Redeeming for coach isn’t always a bad value….

Via View from the Wing:

Through May 14, United is offering roundtrip coach awards to Europe for 40,000 miles. They just upped the price from 50,000 to 55,000 January 1. But times are tough, seats are empty, and United is betting they’ll stay that way at least until the “usually-busy-in-back” transatlantic summer season.

Normally I would never suggest redeeming miles for a coach award, but 40,000 miles to Europe is a steal. It’s still worth checking revenue fares first, since many fares to Europe are currently in the $400-600 range, but I’m sure there are some cases where this makes sense. For example, fares to Moscow aren’t anywhere near $600, so if you’re brave enough to fly coach and money is tighter than miles, this is a steal.

Unfortunately it’s only good for United metal flights booked on united.com, which means no open-jaws, stopovers, etc.

About lucky

Ben Schlappig (aka Lucky) is a travel consultant, blogger, and avid points collector. He travels about 400,000 miles a year, primarily using miles and points to fund his first class experiences. He chronicles his adventures, along with industry news, here at One Mile At A Time.

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Comments

  1. Gary: One word: Wuss :p

    (says he with 2 TATL Legs coming up and the “joy” of IAD)

    It boils down to the classic question “How much do you value your miles?”. If there’s no C/F available, and you need to get to the other side of the pond on the cheap, then its not the worst idea out there.

    Of course, you would had stocked up on Abeium etc before pushback.

    the other was to use these are as positioning flights to other locations if you’re starting an MR somewhere else (or taking advantage of another supercheap fare).

    As long as you’re NOT onboard the back of a UA747… it’s not THAT bad.

    Umm.

    Ok.

    Maybe it is 😉

  2. I don’t think the 15k off is applicable for Russia. Just did a search and UA’s new flight into Moscow was still coming up as 55k miles. And, Russia fares are pretty cheap…I think UA is running something like ~$680 from NYC via IAD for this new route.

  3. Hah, believe it or not I might even consider this if I had time. While coach usually sucks, one of the better Economy Plus seats can actually be quite comfortable. On the 767’s, rows 19 and 20 really aren’t that bad, and of course the 777 has “special” seats too. The 747 is a different story, as Kevincm says….

    Blake, I just managed to pull it up for DME. I’m guessing you were looking during the blackout period or after the promo was over. I agree it’s not really worth it if you find a fare like $680 (especially since you’ll be earning tons of miles for a revenue ticket, especially as an elite), but if there’s a case where the fare is over $800 or so, it might be worth it.

  4. While UA’s promotion is ok, 40k to Europe is no “steal” — it’s the *standard* off-peak redemption amount on AA flights to Europe (or partner awards AA to BA, Malev, or IB). This is just United matching AA’s standard award.

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