My lowest PQD flight ever


It took a while to get all the segments from my Island Hopper misadventures posted to my MileagePlus account. Thanks to the part where we spent 12+ hours in Kwajalen with a broken plane and the agents putting us back on the flight pulled the boarding passes strangely there were apparently a few segments which I was never really on, despite making it to Guam. And so I applied for the missing miles online and nothing happened (as expected). I then called in and got a great agent who pushed it all through on the first call, overriding some of the systems to make it happen.

I don’t really care about PQDs as I have no expectations of getting to $10k in spend and I’ll get the credit card exemption for Platinum status but, mostly for entertainment reasons, I do keep track of how things are posting to my account. The numbers shuffled around a bit (I’m pretty sure that the $199/$133 used to be assigned to EWR-LAX and LAX-HNL) but the funny part to me is the $12 and $15 credits.

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That totals 538 in PQDs, which matches up relatively closely with my outbound base fare ($225) and the full YQ for the trip ($230). The return half was a mess because of the Trip-in-Vain aspect of the ticket so I guess they decided to allocate all the YQ to the outbound.

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  • EWR UA X/LAX UA X/HNL UA X/GUM UA HKG 225.00 KLE0ZEM
  • UA EWR Q4.25 577.00 WLX0ZUM
  • NUC806.25
  • 10.00AY
  • 230.00YQ
  • 5.50YC
  • 7.00XY
  • 5.00XA
  • 15.50HK
  • XF9.00EWR4.5LAX4.5

I’d like to be able to say that the numbers match up based on the percentage of the miles flown or some other reasonably easy to discern mapping. But they don’t. And I honestly don’t care all that much as the overall numbers line up in my case. I suppose it matters more with multi-carrier itineraries and feeder flights.

My recent trip to Norway had an SAS-operated flight on non-016 ticket stock (thanks, Wideroe!) making it ineligible for PQDs. Bergen to Oslo was allocated $16 of the $163 in base fare for that portion of the itinerary. And it was about 10% of the total miles flown. In that case I suppose to is closer to something I can understand as a metric.

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So, can anyone beat 12 PQDs as the lowest amount assigned to a segment??

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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.

11 Comments

  1. I’ll tell you when united.com decides to acknowledge that I actually have activity since my last statement …

    1. It is pretty much impossible. I got lucky and got an agent to do it by pressing the seat assignment issue (bulkhead/exits don’t show up on the combined flight but do on the individual segments) but even that took several tries.

  2. I was originally booked ZFV-EWR-PDX on a cheap N fare for $73.45 (airfare = $61.40). IRROPS (weather) had me rebooked as EWR-SAT-IAH-PDX. Posted as:
    EWR-SAT (Y fare): $24
    SAT-IAH (Y fare): $9
    IAH-PDX (Y fare): $25

    On the return, I lucked out though. Was PDX-ORD-EWR-ZFV, again on an N-fare for $74 total, but an oversold PDX-ORD flight caused me to get rebooked as PDX-IAD-BUF (per my request) into full-fare Y (with the appropriate PQD!) Posted as:
    PDX-IAD (Y fare): $339
    IAD-BUF (B fare): $183

    PQDs are like a box of chocolates…

  3. Could this be done by using the full Y fare for each segment and scaling appropriately? (I believe this is the logic typically used for valuing a flight on a multisegment ticket during IDB.)

    1. It is supposed to be based on the fare paid. I don’t think that using a Y fare would change the ratio of the value of each segment in a meaningful manner.

  4. I’m a Delta flyer. Thanks to the Boxing Day “sale” I have some segments as low as 4 MQDs. That might get even lower with some of my upcoming flights. The one mistake fare I’ve flown so far I went 3/4 for upgrade which isn’t bad for a Gold on a $50 roundtrip. Fortunately I’ll use the credit card waiver to make Platinum (or Diamond if work travel picks up) this year.

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