Great Day to Share and Get United Upgrades

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If you are a Platinum or 1K elite traveler on United you will earn a number of Regional and Global Premier Upgrades that you can apply to paid travel to confirm upgrade space on domestic or international flights.  Many of the upgrades earned throughout the year have a January 31st expiration date.  Unless you can get that extended by United (have heard reports of 1Ks that requalified getting their GPUs extended to April), they will go poof if they aren’t used before February 1st.

This means not only do they have to be applied to a reservation by January 31st, but the flight they are attached to has to actually happen by that date.  That means if you have some GPUs or RPUs sitting around that are about to expire, that you can use them to help a friend (or stranger) have a more comfortable flight some time in the next two days.  If you have a paid and eligible United flight in the next couple of days that has R space available, that also means that maybe you will fall into a pile of luck and be gifted someone’s upgrade.  If you are booked on an international space that requires a GPU, you must be booked in a fare class of W or higher, but if you are on a flight that only requires a regional upgrade, your fare class doesn’t matter.  These are flights like domestic trips within the US, trips from the mainland to Hawaii, trips from the US to Caribbean, etc.

Use RPU to upgrade to BusinessFirst seats!

Use RPU to upgrade to BusinessFirst seats!

Learn to check to see if there is R space by reading this post.  Note that it is against the rules to sell things like upgrades, so please don’t do that here.  However, if you want to try and give amazing travel karma to a stranger by sharing an expiring upgrade, then feel free to post here.  I have seen multiple similar posts of folks sharing upgrades on places like Milepoint today (here is one example and here is another and here is another, and another and yet another).  So, if you are in need of an upgrade on a paid United flight that has R space and departs by February 1st, then it can’t hurt to nicely ask.  Just be ready to send some good karma back into the world in exchange.

Being that I travel with a family and go through things quickly, I am fresh out of upgrades, otherwise I would happily share.  I do, however, have two United Club passes that expire on March 31, 2014 that were given to me by a reader that I will happily share to the first person that asks in the comment log. 

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    • Regina, as long as you are going to be able to use them in a United Club by 3/31 they are yours. Email me your mailing address to mommypoints at

  1. Hi Summer, I’ve got 2 questions:

    1) What thread/forum/website is the best for requesting a United GPU from an elite UA traveler who happens to have a spare one to “gift”?

    2) Do elite flyers ever gift non-elites with GPUs that aren’t on the edge of expiring? I ask because my UA long-haul international flight is in mid-March, so asking an elite member for a GPU that expires on Jan 31 isn’t gonna work.


  2. I have been stuck on the Gulf Coast for two days but have confirmed flights to SFO through IAH tomorrow. I’d happily take an upgrade from anyone inclined to donate! And, I would certainly pay it forward.

    Btw, love your blog.

  3. I am definitely looking for a RPU or GPU for my flights within the next 2 months. If anyone has a kind heart, please contact me! Thank you so much

    • KT, flight has to be today or tomorrow for the expiring upgrades…and that is if anyone here has some to share. 😉

  4. @ASW – You do realize that our GPUs are worth hundreds of dollars a piece, right? Unless you’re in the military, I can’t see why anyone would just give you their GPUs. You might as well be asking for free money.

  5. ASW, best is coupon connection on Flyertalk. I believe you need 90 posts on FT to access that forum (real posts, not just stuff to up your count). Though my best success is from people I have met in real life via miles and points events and routinely communicate with. Short of that, coupon connection. Rarely is something just outright gifted to strangers unless it is about to expire because they are so hard to earn and most are able to use them for themselves or friends/family.
    Jonathan, it was a fair question, but you are right they aren’t normally outright gifted short of being on the verge of expiration.
    AS, when you are logged in they are listed under your “Premier Status Qualification Info” section.

    To everyone, I have linked a couple of threads on MilePoint where upgrades are being given away, so encourage you to go ask nicely there. I’ll post more links if I see them.

  6. Have three links to folks giving away upgrades in the post now (remember, for United flights today or tomorrow). Let’s spread the travel karma!

  7. Audrytec, so nice of you! I recommend if anyone is interested to post your email address so you can be contacted by Audrytec. I don’t want to post the email address of anyone that has already raised their hand without their permission.

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