United Blocks AwardWallet Access To Mileage Accounts
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Joining the other airlines that have all blocked AwardWallet’s access to their customer’s mileage accounts in the past year – American, Delta and Southwest – United has announced that it will no longer make its MileagePlus members’ account information, mileage balances or reservations accessible to AwardWallet’s users.
AwardWallet is a site that keeps track of all your mileage and point balances in one convenient place. It’s one of the best ways to stay on top of your points assets.
I actually still manually log in to each individual points and miles account since I’m fairly obsessive about it (hey, I’m The Points Guy!), but I do find it useful to have a single place with a dashboard that gives me a snapshot of my points wealth, various expiration dates, and it helps me think more strategically about booking awards – choosing one program over another for various reasons.
Plus, AwardWallet doesn’t just track travel programs – you can store tons of other loyalty program info including your Subway or even Harrods points accounts. The site also has useful features like automatically adding your flight itineraries that will send you check-in reminders and flight status updates…unless the airline has blocked the site’s availability to do so, as all four major ones above have.
The good news is, AwardWallet has come up with a workaround for Delta and United where you can have your statements and reservations emailed directly to your AwardWallet mailbox so that your AwardWallet account will be updated. It’s not instantaneous like it used to be, but it’s better than nothing. You could also use another site that still has an agreement with United like UsingMiles, which can also track Delta SkyMiles but not American or Southwest accounts.
My guess is that this is all about airlines keeping customers coming back to their sites so they can continue hard sells on fare sales, credit card offers and various other products you always see advertised on them or that they are trying to extort fees out of AwardWallet for access to customer information as another small revenue source.
I plan on writing to United asking them to reinstate access, and I encourage readers to do the same whether it’s by email, regular mail or even a Tweet (though @United is fairly unresponsive in my opinion). Unfortunately these actions didn’t seem to make a difference in the case of Delta, but United is struggling to keep its loyal flyers happy so maybe they’ll be more willing to listen.