United is giving customers some very needed flexibility that will come in handy when they need to rebook their travel. The concept is simple: United is helping customers find and use their travel credits with a few easy moves. United is the only airline to make it this easy for customers to use their credits as the numbers are now automatically displayed as a payment option during the checkout process.
This functionality is available for MileagePlus members now and the airline is working to roll it out to all customers in the near future. Also, beginning this week, United is now the first to let customers use their travel credits for extra legroom seats and to pre-pay for checked baggage.
These industry firsts, along with other new options, such as the ability to combine multiple travel credits and use them on partner airlines, give United customers the most flexibility for such tasks in the airline industry. For customers who have travel credits issued on or before August 31, 2021, United is also allowing a one-time opportunity to share these credits with friends and family.
The airline is deep into a customer experience transformation campaign, and continues to invest to enhance the travel experience with new policies that simplify the travel loop end to end.
“Unlike most airlines where travel credits are difficult to use, at United we’re doing something different,” said Toby Enqvist, chief customer office for United. “We’re showing our customers they have credits – and we’re making them easier than ever to use. It’s not just the right thing to do for our customers, but it’s also the right way to re-introduce more customers to the United travel experience, which we’re convinced will make them more likely to fly with us in the future.”
Using the United app or official website, customers with an electronic travel certificate (ETC) or a future flight credit (FFC), can enjoy these options and flexibilities:
• Combine multiple travel credits to apply when booking new travel plans (customers can now combine multiple Future Flight Credits (FFCs) or Electronic Travel Certificates (ETCs), and will soon be able to combine ETCs and FTCs together)
• Book travel on partner airlines
• Purchase extra legroom seats and pre-pay for checked baggage at time of check-out
• Share travel credits with a friend or family member from wholly unused travel credits issued on or before August 31, 2021 by applying travel credits as payment on check-out screen
The airline is also showcasing inflight upgrades, including the option to pre-order snacks and beverages online and through the airline’s app. Customers can book trips without worry as they have the flexibility to adjust their travel with no change fees. United was the first global U.S. airline to eliminate change fees on most tickets and to allow all customers to fly standby for free on the same day of travel to the same destination. The company also upgraded hundreds of aircraft over the past many months and invested in providing larger overhead bins, augmented seatback entertainment and fast Wi-Fi.
Regarding pandemic precautions and sustainability actions, United:
• Became the first airline to offer customers the ability to check their destination’s travel requirements, schedule COVID-19 tests and more on its mobile app and website.
• Invested in emerging technologies that are designed to decarbonize air travel, like an agreement to work with urban air mobility company Archer, an investment in aircraft startup Heart Aerospace and a purchase agreement with Boom Supersonic.
• Committed to going 100% green by 2050 by reducing all greenhouse gas emissions without relying on traditional carbon offsets
• Eliminated change fees for all economy and premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S.