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Consolidated Global Services Thread: Benefits, Questions, Experiences [2022]

Consolidated Global Services Thread: Benefits, Questions, Experiences [2022]

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Old Aug 9, 22, 10:33 am   -   Wikipost
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United Global Services ("GS") is the highest tier of MileagePlus elite status. It is by invitation only, reviewed annually -- the invite criteria is not public but seems to require substantial annual spending with UA both in terms of absolute dollar amounts and purchasing higher fare classes (higher cpm - cents per mile). There are also reports of GS status being comped by UA Marketing to VIPs in companies who sign corporate travel deals with UA, and also to those individuals that purchase an annual PassPlus enrollment of $50k or greater. The sole published way to qualify is to become a 4MM, having flown 4 million BIS miles on UA metal (plus additional grandfathered credits at the time of the UA/CO merger).
GS have enhanced services / benefits over 1Ks. There is little said publicly by UA on GS benefits and/or qualification.
Last year's thread, Consolidated Global Services Thread - Qualifications, Benefits and Q & A [2021]


Known facts concerning qualification and eligibility from United:
Quote:
Global Services recognizes the extraordinary dedication of our top flyers. We consider a number of factors beyond the usual Premier-qualifying criteria.
We look at your travel spend on United-operated flights relative to that of other top Premier flyers over recent consecutive years.
Usually, members invited to Global Services tend to consistently purchase premium cabins or fully refundable tickets.

Published Benefits
Full detail of published benefits can be found at https://mystatus.united.com/gs [MP credentials login required, existing GS only]
Shortlist (incremental/different to 1K):
  • Dedicated phone number with fastest pickup times, and generally by specially-trained GS agents. Some exceptions occur, especially during busy periods (such as when weather waivers are in effect)
  • Dedicated email address for MileagePlus and other inquiries, usually answered personally within hours
  • Dedicated check-in at main airport stations, including private Global Reception centers at major hubs, providing priority TSA security access. May bring guests/companions into Global Reception areas or dedicated GS checkin lanes who are traveling on same itinerary as GS member.
  • Instrument-supported upgrades (PlusPoints or miles) clear into PN class rather than PZ class for other elite tiers, which usually have much better availability. Instruments drawn from the GS member account and applied to other reservations will also clear into PN class.
  • Complimentary Premier Upgrades (CPUs) cleared beginning 120 hours prior to flight departure (versus 96 hours for 1K) for GS member and up to one other traveling on same PNR
  • Highest-priority when waitlisted for Upgrades, Award Travel, and Sold-out Flight Availability. GS members clear before any other status level or full-fare customers.
  • Priority Boarding, among the first to board the aircraft (currently after unaccompanied minors, people with disabilities and/or need more time boarding, Active-Duty Military, and prior to families with children under age of 2)
  • Priority handling in event of IRROPS, including next flight guarantee in case of re-accommodation, overseen by dedicated team of location-based GS Customer Service Agents (identified via gold scarves/ties)
  • Mercedes-Benz Tarmac Transfer for tight connections between flights at major hubs (cannot be requested in advance)
  • Access to United Arrivals Lounge at SFO when arriving from international flight, regardless of cabin class (no guests permitted) Closed
  • Access to Arrivals Lounge at LHR T2 when arriving from inbound UA-operated intercontinental flight, regardless of cabin (no guests permitted, must present Boarding Pass or physical GS card)
  • Access to Lufthansa / Swiss Welcome (arrival) Lounges in FRA and ZRH for same-day inbound UA intercontinental flight, regardless of cabin (no guests permitted, must present physical GS card)
  • Effective January 2021, GS members who do not have a United Club membership may access United Clubs on domestic itineraries, but no guests are permitted.
Additional Known Award and Upgrade Benefits (many unpublished)

