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United Devalues Clubs - Makes sure they are packed beyond capacity.

United Devalues Clubs - Makes sure they are packed beyond capacity.

Old Jun 20, 22, 1:27 am
  #61  
 
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
It's more like the club CC is a club membership which happens to come with a not-very-good CC attached.
Although one with an ongoing 100k+ mile SUB for the past few months.
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Old Jun 20, 22, 6:16 am
  #62  
 
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Originally Posted by lincolnjkc View Post
And there's the people who don't know that the sign outside the club "No One Time Passes" means....NO ONE TIME PASSES.

At ORD on Saturday I was in line behind 14 people (which turned out to be 3x families of 4 + 1 young couple) to get scanned in and I had to listen to each on get the explanation "temporary club...no passes...members only...standing room only...no...sorry...can't sell you a pass..." and the follow-up objections/are-you-sure/but-we-won't-take-up-much-room. If I could hear it every time the agent explained it I'm really not sure why groups 2, 3, and 4 made her repeat herself but.....ARRRGH. (Also: Contrary to agent's bleak description, there was available seating for members which I appreciated)

Would be nice if the clubs did the self-boarding-gate thing (that I think I've seen at a few of the EU lounges) -- if you don't need assistance, just scan your BP and in. If the gate says no, see an agent.
The new C club at EWR has them, though you also have to use the touch pad to indicate number of guests with you. Have seen them mostly backed up during busy times as people try to figure it out, but should get better as people get used to them.


Originally Posted by bmwe92fan View Post
LOL - because here in the US -- the rules don't apply to ME -- only to EVERYONE ELSE.... However, in their defense as a chase credit card holder -- they do make it seem like you can always use the UA club -- and I honestly believe that the chase pass holders don't think of it as a one time pass -- its a benefit of the card...
Yes, same with the credit card announcements on flights. FAs make it seem like a free trip to Hawaii is a confirmed benefit of the sign up for the card.
Almost like I should believe that I can upgrade a flight using Plus Points....and we know how likely that is now.
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Old Jun 20, 22, 9:30 am
  #63  
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Originally Posted by cfw View Post
Not sure where you are traveling, but families are definitely not the problem (large or small). The issue with every airline lounge is credit cards and day passes. It's the same problem at Amex Centurion lounges (which they have had to make departure-only
I disagree. Large families are a contributor to the problem at both UC and Amex CL. Fortunately, effective 1/1/23, Amex is significantly curtailing guest access. I would expect UA to follow, with tiered memberships, where the lowest price tier includes include only member access (as DL already does).

It's long been common to blame the credit card day passes for overcrowding, but the fact is many UCs are overcrowded even when they are not allowing use of one day passes. Similarly, it's easy to blame "credit cards" but the reality is that United Club card holders get a club membership in exchange for an annual fee which comes very close to the UC membership fee. While it may make you feel better to blame "those credit card people," the fundamental problem is that capacity does not match demand. There are several ways to mitigate that problem, one of them being not allowing members to bring in an unlimited number of dependent guests.
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Old Jun 20, 22, 9:49 am
  #64  
 
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Originally Posted by EasternTraveler View Post
Can we create two different clubs for the airlines?
United Club - Anyone admitted with a membership, first ticket, business ticket, Day Pass, CC pass. Comes with snacks and limited drink options for free, food and adult beverages for purchase.
United Lounge - Only adults with a membership or with a first or business ticket admitted. Top notch service with no charge food and drinks. Quiet areas where no phone conversations are allowed.
Isn't the second the new Polaris Lounge? And where would *Gs fit in?
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Old Jun 20, 22, 10:05 am
  #65  
 
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Originally Posted by cfw View Post
Not sure where you are traveling, but families are definitely not the problem (large or small). The issue with every airline lounge is credit cards and day passes. It's the same problem at Amex Centurion lounges (which they have had to make departure-only), Delta SkyClubs (because of co-branding), etc. Don't even start on Priority Pass lounges, which are often more crowded than the actual terminal.

