United and Delta Extend Rewards Status Beyond 2020

United Airlines Editorial

Travelers who have a United Airlines MileagePlus or Delta SkyMiles account will be happy to hear their status is being extended beyond 2020 as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

United Airlines announced a series of changes to assist customers and MileagePlus members, including extending members' current MileagePlus Premier status through January 2022. At a minimum, all MileagePlus Premier members will retain the status they earned for 2020, through January 31, 2022. Good to know: For the 2021 status year, United is reducing thresholds for Premier qualification by 50 percent for each status level, to make reaching an even higher status tier easier.

In addition, for the first time ever, United is increasing the maximum number of premier qualifying points (PQPs) United Explorer and United Club credit card holders can earn through card spend toward status in 2021. From May 1 through December 31, 2020, United will be offering a promotion that doubles the maximum PQPs for United Explorer credit cardmembers and quadruples the maximum PQPs for United Club cardmembers to help customers achieve a higher level of status.

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Even more, United is increasing the ability for Premier members to use their upgrade benefits. First, the airline is offering a six-month extension for all PlusPoints that are set to expire on or before January 31, 2021. United is also expanding the availability of Skip Waitlist—an upgrade option that allows Premier 1K members to confirm upgrades at the time of booking—to significantly more international long-haul flights.

For customers who purchased annual membership and subscription benefits directly from United, the expiration will be extended by six months; this includes United Club memberships and subscriptions for Economy Plus, United Wi-Fi and checked bags.

Lastly, United is extending electronic travel certificates (ETCs) and waiving redeposit fees for members who booked travel using award miles. ETCs will now be valid for two years from the time of booking. The airline is also waiving all redeposit fees for members who have flights booked through May 31, 2020 and will be waiving fees for all members who cancel their flights at least 30 days before departure for the remainder of 2020.

Delta SkyMiles Medallion members, on the other hand, will be able enjoy the same loyalty benefits throughout 2021 as they have (or would have) in 2020. In addition, All Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) from 2020 are being rolled over to 2021 to qualify for 2022 Medallion Status.

In addition, Delta Sky Club Individual and Executive memberships with an expiration of March 1, 2020, or later will receive six additional months of Delta Sky Club access beyond their expiration date.

If Delta SkyMiles American Express Card members have one of the following in your SkyMiles profile “My Wallet” that is valid now or has expired since March 1, 2020, Delta extending the expiration dates to give you additional time to enjoy your benefits:

  • Delta SkyMiles Gold Card members with a $100 Delta flight credit will get a six-month extension beyond their current expiration date.
  • Delta SkyMiles Platinum Card members with Companion Certificates with an original expiration date between March 1 and June 30, 2020, can use them when they book and fly by December 31, 2020, and those that expire between July 1, 2020, and April 1, 2021, will receive an additional six months beyond the current expiration date.
  • Delta SkyMiles Reserve Card members with Companion Certificates with an original expiration date between March 1 and June 30, 2020, can use them when they book and fly by December 31, 2020, and those that expire between July 1, 2020, and April 1, 2021, will receive an additional six months beyond the current expiration date.
  • Delta SkyMiles Reserve Card members will also get a six-month extension to use their Delta Sky Club One-Time Guest Passes beyond their current expiration date.

SkyMiles Members, if you have one of the following in your SkyMiles profile “My Wallet” that is valid now or has expired since March 1, 2020, Delta is extending the expiration dates to give you additional time to enjoy your benefits:

  • Upgrade Certificates or $200 Travel Vouchers with an original expiration date between March 1 and June 30, 2020, are extended; now, they can be booked and flown by December 31, 2020. And, SkyMiles members with Upgrade Certificates or $200 Travel Vouchers that expire after June 30, 2020, will receive an additional six months beyond the current expiration date.
  • SkyMiles Select members will receive a six-month extension to the Priority Boarding benefit and any unused drink vouchers.

SkyMiles Members enrolled in a challenge or promotion to earn Medallion Status, such as the Status Match Challenge, Reclaim My Status or a promotion offered through their employer, can restart that promotion when they are ready to travel again. Those Members will receive next steps from Delta in the coming weeks.

This article originally appeared on www.travelagentcentral.com.

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