TRAVEL NEWS: United Airlines recently announced a change to its 2020 MileagePlus Premier Status qualification structure.

2020 Premier Program Changes

Currently, MileagePlus members are able to earn status using these three ways:

  1. Premier qualifying miles (distance)
  2. Premier qualifying segments (number of flights flown)
  3. Premier qualifying dollars (how much you spend)

Starting January 2020, earning Premier status will no longer include actual miles flown. Instead, points will be based on two metrics:

  1. Premier qualifying points – MileagePlus members will earn 1 PQP for each U.S. dollar spent. Like before, only the base fare earns PQP. Taxes and fees don’t count toward spend requirements.
  2. Premier qualifying flights — every flight you take (takeoff and landing) you earn 1 PQF. What’s new, is different fare classes (business class or first) will no longer matter. All fares will earn at the same rate. The only exception is basic economy fares: they are not eligible for earning PQF.

How to earn points with 2020 changes (info provided by United)

  • Base fare + surcharge
  •  Economy Plus® seating or subscriptions
  •  Preferred seat purchases
  •  *NEW* MileagePlus Upgrade Award co-pays
  •  *NEW* Paid upgrades
  •  *NEW* Flights ticketed and operated by our Star AllianceTM partners
(Image provided by United Airlines)

2019 and 2020 qualification comparison

(Image provided by United Airlines)

Some good news

Earning PQF and PQP on partner flights:

“Previously, if you flew on a Star AllianceTM partner airline and your flight was not ticketed by United, you couldn’t earn Premier qualifying dollars. With the new program, you’ll receive spend credit on these flights in the form of Premier qualifying points.”

  • Preferred partner airlines — PQP will be equal to award miles* earned divided by 5.
  • MileagePlus partner airlines — it will be award miles earned divided by 6.

For more detailed and in-depth information can be found on the United Airlines site.