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In case you were in prison or on some uninhabited island with no WIFI and haven’t yet heard the news, on Sunday many folks (myself included) got in on a 4 mile round trip first class ticket to China. If that sounds far-fetched, it’s because it was clearly an “oops” IT moment from United. However, the tickets ticketed with actual ticket numbers and credit cards were charged for the appropriate taxes. Most folks thought it was a long-shot that the tickets would be honored, but it was fun to dream that they might be. United has been quiet on the issue publicly for about 24 hours, but now there is a response from UA Insider on the relevant FT thread:
Hi Everyone, over the weekend, we discovered a united.com programming error that allowed customers to obtain Mileage Plus travel awards to and from Hong Kong for as little as four miles roundtrip per person, substantially below published levels, which we disclose to customers. We have since corrected the error and will be in contact with customers who have tickets issued at the incorrect award amounts. Customers will be given the choice to redeem at the correct mileage amount or re-deposit their award with all fees waived. We regret any inconvenience this has caused you, and appreciate your understanding.
Director, Customer Insights