Last week I promised I would provide more details on United’s new one-way award program.
Simply put, I like the new program.
Per my conversation with a reservations agent, stopovers will still be permitted on United roundtrips and Star Alliance awards–for now at least.
This means that in addition to the benefits of being able to book a one-way award (when an outbound might be prohibitively expensive but the return flight cheap, for example) we will still be able add an additional destination on roundtrip flights–a huge perk when planning a multi-city trip.
The following restrictions exist on one-way award tickets:
I find the "indirect routing" requirement interesting. What constitutes an indirect routing is not defined and just last night I was offered a one-way routing on united.com from PHL to ORD through IAD and BUF. That doesn’t sound like a direct routing to me.
I predict that as the one-way program is further developed, eventually we will see stopovers phased out and one-way awards permitted for all Star Alliance carriers. For now, though, don’t worry: we can still book our stopovers.
I commend UA for adding this new award option and applaud them for making these bookings available online–quite a feat for United’s IT team.
Don’t forget about cash + miles awards either.