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Book now: Saver business class award space on several of United's new London flights

Oct. 28, 2021
6 min read
Double decker buses driving along Westminster Bridge in front of Big Ben in London
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Earlier today, United unveiled a handful of new flights to London. The expansion added new frequencies to London-Heathrow (LHR) from key United hubs like Denver (DEN), Newark (EWR) and San Francisco (SFO). Further, the Chicago-based airline will resume daily flights to London from Los Angeles (LAX) and start previously announced flights from Boston (BOS).

Some of these new flights are chock-full of open business class award space that's bookable with United MileagePlus and partner miles, presenting a great way to book an early 2022 trip to Europe. Specifically, flights from Boston have plentiful award space starting in March. We've also had some look snagging some out of Newark. You'll find more limited award space on other routes.

Let's take a closer look at what flights have award space and how to book it with your airline miles or transferable points.

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The deal

Airline: United Airlines
Routes: Most award space on BOS-LHR, limited space on EWR-LHR and others
Cost: 120,000 United MileagePlus miles roundtrip and $335.57 in taxes and fees; various pricing with Star Alliance partners like ANA Mileage Club, Air Canada Aeroplan and Avianca LifeMiles. One-way overnight flights from the U.S. to LHR will price at 60,000 miles and $5.60.
Dates: March to May 2022
Pay with: The Platinum Card® from American Express (5x on airfare booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel, on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year), Citi Premier® Card (3x on air travel ), Chase Sapphire Reserve (3x on travel), American Express® Gold Card (3x on airfare when booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel) or Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on travel).

Open business class award space to London

(Photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy)

We're currently finding award space on most of United's new London flights from Boston, starting in March 2022 and continuing through the spring.

That said, some of this pricing isn't initially displaying on United's search tool. United typically charges 60,000 miles one-way for saver business class flights from the U.S. to Europe, but the United search engine is showing moderately higher pricing on some routes. Don't fret — this is an error on many flights.

(Screenshot courtesy of united.com)

Saver award pricing should show once you select an individual flight fand start the booking process. This may not be the case on all dates, but there's plenty of business class award space out there on some of these routes.

(Screenshot courtesy of united.com)

We're also able to find this saver award space on partner websites, like Air Canada.

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(Screenshot courtesy of aircanada.com)

While most of the award space we found was from Boston, you'll also find some award space on other United flights to London. Alternatively, you may be able to book connecting flights from your home airport to London via Boston at the saver rates. Run your own searches and see if there's open award space on the flights you'd like to book.

How to book

You can book these flights online — just log into the Star Alliance loyalty program you'd like to use to book and run a search.

Then, follow the on-screen prompt when you find a flight you'd like to book. If you're transferring points, make sure to find award space first before you transfer so you're not stuck with airline miles you can't use.

Related: The best websites for searching Star Alliance award availability

(Screenshot courtesy of aircanada.com)

Maximize your purchase

Don’t forget to use a card that earns additional points on airfare purchases, such as The Platinum Card from American Express (5x on airfare booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel, on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year), Citi Premier Card (3x on air travel), Chase Sapphire Reserve (3x on travel), American Express Gold Card (3x on airfare when booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel) or Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on travel).

This won't matter much if you are only booking the flight there but when booking a round-trip the taxes and fees add up. Also remember, if you are booking these flights with United miles, you can change or cancel your award flight 31 or more days before departure for no fee and even change an award flight originating in the U.S. for free less than 30 days from departure. Essentially, this means you can book now and change your mind later.

Feature photo by S-F/Shutterstock.com

Featured image by (Photo by S-F/Shutterstock.com)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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TPG featured card

Best for the well-traveled foodie
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review
Apply for American Express® Gold Card
at American Express's secure site

Rewards

3 - 4X points
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
3XEarn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.

Intro offer

60,000 bonus points
Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

Annual Fee

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Recommended Credit

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Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

There's a lot to love about the Amex Gold card. It's been a fan favorite during the pandemic because of its fantastic rewards rate on restaurants (that includes takeout and delivery in the U.S.!) and U.S. supermarkets. If you're hitting the skies soon, you'll also earn bonus points on travel. Paired with up to $120 in Uber Cash (for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders) and up to $120 in annual dining statement credits at eligible partners, there's no reason that the foodie shouldn't add this card to their wallet. Enrollment required.

Pros

  • 4x on dining at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets (on the first $25,000 in purchases per calendar year; then 1x)
  • 3x on flights booked directly with the airline or with Amex Travel
  • Welcome bonus of 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first six months

Cons

  • Weak on travel outside of flights and everyday spending bonus categories
  • Not as useful for those living outside the U.S.
  • Some may have trouble using Uber/food credits
  • Few travel perks and protections
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Apply for American Express® Gold Card
at American Express's secure site
Terms & restrictions apply. See rates & fees
Best for the well-traveled foodie
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
3XEarn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

    60,000 bonus points
  • Annual Fee

    $250
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

There's a lot to love about the Amex Gold card. It's been a fan favorite during the pandemic because of its fantastic rewards rate on restaurants (that includes takeout and delivery in the U.S.!) and U.S. supermarkets. If you're hitting the skies soon, you'll also earn bonus points on travel. Paired with up to $120 in Uber Cash (for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders) and up to $120 in annual dining statement credits at eligible partners, there's no reason that the foodie shouldn't add this card to their wallet. Enrollment required.

Pros

  • 4x on dining at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets (on the first $25,000 in purchases per calendar year; then 1x)
  • 3x on flights booked directly with the airline or with Amex Travel
  • Welcome bonus of 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first six months

Cons

  • Weak on travel outside of flights and everyday spending bonus categories
  • Not as useful for those living outside the U.S.
  • Some may have trouble using Uber/food credits
  • Few travel perks and protections
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees