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Given all the devaluations happening, are there literally any sweet spots/value left?

Given all the devaluations happening, are there literally any sweet spots/value left?

Old May 2, 2024, 3:30 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 253
Given all the devaluations happening, are there literally any sweet spots/value left?

What is left as the best use of miles at this point? Upgrade + copay? Other geographies/routes? Super disappointed in UA.
nygiants242 is offline  
Old May 2, 2024, 3:36 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: NYC / TYO / Up in the Air
Programs: UA GS 1.7MM, AA 2.1MM, EK, BA, SQ, CX, Marriot LT, Accor P
Posts: 6,613
Originally Posted by nygiants242
What is left as the best use of miles at this point? Upgrade + copay? Other geographies/routes? Super disappointed in UA.
As a GS the ability to upgrade economy class award tickets to business class is by FAR my biggest benefit -- especially now that a roundtrip J ticket between Tokyo and NYC is 400k miles lol...

I just used 20k miles on 2 domestic roundtrip flights in Japan for my wife and I to visit family next week -- the only thing that has seemingly not changed in the past month...f

MileagePlus is now MileageMinus...
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Old May 2, 2024, 3:55 am
  #3  
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Canada
Programs: UA*1K MM SK EBG LATAM BL
Posts: 23,394
If there are noone us gonna spell it out for United to fix

But yes the program is now almost useless
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rankourabu is offline  
Old May 2, 2024, 4:24 am
  #4  
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: FLL, MEL, SIN, WAS
Programs: UA*Lifetime GS, Hyatt* Lifetime Globalist
Posts: 12,468
MileagePlus has skydived from being historically one of the best FFPs to the bottom.

Now UA is consistent in all rankings (in the bottom half of list):

customer satisfaction
on-time record
airline meals
baggage delays (and missing)
maintenance
negative press
most Max exposure (amongst the Big3)
least partner awards

I guess UA is no longer consistently inconsistent anymore when it comes to rankings.
UA_Flyer is offline  
Old May 2, 2024, 5:43 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Virginia, USA
Posts: 4,521
Originally Posted by nygiants242
What is left as the best use of miles at this point? Upgrade + copay? Other geographies/routes? Super disappointed in UA.
Find the most aspirational trip you can take for all of your remaining miles and take that trip. Basically, clean out your account for the one thing you really want. Don't wait around for things to get better because they won't.
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JetAway is offline  
Old May 2, 2024, 5:45 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: NYC / TYO / Up in the Air
Programs: UA GS 1.7MM, AA 2.1MM, EK, BA, SQ, CX, Marriot LT, Accor P
Posts: 6,613
Originally Posted by JetAway
Find the most aspirational trip you can take for all of your remaining miles and take that trip. Basically, clean out your account for the one thing you really want. Don't wait around for things to get better because they won't.
+1 - Earn and burn! Any time I get above 500k miles I get stressed.
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bmwe92fan is online now  
Old May 2, 2024, 6:24 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 681
This is the first time in a long time that I can't decide which program is worse between MileageMinus and SkyPesos. I stopped accumulating SkyPesos a long time ago (so I don't have many DL miles), but I didn't stop accumulating UA miles until about a year ago so I still sit on a pile of UA miles. I tried to burn those miles but I didn't really want to spend 400k+ miles on a single ticket because there's a floor to how low their values can go (about 1 penny/mile for domestic UA flights).

Even though I haven't found much use for UA miles this year (other than for some intra-Japan flights on NH), I've been booking award reservations using UA miles as my backup plans, taking advantage of the ease with which to cancel such reservations. However, I've almost always ended up cancelling those reservations, as I almost inevitably found better and/or cheaper alternatives.
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tth6133 is offline  
Old May 2, 2024, 7:12 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: SF Bay Area
Programs: None - previously UA
Posts: 4,942
The 60k Aeroplan Chase signup bonus is a sweet spot. Cancel your Explorer card though to send a message.
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Old May 2, 2024, 7:38 am
  #9  
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Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: MSP
Programs: DL PM, UA Gold, WN, Global Entry; +others wherever miles/points are found
Posts: 14,646
I feel like the IN price points are still decent, at least compared to DL which is more or less pegged to revenue fares across the board.

That being said, having experienced DL, there is some zen to being able to redeem your miles at ~1.3cpm for basically any trip and know you're not missing out on a good deal since those don't exist
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Old May 2, 2024, 8:04 am
  #10  
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: PHX
Programs: AS 75K; UA 1MM; Hyatt Globalist; Marriott LTP; Hilton Diamond (Aspire)
Posts: 56,949
My redemptions the past couple years have mostly been intra-Europe LH/LX for 8k in Y. Occasionally a domestic redemption within 7 days of departure will price out over 1.5 cpp or so but those are becoming ever more rare. I've tried to redeem for long-haul J, but the saver awards are so rare have not had success with one of those for many years. I have redeemed for long-haul JN when there's nothing else available, but the value per point has been pretty low.

UA has absolutely (and deliberately) destroyed the program's value.
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Old May 2, 2024, 8:06 am
  #11  
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 538
Originally Posted by tth6133
...
I've been booking award reservations using UA miles as my backup plans, taking advantage of the ease with which to cancel such reservations. However, I've almost always ended up cancelling those reservations, as I almost inevitably found better and/or cheaper alternatives.
I do enjoy using UA points as a placeholder for last minute/long term one-way ticketing needs but often find better alternatives on the long term needs. If UA wants to draw traffic, be a pricing leader in one-way, long distance by the price of round trip cost.
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Old May 2, 2024, 8:08 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: LAS, ZQN
Programs: UA PP (2MM), BA gold
Posts: 2,263
Had to find a biz ticket and paying 110K miles (used to be 80?) to AKL was a deal compared to cash for a sick relative and had to go.
Even salad on flight was inedible and no pj's as 13 hours is under the 14 limit- didn;t we used to get them on this flight?
Otherwise the benefit of booking and hold and free cancel in future is nice.
However all burned now and down to 19K miles.
Have moved to OW (BA) and hope to have GGL.
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Old May 2, 2024, 8:15 am
  #13  
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 58,372
I have successfully used my miles to book J seats on flights to Europe in the January-March timeframe, using mileage plus upgrades and able to score an upgrade at booking. Thats really just about it. The only other possible use I can see my for miles is if I want to go on a short fuse trip, there are some decent last minute deals on transAtlantic flights.

I suspect its only a matter of time before United removes those as well
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Old May 2, 2024, 8:18 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: DFW
Programs: UA Platinum, Bonvoy Platinum
Posts: 153
Australia is still the best value by far -- 100-110 in I (used to be 70, actually....) but even at a 50% devaluation in the past decade, it's still around 6 cents a mile, which I think you'd be hard pressed to find anywhere else in the system.
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Old May 2, 2024, 8:29 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Programs: DYKWIA, But I'm a "Diamond Guest" UA 1K/2MM
Posts: 2,278
I save mine for last-minute short-haul domestic flights, such as SEA->SFO. Sometimes, I get over .02/mile value on those.

I just booked some intra-Europe flights with Lifemiles. It took about half as much as MP. I have a United club card, but only charge United purchases on it.
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