Since I’ve gotten the Chase MileagePlus Explorer Credit Card, my friends and colleagues have been asking me questions about the MileagePlus Explorer cards benefits.
As a business person, sometimes we can’t use our personal cards and have to use a business card. The most popular question I get is:
Do you have to use your MileagePlus credit card when buying United tickets to obtain the benefits?
The answer is NO!
I routinely purchase my United flights with my business credit card via the United/Continental Website. I have my MileagePlus Explorer card stored into my profile, but I change my personal card to my business card upon clicking on “Purchase.” Since the MileagePlus Explorer card is in my profile, I still get the United MileagePlus Explorer benefits of free baggage and earlier boarding. Unfortunately I do not get the extra points as that would be a great loophole!
Furthering my previous post regarding United counting partner miles towards United’s MileagePlus Million Miler Program, it seems like United is only performing a one-time true-up to count all partner miles toward the Million Miler Program as a part of the Continental merger. I have flown USAir and Lufthansa flights after the merger and banked my flight miles to my United MileagePlus account. The PQM (Premier Qualifying Miles) showed up on my account but was counted toward my Million Miler miles. I have heard from others where their Lufthansa miles were counted towards United’s Million Miler Program.
After reviewing United’s Lifetime Flight Miles section of the Million Miler Program website, I came to the following conclusion regards what flight miles count toward the Million Miler program:
1. You must be on a United or Copa flight.
2. You must purchase the ticket on United with a United Airlines flight number even though it is operated by another carrier. For example, you purchased on United a round trip ticket from JFK to FRA where the outbound is a United fight and the return is a co-shared Lufthansa flight.
For sure, United does not count the following flight miles toward its Million Miler Program:
1. Flights operated by USAir (which is its competitor in the US).
2. Flights operated by Star Alliance partners that does not originate or return to the US. For example, a Singapore Airline flight from HKG to SIN.
Please share your experiences, thoughts and suggestions with us.
I am sure you all received an email from United stating that Premier/Elite benefits will be extended into the first quarter of 2012. However it not state the exact date. The good news is your United status will not expire on January 31 unlike other carriers which carries your previous year’s status to the end of February (see my previous post).
The real news United did not highlight is the fact that United will be adopting the Continental OnePass system as I have predicted last summer (see previous post). This means United flyers will need to use their OnePass number to bank miles starting in March 2012 (see United link). For those United flyers without a OnePass number, I’m sure United will be sending you a new six digit account number soon.
More importantly, United will be adjusting all the actual airline miles you have earned from partner airlines and count them towards your MileagePlus Million Miler program. To get this information, login to United MileagePlus Personalized Preview via this link. As you can see below, all of my miles earned from partner airlines and Continental have been added to my lifetime miles on my MileagePlus account.
As indicated by United, MileagePlus and Continental’s OnePass program used to track lifetime activities differently. United MileagePlus counted only base EQM (actual flight miles on United and United Express), while OnePass counted both base EQM and additional EQM (those earned on partner airlines or through promotions or certain credit cards).
United was kind enough to recalculate its MileagePlus lifetime miles balances to include additional EQM earned since enrolling in the program. United will refresh the balance before the 2012 MileagePlus program begins on March 3, 2012.
For those of you who are curious, below are the perks of becoming a United Million Miler.