United just ended its Premier Status Match Challenge. Why?
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
TPG reader Grant wrote in telling us he noticed the ever-popular United MileagePlus Premier Status Challenge program had closed enrollments for 2019. A quick check of the dedicated website confirms the program has ended for this year and to “be on the lookout for a 2020 Premier Status match offer, which could be available as early as January.”
Status matches and challenges have long proven popular and most carriers operating in the U.S. do have an option to match, and usually require a challenge. You’ll have a time frame in which to earn a certain number of elite qualifying miles, segments and/or elite qualifying dollars to keep status for the remainder of the status year, and even possibly through the following status year.
Here are the requirements for the United Premier Status Match Challenge you needed to meet within 90 days of registering in order to maintain the status you were matched to — assuming you registered before Oct. 1:
This is a letdown for anyone who planned to utilize a competing airline status, match to United for the fourth quarter, complete the challenge and then carry United Premier status through 2020. My personal guess is that is the exact reason United closed the challenge. Many customers over the last few years have been hopping airlines from year to year, counting on end-of-year matches and challenges to pick their carrier for the next year or carry multiple statuses. This doesn’t bode well for long-term loyalty and we can assume some smart folks over at United looked at their elite membership count and decided they were happy with the current picture.
I would imagine the challenge will open again right at the beginning of the New Year, but I don’t recommend signing up for a challenge at that time. If you complete challenge requirements before July 1 in any given year, you’ll only keep the status for the remainder of that status year. If you complete a challenge after July 1, you’ll keep if for the remainder of the current status year and all of the following year. This means you need to sign up for and time completing a challenge on or as close to possible as July 1.
We reached out to United for comment and a spokesman told us “We are working to consolidate two previous programs — the Corporate Status Match program and the Premier Status Match program into one offer that will return in 2020.” The corporate program as far as we know has been targeted to employees of companies that do a lot of business with United, so it will be interesting to see how the public and targeted programs come together in 2020.
Featured photo by Alberto Riva/The Points Guy
Welcome to The Points Guy!
WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
- Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
- With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
- Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
- Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.