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How to Upgrade Your Seats in United Airlines?

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Few things can be more delightful than having your seats upgraded from Economy or Premium Economy to Business and First Class and enjoying spacious seats, better flight amenities, and a higher standard of dining options. Upgrading your flight seat reservations in United Airlines is not as easy as it used to be. Based on the availability of fare upgrades and different types of airfares, you can plan well to make flight upgrades either online, through a mobile app, or on call. Besides this, United Airlines allocate upgrade preference according to a priority basis.

Read this blog to know more about how you can upgrade your United airlines flight reservation and avail services of an experienced travel agent like Airlineticketworld in case you need their help.

Steps to Make United Airlines Flight Upgrade

#1. Check the availability of seat upgrades in the United

For this, you need to enable ‘United’s Expert Mode’ which helps you to check the availability of different fare classes.

Do you know how to enable United’s Expert Mode? You simply need to follow these steps in the right sequence to get the same.

  • Visit United airline’s official site and log on to your United Mileage Plus account
  • Click “View account” located near your name.
  • Open “Profile & Preferences” under “My Account” and Choose “Preferences and settings”
  • Open “Special preferences and accommodations” from the drop-down menu
  • Scroll to the bottom and check “Enable expert mode” that you can find above the “Save” button.
  • Click “Save”

As you enable Expert Mode, you need to enter your flight booking details and click ‘Details’ on the booking page which will help you see the available United fare classes. You can easily view the numbers displayed next to different fare classes that display the number of available upgrades. An R9 would indicate the availability of 9 upgrades from Economy to Business or first-class seats.

As seat upgrades in United Airlines depend on various factors and the airline follows a priority order for upgrades, you may get wait listed for seat upgrades and may or may not be confirmed till departure. United Airlines gives preference to purchased tickets and it is in their best interest to sell tickets when they can with maximum profit.

Priority for Gaining Complimentary Upgrade

It is crucial to know the priority order of waitlisting for the United Airlines upgrade so that you can use the information for seat upgrades.

  • PlusPoints upgrades and MileagePlus Upgrade Awards
  • Upgrades based on the elite status of the traveler
  • Upgrades based on fare class
  • Upgrades for Chase United Club℠ Business Card and United MileagePlus® Presidential PlusSM Cardholders
  • Upgrades for United Corporate Preferred participants
  • Upgrades for United Chase cardmembers with $25,000 in annual credit card spending
  • Upgrades based on the date and time of the request

How to Get United Flight Upgrades using PlusPoints and United Miles?

Frequent flyers in United Airlines get PlusPoints after they achieve the elite status level. A Platinum member gets 40 PlusPoints while a Platinum 2K is awarded 280 PlusPoints besides the 40 they receive from gaining Platinum Status.

You can request a seat upgrade through online, mobile app from Economy to Premium Plus and United Polaris Business Class. On a short-haul flight, an upgrade from Economy to United Business or First Class requires 20 PlusPoints each while an upgrade from Premium Plus to Business will require 10 PlusPoints.

On a long haul flight, an upgrade from Discounted Economy to Polaris Business requires 80 PlusPoints while from Economy to Polaris Business, you will have to spend 40 PlusPoints. Likewise, an upgrade from Premium Plus to Polaris Business takes 30 PlusPoints while from an Economy to Premium Plus, you will have to spend 20 PlusPoints.

How to Upgrade Your United Seats on Already Booked Tickets?

A traveler can upgrade their United flight booking through any of the three methods listed below:

  • Upgrade seats online
  • Upgrade by making a call United Airlines Customer Service
  • Upgrade at the gate

For an online flight upgrade, you need to sign in to your MileagePlus account and retrieve your current ticket booked. When you sign in and get your existing reservation, you will find an option to redeem an upgrade. You have the options to choose from here— buy an upgrade with cash or use miles to get an upgrade.

You can even call United Airlines customer service at @ +1-888-720-1433 / 800-864-831.

Flight upgrade at the gate is not recommended as, by the time of flight departure, there may or may not be any seat left for an upgrade.

TAKEAWAY: Insightful Tips for Success in United Flight Upgrade

Want to up your chance of success getting an upgrade in United flights? Here is a summarised form of all tips or action items you should follow:

  • Achieve Higher Elite Status level in MileagePlus Program

Based on the level of your MileagePlus elite status, you can not only get complimentary upgrades but also lock in upgrades before other passengers. Flight upgrades for a premium 1K member get approved 96 hours before the departure while Silver members are eligible for upgrades on the departure date.

  •  Basic Economy Tickets are a strict NO for Upgrade

Travelers with Basic Economy tickets in United can’t make changes or cancel their flight tickets and they can’t select their seats. They are not eligible for any kind of upgrade. Hence, you should refrain from booking Basic Economy tickets.

  • Earn PlusPoints with Shopping from Credit Cards

As you move higher on the Elite Status Levels, you earn PlusPoints that help you in flight upgrades on United or Alliance partners.

  • Shop with United Credit Card

If you want to rack up MileagePlus points quickly, you can do so by getting United Club Business Card, United Club Infinite Card, or other United Credit cards. Along with the lucrative Sign-up bonuses, you earn many miles for each dollar spent on the credit card.

Feel free to contact an expert customer service rep by calling on United customer service number or an expert travel agent of ATW on-call at @+1-888-720-1433 for a seamless United flight booking upgrade.