tickets issued through April 30, 2021 or Basic Economy tickets issued between May 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021 for travel commencing between August 11 and December 31, 2021, all destinations, all points of sale, provided the ticket number starts with 016.

Miscellaneous: Fares, fees, rules and offers are subject to change without notice. Seats are capacity-controlled and may not be available on all flights or days. Some fares are nonrefundable except during the first 24 hours after purchase. Other restrictions may apply.

New fine print (1 April 2021)
  • You can change Basic Economy tickets without change fees if the ticket is issued by April 30, 2021,
  • and all other international travel without change fees if the ticket is issued by May 31, 2021.
  • If the new flight is priced lower, the customer may change without paying a change fee, and may be given residual value in the form of a future flight credit.
Updated 30 Sept 2021
Tickets: Applies to standard fare tickets issued between March 3, 2020, and December 31, 2021, and Basic Economy fare tickets issued between March 3, 2020, and April 30, 2021, or Basic Economy tickets issued between May 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021 for travel commencing between August 11 and December 31, 2021.

Changes/Cancellations: Customers with Basic Economy fare tickets issued between March 3, 2020, and April 30, 2021, or between May 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021 for travel commencing between August 11 and December 31, 2021, or standard fare tickets issued between March 3, 2020, and December 31, 2021, will be permitted to change without paying a change fee. If the new flight is priced higher, the customer may change for no change fee but must pay the fare difference. If the new flight is priced lower, the customer may change without paying a change fee, and standard fare tickets may be given residual value in the form of a future flight credit. If you purchased your ticket from a third-party agency, please check with the issuing agency for the rules of your ticket. Contract fares such as special bulk fares sold by travel agencies (e.g., opaque) may not be eligible for free changes. Any changes or cancellations must occur prior to ticketed travel date.

Please note: As of August 30, 2020, we no longer have change fees for most Economy and premium cabin tickets for flights within the U.S., or between the U.S. and Mexico or the Caribbean. We also no longer have change fees for international travel originating in the U.S. For more information visit united.com/changefee.

Fare validity: This applies to all standard fare tickets issued through December 31, 2021, all destinations, all points-of-sale, all travel dates available for sale, provided ticket number starts with 016. It also applies to Basic Economy fare tickets issued through April 30, 2021 or Basic Economy tickets issued between May 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021 for travel commencing between August 11 and December 31, 2021, all destinations, all points of sale, provided the ticket number starts with 016.

Miscellaneous: Fares, fees, rules and offers are subject to change without notice. Seats are capacity-controlled and may not be available on all flights or days. Some fares are nonrefundable except during the first 24 hours after purchase. Other restrictions may apply.

Originally Posted by spartacusmcfly View Post
I just went through the process on a post-April 1st itinerary and was issued the new FFC vs ETCs. The agent tried to explain the new FFCs in detail:

The Bad:
1. No more ETC
2. No transferability
3. No combinability
4. Given there is no combinability, there is no more date-pushing (meaning new expiration date is most favorable of combined cert dates)

The Good:
5. Can use multiple towards a single itinerary (up to 10 she said)
6. Can pull from multiple accounts (3 from yours, 3 from spouse), so you don't have to split the locator to use from multiple accounts
7. Can be used on partner itineraries as long as one segment is UA
8. The FFCs show up in the account of the recipient and the booker. So I can see my spouse's FFCs if I booked the itenerary
9. FFCs now show up as a payment method in the app booking flow. For multi-passenger FFCs, both passengers show up!