Until lounge access is removed as a "free" perk from credit cards, they will all be very, very crowded.
"FREE"

Mine costs hundreds of dollars, not free. LOL
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Old Jun 20, 22, 10:21 am
  #66  
 
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I cancelled my paid membership more than 5 years ago due to the overcrowding.... may have been 7 years actually. Now, I get access as a GS and still dont bother to go in. Sure, they may not be at capacity all the time but, on average, they are packed to the gills almost every time I've tried.

I'd rather find a nice spot in the airport to work or at a bar. To me, it's worth paying for my beer vs dealing with a UC.
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Old Jun 20, 22, 10:32 am
  #67  
 
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
I disagree. Large families are a contributor to the problem at both UC and Amex CL. Fortunately, effective 1/1/23, Amex is significantly curtailing guest access. I would expect UA to follow, with tiered memberships, where the lowest price tier includes include only member access (as DL already does).

It's long been common to blame the credit card day passes for overcrowding, but the fact is many UCs are overcrowded even when they are not allowing use of one day passes. Similarly, it's easy to blame "credit cards" but the reality is that United Club card holders get a club membership in exchange for an annual fee which comes very close to the UC membership fee. While it may make you feel better to blame "those credit card people," the fundamental problem is that capacity does not match demand. There are several ways to mitigate that problem, one of them being not allowing members to bring in an unlimited number of dependent guests.
Exactly
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Old Jun 20, 22, 10:42 am
  #68  
 
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
I disagree. Large families are a contributor to the problem at both UC and Amex CL. Fortunately, effective 1/1/23, Amex is significantly curtailing guest access. I would expect UA to follow, with tiered memberships, where the lowest price tier includes include only member access (as DL already does).

It's long been common to blame the credit card day passes for overcrowding, but the fact is many UCs are overcrowded even when they are not allowing use of one day passes. Similarly, it's easy to blame "credit cards" but the reality is that United Club card holders get a club membership in exchange for an annual fee which comes very close to the UC membership fee. While it may make you feel better to blame "those credit card people," the fundamental problem is that capacity does not match demand. There are several ways to mitigate that problem, one of them being not allowing members to bring in an unlimited number of dependent guests.
what would be interesting is the metric on visits by subscription type. I suspect that GS has the most visits (they get free membership) 1k next and so on. The paid credit card membership visits might fall somewhere in between the paid membership levels (you must be a MP member to be a UC member). So what is the 'value' per visit for UC by subscription type? If the CC memberships don't visit as much as the other memberships, perhaps their value to UA is in that membership, particularly if other elite levels pay for their subscriptions with miles (non-cash).
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Old Jun 20, 22, 11:18 am
  #69  
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Originally Posted by prestonh View Post
what would be interesting is the metric on visits by subscription type. I suspect that GS has the most visits (they get free membership) 1k next and so on. The paid credit card membership visits might fall somewhere in between the paid membership levels (you must be a MP member to be a UC member). So what is the 'value' per visit for UC by subscription type? If the CC memberships don't visit as much as the other memberships, perhaps their value to UA is in that membership, particularly if other elite levels pay for their subscriptions with miles (non-cash).
It would indeed be interesting to see the numbers.

We do know that the carriers make lots of money on the co-branded cards, and I wouldn't be at all surprised if the Explorer and Club cardholders are among the most profitable visitors in terms of net revenue per visit.
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Old Jun 20, 22, 11:29 am
  #70  
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Originally Posted by hirohito888 View Post
IAH UA clubs get pretty full during the connection banks. It's usually 100% full then after 45min or so, it drops down to 25% full.

But I guess that's the difficulty with carrier airline clubs, there's a trade-off because a lot of the club traffic is determined by flight schedule and expensive to maintain such a large space when no one is using it.

Only airline club based on my experience that is not consistently jam-packed, even during peak hours is the AA flagship lounge, which I find kind of impressive given that it's opened to J passengers and OWS.
I guess you were not at JFK Flagship this past Friday afternoon. The place was as packed as EWR UC.

Originally Posted by lincolnjkc View Post
That is, essentially, what Polaris Lounges are. Demand is intentionally controlled because UA knows it will essentially never practically exceed (#J Seats)x(#Long Haul INTL flights departing/arriving that airport) -- with the small number of PLounge-at-non-Polaris airport flyers being offset by local passengers who don't use the lounge -- no membership, no passes, limited (no?) guests -- and much better amenities at least pre-C19. IIRC, LH's F lounges are similarly "no passes, no membership". I don't think there's sufficient market demand (or available real estate in enough airports) to make two different membership-based lounge products viable.

