United (maybe) brings back pending upgrade status indicator

UPDATE (9pm EDT): It is working now; see below!

One of the more vocal complaints lodged early on with respect to the "new" United Airlines website is that their elite status customers were unable to tell whether their eligible flights were properly queued to be processed for complimentary upgrades. At the time United representatives said that they would be working to add that functionality back into the site but provided no timeline on that effort. Per an email I received this afternoon it seems that the functionality is available now on their testing/preview site for select customers meaning the wide-spread deployment should be coming soon.


Only one problem. I don’t see that information anywhere in my existing reservations. I checked a few and either it isn’t working correctly, it is so counter-intuitive that I simply cannot figure it out or I’m a moron. I’m not completely convinced that option C isn’t the right answer, but in the mean time I’m holding off a bit on the celebrations.

Huzzah… It is actually showing on the Preview site now. Here’s what a reservation with the feature available looks like:


Hovering over the icon on the specific flight provides similar information:


For a flight upgraded using an instrument it looks like this:


You can see that the confirmed and pending segments show slightly differently. One big change is that the pending segment now no longer shows up twice in the reservation, once in the confirmed bucket and once in the waitlist. I didn’t mind the bright red "This segment is waitlisted" alert but I think that the UI here is definitely better, mostly because the duplicate flights were confusing from time to time

A pretty good view of the data overall, I’d say. It works into the existing UI quite nicely.

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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. Yeah, a guy who develops complex browser scripts that help users search for and highlight upgrade availability for a web site he doesn’t control is most certainly a moron. Or possibly a genius. Dude, if you can’t see the new upgrade status option, I’d bet dollars to donuts that it ain’t in there.

  2. It’s frustrating… As Gold I didn’t clear at 48 on a intl flight while my collegue a Silver cleared, had to call and they said it was a system problem with too many pax on the PNR (8 total)… Shares love.

    1. For what it is worth, SBG, the issue you had isn’t really a SHARES one; the legacy United systems behaved the same way. If you want to get a CPU then you can have only yourself or yourself plus one other on a reservation. That’s the way the systems work.

  3. It is one thing to simply not offer a feature. But to email a select group of frequent customers and advertise that a widely-requested feature has been added when, apparently, it has not … come on!

    In other words, I don’t see it either on the preview site.

  4. I just was looking all over for it a little while ago and had the same thought – I must be an idiot as I wasn’t able to find the data either.

  5. @EM – agreed. As bad as United’s new “Know what you owe” marketing for baggage fees (see current FT thread)… UACO’s marketing team needs some improvement.

  6. Seth – in reading your response to SBG above, why do you ahve to ALWAYS be a CO apologist? UA did not have it you said – who cares? I bet Smisek has you in his back pocket…

    1. I’m not apologizing for Continental or United. I’m apologizing for reality. When someone states something demonstrably false there is no need to let that continue.

      Sorry if the truth is so disturbing. I figured explaining how the system works to someone who doesn’t understand it is more important than perpetuating an unjustified and misguided hate.

  7. @SBG
    Same exact thing happened on PMUA, the few times I had more than two on my res I had to call in to get the res split it. As Seth said, you have to break up the reservation, which as far as I know is far easier now than it was on PMUA. There is a button you can click to break up the itinerary when you look at it, it’s not that difficult.

    How is it being a CO apologist to state an undeniable fact?

    1. I see it now, too, Gabe. Just showed up when I refreshed. Definitely wasn’t there before. I’ll update the main post with the screen shot in a minute.

  8. I am still annoyed by how CPUs are cleared…I just found out that RN inventory is not relevant, even if you are inside the 100 hour window.

    1. Are you using the preview site, Angelina? It is only deployed there right now. It should go live on the main site this weekend.

  9. Still not available on the main site. Was hoping to use the feature for my flights this week.

    1. Turns out that they were having some troubles with this or some other functions in the latest release cycle. They chose to delay the roll-out rather than deploying the broken code. A bit annoying but way better than having a (more) broken site.

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