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A Cautionary tale -- United, GS, 1K -- Wake up call...

A Cautionary tale -- United, GS, 1K -- Wake up call...

Old Apr 19, 2024, 7:23 am
  #31  
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Originally Posted by narvik
Two things:

1) Did you manage to complete the GS challenge after all of this?

2) I'd not have been able to help you much, had you posted at 2am EST, but I would have lent a caring ear, and likely offered some sympathetic words.
1. As of this morning no - Im still 1k as they only posted a small amount of spend for the return trip - Ive already written GS about it so hopefully they fix it.

2. Thanks!
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 7:24 am
  #32  
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It is not normal for ZRH. I fly through/from ZRH quite often and had my share of irops on UA. Last time we were already rebooked OAL in J all the way by the time we even reached the gate. Bag was transferred for us. Smooth process.
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Last edited by cfischer; Apr 19, 2024 at 7:35 am
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 7:32 am
  #33  
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Originally Posted by cfischer
It is not normal for ZRH. I fly through/from ZRH quite often and had my share of irops un UA. Last time we were already rebooked OAL in J all the way by the time we even reached the gate. Bag was transferred for us. Smooth process.
Very much agree -- I love the lounge, no security for transfer, and the efficiency. Unfortunately I chose the wrong day for a mileage run... I think the issue was by the time the officially cancelled the flight there were no more J seats on the LX flight -- and 200 unhappy passengers to try and get home...
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 7:32 am
  #34  
 
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Originally Posted by bmwe92fan
As many of you know I have been GS for many years -- but due to some life changes post COVID I travelled a bit less on UA this past year and was offered a challenge to get back to GS -- spend $18k in 4 months and you can stay GS....

United in their infinite wisdom (aka revenue management) decided to take the plane that was supposed to go back to EWR -- my plane for my flight back -- and sent my plane to ORD -- and left the ORD plane -- which was broken -- to fly back to EWR -- with a delay of 3.5 hours..... During thins time in the Swiss E lounge their were multiple announcements for pax to come to the lobby for an update -- each time I went to the lobby and the "UA" rep asked if I was GS -- I had to say no since I was temporarily 1k and I'm an honest person -- so she wouldn't even talk to me -- and this happened twice!

I've never felt less important to UA -- I spent $7k to fly to ZRH and $7k to fly back -- and I couldn't even speak to her! There were 3 or 4 other GS's that were treated very well -- and re-accommodated on the 5pm Swiss Air flight -- before they even cancelled the flight.... I was truly amazed that she wouldn't even be bothered to speak to a lowly 1k in the lounge -- it was humbling but informative....

Much more humbling was trying to get some help as a 1k! I tried to call the 1k line -- but it was 4am US time and could never get a human -- so I called the GS line -- and was immediately sent to the general members queue -- with an estimated wait time of 30 minutes.... I knew things were going to go sideways -- but I couldn't do anything....

My key learnings:

1. If you aren't GS you don't matter to UA
2. See Number 1

I'm sorry if I've ever said anything negative about someone's 1K / lower experience on UA here -- today was a huge wake up call and I've never felt so worthless to UA as I did today -- if someone hadn't taken pity on me I'd still be in Europe tonight -- very humbled -- and very angry....
Trust me, you can get ignored as a GS as well unfortunately.

Originally Posted by jsloan
Wait, you got called to the lobby of the lounge for an update? And then you didn't get helped? Why not then go to the gate?

What does "could never get a human" mean? You were put on hold? FWIW, I generally find late night to be the absolute best time to call the 1K line, with rarely any wait at all.

If you'd posted a message to the board earlier, you'd probably have had five suggestions for alternative routes with available space.

Maybe it's different in the rarified world of GS, but for most of us, UA is primarily a self-service airline. Maybe you would still have been in Europe but I don't think I would have been, because I'd have found available space and suggested it to the 1K agent and/or the gate agent. I'm not sure why your first phone call failed, but 30-minute waits are uncommon for 1Ks -- maybe the caller recognition system didn't work.
I now think of UA in the same light as Syms, that discount department store that used to say "an educated consumer is our best customer". You need to know what to do and where to turn when things go awry because leaving it up to UA will not yield optimal results. The days of being able to rely on UA to pull out all the stops and fix your travel plans due to irops are long gone.

Another analogy, United is like going to the doctor, you need to be your own advocate and know what the alternatives are.

Originally Posted by bmwe92fan
She point blank asked me if I was GS -- I said no I'm 1k and she ignored me after that -- I was truly shocked but in her defense she was the "GS" agent with the scarf - I was humbled....



