How to Keep Your United Airlines Mileage Plus Miles From Expiring

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by Canarsie, Feb 6, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. essxjay
    • Original Member

    essxjay Silver Member

    Many thanks for this tip. My account is about to go pumpkins ~18 hours so lets hope those 156 CO orphan miles post in time!
  2. DealHound
    • Original Member

    DealHound Silver Member

    The Mileage Plus toolbar is finally posting miles for searches to my account! Here is a free way to easily keep all your family members' miles from expiring. Download the toolbar, log in to the desired account, earn 1 mile for every 3 searches per calendar month (up to 100 miles/month, I think). Repeat every few months to keep pushing the expiration out.
  3. YUL36

    YUL36 Silver Member

    Folks I am missing a slew of miles. Way back when in the early 90's when I started flying I amassed about 15,000 MP points on PMUA. I remember at some point they changed the program and new miles past a certain date would expire after 18 months. But the old ones were grandfathered. My MP balance shows the lifetime miles, and new miles, but I only have access to the new miles to redeem. I am baffled because I have never redeemed a single mile on UA so in theory I should have access to the full total amount????
  4. cvarming
    • Original Member

    cvarming Silver Member

    There can be a number of reasons why your lifetime miles and RDMs might be different. For instance, some booking classes award a different number of EQMs and RDMs, and often people are rebooked into such booking classes (Y) during IRROPS. And, your lifetime miles are all earned EQM until 2012, and after 2011 it is only EQM on United and Copa operated flights, so flying on other carriers skews the numbers as well. That said, I would not put it past United to simply forget about obligations from far in the past.
  5. nchristina529

    nchristina529 Member

    What about using the miles on something like the United Airlines Digital Plus Media Store? Will that allow you to keep those miles are do they expire unless you spend a lot of money? New to this yet apparently have been a part of a FFP program for quite a while! Any help would be appreciated!
  6. HaveMilesWillTravel
    • Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    Any activity counts. If you can spend a few miles to buy a song, that will extend the expiration date of the rest of our miles.

    Welcome to MP!
  7. OnTehWings
    • Original Member

    OnTehWings Gold Member

    Welcome to MP and what HaveMilesWillTravel said, any kind of activity on your MileagePlus account will keep the account alive and your miles from expiring.
  8. Mooper
    • Original Member

    Mooper Silver Member

    I love this type of loophole! However, I gave it a try today for a friend and it seems that the system may be different now. I followed your instructions precisely (though the beginning was "Book A Flight", not Reservations/Award Travel), and it went okay until after I confirmed my zip code. Once I did this, rather than asking for a birthday or any other information, it forwarded me to an agent WITHOUT first giving a PNR or asking for the birth date. I tried it with a few city combos and even a couple different family accounts but it didn't work. Method dead?
  9. merice107

    merice107 Silver Member

    When looking at the Terms and Conditions of the Chase United Mileage Plus Visa, this is what it says about miles never expiring:

    "MILES DON'T EXPIRE: Your miles will not expire as long as there is activity on your credit card account, including paying your annual membership fee, and the credit card account is open and not in default. Upon cancellation of your credit card account your miles will expire according to the MileagePlus program rules."

    After you close the card then you have 18 months for you to have activity to your account otherwise those miles (along with any other miles you have in your account) will expire? Is that correct?
  10. cvarming
    • Original Member

    cvarming Silver Member

    If you have no activity with United MP in 18 months your miles expire. Any MP transaction resets the 18 months timer.
    merice107 likes this.
  11. WillTravel

    WillTravel Silver Member

    I think this method works (but confirm). Use and log into MileagePlus.
    Find Groupon on that site. Buy a Groupon Now! where if you don't use it within the very limited time (typically 4-12 hours), you get the money refunded (this is obviously different than the regular Groupons).
    The transaction posts the appropriate miles, which are then taken away, but it does seem to reset the expiration date.

    Or just buy a Groupon that you do actually use - that works too.
    merice107 likes this.
  12. pyndasky

    pyndasky Silver Member

    these are all great suggestions.... personally, I prefer to use my miles to buy (or win at auction) stuff that I need - such as: small digital camera, mouse, etc.... all for a small amout of miles (2K - 5K).
  13. jumpdogjump
    • Original Member

    jumpdogjump Silver Member

    Thanks, all - nice to know we can get miles for a song...
  14. adventuress

    adventuress Silver Member

    Has anybody had any success in getting miles back once expired? I lost my Qantas trip miles of 23,000 because I stupidly let expiration date slip my notice. Does begging help? Writing letters? Claiming to be a relative of he PM?
  15. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

    As far as I know, it depends on how long ago the miles have expired. Some years ago, I bought back my 1-year and 2-year old expired miles from American Airlines for a small fee. When I look at my United Airlines miles account, I can see that I have ~7,000 expired miles, but can't look at them as having been earned in the last 3 years. It's doubtful that I could buy back miles this long expired.

    By all means, you should call the airlines and claim ignorance. If they don't immediately reinstate those expired miles, perhaps they'll tell you how to do so for a nominal fee. Good luck!
  16. mre5765

    mre5765 Silver Member

    Simplest for me. Buy a gift card at Walgreens for Lowes hardware for $15. Navigate to gift card exchange. Exchange the card. Miles show up in less than 24 hours.
  17. Paolo Scuri

    Paolo Scuri Silver Member

    Don't you have to buy a 25$ giftcard at least?
  18. mre5765

    mre5765 Silver Member says $15. It was $15 when I did this for my daughter's M+ account. Walgreens has $15 options for Lowes and few other cards. Lowes was most handy and had the virtue that if it did not work, as I shop enough at Lowes, this was risk free.

    It is really a wonderful system; beats spending a few hundred miles on magazines one does not need.
  19. Wandering Aramean
    • Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

    I dunno...the rates pretty much suck. I'm seeing 840 miles earnt for a $25 gift card, and that's with a promo bonus in place. At that rate you're better off buying via Mileage Accelerator or something.
  20. vickers

    vickers Gold Member

    I signed up for A quick survey will post miles to your account immediately.
    Paolo Scuri likes this.
  21. mre5765

    mre5765 Silver Member

    The prices for staples in a convenience store suck too. This is convenient and one doesn't have to remember to cancel the ticket used for award accelerator. Nor is ones credit line tied up.
  22. Wandering Aramean
    • Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

    The entire process for buying miles - even without the award accelerator - would be a better CPM and nothing to remember to cancel. Or the grand total of an hour over which you buy a ticket, buy miles and then cancel the ticket.

    You're correct that you're paying for convenience but I'd say it is still overpaying, even at that level.
  23. mre5765

    mre5765 Silver Member

    Well I don't know of an award accelerator for $15. Moreover, as of Feb 1, it is no longer sensible accumulate significantly more M+ RDMs. The best strategy for marginal accounts is to keep them from expiring at minimum cost, and wait for a jubilee event where those miles can be used to get something useful.
  24. HaveMilesWillTravel
    • Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    I use marginal accounts for domestic flights. No point waiting until 12,700 miles into 110,000.
  25. goalie
    • Original Member

    goalie Gold Member

    goalie-mom's miles were set to expire on 10/31. I logged into her mileage plus shopping account as her on 10/30 and ordered 3 pairs of socks from Target for $5.00 and the miles posted this morning :eek:
    FriendlySkies likes this.

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