United to dump idle frequent-flier miles

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Reggie

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In USA Today (Monday Jan 22nd), it states under the above banner "United Arlines will erase frequent-flier miles in accounts that have been inactive for 18 months as of the end of this year." and "The airline said one effect of the change will be that its most loyal customers will compete with fewer people for award seats."
 

Evan

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If the accounts were 'idle' you would hardly expect them to be competeing for seats would you !
E
 

sully

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What is their definition of idle? I use United to accrue *alliance points on other airlines. I have never flown United and don't plan to. I earned a large number of points from EK at one stage but now only really use the card for SQ flights out of SIN to nearby countries such as Malaysia, Thailand and India. Like most I try to fly OW to maximise points so only use SQ where flights are unavailable of where OW routes are too circuitous. .
 

Kiwi Flyer

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sully said:
What is their definition of idle? I use United to accrue *alliance points on other airlines. I have never flown United and don't plan to. I earned a large number of points from EK at one stage but now only really use the card for SQ flights out of SIN to nearby countries such as Malaysia, Thailand and India. Like most I try to fly OW to maximise points so only use SQ where flights are unavailable of where OW routes are too circuitous. .

From 31 December 2007 the rule requiring activity in the past 3 years to avoid miles expiring will change to 18 months. Seems reasonable to me.
 

sully

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Does activity mean just adding to the points, flights on UA or flights on a related carrier? I would deduce that it should be either the first two given that I have accrued points without ever having flown United.
 

Kiwi Flyer

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Just adding points (by any means) counts as activity. Worst case if close to expiry is buy the minimum number of miles.
 

sully

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Thanks for the clarification KF, my little hops from SIN-KUL-SIN next month will suffice then.
 
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Kiwi Flyer said:
Just adding points (by any means) counts as activity. Worst case if close to expiry is buy the minimum number of miles.
Or using points should also qualify as activity.
 

Reggie

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Full story - Hope this clarifies some questions.

United Arlines will erase frequent-flier miles in accounts that have been inactive for 18 months as of the end of this year. United Mileage Plus miles previously expired after three years of no activity. The change will affect travelers who haven't flown on United or one of its 28 partners, redeemed miles or used Mileage Plus Visa credit cards since July 1, 2006. The airline said one effect of the change will be that its most loyal customers will compete with fewer people for award seats. US airways also closes accounts that have been inactive for 18 months. Continental and Northwest miles dont expire. American has a 36 month time limit. Delta has a 24 month limit on exisiting accounts, but new accounts are terminated if inactive after one year.

Sorry was lazy and only put in a couple of lines for original post.
 

wallacej

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Got an email from UA yesterday confirming that inactive accounts (after 18 months) will be terminated.... this could also assist them in removing outstanding liability from their accounts?????
 
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