I love this board -- but posting a call for help at 2am US EST time I would not expect much response lol.... As an experienced traveler I know how to do things -- like getting to the D terminal and clearing security because I'm flying to the UK -- my wife -- and 99% of travelers -- not so much.... The team here at FT are the best of the best -- the top 1% -- but they also need sleep lol...
I have been told the gold scarves and ties can be ordered and worn by any UA employee now. Hard to tell a real GS agent just like it is hard to tell a real GS flyer!

Anyway, hope your travels go more smoothly.
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Last edited by uanj; Apr 19, 2024 at 7:38 am
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 7:36 am
  #35  
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Originally Posted by bmwe92fan
Very much agree -- I love the lounge, no security for transfer, and the efficiency. Unfortunately I chose the wrong day for a mileage run... I think the issue was by the time the officially cancelled the flight there were no more J seats on the LX flight -- and 200 unhappy passengers to try and get home...
yeah, I can see that. I usually fly ZRH-IAD-BOS (when I don't book the LX flight) so when ZRH-IAD goes down there is the non-stop LX52 5 hours later and most pax don't need to go to BOS ... so there is usually space on that
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 7:36 am
  #36  
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Here is my tracker as of this morning -- haven't received any credit for the ZRH - LHR - EWR $6.7k spend yet...

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Old Apr 19, 2024, 7:40 am
  #37  
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Originally Posted by bmwe92fan
Here is my tracker as of this morning -- haven't received any credit for the ZRH - LHR - EWR $6.7k spend yet...
You will want to ask for ORC anyway with that LX segment to LHR. Might be faster to just ask MPSC to process the ORC - however, there will probably be pushback until ZRH-LHR-EWR has credited
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 7:42 am
  #38  
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Originally Posted by bmwe92fan
I love this board -- but posting a call for help at 2am US EST time I would not expect much response lol..
You badly underestimate the number of people online at 11pm SFO time

I haven't ever been GS, but it does sound like an understandable drop there. In my years as 1K, I never really expected/received proactive recovery, although to be fair I'm not sure I ever waited for it. The main benefit was being able to call in, rarely with a hold, and have (usually) reasonably competent agents rebook me the way I dictate to them. That's been okay at lower status levels too, but the difference in hold times is the most noticeable thing.

If you're not willing to fend for yourself with all your effort, US carriers are probably not the best choice, or you can get a real TA. It's the American way.
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 7:58 am
  #39  
 
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Originally Posted by bmwe92fan
....

Much more humbling was trying to get some help as a 1k! I tried to call the 1k line -- but it was 4am US time and could never get a human -- so I called the GS line -- and was immediately sent to the general members queue -- with an estimated wait time of 30 minutes.... I knew things were going to go sideways -- but I couldn't do anything....

....
Is it possible that calling from Switzerland caused UA's phone system to not recognize who you are and your 1K status?
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 8:08 am
  #40  
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Originally Posted by JimInOhio
Is it possible that calling from Switzerland caused UA's phone system to not recognize who you are and your 1K status?
Yes that is very possible...
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 8:11 am
  #41  
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Originally Posted by tcdtcd
I thought there were no dedicated GS agents anymore? Everyone gets a yellow scarf/tie?
They are now Premium Service agents, consisted of GS and Club agents. Not everyone get a yellow scarf/tie.
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 8:14 am
  #42  
 
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Why does this tread always depress me?? LOL
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 8:26 am
  #43  
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I'm back as a 1K via status match (from AA). I only buy domestic F so upgrades aren't important. The primary reason I did the status match was to not have to queue 20 minutes before boarding starts or stand 50 pax deep in the "Group 1" line hoping that there is still overhead bin space in F.
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 8:38 am
  #44  
 
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Originally Posted by bmwe92fan
After my experience today -- there is GS - and then there is cliff.... We just don't matter to UA -- even spending $7k on a one way ticket -- they just don't care.... I mean honestly -- a less experienced traveler like my wife would still be in Zurich -- how is this ok? Like i said -- today was a wakeup call for me....
Wake up call how? What do you intend to do going forward?
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Old Apr 19, 2024, 8:43 am
  #45  
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Originally Posted by AJNEDC
Wake up call how? What do you intend to do going forward?
Well, tbh I really thought that life as a 1k wouldn't be that different -- It appears I may be wrong about that and after this year as GS (assuming the credit things properly eventually) I may think differently about spending to get to 1K...
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