Would You Pay $12,975 or 1,297,500 Miles for United Premier 1K® Status?

by Anthony Losanno
United Plane

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Last month, I shared that I earned Premier Platinum status with United Airlines for 2024. This came as I shifted many of my flights to Delta last year and ended up earning Diamond Medallion after spending many years as a Global Services or Premier 1K® member. Earlier this week I got an email with an offer to upgrade my status, but it’s costly.

United 1K Offer

For $12,975 or 1,297,500 MileagePlus miles, I could buy my way back up to Premier 1K®. As tempting as this offer might sound (said no one, ever), I have no intention of paying this excessive sum of money. Here’s why:

  • I’m flying United less. Most of my flying is now on Delta Air Lines or its partners (with some flights coming up on Star Alliance carriers like Singapore Airlines).
  • I buy J/F tickets, so the upgrade benefit is wasted on me.
  • I almost never check a bag, and can get free bags with both a First Class ticket and my Premier Platinum status.
  • I will be okay boarding with Group 1 versus preboarding.
  • I find the food disgusting on United flights and generally opt out at this point, so the first choice of meal is irrelevant.

With almost $13,000, I can buy a lot of tickets this year in First Class on the flights that I want to fly and won’t feel captive. Shockingly, the price goes up if I don’t jump on this offer by February 1st. Would anyone considering this really wait and then pay $500 more?

Gary at View from the Wing wrote about several United travelers that wrote or called in and asked for extensions. These were granted for free. Imagine how annoyed some people would be if they paid thousands to find out that others were waived in with a phone call?

Anthony’s Take: The exorbitant cost asked here will not be paid by me. I wouldn’t see the value in “upgrading” my status to Premier 1K®. I’d even hesitate to pay this much for Global Services as that program has been considerably watered down as well.

(Featured Image Credit: United Airlines.)

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eightblack January 21, 2024 - 3:09 pm

I agree with you. I wouldn’t pay it either. But then again, I would do what I have to in order to requalify as a 1K because the PP are simply too valuable for me as I use every point every year (mostly to upgrade to and from Australia). And you are right about the food on UA. This is their achilles heel…

jeffk January 25, 2024 - 5:45 pm

I am 73 years old now, retired federal law enforcement that was always on the road anywhere in the U.S. or territories of the U.S. I flew out of Dulles in D.C. a lot and used to earn Premier 1K easy every year just by flying. I miss that, but would not pay $12 for sure. I agree with you.


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