United Airlines today announced changes to its MileagePlus Premier program that will make it easier to earn status in 2021 for the 2022 program year. United is reducing Premier Qualifying Points (PQP) and Premier Qualifying Flights (PQF) thresholds next year and introducing first-of-its-kind promotions that help members earn status more quickly. Early next year, United will deposit 25% of the PQP-only requirements in Premier members’ accounts based on their 2021 Premier status level. United will also give members bonus PQP for their first three trips flown in 2021 through Mar. 31, helping their flights go further toward reaching status.
“Throughout this year, United has taken a leadership approach in enacting customer-friendly changes, and today’s announcement of making it easier to qualify for status is just another step we are taking to make United a better airline for our customers,” said Luc Bondar, vice president of loyalty and marketing and President of MileagePlus at United. “From announcing state-of-the-art cleaning and safety policies, to debuting innovative new technologies and now adjusting our loyalty program to reflect this new environment, United customers can feel confident that we are making progressive changes that reflect their needs both next year and, in the years to come.”
To make earning status easier, United is reducing PQP and PQF requirements at each Premier level. New requirements in 2021 will be:
|Level||Standard Requirements||Requirements Adjusted for 2021|
|Premier Silver||4,000 PQP + 12 PQF or 5,000 PQP||3,000 PQP + 8 PQF or 3,500 PQP|
|Premier Gold||8,000 PQP + 24 PQF or 10,000 PQP||6,000 PQP + 16 PQF or 7,000 PQP|
|Premier Platinum||12,000 PQP + 36 PQF or 15,000 PQP||9,000 PQP + 24 PQF or 10,000 PQP|
|Premier 1K||18,000 PQP + 54 PQF or 24,000 PQP||13,500 PQP + 36 PQF or 15,000 PQP|
Automatically Depositing PQP
To make maintaining status even easier for Premier members, United will automatically deposit PQP into their accounts by Feb. 1, 2021. Members will receive 25% of the PQP-only requirement for 2021 based on their Premier status for 2021. Each level will earn the following PQP deposits to help get them on track to re-qualify for status through 2022:
|Status level for 2021||PQP deposit|
United is also offering its most rewarding Premier qualification bonus offer ever with the first ever bonus PQP promotion. On the first three PQP-earning trips next year taken between Jan. 1 through Mar. 31, members without Premier status will earn 50 percent bonus PQP and Premier members will earn 100 percent bonus PQP.
In addition to earning bonus PQP on flights, PQP earned from eligible MileagePlus credit cards – including the MileagePlus Explorer card – will now count toward Premier 1K® status if the PQF requirement is met. Previously, PQP earned from card spend were only eligible for up to Premier Platinum status. Eligible MileagePlus credits cards also continue to lead the market with one of the fastest ways toward earning Premier status credit, starting with spend at $12,000 each year.
More Opportunity for More Members
To give Premier members more flexibility to use their upgrades, United is extending all PlusPoints that are set to expire on or after Jan. 1, 2021 by an additional six months, which includes all PlusPoints earned from 2019 and 2020 activity. Additionally, as a promotion in 2021, United is giving Premier 1K members who meet the new requirements more opportunities to receive additional upgrades by reducing the milestone for earning extra PlusPoints. After earning Premier 1K status and 15,000 PQP, members will earn 20 PlusPoints for every additional 2,000 PQP in 2021 versus every 3,000 PQP in 2020 – United is the only global U.S. airline that allows members to earn unlimited upgrades after reaching its highest published status tier.
In 2021, all Premier members will also be able to confirm changes to their itineraries when making changes for travel on the same day when a new flight with the same fare class is open. United is the only U.S. airline to offer this benefit to all Premier members, in addition to allowing all customers to list for standby on a different flight to the same destination on the same day for free.