I can live with all this, in exchange for no change fees, and reclaiming residual!
The fine-print on the change rules:
  1. If the new ticket costs less, the residual value from the old ticket is lost
  2. Multiple cancelled reservations cannot be combined to pay for a more expensive ticket
  3. Strictly U.S. and Mexico or the Caribbean only (excludes Canada) and excludes Basic Economy and International flights
    1. Worldwide until Dec 31, 2020
United Airlines Permanently Eliminates Change Fees
Applies to all Economy and Premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S.;
Airline also announces complimentary standby travel, becomes only U.S. airline that will let all customers in all classes of service fly same-day standby for free
With these new options, United gives more flexibility than any other U.S. carrier when customers' travel plans change
Video(1) Photos(1)

CHICAGO, Aug. 30, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The only thing constant is change and at United Airlines, some of the fees associated with changes related to flying are gone for good. The carrier announced today that it is permanently getting rid of change fees on all standard Economy and Premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S., effective immediately. And starting on January 1, 2021, any United customer can fly standby for free on a flight departing the day of their travel regardless of the type of ticket or class of service, a first among U.S. carriers, while MileagePlus Premier members can confirm a seat on a different flight on the same day with the same departure and arrival cities as their original ticket if a seat in the same ticket fare class is available.

United is also extending its waiver for new tickets issued through December 31, 2020, to permit unlimited changes with no fee. This policy applies to all ticket types issued after March 3, 2020 and is valid for domestic and international travel. With these improvements, no U.S. airline gives their customers more flexibility when booking – and changing – their travel plans than United Airlines.

"Change is inevitable these days – but it's how we respond to it that matters most. When we hear from customers about where we can improve, getting rid of this fee is often the top request," said Scott Kirby, CEO of United Airlines, in a video message to customers. "Following previous tough times, airlines made difficult decisions to survive, sometimes at the expense of customer service. United Airlines won't be following that same playbook as we come out of this crisis. Instead, we're taking a completely different approach – and looking at new ways to serve our customers better."

The new change fee policy applies to all standard Economy and Premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S. 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands and customers will not be limited in the number of times they adjust their flights.

Additionally, United is giving customers more flexibility to change their flights on the day of their travel so they can head home if a meeting ends earlier or enjoy a few more hours on vacation. With the ability to list for same-day standby for free, customers will now have an option to take a different flight with the same origin and destination airports as their original itinerary if space is available at departure. This enhanced option will be available to all customers for travel within the U.S. and to and from international destinations beginning on January 1, 2021. Customers who want to switch flights will be able to add themselves to the standby list through United's award-winning mobile app, on united.com or at the airport no later than 30 minutes prior to departure for domestic flights and one hour before departure on international flights.

The carrier is also improving the travel experience for its MileagePlus members including waiving all redeposit fees on award travel for flights changed or cancelled more than 30 days before departure and allowing all MileagePlus Premier members to confirm a different flight on the day of their travel. As a way to thank MileagePlus Premier members for their loyalty, beginning January 1, 2021, all Premier members will be able to confirm a seat for free on a different flight with the same departure and arrival cities as their original ticket. This expanded option will allow MileagePlus Silver members and above to confirm a new seat in the same ticket fare class if space is available. Earlier this year, United announced that it will extend status for MileagePlus Premier and Global Services members through January 2022. United also reduced thresholds for Premier qualification by 50 percent for each status level, to make reaching an even higher status tier easier.

For more information on United's new flexible travel policies, visit https://www.united.com/ual/en/us/fly...hange-fee.html.

......
Related Threads
AA Eliminates Many Change Fees, Other Benefits 31 Aug 2020
Delta to Eliminate Change Fees on Domestic Tickets [Consolidated Thread]
Alaska Eliminates Change Fees (9/1/2020)

UA will extend BE/International change fee waiver (In response to AA?)
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Old Apr 1, 21, 9:09 pm
  #391  
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I think there are two different new policies

One on lower fare residuals -- in the recent posted examples there has been no mention of a fee. (and none of the competitors have a fee)

and a second on refunds -- the refund one is puzzling as it appears to make all fares refundable, some with a fee.
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Old Apr 1, 21, 11:31 pm
  #392  
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Well, they've updated their No Change Fee page: https://www.united.com/ual/en/US/fly...hange-fee.html

It says you "may" get the residual back... and then in the terms and conditions at the bottom, it repeats the "may," and then merges it in with the current waiver (BE through 4/30, everything else through 5/31).

I'm sure that the intent is that this policy will apply to all "no change fee" tickets beyond those dates (e.g., US origin), but they really need to work on less confusing messaging.