Most benefits noted below require calling a GS agent:
  • GS can create saver economy award space (XN) if T inventory is available. United-operated flights only. Update 12 Dec 2018: Only for GS member + 1 companion.
  • GS can create saver business award space (IN) if PZ inventory is available. United-operated flights only. Update 12 Dec 2018: Only for GS member + 1 companion.
  • GS can upgrade economy awards (XN or YN) into Business / First with PlusPoints if PN inventory is available. United-operated flights only. Can now be completed online/via the app, in most circumstances.
  • GS can confirm any waitlisted instrument-supported upgrade (miles/co-pay or PlusPoints) within T-72 hours to flight departure provided at least 2 (two) J class premium seats remain for sale after the upgrade is processed and they are at the top of the waitlist.
  • GS are entitled to one Saver Award seat in the same class of service for one segment of the itinerary with their purchase of any premium cabin fare. GS agents can open space if it is not available provided that at least 2 seats remain for sale afterwards. United-operated flights only.
  • GS can upgrade a companion with an instrument (PlusPoints or miles) from Economy to Business / First when flying on a paid premium cabin fare, even if PZ or PN is not available, as long as J > 2 after upgrade processed. Companion needs to be ticketed in W class or higher on international cash fare itineraries, or ticketed in X/XN for upgrades from award tickets.
  • (Note: Only ONE of the two above options can be exercised per premium fare purchased, and for one segment in the itinerary, per caveats noted below. GS traveler must remain in same itinerary as companion)
  • GS can buy up from Basic Economy fares, which is usually forbidden
  • GS can access VIP Lounges (former Global First Lounges) in NRT, LHR, and HKG when booked in Polaris Business on an international itinerary. One guest permitted (two guests if a United Club member). Not accessed if booked in United Economy. (Note: VIP Lounges in NRT and HKG remain closed due to Covid-19; LHR VIP now open.)
Reported caveats & YMMV situations on unpublished benefits
  • Post 12/12/2018, agents have been instructed to grant only one "exception" when opening award space for a companion. Thus, you can open T->XN for a companion, or you can force a companion upgrade into PN, but you can't convert T->XN and then force clear an upgrade into PN. Some have reported success by requesting this in two separate calls.
  • Some agents will allow GS to open economy award space for a companion to allow for an upgrade with an instrument, even if XN or T are unavailable
  • According to GS Customer Service, a GS on a paid coach fare using an instrument will clear into Polaris business before a lower-status passenger with a paid PremiumPlus fare (i.e. O, A, R). In other words, for example, a paid O, A, R for a 1K will not give higher priority than a GS with a W fare if both are using 40 PlusPoints. This is true even on the gate waitlist.
  • Post 12/12/2019, agents have been instructed that they can only grant a companion exception for one segment per round trip journey. Thus, if you have a roundtrip premium fare, they will only open saver space, or force an upgrade, for one segment. This means you must either waitlist (if upgrading) or use a standard award, for the remaining segments.
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Old Jul 6, 22, 5:52 pm
  #736  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Programs: UA GS / AF Platinum / Marriott Ambassador
Posts: 161
Sounds to me like all the unpublished benefits are slowly being wound down. UA must figure that the small minority of GS that even know to take advantage of said unpublished benefits are leveraging them to (too) high ROIs - Iím certainly guilty of that and I imagine I have saved as much money using the GS benefits for my family travel as my company has spent flying me around on UA. I used to buy more J tickets overall when I was 1K (not all for me that is, hence my spending so many years as a mere 1K) than I do now as a GS because the odds of clearing into J are just so high I happily play those odds and save thousands when buying tickets for my family and me.
I enjoyed it while it lasted, thatís for sure. But as much as many love to rave about CK and D360, Iím not aware of GS-like unpublished ways to (almost) guarantee J travel for Y money?
Gate45 is offline  
Old Jul 6, 22, 6:11 pm
  #737  
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: New York / Hawaii
Programs: UA Global Services, HH Diamond
Posts: 5,081
Originally Posted by n8-the-gr8 View Post
How do you know the office was closed? Just based on not reaching GS agents after that time?

I routinely call at ~11:30pm or 12am CT before bed and was often connected with one of this forum's favorite (very seasoned) agents (who sadly is shifting to another team). Maybe that was a one off but my odds are generally just as high that I receive a new or poorly trained or 1K agent earlier in the evening or during the day. It's more driven by how busy the line is versus time of day in my experience.
They told me; the GS agents who take my call say that the office needs to be open to deal with my issues and to call back during normal hours which is 8am - 8 pm CT.

Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
Yes there are number of waitlist issue where GS are handled outside the published rules. SUch as GS CPU beats a non-GS waitlisted PlusPoints.

GS, GS supported waitlist are on the PN wiatlist, others are on the PZ waitlist. At the gate when the lists are merged, PN waitlisters are prioritized above PZ.
Whenever I use my GS PP on others, I notice they show up on the waitlist but then disappear from the list once they clear....whereas other people's seat assignments show. So I wonder how many cleared GSs or passengers on GS instruments have cleared that aren't visible on the waitlist at all.

