United Airlines unveiled a new award chart for its MileagePlus program in November. The biggest change that customers will notice is that the airline has moved away from a standard awards system with fixed pricing to offer what it is calling Everyday Awards.
The Everyday Awards system does not rely on fixed pricing. Customers will now notice that costs will change from flight to flight. This means that members of the United Airlines MileagePlus frequent flyer program will now pay for flights based on actual ticket costs instead of how many miles they plan to fly.
United Airlines is introducing a ceiling to protect members of its MileagePlus program from high prices. Members will never have to use more than 32,500 miles when booking a one-way ticket in Economy Class as long as they are flying within the contiguous United States.
Saver Awards tickets are still available under United's new award system. Saver Awards tickets will now be slightly pricier for travelers booking seats in Business Class and First Class for select international markets, U.S. premium transcontinental routes and for select Hawaii routes. However, they will be slightly cheaper for travelers booking Economy seats on shorter flights outside of the United States.
Anyone booking award flights with United Airlines in the months to come will likely notice that some routes are more expensive than others. United Airlines recently made upgrades in cabins on certain routes. The routes that now offer better accommodations and higher levels of service will be priced higher than routes that have not been upgraded. One other notable change is a fee of $125 that will be charged to any customer seeking to get their miles back after failing to show up for a flight.