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Upgrades

Upgrade options with United® Premium Plus

On December 3, 2018, we’ll begin selling United® Premium Plus — our premium economy experience coming to most long‑haul international flights.

For aircraft with United® Premium Plus:

  • MileagePlus Premier® members traveling on upgrade‑eligible fares in United Economy® can use one Global Premier Upgrade to be considered for a move to a United® Premium Plus seat or an upgrade to the United Polaris business class cabin.
  • All MileagePlus members seated in United Economy can use one MileagePlus Upgrade Award request to move to a United® Premium Plus seat or to upgrade to the United Polaris business class cabin and will be charged the United Polaris business class cabin price at that time. If you’re only moved to a United® Premium Plus seat but requested an upgrade to the United Polaris business class cabin, we'll refund the full United Polaris business class cabin price and charge the United® Premium Plus price.
  • If you’d like to be considered for a move to a United® Premium Plus seat or for an upgrade to the United Polaris business class cabin, we’ll move you to the first available seat. If the first available seat is a United® Premium Plus seat, we’ll continue to look for space in the United Polaris business class cabin without requiring an additional Global Premier Upgrade.
  • Members requesting to move to a United® Premium Plus seat only and who have domestic portions of their itinerary will not be automatically waitlisted for United First®. To be waitlisted for United First on domestic portions of an international itinerary, use your Global Premier Upgrade to request an upgrade to the United Polaris business class cabin.

Upgrade priority order

On aircraft with United® Premium Plus, we’ll process United Polaris business class cabin upgrade requests for members who have purchased United® Premium Plus seats first, using the upgrade priority order. We’ll then process upgrade requests for who purchased United Economy seats, using the same priority order.

Learn more about United Premium Plus
Learn more about upgrades available for MileagePlus members

Additional upgrades after earning Premier 1K status

Effective for the 2019 program year, we’re changing the way you earn upgrades that are in addition to the upgrades you earn with Premier 1K® status. For every 25,000 Premier qualifying miles (PQM) or 30 Premier qualifying segments (PQS) after you qualify for Premier 1K status, we’ll add one Global Premier Upgrade into your account. We will no longer offer additional Regional Premier Upgrades for flight activity after qualifying for Premier 1K status.


FAQs about upgrades

These changes are effective once we begin selling United® Premium Plus since you’ll be able to start making requests by that time.

No, we allow upgrades from both United Economy to the United Polaris business class cabin, as well as from a United® Premium Plus seat to the United Polaris business class cabin.

For United Polaris business class cabin upgrades, members with United® Premium Plus seat purchases will be processed first by our normal upgrade priority order: Premier status, fare class, Chase United MileagePlus Club Cardholders, United Corporate Preferred participants, and time of request. We’ll then continue to process United Polaris business class cabin waitlists from members with United Economy seats, using the same priority order.

Currently, Premier members earn two Regional Premier Upgrades for every 25,000 PQM or 30 PQS and two Global Premier Upgrades for every 50,000 PQM or 60 PQS after reaching Premier 1K status. In 2019, Premier members will earn one Global Premier Upgrade for every 25,000 PQM or 30 PQS after reaching Premier 1K status and will no longer earn additional Regional Premier Upgrades.

No. We will continue to award two Regional Premier Upgrades when a member meets all requirements for Platinum status, and we will continue to award two Regional Premier Upgrades and six Global Premier Upgrades when a member meets all requirements for Premier 1K status. We are only changing how Premier members earn additional upgrades after already reaching Premier 1K status.

These changes are intended to allow us to give more valuable upgrades (Global Premier Upgrades) to members sooner. Premier status benefits continue to lead the industry in this regard as Premier members can earn unlimited upgrades.