Inside the United GS elite packet

I don’t know why I was expecting something exceptional. Perhaps because I’ve always heard so many incredible stories about how amazing the United Airlines Global Services status level is and how the benefits are amazing. So when the kit finally arrived last week (I received the 1K kit a month ago, too) I was quite excited to see just what amazing it might contain. And so, I signed for the package from FedEx and dug in, wondering what special treats or information would be inside. It was hard not to be disappointed given that set up.


Yes, it came in a larger box (and via FedEx rather than USPS) so there was more potential for goodies. And that was met in the form of a couple luggage tags which are reasonably nice.


Other than that, however, the kit was pretty much the same as the 1K. Same drink coupons and same program guide, save for one small section. There are a few interesting benefits noted in the guide that are exclusive to the GS level. Yes, there is access to exclusive check-in facilities in Chicago. And access is also given to the Arrivals Lounges, even if not in a premium cabin. Most significant of the benefits I noted, however, is a guaranteed seat if a flight is cancelled. The carrier guarantees a coach seat on the next flight should your booked flight be cancelled. Not the next flight with availability, but the next flight,so long as it is an hour or more out. That’s pretty nice.

It is hard to know what other benefits the program includes. They certainly don’t seem to write them down anywhere.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.


  1. How will they accomodate you if the ‘next’ flight is sold out, ie no availability? 😉

  2. How the hell did you hit GS? You dont seem like the “30k spend in Full fares” kind of guy

  3. @oliver2002…GS members can get a seat on the next (full) flight, by simply bumping somebody from that flight. All it costs is a $200 voucher, which some ‘volunteer’ is usually thrilled to get

  4. I second whakojacko’s question (although I’ve heard it rumored it’s more like $50K in a year). You don’t give the impression that you travel much for work…I know we’re all a bit addicted to travel, but please tell me you didn’t blow $30-$50 of your own money just on flights last year (unless you’re making seven figures, in which case, more power to you!)

  5. I would like to know how this happened also. Without spending the money it almost seems like a thank you gift for answering UA questions on FT and being such a diehard fan.

    1. Do people really think I’m so cheap or stupid as to accept status from United instead of real money (or comp’d travel benefits) as compensation if I were actually going to work for them?? Or to not disclose my affiliation when I post about the company?

      Sorry to disappoint everyone, but continually repeating that I get paid by them – either in cash or status or anything else – is simply untrue. That’s not how it happened and was never even something I would consider. Hell, if it was true I’d be able to provide actual answers on behalf of the company rather than just my own knowledge. It really is rather insulting that people keep repeating such a ludicrous claim with absolutely nothing to base it on.

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