United Airlines Miles Tips

For those that are interested in building up miles with United Airlines, it may not always be easy to figure out what are the best ways to earn and redeem them. Find tips below that can help you get the most out of your United miles.

How to Earn More Miles: Some credit cards will offer up miles just for using them. Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program offers a transfer program, and there are variations of the card that earn more. You can use them on things you’ll already buy – from office supplies to gas – and still earn tons of miles. There is also a United Club card, which offers 1.5x miles per dollar spent. It also allows you to have two free checked bags and waived close-in booking fees!

How to Redeem Miles: When you are redeeming your miles, do not look at the award calendar. It is best to do your own research because of the way United’s system is set up. They will look for flight itineraries that require more than two flights, which limits your options. You might have to call the reservations center to book, but it will be worth it.

For an additional trick, you should find additional Saver award space using the United Card. Ensure that you are logged in before you search for flights.

Make sure you look for partners that aren’t online. United is pretty much on top of things, but its partners aren’t always. If you are looking to go through Singapore, Cape Air, Jet Airways of India, or Shenzhen Airlines of China, you might not be able to find them on the website.

Another option if you don’t plan on traveling anytime soon and want to get something for the miles you’ve earned, you can sell your United Airline miles for cash. This is an easy way to get cold hard cash for the miles you’ve earned.

Bonus Tips:

Use your phone – United isn’t always consistent about offering up cash and mileage upgrades for paid, economy-class tickets. You could get an offer during booking, during check-in, or even when you are at the gate. If you want to confirm your upgrade in advance, calling the reservation line and asking might be your best approach.

Avoid Fees – If you book your flights as one-ways, United won’t charge the outrageous $200 fee (domestic) or $400 fee (international). This is the same price as a one way ticket and really doesn’t pay! This number goes up if you aren’t flying coach. What you should do is book your flight as two one-way segments, especially if you are going to book a different outbound flight. Then you can no-show for your original reservation and won’t pay the fees. You might even be qualified for a refund if your original flight was delayed or cancelled. You’ll just have to be careful and do some math.