Some airline carriers, if not all, may offer their customers a certain type of elite status memberships with which travellers can experience more comfort than others. A Review of United Airlines Global Services Elite Membership and Benefits. United Airlines is no exception here. This US-based airline carrier offers a couple of elite statuses, which include Premier Silver, Premier Gold, Premier Platinum and Premier 1K. Now, the airline has also come up with another exclusive elite status membership that is called United Global Services.
In this travel guide prepared by Treknova, we will look at an in-depth review of United Airlines’ Global Services membership, including the eligibility criteria and benefits.
A Quick Look at United Global Services
United Airlines offers an invitation-only elite status called Global Services to United’s most elite and profitable customers. Thus, a person with a United Global Services membership can expect several benefits and customer service that far exceeds anything that other United passengers receive.
Having elite status with United comes with a number of perks. The higher level of status you have, the more perks you can expect. For many who travel for work, this can mean fighting to earn Premier 1K status to improve their chances of upgrades on domestic flights. However, earning top tier Premier 1K status with United requires you (or your employer) to spend $12,000 on United flights each year. Premier Silver, Premier Gold, and Premier Platinum status levels are a bit easier to earn.
Each status level requires you to meet a Premier Qualifying Dollar (PQD) requirement plus either a Premier Qualifying Miles (PQM) or Premier Qualifying Segments (PQS) requirement.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, United Airlines has reduced theeligibility criteria for its Global Services status through the year 2022 program, beginning from January 1, 2021. The new change is as follows:
Premier Silver status now requires:
- Earn 8 Premier Qualifying Flights (PQF) and 3,000 Premier Qualifying Points (PQP), or
- Meet a higher PQP goal by earning 3,500 points only
Premier Gold now requires:
- Earn 16 Premier Qualifying Flights (PQF) and 6,000 Premier Qualifying Points (PQP), or
- Meet a higher PQP goal by earning 7,000 points only
Premier Platinum now requires:
- Earn 24 Premier Qualifying Flights (PQF) and 9,000 Premier Qualifying Points (PQP), or
- Meet a higher PQP goal by earning 10,000 points only
Premier 1K now requires:
- Earn 36 Premier Qualifying Flights (PQF) and 13,500 Premier Qualifying Points (PQP), or
- Meet a higher PQP goal by earning 15,000 points only
So, in order to be eligible to qualify for any Premier level, you must fly a minimum of four paid flight segments on flights operated by United and/or United Express during a calendar year. Basic Economy (N) purchases do not count toward the four segment minimum. Members holding United MileagePlus Premier status at the end of 2020 will receive a 25% bonus of the 2021 PQP requirement to help them achieve status for the following year.
How to Qualify for United Global Services
There are certain criteria that you must fulfil in order to become a United Global Services member and avail all the benefits thatthe program offers.
As already mentioned above, it is known that Global Services membership is based on invitations only. However, the eligibility conditions still remain unpublished to us. As of now, we only know that United selects its members at their sole discretion. But, what we can speculate is that in order to be eligible for United Global Services, you must rack up as many points and miles or spend thousands of dollars per year, particularly on full-fare ticket types. These full-fare tickets are changeable and refundable tickets.
Thus, according to United Airlines, “Global Services recognizes the extraordinary dedication of our top flyers. We consider a number of factors beyond the usual Premier-qualifying criteria. We look at your travel spend on United-operated flights relative to that of other top Premier flyers over recent consecutive years. Usually, members invited to Global Services tend to consistently purchase premium cabins or fully refundable tickets.”
Once you have fulfilled the requirements that are necessary to get into the membership, you can check your membership status online on United’s website. They have a dedicated page called My Status which you can access with your United account. Here, you can view and manage your earned points etc.
Benefits of United Global Services
Being an invitation-only elite membership, there are plenty of benefits which you can avail and make your travel even more comfortable.
Below are the benefits you get as a United Global Services elite status member.
Global Services Welcome Kit
When United Airlines chooses you as a Global Services member, they will send you a welcome kit. This welcome kit basically highlights your elite status and the benefits you are entitled to.
Dedicated E-mail Service
You are provided with a dedicated e-mailing service with very quick response. You can send e-mails regarding your MileagePlus program and any enquiries that you have.
United Global Services members are provided with private or dedicated check-in areas at airports that are served by United Airlines. There’s also Global Reception centres along with priority TSA security access. You can bring a companion along who is travelling with you.
You never have to worry about check-in lines when departing Chicago-O’Hare (ORD), Newark (EWR), or San Francisco (SFO). There are dedicated check-in areas just for them, which can be a huge benefit if running late.
Global Services members will be the first to board and get settled into their seats. This means you get to board the plane before other passengers, which include people with disabilities, passengers who need more time boarding, families with young children, and often active-duty military personnel.
Global Services members are entitled to priority upgrades. This may be useful, for instance, when booking Economy class ticket on trans-continental flights.
Upgrades on Award Flights
Premier members who have one of the co-branded United cards are eligible for Complimentary Premier Upgrades (CPUs) on award flights. To upgrade, there must be space in the RN fare class.
Meanwhile, Global Services members can receive a CPU if there is space in the PN fare class, which often has much better availability. While Global Services members receive access to this PN fare class availability, Premier members do not.
Upgrades with Miles and Certificates
Global Services members can also redeem United miles for upgrades into the PN fare class. As we mentioned above, the PN fare class has much better availability than the standard upgrade space (RN fare class).
Additionally, Regional Premier Upgrades (RPUs) and Global Upgrade Certificates (GPUs) can also be used by Global Services members to upgrade award tickets.
Companion Saver Award with a Cash Ticket
When you consider the fact that those with Global Services are not only spending a lot of money on United but also travelling very frequently, the companion perk is a really nice touch from United.
If Global Services member books a cash ticket, he or she may bring along a companion for the cost of a saver level award ticket. This allows members to extend a work trip into a vacation with a spouse, loved one, or friend.
Not only that, but these companion saver level awards are available in whatever cabin the Global Services members have booked. That means if a member has paid for a business class ticket, his or her companion can book a business class award at saver level.
Mercedes-Benz Transfer between Flights
Probably one of the coolest benefits of being a Global Services Member is a ride to your flight in a Mercedes-Benz. Now, Global Services members won’t receive this every time they connect, as it’s only used for tight connections at specific airports.
The airports with this Mercedes-Benz service include Chicago-O’Hare (ORD), Denver (DEN), Houston (IAH), Los Angeles (LAX), and San Francisco (SFO).
Global Services Customer Service
United Global Services members also receive a dedicated phone service. There is a separate team of trained representatives that can assist you immediately. However, United does not provide this phone number to any other customers other than the select Global Services members.
Customer service is at its best for Global Services members. They can expect a dedicated phone line that very rarely has any wait time, United staff tracking their flight status to ensure connections are made, and getting served meals before anyone else when flying Business or First class. United really goes above and beyond for its Global Services members.
Conclusion – United Airlines Global Services Elite Membership and Benefits
Though most people may give a second thought before spending enough to be considered for an invitation to Global Services, a look at the benefits of this membership is a great insight. Also, how United Airlines’ customer service centre works may amaze you.
United Global Services members not only receive a number of benefits, but United Airlines really looks after them to ensure their travel experiences are seamless and enjoyable.