Changing a Mileage upgrade to a RPU upgrade

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by Canadi>n, Jun 24, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    I've just made a booking on which there is R space. However, I've also used the last of my RPUs and won't cross the 75K threshold to earn new ones until later this fall. I can upgrade with miles now to get a first class seat (actually business since this is a PS transcon) but once the new RPUs have been deposited into my account, can I swap one of these and have the miles refunded? (The fare is L so requires the maximum 20K which of course is just 5K less than an award ticket for the same flights, so not the best use of miles.)
     
  2. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    I have swapped upgrade instruments before. If they agree to do it for you, then they should redeposit the miles...
     
  3. HeathrowGuy
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    HeathrowGuy Gold Member

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    Technically, no, but YMMV.
     
  4. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    It all depends on the CSR one runs into because the reason it makes sense to do this swap when a mileage upgrade that already cleared is that one can cancel that upgrade, which would result in the upgrade miles being redeposited, and then immediately put down a RPU to secure the upgrade that was just freed. The danger is that one could lose the upgrade altogether, which is why having a good CSR handling the swap is key to getting this done.
     
  5. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    Thanks for your responses. As it has turned out, the generosity of a stranger has resulted in my receiving an advance of an RPU which I will pay back in the new year as the need may arise, so I won't get to test out how this would otherwise be done. Much appreciated.
     
  6. KenInEscazu

    KenInEscazu Gold Member

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    This was my take in the past, but I have a new perspective of late. If I use miles, I earn zero PQMs (and soon, PQDs). Depending on how close one is to achieving their desired status level, combined with how willing they are to ride back there on a TCON, 20,000 miles may not be such a bad deal considering the fare.

    The Dave Ramsey fan in me would trump the desire to hit the PQDs, but my Colombian residency will let me slide under the radar next year. This year kind of seems like a freebie for all those who are concerned about keeping their status in the coming years. If one has status this year, then earning the miles to make it again for 2014 could be worth more than 20,000 miles for an upgrade. I have been opting to use miles on some shorter flights than that, and mine are almost always 20,000 per.

    I say this, but it's also a lot easier for me as a business owner with a Business Chase card earning more miles than I can spend. That, my business travel and double miles from being 1K clearly make spending miles a lot easier for me than it is for some others who benefit differently from the use of miles. Like everything posted on this site, each of us must consider what is best for us based on our own situation, not what the conventional wisdom of the board may be.
     
  7. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    Are you saying when one uses miles to upgrade, one doesn't even get the PQMs for the purchased base fare? Surely this can't be the case. I think you may have misread me since I was only planning to use miles for the upgrade, not the full ticket...though I recognized that's a pretty poor use of miles considering an award in F would be just 5K more miles. And, yes, I would otherwise have done the flight(s) as an award were it not for the fact that with everything [before this flight] I have booked and planned for the 3rd and 4th quarters, I was 2200 PQMs short of 1K. So we do generally agree.
     
  8. KenInEscazu

    KenInEscazu Gold Member

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    Pardon my lack of clarity. I meant that using miles to buy a ticket in first earns no PQMs. I can see how my post was confusing in hindsight.

    We are on the same page with regard to earning the PQMs trumping the free ticket in this case. Getting double RDMs is a valuable advantage of 1K that would exceed the cost of the TCON for me. I have about 102,000 PQMs booked through November, so the remainder of my flying will be on award tickets.

    In the meantime, I would certainly use 20,000 miles to move up a class. My aging tail gets pretty sore in coach these days on anything over an hour. My Tempur-Pedic seat cushion helps with the pain caused by too-little padding in most coach seats, but it doesn't make them any wider. ;)
     

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