Back in late June, United announced some changes to the MileagePlus program, which kick in for bookings as of November 1, 2017. While there are a few aspects to these changes, the most significant one to act on is that many saver level award prices will be changing tomorrow, both for travel on United and for travel on partner airlines. So it might make sense to consider redeeming your MileagePlus miles today, assuming you’re traveling between regions that are seeing price increases.
The cost of many United Polaris awards is increasing
A couple of weeks ago Tiffany wrote a post highlighting six types of awards you should book before the devaluation. Hopefully many of you have already taken advantage of those deals, but for those who haven’t, you have just under 24 hours remaining to book MileagePlus awards at the current rates.
I’d recommend checking out Tiffany’s post, but in this post I just wanted to briefly summarize a few of the changes. As a reminder, United has separate saver level award pricing based on whether your longhaul flight is on United or one of their partner airlines, with partner awards always being more expensive. So you’ll notice that below I list some United rates, and also some partner rates. In no particular order (all costs are one-way):
- US to Australia/New Zealand in business class — increasing from 70,000 to 80,000 miles on United, and from 80,000 to 90,000 miles on partners
- US to South Asia in business class — increasing from 70,000 to 75,000 miles on United, and from 80,000 to 90,000 miles on partners
- US to Southern South America in business class — increasing from 55,000 to 60,000 miles on both United and partners
- US to Europe in business class — increasing from 57,500 to 60,000 miles for travel on United
- South Asia to Australia/New Zealand — increasing from 30,000 to 50,000 miles in business class, and from 40,000 to 65,000 miles in first class
Redeem United miles for Thai first class between Bangkok and Australia
As, you can see, some of these increases are minor, like the 2,500 mile increase between the US and Europe. Some are more substantial, like the 10,000 mile increases in many other regions. Then some are really significant, like the current sweet spot redemption between South Asia and the South Pacific, where the increases are as much as 25,000 miles one-way (Tiffany and I just recently booked one of these).
Keep in mind that United MileagePlus is a Chase Ultimate Rewards transfer partner, and points typically transfer instantly, so you can convert points earned on cards like the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card, Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, etc. Furthermore, since most awards can be booked online, you should be able to do this without suffering through long hold times, as are often the case before a devaluation.
Are you locking in any last minute United MileagePlus awards?