Given that UA has gutted premium services (see: chauffeured transfers) I wouldn't count on them making a business case for a return in the near future.

In other words... For the "charege big bucks for it" option by the time you make it expensive enough add on to make sense for UA to meaningfully limit availability and combine it with airfare you're probably getting close enough to the charter/fractional charter ranges that a significant number of potential clients would go that route.
Maybe it's time for UA to monetize the Polaris Lounge and offer purchasable passes.

Originally Posted by phkc070408 View Post
I visited the new UC in EWR on Day 3 - with a one-time CC pass. For those who haven't been there, real estate wise it's at least 3X-4X the size of the ole C74 club. The club was extremely busy at 11:00am on a Saturday, with a lot more people than the old C-74 lounge could hold. While I never saw or used the Pop-up lounge, I'm sure the new lounge still holds a lot more people than the C74 and pop-up combined. The only explanations are people being turned away, people choosing not to visit the old lounges (assuming because they were so crowded), and maybe the novelty of being there newest and nicest UA club in the network was causing more one-time passes to be purchased.

I'm curious to know what Chase has to say about UA turning their customers away. Last year I had 4 UA club passes for a short period and didn't get to use any of them on a family trip to Disney. We traveled the week before MCO opened and EWR denied us. When all 4 of them expired, unused, I sucessfully pressured chase into giving me a $200.00 statement credit for the denied benefit.
C74 lounge is closed for renovation at the moment. The alternative is the lounge in Terminal A, which is not useful for most people
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Old Jun 20, 22, 11:41 am
  #71  
 
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Perhaps an additional factor at least at the moment is the decreased operational performance, leading to more delays and more people lounging around in the various lounges, while waiting for their flights.
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Old Jun 20, 22, 11:49 am
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Originally Posted by PTahCha View Post
I guess you were not at JFK Flagship this past Friday afternoon. The place was as packed as EWR UC.
There was a line about 20 minutes long outside the SLC SkyClub this past Friday. And apparently they've only completed half the airport
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Old Jun 20, 22, 12:27 pm
  #73  
 
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Originally Posted by cfw View Post
Not sure where you are traveling, but families are definitely not the problem (large or small). The issue with every airline lounge is credit cards and day passes. It's the same problem at Amex Centurion lounges (which they have had to make departure-only), Delta SkyClubs (because of co-branding), etc. Don't even start on Priority Pass lounges, which are often more crowded than the actual terminal.

Until lounge access is removed as a "free" perk from credit cards, they will all be very, very crowded.
I assume you are not referring to the Chase Club Card, the card basically knocks about $100 bucks off the membership last I looked, still pretty pricey. I have held the car now since they pretty much dropped the Red Carpet Club name.
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Old Jun 20, 22, 12:40 pm
  #74  
 
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Originally Posted by avi8tir View Post
I cancelled my paid membership more than 5 years ago due to the overcrowding.... may have been 7 years actually. Now, I get access as a GS and still dont bother to go in. Sure, they may not be at capacity all the time but, on average, they are packed to the gills almost every time I've tried.

I'd rather find a nice spot in the airport to work or at a bar. To me, it's worth paying for my beer vs dealing with a UC.
What pushed me towards the club card was all the bars outside the lounge being overcrowded the past 2 years, particularly since some airports havent reopened all their bars and restaurants yet. I'd imagine I'm not the only one who made that call, which is contributing to more people in the lounge.

That being said I've found just sitting at the bar is usually a pleasant experience, especially if you pay for a beer and tip, as they'll help you before the line when you need a refill.
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Old Jun 20, 22, 4:52 pm
  #75  
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Originally Posted by EasternTraveler View Post
Can we create two different clubs for the airlines?
United Club - Anyone admitted with a membership, first ticket, business ticket, Day Pass, CC pass. Comes with snacks and limited drink options for free, food and adult beverages for purchase.
United Lounge - Only adults with a membership or with a first or business ticket admitted. Top notch service with no charge food and drinks. Quiet areas where no phone conversations are allowed.
Members should only get access to the lesser club.
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