Unlock extended prize availability with a United credit card or elite status
Editor’s Note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with the latest information.
If you’re having trouble finding savings prizes available with United Airlines, you’re not alone.
Since then United MileagePlus remove it Official award rankings, the savings bonus (seats that require fewer miles and are also available to partner airlines) feel harder to find. The savings bonus space greatly affects your reward redemption value, as dynamically priced rewards can exceed 50,000 miles for a one-way domestic, economy class flight (although the price of an economy seat may not be the same). Savings can depreciate — as we have seen recently).
Today, we will discover an exclusive benefit that allows United MileagePlus elite member and qualified co-branded credit card holder to access hidden savings awards on United and United Express flights.
Who has access to United’s extended savings awards?
There are two ways to access extended savings on United flights: a United co-branded credit card and elite status.
If you are the primary cardholder of a United Explorer card, unified business card, Unity quest card or United Club Infinite Cardyou can access extended economy class savings, giving you access to XN Fare class. United issues more seats for fare XN than fare X (standard fare class for economy savers).
United Premier Silver and Gold members have the same access to XN fare for extended economy savings rewards. In contrast, Premier Platinum, 1K and Global Services members also have access to extended first and business class saver prizes, with access to IN fare class. As you might expect, United typically issues more seats for IN fare than for I fare (the standard fare class for domestic and business first-class economy tickets).
The extended savings rewards benefit is only eligible for MileagePlus bookings, so even if you’re a United cardholder or a Premier member, you can’t unlock the ability to get additional rewards when you book through a partners like Air Canada plane or Turkish Airlines Miles and Smiles.
Related: The best site to look for the availability of Star Alliance awards
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Look for the availability of extended savings prizes
If you are a credit card holder or eligible Premier member of United, visit unity.com and log in to your MileagePlus account. Once you’re signed in, enter your search details. You’ll see “Special Member Rates” listed below the flight number and discount when fare is available.
However, non-cardholders will see the price of this flight as follows.
This is what it looks like when the IN fare is available. Again, IN fares are available to Premier Platinum, 1K and Global Services members only.
For those without status (or lower-tier Premier Silver or Premier Gold status), the 80,000-mile business class fare will not appear.
Note that you must be logged in to see any applicable discounts, but there is another way to check this inventory.
Another way to see ticket prices XN and IN
If you want to know if your flight is available for fare XN or IN, you need to enable “expert mode”.”
Once you have expert mode enabled, you can search for cash tickets and view available fare classes by selecting “Details” of the flight you want.
“XN9” means nine or more economy class bonus seats available to eligible co-branded cardholders and Premier members. “X0” indicates no standard economy bonus, meaning regular MileagePlus members who don’t have an eligible co-branded card will pay a higher price. In addition, this means that this flight cannot be booked using the Star Alliance partner bonus type.
Here’s how to find the same for flights from Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER) to Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD).
Note that “IN9” means there are at least nine seats available for travelers with Premier Platinum status (or higher), while “I0” means no savings tier rewards are available for guests other travel.
Related: Last Minute Strategies to Win United Premier Elite
Award waiting list for first class and corporate savers
Few people know about this, but you can join the waitlist for business class saver rewards if there are economy savers available. According to United’s statistics Airline Award Charteryou can call and book a business class economy coach bonus while being waitlisted for a business class seat.
Once you’re on the waitlist, you’ll be upgraded if business class (or first class in the country) is available as a saver bonus. If your upgrade is not clear prior to check-in, you will be given priority to the top of the waitlist upgrade. Technically, it’s not considered an upgrade because you’ve exchanged the required mileage for a higher fare class.
This greatly improves your chances of being cleared for the next type of service. If your upgrade isn’t clear, any additional mileage originally used for the business class seat will be refunded to you.
If you’re having trouble finding the savings rewards space, an account is eligible unified credit card can help you unlock more value from your miles. With the enhanced availability of savings rewards and the option to join the waitlist for business class savings, United’s co-branded credit cards and elite status play an important role in maximizing your mileage.
Additional reporting by Benji Stawski.