Originally Posted by Gate45 View Post
Sounds to me like all the unpublished benefits are slowly being wound down. UA must figure that the small minority of GS that even know to take advantage of said unpublished benefits are leveraging them to (too) high ROIs - Iím certainly guilty of that and I imagine I have saved as much money using the GS benefits for my family travel as my company has spent flying me around on UA. I used to buy more J tickets overall when I was 1K (not all for me that is, hence my spending so many years as a mere 1K) than I do now as a GS because the odds of clearing into J are just so high I happily play those odds and save thousands when buying tickets for my family and me.
I enjoyed it while it lasted, thatís for sure. But as much as many love to rave about CK and D360, Iím not aware of GS-like unpublished ways to (almost) guarantee J travel for Y money?
I would think UA lost a lot of their GS population when the big tech companies stopped regularly flying their people in/out of China due to COVID. Missing those high value fliers and flights, most of which were likely contracted accounts, I would think UA would be careful not to try to upset the non-contracted GS flyers who are spending serious cash on the airline regardless of the world we find ourselves in. Yet here we are.
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Last edited by WineCountryUA; Jul 6, 22 at 7:10 pm Reason: merged consecutive posts by same member
Weatherboy is offline  
Old Jul 6, 22, 10:02 pm
  #738  
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: SFO
Programs: UA GS 2mm
Posts: 54
Originally Posted by felipz24 View Post
Has anyone received a mid-year GS invite yet? Curious when those tend to go out in July.
Iím not sure thatís a thing anymore - havenít heard of anybody
kj5hp is offline  
Old Jul 7, 22, 2:25 am
  #739  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Programs: SQ, QF, UA, CO, DL
Posts: 1,969
Originally Posted by manstein58 View Post
not my recent experience with an EWR/LIS flight. No GS phone reps available after 1:00am. Only ďcustomer serviceĒ
I have had the worst luck calling in aroun1-6 am EST. The agents are not knowledgable on anything beyond the most simple request.
uanj is offline  
Old Jul 7, 22, 5:57 am
  #740  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: BOS/EAP
Programs: UA 1K, MR LTT, HH Dia, Amex Plat
Posts: 28,121
Originally Posted by Weatherboy View Post
Whenever I use my GS PP on others, I notice they show up on the waitlist but then disappear from the list once they clear....whereas other people's seat assignments show. So I wonder how many cleared GSs or passengers on GS instruments have cleared that aren't visible on the waitlist at all.
Anyone who clears prior to check-in via PP or comp upgrades will not show on the cleared list.
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cfischer is offline  
Old Jul 7, 22, 9:05 am
  #741  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: DEN
Posts: 29
Chalk this under the degradation of benefits or just poor training.

Myself and raven jr on same domestic pnr. PP applied. At T-72 called to push through Jr with 3 available seats to sell and we are 1/2 on upgrade list.

First agent said that while the policy still exists, 1 upgrade could not be pushed through because there were 5 other GS’s on the upgrade list and even though we were 1/2, the policy required all GS to be cleared before any could be cleared. And since there were only 3 seats left this was not possible.

I told her that I’d never heard that before but she was adamant that this was longstanding policy.

Quick HUCA, got me transferred to June ***** with 2x yrs of experience and after a quick explanation and agreement that this was kosher, she was off to split the PNR and push through Raven jr.

While she’s processing, she sees a note that gets added to the reservation from the previous agent who was noting for all other agents to not process the upgrade since it was not within policy. To which June *****, replies that’s clearly incorrect, doesn’t know what that other agent is talking about and proceeds despite it.

I was surprised that the 1st agent would go so far as to not only be wrong on the policy but also put a note in the reservation for others to be wrong as well. I didn’t even push the issue with her. Just said ok, and hung up.

Although the deal got done, it’s very frustrating with all the inconsistencies and degradation of perks. Wondering why I throw as much business to United as I do.

Thank god for agents like June *****. National treasures. Add her to the list of great agents.

Last edited by WineCountryUA; Jul 7, 22 at 5:05 pm Reason: remove agent persona; infor per FT rules
Raven139AS is offline  
Old Jul 7, 22, 9:09 am
  #742  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Programs: UA GS | Marriott Titanium / LT Platinum
Posts: 365
Have been quite lucky with getting the few remaining experienced GS agents lately. Was changing flights a few days ago for a trip after a schedule change and in looking up what options there were, noticed the flight price had dropped by ~$150. Called GS to have them issue a credit and they couldn't see the fare I had priced (on their end it had actually gone up). Realized while on hold that my price was using "Break from Business" which I've never actually had success booking as I get errors about not being eligible (I don't believe my current company has a corporate contract with United).

