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Wandering Aramean has a massive list of United fares that no longer qualify for bonus PQMs. It’s not the most surprising move, since this is move back to the way United compensated on some of these fare classes in the past. And, most moves lately by airline loyalty programs are to cost-cutting as opposed to enhancements (most enhancements now are in physical product, new planes and seats). And, the full-fare economy drops surprise me the least.
Cutting the PQM earning for first class fares doesn’t make a ton of sense to me if United is trying to reward people for higher spend, but maybe that’s something they intend to revisit in the future. Just hoping they don’t revisit it by dropping coach to 50% PQMs.
View From the Wing has notes this morning on reducing PQMs for purchase on United. It’s a shame this is happening so early in the year, since I would be a buyer at 8 cents for a limited amount to retain 1K if I needed it. But, it is January and I didn’t intend to keep 1K this year, so I have no idea how many I would need to purchase. And, I certainly wouldn’t be willing to spend thousands of dollars to retain 1K status since I don’t find much value in their systemwide upgrades, due mostly to the fact that they are not eligible for use on some of the lowest fare classes.
But, since you can purchase these PQMs from United without actually flying, in that you can buy a refundable fare PLUS the PQMs, then refund the ticket and keep the extra PQMs, this will most likely be of value to some.