Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Discontinued Programs/Partners > United Mileage Plus (Pre-Merger)
Reload this Page >

My *A award booking experience using UA miles (rather good!)

My *A award booking experience using UA miles (rather good!)

 
Old Jun 6, 10, 12:46 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Washington DC
Programs: UA 1P, BA Silver
Posts: 358
My *A award booking experience using UA miles (rather good!)

I went around Asia last December for the first time using UA award F ticket (UA F, SQ J and LH F) and had an awesome time there. Because I only flew UA and in E- or E+ most of the time, checking out LH F and SQ J along with their lounges and different airports were part of the big fun. So, I've decided to do it again this year's holiday season.

Last night around 8, I called the UAL reservation desk and put the following itinerary on hold. All I told to the agent was I would really love to check out the first class on Lufthansa's new A380. After about 10 mins of confirming departure and arrival from IAD (as well as checking the routing is valid with her supervisor), she said I would have to stay a night in NRT if I want to try out the F class in A380.

So, here's my questions. Do you guys think that I should fly extra miles/destination to try out the LH new F? I've never been to NRT and no idea what to do there for a day because someone told me that NRT is far away from Tokyo where there are things to see/do. Also, I've heard about start net blockings and how getting an award on TG is very tough. Am I being super lucky here? If it is, I'd just ticket the reservation. What would you do if you were me? I need some feedback from flyertalk to made my decision whether I should just go straight to SIN or stay over night in NRT just to try out the new LH F.

Cheers,
K

Last edited by kan148; Oct 5, 10 at 2:47 pm
kan148 is offline  
Old Jun 6, 10, 12:55 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: The road less traveled
Programs: UA Gold MM, AA EXP, Delta Platinum, Marriott Titanium, HHonors Diamond, Natl EE, Hertz Platinum
Posts: 5,052
I also just booked a LAX-AKL-LAX award and had no trouble with the agent not being able to see the availability I found on ANA's site.

Is it possible they are relaxing StarNet Blocking?
JohnnyP is offline  
Old Jun 6, 10, 1:57 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: PHL & (gasp) AVP (NEPA)
Programs: UA 1K
Posts: 787
Originally Posted by kan148 View Post
I went around Asia last December for the first time using UA award F ticket (UA F, SQ J and LH F) and had an awesome time there. Because I only flew UA and in E- or E+ most of the time, checking out LH F and SQ J along with their lounges and different airports were part of the big fun. So, I've decided to do it again this year's holiday season.

Last night around 8, I called the UAL reservation desk and put the following itinerary on hold. All I told to the agent was I would really love to check out the first class on Lufthansa's new A380. After about 10 mins of confirming departure and arrival from IAD (as well as checking the routing is valid with her supervisor), she said I would have to stay a night in NRT if I want to try out the F class in A380.

So, here's my questions. Do you guys think that I should fly extra miles/destination to try out the LH new F? I've never been to NRT and no idea what to do there for a day because someone told me that NRT is far away from Tokyo where there are things to see/do. Also, I've heard about start net blockings and how getting an award on TG is very tough. Am I being super lucky here? If it is, I'd just ticket the reservation. What would you do if you were me? I need some feedback from flyertalk to made my decision whether I should just go straight to SIN or stay over night in NRT just to try out the new LH F.

Cheers,
K
Tokyo is about an hour by train from NRT. I love Tokyo so for me it is an easy answer

Last edited by iluv2fly; Jun 6, 10 at 8:54 pm Reason: image
TechnoPagan is offline  
Old Jun 6, 10, 2:02 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: LAX / BKK
Programs: AA Platinum Exec / UA Gold
Posts: 116
Nice itinerary

But why your only real stay over in Singapore? I like Singapore fine, you would have much more interesting exploring to do in Tokyo which is an amazing city, or Seoul or Bangkok. Just my two cents. I know checking out the various F and lounges is part of the fun, but its still a lot of flying for only really checking out Singapore.
bkkchriss4 is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 1:01 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: LAX
Programs: UA 1K MM; Bonvoy Titanium; most other FF programs...
Posts: 595
Relaxing of Starnet Blocking?

I just got off the phone with the 1K line booking award travel to SE Asia for about 4 weeks out from today.

I am flying to Chiang Rai, Thailand via BKK, and was successfully able to book the TG NON-STOP LAX-BKK in C Class both ways. While I understand that Thailand may not be the most desirable location as of late, what was surprising is that I was able to book EXACTLY what showed up on the ANA Website for award travel. And historically, UA has blocked the TG non-stop. So to be able to score tickets for the dates I wanted and in business seems like a real coup.

Could it be that UA is relaxing StarNet Blocking, as Johnny P notes above?

Originally Posted by JohnnyP View Post
I also just booked a LAX-AKL-LAX award and had no trouble with the agent not being able to see the availability I found on ANA's site.

