United Club Investments – New Complimentary Food Menu, and More

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by UA Insider, Mar 4, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. UA Insider
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    UA Insider Official Representative

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    Hi everyone,

    Today we’re excited to formally announce significant investments in our United Club product, from an improved complimentary food offering to additional renovations and new locations. You can check out our press release for full details and photos, but here are the highlights:

    New complimentary food menu
    Days are numbered for carrot sticks and ranch. This year we’ll upgrade our complimentary food offering with a modernized menu, higher-quality ingredients, and hot items in both morning and afternoon/evening. Here’s what you might see:
    • Morning: A Greek yogurt bar and hot oatmeal station, with assorted toppings of mixed fruit, granola, cinnamon, raisins, and brown sugar, assorted cereals and milk, scones and bagel sticks with cream cheese and assorted jams. Cage-free hard-boiled eggs with paprika and fresh chives will also be available during key morning hours.
    • Afternoon/evening: Garden vegetable soup; Mediterranean salad; fresh hummus with pita chips, Greek olives and freshly-sliced red peppers; cheddar cheese with hearty wheat crackers; all accompanied by artisan breads with olive oil and additional condiments. Sliced, cured salami will also be available during key afternoon/evening hours.
    The new menu rolls out at our ORD Clubs this week, expands to the rest of our domestic hubs by the end of the summer, and will be at our remaining locations by the end of the year.

    Overhauls, renovations and new locations
    We will make significant investments in multiple new and existing locations this year. These include a complete overhaul of our flagship ORD locations, along with major renovations at HKG, NRT and DCA. We’re also moving ahead with new Clubs at LAX, SFO and yes…ATL. To be sure, all of our clubs will get attention this year, and over time, we intend to bring the design aesthetic you currently see in some of our newer locations, to the rest of our network.

    …and more to come
    Stay tuned for additional Club investments this year, including:
    • An upgraded beverage-for-sale program, featuring Laurent-Perrier champagne and Trinchero Family Estates wines;
    • A pilot of a food-for-sale program;
    • Wi-Fi printing; and
    • A comprehensive customer service training program specifically tailored for the lounge experience.
    In the meantime, please pardon our dust as we build a new lounge experience, and bon appetit!

    -UA Insider
     
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  2. Steve GadFly
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    Steve GadFly Gold Member

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    Excellent news! Are there plans to raise the price of purchasing a membership (both the standard method and via the credit card) to cut down on the over-crowding?
     
  3. Flyer1976
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    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    Excellent news on the improvements and the commitment to ATL for the new United Club at the T Gates. :)
     
  4. edcho

    edcho Silver Member

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    I highly doubt it for now especially when they seem to hand united club passes out like candy (i.e. the recent Hyatt Diamond benefit).
     
  5. Steve GadFly
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    Steve GadFly Gold Member

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    I know some credit cards give out passes but I didn't know about the Hyatt thing. The one-time passes aren't so bad....the fact that a credit-card club membership is far cheaper than a purchased membership ($395 vs $550) pushes a lot of people that route, makes UA less money, and results in many clubs being filled to capacity a lot of the time. If they're going to start offering a much better product, they should appropriately charge for it.

    Full disclosure: I bought a lifetime membership when CO still sold them. It cost quite a bit at the time however, given that I probably utilize clubs >200 times per year, it's been very much worth it (except when the clubs are overcrowded, seats are unavailable, the snack areas are beat up, the WiFi barely works, the bathrooms are nasty, and the line to get an agent is ridiculous).
     
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  6. edcho

    edcho Silver Member

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    "makes UA less money"

    Not so sure about that. United gets more revenue out of these credit cards especially for active users than a paid membership. If anything, they would want more people to use the CC than a purchased membership (and encourage them to use it).

    However, I do agree that they have to address the over crowding issue during peak times (or weather events). Just not sure what the perfect solution would entail...
     
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  7. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Indeed...I would bet a decent chunk of change that UA makes more money off the CC members than those buying membership outright.
     
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  8. Steve GadFly
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    Steve GadFly Gold Member

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    I know the sale of miles to CC companies is very proitable for the airline. My "makes less money" comment was regarding the initial purchase cost. I still think the only real 'solution' to the overcrowding is to raise the cost.
     
  9. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Why only look at the sign up cost when that doesn't represent the whole story?? :confused:
     
  10. mht_flyer
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    mht_flyer Gold Member

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    This sounds great, I am looking forward to seeing the new additions/services :)
    It's the type of changes that will lead me to another year renewal later in September.

    Personally I think the price is priced right for me and a fair prices and they already have a bunch of upsells in the club (alcohol and seems they may add food for pay later too), I don't think they should be raising the price of the membership.

    I'd be curious on the stats of paid memberships, paid with having club card membership and *A users of the club.
     
  11. Steve GadFly
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    Steve GadFly Gold Member

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    I think the average (non MP/FT) CC holder doesn't realize or understand the profit the airlines get from the sale of miles sees getting the CC as a significant discount over buying a membership. Because of this, Chase could probably raise the annual cost of the card to be closer to price of a paid membership...maybe even the same....and still tout it as, "you get the club membership plus all these extra benefits!".

    The price increase would deter some folks from getting the card (potentially less crowding in the clubs) and would put more up-front money in UA's coffers. Whether the amounts would equal out (lost revenue from people dropping the card vs increased revenue from higher premiums) is anyone's guess.
     
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  12. 8MiHi

    8MiHi Silver Member

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    Sounds very positive. Having a good lounge experience that can be counted on before the flight makes the entire flying experience better.
     
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  13. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    I bet you're wrong. Especially in the market where premium CCs are mostly priced in the $400-450 range.

    You're looking at it as a club membership. That's not really what it is being sold as and I would bet that most people who buy it would have never paid for the club membership alone. UA realizes more overall revenue and more customers are happy with the product they're buying. That's a win for the company.
     
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  14. Rob
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    Rob Gold Member

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    This point, while buried close to the end of the release, is actually a pretty major one for me. I think every Admirals Club I've been in has had a printer, and it's very important for my productivity when working on the road. I'm happy to hear that the United Clubs are finally catching up in this area.
     
  15. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    I have only ever been to one Admirals Club, and used that feature. Didn't work, printout didn't come out. If you happen to find it, please forward it to me. But don't read it, it was confidential stuff :-/
     
  16. genemk2

    genemk2 Gold Member

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    I've had it work at Delta SkyClubs (or Admiral's Club...I don't recall). It's great.
     
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  17. dayone
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    dayone Silver Member

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    Agreed.

    One "enhancement" that I would like to see is fewer free Club passes distributed. Make partner passes 50% of the day-pass fee.
     
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  18. sfogate
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    sfogate Gold Member

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    I miss Walker Short Bread cookies.
     
  19. Weatherboy

    Weatherboy Gold Member

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    I enjoyed the "hearty vegetable soup" at the United Club today.

    [​IMG]

    The salami was a little suspect hanging out on the table like that, but it was cold / tasted right. Somewhere out there, there's a chemical factory mourning UA's decision to swap out the fake cheese for real chunks of cheddar.
     
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