The agent was quite persistent though and ended up calling the web team who said there had been IT issues all day. Somehow found the fare class I had seen but it was actually ~$300 cheaper and reissued the ticket, somehow changed it to fully refundable, and found PN space. I felt like I had gone back to the 2010's...
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n8-the-gr8 is offline  
Old Jul 7, 22, 9:15 am
  #743  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Programs: UA GS | Marriott Titanium / LT Platinum
Posts: 365
Originally Posted by Raven139AS View Post
Chalk this under the degradation of benefits or just poor training.

Myself and raven jr on same domestic pnr. PP applied. At T-72 called to push through Jr with 3 available seats to sell and we are 1/2 on upgrade list.

First agent said that while the policy still exists, 1 upgrade could not be pushed through because there were 5 other GSís on the upgrade list and even though we were 1/2, the policy required all GS to be cleared before any could be cleared. And since there were only 3 seats left this was not possible.

I told her that Iíd never heard that before but she was adamant that this was longstanding policy.
This rule seems to be one of the most mis-trained ones for new agents. It seems the tenured GS agents all have a very simple and clear view of what the policy is whereas new agents seem to consistently pull in random (or completely made up) aspects of other GS perks as caveats on this one.

Indeed very frustrating as we have no reference to really point to and at best you hope they don't mark up the record...
I'm sure they would say we should be happy with any exceptions above 1K but it misses the whole point of what made this program so desirable to earn which was to a significant degree driven by above-and-beyond service.
n8-the-gr8 is offline  
Old Jul 7, 22, 10:14 am
  #744  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Houston, TX, USA
Programs: UA 1K3MM
Posts: 193
Question - if I use the SFO Global checkin with someone who does not have pre-check - can they still follow me through the exit to the TSA person? Do they get redirected from there, or do they need to leave the Global room through the entrance and find the general security line? Thanks
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Old Jul 7, 22, 10:35 am
  #745  
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Join Date: Oct 1999
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Originally Posted by uanj View Post
I have had the worst luck calling in aroun1-6 am EST. The agents are not knowledgable on anything beyond the most simple request.
My experience as well! Thx for sharing!!
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Old Jul 7, 22, 11:35 am
  #746  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Houston
Programs: UA GS 2MM/Lifetime UC, QFF Platinum, HH Diamond, HawaiianMiles
Posts: 7,481
Originally Posted by SuiteFlyer View Post
Question - if I use the SFO Global checkin with someone who does not have pre-check - can they still follow me through the exit to the TSA person? Do they get redirected from there, or do they need to leave the Global room through the entrance and find the general security line? Thanks
They'll take them over to the front of non-precheck line, will require some opening & closing of the retractable lane markers. Had this happen when I got SSSS once connecting back from a TPAC flight.
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Old Jul 7, 22, 11:36 am
  #747  
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Programs: United Global Services, Amtrak Select Executive
Posts: 3,610
Under the right circumstances, the prior companion saver exception rule certainly could cost UA a lot of revenue. Imagine two people who always fly together & always book in the premium cabin. Under the old rule, every time the GS member of the pair bought a premium ticket, they earned enough miles to fully support the companion saver award for the companion. It thus basically served as "buy one, get one free" for $50,000+ of premium cabin seats. That's potentially a lot of lost revenue...
physioprof is offline  
Old Jul 7, 22, 1:04 pm
  #748  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Houston, TX, USA
Programs: UA 1K3MM
Posts: 193
Thank you
SuiteFlyer is offline  
Old Jul 7, 22, 1:22 pm
  #749  
Moderator: Midwest, Las Vegas & Dining Buzz
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Illinois
Posts: 17,761
Originally Posted by uanj View Post
I have had the worst luck calling in aroun1-6 am EST. The agents are not knowledgable on anything beyond the most simple request.
I usually call in during that time period and have had the complete opposite interactions. I find many of the legacy GS agents (DTW, HNL, ORD) working at that time and have had stellar service.
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Old Jul 7, 22, 1:48 pm
  #750  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Programs: UA GS / AF Platinum / Marriott Ambassador
Posts: 161
Originally Posted by physioprof View Post
Under the right circumstances, the prior companion saver exception rule certainly could cost UA a lot of revenue. Imagine two people who always fly together & always book in the premium cabin. Under the old rule, every time the GS member of the pair bought a premium ticket, they earned enough miles to fully support the companion saver award for the companion. It thus basically served as "buy one, get one free" for $50,000+ of premium cabin seats. That's potentially a lot of lost revenue...
Exactly. This details what I implied above.
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