It came a complete shock to me when United updated their award chart this week and did not introduce across the board price increases.
On the contrary, United cut the number of miles needed to fly to Europe or Asia in business class by 2,500 miles each way! UA also has adopted Continental’s longstanding 20,000 r/t awards for trips that are less than 700 miles each way.
Note my title mentions savvy travelers–if you are the type of traveler who redeems miles for international economy class travel, not only are your wasting your miles in most cases (I’d argue unless the ticket price is more than $2,000), but now you will be wasting even more miles on some routes. For example, economy class tickets from North America to Europe will go up from 55,000 to 60,000 r/t.
Standard awards, now twice the cost of a saver award on United flights, will go up as well in varying amounts and co-pays will also increase, making such miles + points awards even more unattractive than they already are.
Have a look at the new award chart here.
With United’s liberalized routing rules on mileage awards coupled with changes to their award redemption rates that are arguably a positive move, United is solidifying its position as America’s best frequent flyer program.