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United deal: Fly abroad with $75 off economy fares and $250 off Polaris fares

Jan. 18, 2023
5 min read
plane flying
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International travel has been experiencing a major resurgence, and there have been plenty of fare discounts this past month. So, there's no question that now is a great time to book a trip abroad.

United Airlines is joining the game now with a bevy of discounts for travel from the U.S. to cities across Europe, South Africa, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates. The Chicago-based carrier is shaving off $75 for economy fares and $250 for United Polaris fares for trips taking place from Feb. 1 to May 17.

While flyers have until Jan. 26 to book this deal, the airline's special-offer fares are sure to sell out, so we recommend booking your flights abroad sooner rather than later.

JOEL SAGET/GETTY IMAGES

Deal basics

Airline: United.
Routes: From Denver, Washington, Newark and other U.S. cities to European cities as well as Cape Town and Johannesburg. Flights from the U.S. to Dubai and Amman, Jordan, also fall under this deal.
How to book: Enter the promo code "VACAYABROAD" and then book your flights directly on United's website.
Travel dates: Feb. 1 to May 17.
Book by: Jan. 26.

Sample flights

With this deal, you can fly nearly anywhere in Europe. Best of all, United's business class (also known as United Polaris) is also on sale.

Here are some sample flights we spotted:

  • United: Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) to Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (AMS), starting at $548.
  • United: EWR to Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG), starting at $554.
  • United: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Heathrow Airport (LHR), starting at $686.
  • United: Denver International Airport (DEN) to Josep Tarradellas Barcelona-El Prat Airport (BCN), starting at $783.
  • United: Dulles International Airport (IAD) to Cape Town International Airport (CPT), starting at $1,052.
  • United: George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) to Dubai International Airport (DXB), starting at $6,736 (this is a United Polaris flight).

While United is taking off $75 for economy and $250 for United Polaris fares, we recommend playing around with the dates as much as possible to find the best deal. We found that the week from March 7 to March 14 had some of the cheaper fares to Europe, for example.

Also, we recommend comparing some of the United fares to those on Google Flights. In several cases, we noticed that although United marked down its fares, the prices were still more expensive than those on Google Flights for the same routes. However, this United deal is still worth booking if you're a loyal United flyer and looking to add more miles to your United MileagePlus account.

Surprisingly, one of the cheaper flights we found was from Newark to Paris in March. While flights to Paris can soar well into the thousands during the spring and summer months, United had an economy deal for $554.

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UNITED.COM

To access this special-offer fare, you need to enter the promo code VACAYABROAD into United's advanced search function on its website.

UNITED.COM

On the advanced search page, there's an "Upgrades, certificates, and promotion codes" tab in which you can enter the code VACAYABROAD to access the special offers.

UNITED.COM

If you book that $554 economy fare from Newark to Paris, seat selection will already be included. However, if you want a better seat, you can pay extra for Economy Plus seats, which have extra legroom. Economy Plus seats cost anywhere from an additional $154 to $217.

UNITED.COM

Maximize your purchase

When booking your flights, be sure to use cards that earn bonus points on airfare purchases, like The Platinum Card® from American Express (5 points per dollar on airfare booked directly with the airline or through American Express Travel, on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year), Citi Prestige® Card (5 points per dollar on airfare), Citi Premier® Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve (3 points per dollar on airfare), American Express® Gold Card (3 points per dollar on airfare when booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel) and the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2 points per dollar on travel). Check out this post for more on maximizing airfare purchases.

The information for the Citi Prestige Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Bottom line

If you're an avid United flyer looking to add some miles to your MileagePlus account, this is the deal for you. Keep in mind that getting the best possible prices boils down to playing with the airline's fare calendar.

Even with this deal, United's fares aren't the cheapest options. However, the ability to fly to nearly any major city in Europe, along with other destinations, from the U.S. still makes this United offer compelling.

Featured image by STEVE PARSONS/GETTY IMAGES
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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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
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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