The fare rules haven't been updated yet.
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Old Apr 2, 21, 6:39 pm
  #393  
 
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I just experienced it today. Booked SFO-GSP two days ago. Had to change return date and new fare was $30 lower. Was issued a new $30 ETC and agent was nice enough to consolidate that ETC with the larger ETC that sits in my account.

Wow!!! It was only $30 but it felt good!

I bet ending change fees and refunding residual increases UA's NPS by 30+ points. UA's NPS is currently at 10 while SW's NPS is at 62. Kirby doing good things!
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Old Apr 3, 21, 12:36 am
  #394  
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So, after taking a screenshot of the policy, just in case, I booked a couple of speculative non-refundable tickets today. (UA probably could have had my cash a year ago if they hadn't written the 'residual ignored' language). There's something new on the website; I get a new redemption option for UA-operated flights:

Future flight creditsIf you've been issued future flight credit, you should have received an email that includes a confirmation number that you can use to book a new trip. Learn more about travel credits

To use your unused flight credit, go to My Trips and find your original reservation to begin your new flight search.

If you received a future flight credit from changing your flight after April 1, 2021, you can apply the credit when booking a new trip on our mobile app. This option will be offered on united.com soon.
(Emphasis mine).

I don't see anything new on the app, though -- perhaps because I don't have one of these newfangled credits.

That said, I suspect we're in for waves of confusion if they're going to have two different products both called "Future Flight Credit." 🙄

Last edited by jsloan; Apr 3, 21 at 10:21 am Reason: typo
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Old Apr 3, 21, 4:14 am
  #395  
 
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
Give it a couple of days and I suspect that you'd be able to do this yourself for tickets you purchase through United. They're not going to set up a policy that makes it a better deal to use a travel agent than to buy from them directly.
Between this wording and the new consumer policy page on United.com, it sounds like the refund for a fee is for travel agents so that corporate customers can choose not to track all the canceled ticket credits by paying the fee. For example, my organization spends a good deal of time and effort tracking these and there is breakage on canceled tickets that don’t get reused. I wouldn’t be surprised if we get this as an option in my organization when we don’t have clear plans to rebook a trip.

It doesn’t sound like this will be offered to direct booking individual customers.
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Old Apr 3, 21, 10:21 am
  #396  
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Originally Posted by LAX UA 1K View Post
Between this wording and the new consumer policy page on United.com, it sounds like the refund for a fee is for travel agents so that corporate customers can choose not to track all the canceled ticket credits by paying the fee. For example, my organization spends a good deal of time and effort tracking these and there is breakage on canceled tickets that don’t get reused. I wouldn’t be surprised if we get this as an option in my organization when we don’t have clear plans to rebook a trip.

It doesn’t sound like this will be offered to direct booking individual customers.
If UA wanted to offer this only to certain clients, it could do so easily, behind the scenes. Putting it in Jetstream opens it up to anyone who wants to register as a travel agent.

It makes little sense to give such a valuable option only on agency-purchased tickets, given that UA and the other airlines have spent the better part of two decades trying to undercut travel agents and move to a direct sales model.

Anything's possible, to be sure, but I don't see the logic behind that from UA's perspective.
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Old Apr 3, 21, 1:57 pm
  #397  
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
Extend fee change waiver on Basic Ecionomy and non-ex_USA international flights AND no longer forfeit lower fare difference
So from what I'm reading for a regular ticket purchaser, no change fees on non-BE fares through May 31, 2021. So I could use an ETC, cancel the flight, and get the FFC turned into another ETC? Thanks!
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Old Apr 3, 21, 3:01 pm
  #398  
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Originally Posted by CApreppie View Post
So from what I'm reading for a regular ticket purchaser, no change fees on non-BE fares through May 31, 2021. So I could use an ETC, cancel the flight, and get the FFC turned into another ETC? Thanks!
There is no change fees for non-BE, ex-USA beyond 31 May 2021 - "forever". The 31 May deadline is for trips originating outside of the USA (&Mexico or the Caribbean).

