Elite Status Match On United

by Marc Cain     

Shorty after American Airlines announced the huge devaluation of their frequent flyer program I made the decision that keeping all my eggs (miles) in one basket wasn’t going to provide any real benefit in the future. Maybe I was just feeling a little rejected after showing all my loyalty to American.  In any case I decided to explore other programs via their status matching programs.

Being based in Chicago and traveling more than 250,000 miles a year my next choice would of course be United Airlines.  After contacting UAL about a status match they pointed me to their website with a form for just such occasions.    I was pleasantly surprised to see how easy it was to apply.

While they only discuss matching up to Premier Platinum on their status matching page the representative on the phone told me that they would have no issue matching my Executive Platinum status if I met their qualifications.  Currently their status match options are:

Delta Medallion Silver Gold Platinum
AA Addantage Gold Platinum Reviewed
Level Matched in MileagePlus Silver Gold Platinum

Currently the Challenges have the following requirement that need to happen within 90 days of starting the challenge:

Premier Silver Fly 7,000 PQM or 8 PQS on flights operated by United or United Express
Premier Gold Fly 12,500 PQM or 15 PQS on flights operated by United or United Express
Premier Platinum Fly 18,000 PQM or 22 PQS on flights operated by United or United Express

I was told that it would take up to two weeks to approve my request and was pleasantly surprised when I heard back from them within 2 hours telling me my request was approved for Premier 1K status and that my Mileage Plus account would reflect the change within 24 hours.  I was also told it would take 35K miles to meet the requirements within 90 day.  Once I met the requirements my 1K status would be valid through January of 2018!  There was some initial confusion as to when my requested start date would be for the 90 day, but they quickly corrected this with one phone call to the Premier 1K desk that I now had access to.

I decided to throw two of my work trips towards this status challenge – one to Shanghai (PVG) and one to Hong Kong (HKG).  By routing my trips through LAX and SFO it put with within 1,100 miles of meeting the requirements – a simple florida weekend for $119 would finish that off.  I will update this post when the final trip has been completed with how the challenge went.

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