United MR Help

Discussion in 'Mileage Runs/Travel Hacking' started by bernalscott, Nov 19, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. bernalscott

    bernalscott Silver Member

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    I need 4300 miles to reach Gold this year...Looking for a mid-week MR preferably a red-eye with a quick turn around so minimal time away from work/family. I'm in SF (SFO, OAK). I've found SFO-EWR-SFO for $311 which works time-wise but would prefer something cheaper than CPP of $0.16.

    Any ideas or thoughts?
     
  2. wto605

    wto605 Member

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    You're probably not going to find an MR going hub-to-hub, but you can definitely do cheaper than 16 CPM, I'd say 6 is a reasonable goal so late in the year. This is slightly revised from a previous response, but unless you have a reason to go to NY I'd look into #3, premier accelerator is almost always below 16CPM

    1) If you have the time book a run by watching "the flight deal" (google it, I can't post links). With the holidays coming up there won't be a ton available, but a pair of domestic runs, a straight-shot round trip to Europe, or a South American run could cover that, it's all about when you're free and what fares are cheap.
    2) While it probably won't get you all the way to 4300 look at your existing travel and see where you can stick in a same-day change. They wreak havoc on upgrades, but if you have already booked EWR-SFO and sdc to EWR-ORD-SFO, and then in ORD sdc to EWR-ORD-IAH-SFO you can throw in a lot of extra miles. It's nothing to count on (unless you have a high fare bucket on upcoming flights) but if you see a lot of opportunities coming up you can hope to hit a few and plug in some minimum number of miles gained for your calculations.
    3) If you don't have the time for either of the above your last option is premier accelerator. This gets a bit expensive, but it gets you to PP without extra time on a plane. If you have an upcoming flight that's appropriately sized for this use it, but you can also buy a refundable ticket wait for the accelerator miles to post, and then cancel the ticket. Some like to do this with non-refundable fares using the 24 hour window... but then you've canceled your flight before miles post.
     
  3. speciald

    speciald Active Member

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    And you think that the premier accelerator play with a refundable ticket could be done for under $311?
     
  4. speciald

    speciald Active Member

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    Plus, your original proposal is actually 6 CPM, not 16.
     
  5. bernalscott

    bernalscott Silver Member

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    Thanks for correcting my math as it is 6 CPM with the SFO-EWR-SFO routing....I do have a trip to EWR for the holidays coming up which is my last for the year. The premier accelerator option for this trip is $647 (!!!) for the 5260 PQMs...So I'm weighing the $336 ($647 - $311) additional outlay vs 11hr 45min on a plane....

    You begin to ask yourself if its worth it....with SFO as my home hub, 70% of my travel is on UA...the main reason for wanting Gold is E+ at time of booking for me and companion and same day changes to award travel...How I miss the days when silver was meaningful!
     
  6. speciald

    speciald Active Member

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    I know what you mean. SFO is my hub too, and UA is my primary airline. I too will end up this year in the low 40K range in PQM depending on some additional business travel that is TBD. If it were the $$ alone, I'd probably do it for $311 but the 12 hours on a plane would give me pause.
     
  7. bernalscott

    bernalscott Silver Member

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    exactly...luckily its all night travel so minimal impact on work/family...just my well-being and health!

    Thanks for the help...
     
  8. traveltoomuch

    traveltoomuch Silver Member

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    You're on the right path. 4300 from SFO/OAK may not require a transcon; a creative routing via IAH or LAX could make a mid-con do the trick, which could open some more options for you. Keep in mind that miles on US will work just as well, too. Use a tool with flexible date searches (ITA matrix?) and see what you find. Here's a quick guide to mile run searches: http://milepoint.com/forums/threads/pqm-to-keep-premiere-1k.73009/#post-2193172 Using the tools mentioned, I just found an SFO-IAH-MKE on Dec 11/12 for $243.

    Unless you also have MM in your sights or want extra miles, CPM may not be the most important metrics: total cost and timing may be. I suggest ignoring the CPM and instead just looking at the bottom line.
     
  9. speciald

    speciald Active Member

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    Agree!
     

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