There is no published policy that FFCs can be converted to ETCs and it must be agent initiated and above a certain $$$ amount appears it is reviewed. UA is doing this once again but they have already shut it down once before due to abuse. So yes, you might be able to this is extend an ETC for another two years, but if UA sees too much of this, UA could eliminate the option once again.
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Old Apr 3, 21, 6:37 pm
  #399  
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
There is no change fees for non-BE, ex-USA beyond 31 May 2021 - "forever". The 31 May deadline is for trips originating outside of the USA (&Mexico or the Caribbean).

There is no published policy that FFCs can be converted to ETCs and it must be agent initiated and above a certain $$$ amount appears it is reviewed. UA is doing this once again but they have already shut it down once before due to abuse. So yes, you might be able to this is extend an ETC for another two years, but if UA sees too much of this, UA could eliminate the option once again.
Thanks for the clarification. Am I only the one who has had problems with the website using FFC? Is it better to search for a flight then click the box that says FFC as opposed to going to the FFC and then searching? The strategy of trying to use from the FFC page failed for me.
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Old Apr 3, 21, 6:51 pm
  #400  
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Originally Posted by CApreppie View Post
Thanks for the clarification. Am I only the one who has had problems with the website using FFC? Is it better to search for a flight then click the box that says FFC as opposed to going to the FFC and then searching? The strategy of trying to use from the FFC page failed for me.
No, you're definitely not the only one who's had problems.

The option to use "FFC" from the search results is new and appears to refer to some new product UA is rolling out to capture the residuals left over when someone does a flight change to a cheaper flight. If you choose it, it'll tell you "if you want to use FFC from prior to April 1, start from the reservation with the attached credit."

If you're not able to get the system to work properly via the change flight tool on the website, call.
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Old Apr 3, 21, 6:52 pm
  #401  
 
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I just went through the process on a post-April 1st itinerary and was issued the new FFC vs ETCs. The agent tried to explain the new FFCs in detail:

The Bad:
1. No more ETC
2. No transferability
3. No combinability
4. Given there is no combinability, there is no more date-pushing (meaning new expiration date is most favorable of combined cert dates)

The Good:
5. Can use multiple towards a single itinerary (up to 10 she said)
6. Can pull from multiple accounts (3 from yours, 3 from spouse), so you don't have to split the locator to use from multiple accounts
7. Can be used on partner itineraries as long as one segment is UA
8. The FFCs show up in the account of the recipient and the booker. So I can see my spouse's FFCs if I booked the itenerary
9. FFCs now show up as a payment method in the app booking flow. For multi-passenger FFCs, both passengers show up!

I can live with all this, in exchange for no change fees, and reclaiming residual!
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Last edited by spartacusmcfly; Apr 5, 21 at 12:27 pm Reason: Added #8 & #9
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Old Apr 3, 21, 6:52 pm
  #402  
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Originally Posted by CApreppie View Post
Thanks for the clarification. Am I only the one who has had problems with the website using FFC? Is it better to search for a flight then click the box that says FFC as opposed to going to the FFC and then searching? The strategy of trying to use from the FFC page failed for me.
The best approach is find the flights you want using the regular flight search and call to rebook, feeding the agent the specific flight detials
Issues with UA's online rebooking: Missing flights, higher prices, changed cabin, ..
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Old Apr 3, 21, 9:32 pm
  #403  
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Thanks - seems like some things never change - when the website breaks, call United. It is so 2000s.
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Old Apr 4, 21, 9:24 am
  #404  
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Originally Posted by CApreppie View Post
Thanks - seems like some things never change - when the website breaks, call United. It is so 2000s.
Well, logic built into websites is finite. People are generally more capable. Odd but capable. Or worse. Just depends.

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Old Apr 6, 21, 12:10 am
  #405  
 
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Received FFC for residual amount

Did a flight change today for a future trip that resulted in a lower fare. The residual of $191 was immediately issued as a FFC and displayed on both .com and the App. Very happy to see this happen!

One note; as is too often the norm, the flight change errored out on .bomb. I called the 1K line, got a very good agent that knew about the policy change and poof it got done. Just one data point, but happy to see the change.

Last edited by bluedemon211; Apr 6, 21 at 12:36 am
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