Questions about UA Booking.

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by corz123, Jul 10, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. corz123

    corz123 Silver Member

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    Hey guys. New here so go easy please... I'm planning to fly to NYC to San Jose, CA (reward ticket) to start my masters. I wanted to booked my travel using United...

    1) I don't see any kind of economy class availability for the dates in question. I checked a few weeks ago and there seemed to be a bunch. Does United release seats or alter the availability based on the time before the flight?

    2) Is there anyway to arrange a stopover so I can check out Texas or something for a day?

    3) If I'm forced to book Bus/First. What kind of a product should I expect? Is there some way to look this up?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance! :)

    Edit: Yes sorry guys. This is an award booking!
     
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  2. Mackieman
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    Mackieman Gold Member

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    Welcome. :)

    If you care to post the dates you're looking at, we can take a look for you. Seat buckets vary all the time so it's tough to say without specific flights and dates to look at.
     
  3. corz123

    corz123 Silver Member

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    Sure. Its NYC TO SFO/SJC preferably SJC on roughly Aug 5-12. Do you guys have some super secret tool I don't know about? :p Any thoughts on my other questions?
     
  4. Sedosi

    Sedosi Gold Member

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    1. Yup, Dates. then someone who knows something (obviously not me) can help you out. Does it matter where you fly out of? (JFK, LGA, EWR etc.)

    2. Sure. ITA Matrix is a great tool. (There are others, again, someone who knows something will probably offer assistance)

    3. UA BF can be hit or miss domestically. Although you might type the city pairs in the search tool and look for past trip reports.
     
  5. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Stopovers cost extra on tickets wholly within North America. You'll pay for that.

    If you end up in first or business expect a meal on flights over 2 hours in most cases and a more spacious seat.
     
  6. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    ITA won't help for award flights.

    There are only two routes which have a premium product guaranteed: JFK-SFO/LAX. Everything else is basically variable. Other than a bigger seat you shouldn't expect anything.
     
  7. Sedosi

    Sedosi Gold Member

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    Must've missed where he said it was a reward flight. My bad.

    I didn't say he should expect anything, only that the product was hit or miss.
     
  8. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    1. ITA Matrix should be fine. Or United.com. Or Hipmunk.com (I prefer it to Kayak). There's no reason you shouldn't be able to find seats in economy if you have some flexibility on dates. Whether you can find seats on the exact flights you checked earlier...

    2. You can arrange a stopover in Texas, but it will cost more. It's probably just easier to book a one-way to Texas and another one-way from Texas to San Jose. Plus, you'll be able to be a little pickier about where you visit. e.g., you could book from NYC to Austin, and then Austin to SJC/SFO.

    3. You should be able to see the product if you check on United.com when making a reservation. I would not expect much. If you're connecting in Texas, you're likely to have shorter flights, so expect a drink and a bag of chips or a small candy bar (unlimited, but not a meal).

    Send me a PM with dates and cities, and I'll look something up for you tonight.
     
  9. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    He didn't. I only just saw WA's comment and realized that the OP's question makes more sense now.
     
  10. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    You'll probably see better award availability through SFO than through SJC, though it depends on the routing. JFK-SFO has the best product, frankly, as that's the p.s. craft, but it's not going to give you a stopover in Texas.

    Also, I live about halfway between SFO and SJC, so if you have questions about the area, I'd be happy to help. I don't fly out of SJC hardly at all any more, though.
     
  11. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    I assumed award based on all economy seats disappearing. Maybe I'm wrong.
     
  12. Sedosi

    Sedosi Gold Member

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    It makes more sense if that's the case. Any feedback corz?
     
  13. corz123

    corz123 Silver Member

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    Hi guys. Wow this is uhh a super impressive response....:D Thanks so much. Well as for the departing airport I would strongly prefer LGA or JFK as I live 10 minutes from either of the two. I edited the OP to reflect that this would be an award booking (sorry about that). What exactly is the premium product betw NYC and SFO/LAX?

    Also, based on what I'm reading here I think I would really prefer paying 12500 instead of 25000 since there doesn't seem to be much point to the business flight. However, since I am moving a bunch of stuff, can I assume that the business ticket would include 2 checked bags? I have the United Mileage Explorer card so I think I have a free checked bag on United flights but not partners. Please jump in if I'm incorrect on any of these points.
     
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  14. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    p.s. flights are basically catering to Hollywood, so they offer three-class and no regular economy. However, those flights are now changing to BusinessFirst, Economy Plus, and Economy rather than First, Business, and Economy Plus. What plane you'll get is a roll of the dice at the moment, but the transition will be complete by the end of the year.

    As far as the checked bags, you'll spend more, even if it's not cash, on the miles than just paying the baggage fees.

    Personally, I'd save the miles for another flight if I were a student commuting across country, but that's me.
     
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  15. Misplaced Texan
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    Misplaced Texan Gold Member

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    Between JFK and SFO UA flies its p.s. product. In business that includes a recliner seat and improved catering as well as lounge access at JFK.

    There is a ton of business availability on that route for the dates your searching. Just go to united.com and search. Not as much coach avail, but that comes and goes.

    For stopovers, I believe you'll wind up paying for two awards on a one way.
     
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  16. corz123

    corz123 Silver Member

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    Can someone explain what p.s. product is? Would you guys choose business class redemption nonstop to SFO or with 1 stop to San Jose?
     
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  17. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Stopovers in this case would require 10K more points but it would not be quite as much as two one-way trips. Especially not if in biz.
    It is a much bigger seat which reclines more than just a couple inches. They're basically what a long-haul international flight would've been like 10 years ago. They're pretty nice. The catering for the transcons is also a step up versus shorter flights.

    If I'm looking for the better in-flight product I'd take a transcon as it has the better catering and p.s. for the bigger seat. If you're looking to stop along the way (and willing to pay for that) or to actually arrive in SJC rather than SFO and have to get down the bay then the stop is inevitable.
     
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  18. corz123

    corz123 Silver Member

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    What about the business class to SJC? Would that be significantly worse than the business class to SFO?
     
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  19. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    I have done three JFK-SFO RT this year on p.s. wih upgrades to C clearing days or weeks ahead. I have flights booked for October and November on this route and the upgrades to C have already cleared. I usually occupy seat 9D, which has legroom the size of a football field, and the catering has gotten good to the point that I am looking forward to it.

    In sum, it is a great way to do Transcon, and upgrades come by relatively easily, although they require an upgrade instrument as collateral.
     
  20. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Insofar as the p.s. option's not available, yes. Worth it to you, though? It'll definitely be better than coach, but I haven't flown business to SJC.
     
  21. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Forgot to mention this: if you have a special meal (and are flying business or first at a regular meal time), you will get that on the p.s. transcon (if you call in a request for it). That surprised me.

    My pic of first class on p.s.
     
  22. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Meal will be similar. Seat will be worse. And you'd have to fly from EWR to get the non-stop flight.

    If you connect via IAH, DEN or ORD then the meal will not be as good either.
     
  23. corz123

    corz123 Silver Member

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    Nice. I just did looked again and I guess if it's the 3 class cabin I'd rather pay the 25k in miles instead of the 35. I'll bookmark this thread and come back to it to make my decision. Thanks so much guys :)
     
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  24. corz123

    corz123 Silver Member

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    hey guys. thanks again. just booked a business nonstop JFK-SFO :). one last question: what is the baggage policy for business class? 2 free bags per passenger correct?
     
  25. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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