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Update: Continental is now a part of United.
I was searching for awards to Honolulu today for a client and decided to use Continental.com, which has a decent award engine. I was happy when I saw low-level business class awards for Newark-Honolulu through Chicago on United for 40,000 miles each way.
EWR-ORD-HNL in “Business”
When I was checking out, however, I noticed something odd. The Chicago- Honolulu legs were in economy. You know, no big deal that 80% of the flight time of the award was actually in economy class.
Economy class for business class price
Shame on Continental for this sneaky award pricing. I know its always up to the consumer to double and triple check their purchases before buying, but I can imagine a lot of people would purchase this award thinking they were in business class. I can’t imagine the shock when they check in and have a coach boarding pass for the longest leg of the journey.
I’m hoping this is just an IT glitch that Continental can get fixed. I’m going to email them and I’ll update everyone on their response.
Moral of the story- double/triple/quadruplecheck your award bookings at Continental.com (and all airline websites for that matter) to make sure they are what you think they are.