Don’t forget about this Award Ticket CPU Requirement and two ways to confirm you’ve met it

Share via:

A couple of nights ago in FlyerTalk a user asked a question that reminded me of a requirement that must be met for Premier members who book an award ticket and have interest in upgrading via CPU. His question also brought up  two ways in which you can confirm that you in fact have met said requirement. See the thread below.

FT User: Is there any indicator on your MP account that you’re a card holder? I just to make sure everything’s been linked up for possible award CPUs.

Me: I don’t think the card has anything to do with CPU’s? Are you a Premier member? That’s what should be in place for possible CPU’s. Although CPUs can hardly be called ‘possible’ for lower level Premiers.

FT User: Premier members with the card are eligible to be on the CPU list for award tickets.  (Evidently I didn’t read his question thoroughly – ouch!)

Me: yea..missed the ‘award’ part in your original message. I don’t know that there’s any ‘official indicator’. I’d do a search for an award booking. UA is now putting a note in the different flight options telling you something like ‘this award flight is available to you because you’re a card member’, not to be confused with the same message for ‘Premiers’. Not pretty, but confirms whether the system knows you’re a card holder.

FT User: Good find. “Exclusively available to you as a MileagePlus Premier and Chase Cardmember”

I think I redeemed myself after having replied with a wrong response. I’ll surely be more careful when reading other users’ questions/comments. In any case, I think this requirement is not often talked about or referred to. Personally, I’ve never made use of this Premier benefit, because I book my awards in the class that I want to fly in. But I can see how some may be pressed because of mileage balance and time constraints to book perhaps an economy flight but wishing to fly premium. For Premier members the hope is there that their upgrade will go through, but this is possible ONLY IF the Premier Member is ALSO a primary cardholder of one of United’s Chase co-branded credit cards.

While this FT user was aware of the requirement and was a primary cardmember, he wanted to ensure that United’s system was also aware, as sometimes systems may fail in communicating with each other, leaving you hanging when needed. And this is where my moment of redemption came about.

One way to confirm that you’ve met the requirement per the system

I recalled that since a few months ago United placed alerts in their award search tool, letting folks know that X or Y option is available to you because you’re a Premier member or you’re a cardmember or both. I advised the user to try any award search and that he should notice these alerts as confirmation, as shown below.

Another way to confirm that you’ve met the requirement per the system

A different user then jumped in and advised of another way to double check that the system is up to date. FT User 2: “Check the expiration date of your miles – should be a “thank you for being a Chase cardholder, you miles won’t expire” message (as hovertext or similar).” This is better done in the United app. Simply go to your MileagePlus account screen by clicking on your mileage balance in the welcome screen after login into the app.


I hope this helps some of you when in doubt about the system having sync issues with Chase. Now the real concern begins: will your upgrade clear? That’s an entirely different story. 🙂


Give me your thoughts