If you don’t know United is about to massively Increase the number of miles it will charge on many routes, its worst if you want to redeem with a partner airline.
On Jan 28th I was up till midnight, because on Jan 29th the route for Jan 1 2015 opened up. My route was something I couldn’t book online because it included Stop Over and Open Jaw. My Route was
SJD- PHX open Jaw, DFW-FRA-IST-DAC , Return DAC-BKK stopover BKK-FRA-DFW,
Cabo San Lucas-Phoenix , Dallas – Dhaka Via Frankfurt & Istanbul, Return Dhaka to Bangkok stay few days then return to Dallas via Frankfurt.
After the agent put in the destination in the system, she tells me that I couldn’t book this award because it had two stopover SJD-PHX was considered an openjaw and a stopover, and an award reservation can only have one stopover. I was aware of that but I guess I was not completely educated on the stopover ruels, because I though SJD-PHX was just an open jaw.
I then advised the CS to remove the SJD –PHX leg, and do the rest. Then she tells me the system will not show her the award for Jan 1st. I was like what?
She then suggested me to return on Dec 29th as she could see available flights on that date, but I wanted to spend the new years in Bangkok so I hung up. I then called back, so a different CS rep can help me. This time the rep sounded like he was half asleep, well so I told him what my plans and routes were. He immediately responded without even trying that booking, for Jan 1st 2015 award will not open till Feb 1st. I tried to explain him that the award shows up online but since I need to book an stopover I have call the award reservation dept. He then explained me that if it shows up online then it will be best if I book it online. Man this is horrible up was up all this time for this. So I decided to go to bed, it was around 2 am.
I woke up at 5 am to go to work I wrote down all the airline details. On my way to work around 6 am I called united again. I gave the united my route, this time it was SJD-PHX stopover/open jaw DFW-FRA-IST-DAC Return BKK-FRA-DFW, so on this award I have to fly from DAC-BKK on my own expense as this was an open jaw. The agent put me on hold and vanished with no background music for like 20 min, every 5 min I will check my phone to see that if I was still connected. When she returned she tells me that I couldn’t book this award as it was not pricing right in the system and that her supervisor tried it too. I was not sure why because the mileage required for South Asia from Mexico is same as USA Mainland. So I finally told her to Cancel the SJD-PHX and book me DFW-FRA-IST-DAC , Return DAC-BKK stopover BKK-FRA-DFW .
Flight Legs Details
Not all legs had the Business class available so I booked economy. One think with united is that if you book mix cabin, i.e. Economy and Business mix you still be charged the Business award miles. I didn’t want to burn so many miles flying different classes, also when you travel with a 3 yr old boy it might get hard if he starts running around in business class.
DFW-FRA with Lufthansa on Airbus A330-300
FRA-IST with Turkish Airline Airbus A340-300
IST-DAC with Turkish Airline Airbus A330
DAC-BKK with Thai Airways Boeing 777-200
BKK-FRA with Thai Airways Airbus A380-800
FRA-DFW with Lufthansa Airbus A300-300
The total cost me 195,000 United Miles, and $502.50