Is it possible they are relaxing StarNet Blocking?
FoxFlyer is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 1:13 am
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Washington DC
Programs: UA 1P, BA Silver
Posts: 358
Originally Posted by bkkchriss4 View Post
But why your only real stay over in Singapore? I like Singapore fine, you would have much more interesting exploring to do in Tokyo which is an amazing city, or Seoul or Bangkok. Just my two cents. I know checking out the various F and lounges is part of the fun, but its still a lot of flying for only really checking out Singapore.
I'd like to explore Myanmar this time around. Also, just changed the flight from Japan to Singapore to a day after X'mas. All went well. I'm quite surprised award travel reservation is this easy. Thanks United! ^
kan148 is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 5:37 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: PHL
Programs: UA Plat, 2MM
Posts: 1,807
How many miles were used for this itinerary?
TonyBurr is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 7:44 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: SRQ - Sarasota, Florida
Programs: United 1k | Hyatt Diamond?, Marriott Platinum (Lifetime) | IHG Platinum | Avis Chairman
Posts: 307
Originally Posted by kan148 View Post
I'd like to explore Myanmar this time around. Also, just changed the flight from Japan to Singapore to a day after X'mas. All went well. I'm quite surprised award travel reservation is this easy. Thanks United! ^
What sort of milage cost did this run?
jisaac is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 8:12 am
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Washington DC
Programs: UA 1P, BA Silver
Posts: 358
145k.
kan148 is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 8:21 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Programs: HH Diamond, Marriott lifetime Plt, UA 1MM
Posts: 918
Maybe they are relaxing the Starnet slightly. Last week I researched and found space on a US West Coast to SIN award ticket for late June and was surprised when I called the 1k desk and she was able to confirm all the flights in C (on SQ,TG and OZ)
JONEZY00 is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 9:04 am
  #11  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,358
Originally Posted by JONEZY00 View Post

Maybe they are relaxing the Starnet slightly. Last week I researched and found space on a US West Coast to SIN award ticket for late June and was surprised when I called the 1k desk and she was able to confirm all the flights in C (on SQ,TG and OZ)
It might be that currently there is a temporary loosening of * awards.

Only last week I called and asked if I could go this summer to Vienna, Austria in first using LH.

I expected a "no" because the agent told me that I was requesting a flight so close to departure. To my surprise, I got an LH non-stop from my home city to FRA then LH to VIE. My return is also LH from VIE to MUC then non stop to my home city. The dates of my trip are exactly what want.

If this were the first time I ever used United's * Alliance I would have wondered why I read so many complaints about the difficulty of getting a reservation. However, it is not my first time trying to use * Alliance and, yes, I did have difficulty in the past getting an award ticket.

-

Last edited by dgcpaphd; Jun 7, 10 at 9:10 am
dgcpaphd is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 9:22 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Seattle
Programs: United Airlines Premier, Starwood Gold Preferred Guest, Hyatt Gold Passport, Club Carlson Gold
Posts: 356
Non-stop BKK-LAX on TG has usually been blocked by UA. It's great that you were able to grab a C.
vtqanh is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 11:04 am
  #13  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Currently: DCA (+IAD/BWI). Before that: FNL (+DEN/COS). Before that: HVN (+BDL/LGA/EWR/JFK).
Programs: UA 1K, DL Gold, Hertz Five Star, NEXUS, Global Entry
Posts: 626
This routing constitutes a fantastic itinerary, OP! ^ Can't wait for your LH A380 trip report, even if it is 6 months away

I'm really, really hoping that this experience (which is the third sign in ~1 month) is indicative of a relaxation (or even better, removal) of *net blocking. The other two were someone getting a LHR-BKK award on TG in F, and someone being *offered* (not even asking for) a LAX-LHR award on NZ in C.

I'll refrain from speculating as to whether or not the apparent decrease in *net blocking has anything to do with the CO merger so as to avoid this thread getting closed or merged into a "merger speculation" thread.
tjtenor4 is offline  
Old Jun 7, 10, 2:02 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: IAD
Programs: Free Agent
Posts: 1,917
That's good news. I had assumed that LH would block F award inventory on the A380!
Condition One is offline  
Old Jun 8, 10, 1:14 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: LAX
Programs: UA 1K MM; Bonvoy Titanium; most other FF programs...
Posts: 595
Originally Posted by FoxFlyer View Post
I just got off the phone with the 1K line booking award travel to SE Asia for about 4 weeks out from today.

I am flying to Chiang Rai, Thailand via BKK, and was successfully able to book the TG NON-STOP LAX-BKK in C Class both ways. While I understand that Thailand may not be the most desirable location as of late, what was surprising is that I was able to book EXACTLY what showed up on the ANA Website for award travel. And historically, UA has blocked the TG non-stop. So to be able to score tickets for the dates I wanted and in business seems like a real coup.

Could it be that UA is relaxing StarNet Blocking, as Johnny P notes above?
UPDATE: So I messed up on my dates (I actually need to be in Montreal on the 13 of July - which is the date of my return from BKK)...

HOWEVER, was able to book SAME FLIGHTS about a week earlier... now I fly out of LAX on 6/23 (originally 7/1) and return on 7/7 (originally 7/13). And surprisingly, there were multiple outbound and inbound flights on the TG non-stop in C. Even the 1K res agent was surprised... she said that they have been finding little if any C level award seats across the system.

Only downside... could not seem to book an intra-Asia *A award. (Wanted to go CEI-BKK-DPS-BKK).
FoxFlyer is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread