Continental introduces systemwide upgrades and Presidential Platinum status

In other news, hell froze over. You heard me right. Check out CO Insider‘s post on FlyerTalk. Here’s some great news for Continental flyers.

Starting next year, customers that accrue 100,000 elite qualifying miles or 120 segments with OnePass will earn four electronic systemwide upgrades. Best of all, they’re valid on all published fares to anywhere Continental flies and are transferrable! While the earning clock starts on January 1, you can only start redeeming them in mid-2010. Why Continental didn’t just raise Platinum status to 100,000 elite qualifying miles and offer the systemwide upgrades with the status is beyond me, but I guess this is better for those that fly between 75,000 and 100,000 miles per year.

Continental also introduced their version of Global Services. Well, sort of. It’ll be called Presidential Platinum, and what makes it unique is that Continental actually published the qualification criteria for the first year — $30,000 in spend is required. The earning clock starts on January 1 and the program takes effect in mid-2010. What are the benefits? Well, top upgrade priority (which is huge since there are so many Platinum members at Continental), a dedicated phone line, plus a fee waiver on the Continental Presidential Plus Mastercard, which comes with access to the Presidents Club. So while it’s not quite as rewarding as Global Services, the threshold is quite a bit lower and is defined, which is a nice thing.

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. one very interesting thing. 4MM = Presidential Platinum for life! If this survives the merger, there might be a chance for people like us to get GS after all, and for life!

  2. I assume these SWUs will be capacity controlled as are United’s. The devil will be in the details of course….if nobody can easily use them…I doubt CO will make this mistake. Better to have nothing than your top tier fliers with useless certs in their accounts.

    The ability to use them on any fare class is VERY attractive. I can’t help but wonder if we’ll see the same on UA. With CO allowing them on any fare…AA allowing theirs on any fare. Sure we get 6 but I’d rather have 4 on any fare than 6?? HMM…

    Will CO fliers be able to use their SWUs on UA and vice versa? Hopefully someday….

  3. So they say these SWUs are transferable! Good news for those of us that fly less than 100K but might be able to find a “good friend” somewhere. I wonder about any restrictions on being “sold or bartered”??? The posting on FT says CO like to cut out the fine print, so we’ll see …

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