United publishes earning rates for Air India flights

With Air India poised to join Star Alliance next week the other members are slowing rolling out their frequent flyer earning charts for travel on the new partner. United Airlines published their Air India earnings chart this week and it is notable in that it manages to not follow the pattern of other partners.


The premium cabin fares are set to earn more than 100% PQM credit. They are, as best as I can see, the only non-JV/ATI partners where such earning is possible. Since early 2013 when United “fixed” the earning rates on most partners the PQMs were never more than 100%, even for paid first class seats, on partners where UA wasn’t also getting a cut of the revenue. And so this is either a mistake which will also be “fixed” in due course or a small nod in favor of the passengers who might actually get a little something out of the new partnership more than just access to additional destinations in the South Asia region.

Either way, good to see the numbers published in the systems. I’ve also updated the earning rates on my Star Alliance Mileage Run Calculator tool (no, I don’t have any idea what I’ll do with it next year) with the new rates.

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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. Seth
    The problem here is that you are actually flying Air India
    Been there. Done that. Never again.
    Compared to UA that is not much better for the extra PQM!

    1. Plenty of routes/destinations they fly which are not offered by other *A partners, much less UA. It helps fill in the map. That’s good news just about any way I look at it.

      Or don’t fly them and get flights on other carriers. Certainly an option but you’re no worse off in that regard than you were before the announcement was made.

  2. My company has a list of restricted airlines (airlines we are not allowed to fly). Air India is on that short list.

  3. After thinking about it, I suspect UA is getting a cut of the revenue via LH.

    Anyway, my first comment is not that the post is less useful, (it is a very useful piece of info), I was lamenting the service levels on AI. But when forced to use them, knowing the UA option is a good thing.

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