United Airlines

Reminder: Burn Your United Miles Today!

United Airlines Devaluation
Photo credit: sloppyperfectionist / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

Update: United has just announced via Flyertalk that the devaluation will be delayed until Monday, February 3.

What are you doing today? Going to class? Working? Calling in sick and sleeping in? Wrong answer. Today, you are burning your United miles, which are going to be virtually worthless tomorrow morning. While mostly partner redemptions in premium cabins will be affected, this is pretty substantial since United’s partners are the only airlines worth flying. Plus, with US Airways Dividend Miles merging with American Airlines AAdvantage on March 31, the pool of currencies allowing Star Alliance redemptions will be seriously limited.

So unless you want to pay 40-80% more for a first class seat or 20-40% more for business, I say burn those miles while you can. Post-devaluation, the only way to get into a premium partner cabin at a reasonable rate is on multiple segment flights (i.e. to fly a segment on Turkish business class, fly a segment on United first class). I’m glad I took that flight on Thai Airways First to Sydney last month, which I highly recommend if you need ideas for unloading miles. Below is a breakdown of the redemption increases on partner airlines:

  • US – Southern South America: +10,000 J, +5,000 F
  • US – Europe: +40,000 J, +85,000 F
  • US – Northern/Central/Southern Africa: +40,000 J, +110,000 F
  • US – Middle East: +5,000 Y, +40,000 J, +130,000 F
  • US – Central Asia/India: +5,000 Y, +40,000 J, +120,000 F
  • US – South Asia: +15,000 Y, +40,000 J, +120,000 F
  • US – North Asia: +5,000 Y, +40,000 J, +100,000 F
  • US – Japan: +5,000 Y, +30,000 J, +85,000 F
  • US – Oceania: +30,000 J, +70,000 F
  • US – Australia/New Zealand: +25,000 J, +100,000 F
  • RTW: +20,000 Y, +90,000 J, +100,000 F

I’ve got a few 100k miles left, which I’m using to fly my aunt and uncle out from Australia. As far as I’m concerned, that’s a great redemption.

Are you burning your United miles before the devaluation? How are you putting them to use?

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  1. Is there a substantial change on economy? If not, I still feel they’re great value, especially if you have multiple family members who do not mind flying economy and paying 200-ish each way for an upgrade to economy plus.

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