United Airlines is making changes to its Premier program, including updates to baggage allowances and changes in qualification requirements.
These changes will impact qualifying activity for travelers’ 2020 status but they do not affect your Premier status for 2019 (what you are earning toward now in 2018).
Some of these changes are already active, while others will take effect on Jan.1, 2019.
One major improvement for any United Premier traveler is related to baggage on flights going to and from Europe.
All Premier members can check one 70-pound bag for domestic travel, while United Premier Silver Members are now allowed two 70-pound checked bags and Premier Gold members can now enjoy three 70-pound bags to and from Europe in United Economy.
Additionally, all Premier members flying in United Business, United First or United Polaris business class are allowed up to three bags with a maximum weight of 70 pounds per bag.
United’s Premier 1K members will now board during pre-boarding, and Premier Gold Members will move up to boarding in Group 1.
» Learn more: Landing the best airfare is a matter of timing
Premier status changes
Premier 1K members will want to pay attention to the date Jan. 1, 2019.
Starting then, it will become a bit harder to earn Premier Qualifying Miles and the Premier Qualifying Dollars requirement will increase.
The changes that directly impact Premier 1K members are as follows:
- P-class fares will earn 150% Premier Qualifying Miles (formerly 200%)
- The Premier Qualifying Dollars requirement goes up to $15,000 (from $12,000)
How to maximize your rewardsYou want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2018, including those best for:
- Airline miles and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®).
- Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card (Earn unlimited 2 miles per dollar on every purchase).
- Premium travel rewards: Chase Sapphire Reserve® (Get 3 points per dollar on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases).
- No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card (Earn unlimited 1.5 points per dollar spent on all purchases, with no annual fee).
- Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express (Get 5 points per dollar on flights booked directly with airlines or through American Express Travel, plus get access to the Global Lounge Collection). Terms Apply.
Planning a trip? Check out these articles for more inspiration and advice:
Travel rewards bucket list: Showering on a plane
Priceline’s top 15 millennial travel destinations
How to snag credit card rewards flights in peak season