Is it worth striving for elite status with United Airlines? They are loosing Frequent Flyers at a fast pace. You've heard the saying ….. ‘It takes years to win a customer and only seconds to lose one.’ The reason that so many people empathized with Dr. Dao when he was brutally, dragged from a United Airlines flight, was that so many people have been treated badly by the Airlines discourteous behavior.
Even if you have never been on a United flight, you can get the same benefits as their Elite members get, for a lot less spent. Economy plus and economy plus enhanced can be bought for $87 or $182 extra to get extra leg room and the latter even gets you United club access.
United is not a luxury Airlines anymore. Continental Air was a cut above other airlines but now that they have combined the two airlines, United has abandoned the customer loyalty winning strategy, and become a low service, budget airline. They have what they call “Basic Economy” tickets which are subject to loads of restrictions including,: NO seat selection or upgrades, no group or family seating, no normal sized carry-on bags and no flight changes or refunds. Certain MileagePlus and MileagePlus Premier member benefits are not available. So is it worth getting elite Status if benefits are not available and Upgrades are never available and have to pay more than the average price?
You can even pay extra for United Signature Service for departures, connections or arrivals at Chicago O'Hare, Houston Intercontinental, New York/Newark, Los Angeles or San Francisco, and experience premium treatment, if you are an inexperienced traveler. You get an unfriendly United employee to hold your hand and guide you through the airport with the "Signature Service".
The tendency of consumers is to buy the discounted flights, but then to realize that they can buy the cheapest flight on any airline, so they look further and then end up staying with a competing airline.
So, they can stop sending me promotion offers, Like, ”For a limited time, you can receive up to 50,000 bonus miles when you purchase miles with United”.If I don’t want to buy their flights, I most certainly don't want to buy miles, because the miles are not fun to use. When I try to use those miles, they try to get me to use them on their partner Airlines and they only give me options to use the miles by flying inconvenient flights, far out of my part of the world. If I buy a flight, at least I have the option to fly on a direct flight.
It feels good to be free to fly any airline and not to have to do mileage runs at the end of the year to keep your status.