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Please help analyze my situation, use points or pay

Please help analyze my situation, use points or pay

  1. Anonymous


    Here is my situation.
    – I have 4 united GPU left for 2016. My wife got her 1K member with 6 new GPU for 2017.
    – I am about $650 short to be United Gold member for 2017 ($6000 requirement).
    – I want to go to Singapore for visiting families and hope to put my remaining GPU to good use before it expire.
    – I have 260K united miles and my wife has 350k united miles in account.
    – we have 2 kids, 4 and 6 years old.

    Option 1:
    1. Round trip ticket for family of 4 is $5023, can be upgraded instantly to business class both ways.
    – pro: GPU can be put to good use. I think $5000 for 4 international business class ticket round trip (20 hours each way) is a good deal. and I get to get Gold status for 2017 after spending about $1K.

    Option 2:
    2. $4400 to fly coach one way and upgraded to business on return trip.
    pro: I save $600 just for one way coach, save my wife GPU to later use which I am not sure when. For me, $600 is small portion of money, since I spend $4400 already, I would rather spend additional $600 to get the business class.

    Option 3:
    Use saver award for round trip, forget about GPU.
    pro: my wife thinking is we save $4500 just to do coach, which will cover hotels and money we will spend at singapore.
    cons: i will not get gold status, waste 4 GPU.

    – don’t go see family, just use points for carribbean location or disney, find other times to visit.
    cons: too late to plan anything like that now since it is too close to the end of year. GPU will be wasted

    A few of my thoughts.
    -we will plan for europe vacation in summer of 2017, we haven’t done research, most likely we will use points to take advantage of stopover rules. so if i don’t use the GPU now, all of them will be wasted. maybe we could use GPU if we buy tickets, not sure yet.
    – if we want to go to see family back home which we do every 2 years, we might not be able to fly business class anymore because I don’t think i will use 160K round trip to get there, i would rather use the points for hawaii or europe trip which i think is good value.
    – we try to buy round trip to hong kong, or japan or china and use miles for the remaining trip, the ticket price is always higher than going directly to singapore.
    – if i use miles for one way and buy ticket to return trip just to use up the remaining 4 GPU, the one way ticket price is more expensive than roundtrip ticket.

    Please let me know your thought….

  2. Anonymous

    I would go with option 1, because that seems like a great overall value, especially if you can confirm the upgrades right away. But, it really always comes down to your own finances.

    I generally think miles are a better use to Europe, so that would be a good choice. Hoping to use miles to Hawaii will likely lead to disappointment, honestly.

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