Like any mile and point junkie, I’m always looking at ways to double, triple, quadruple dip. When I fly, I am no different. I’ll put my flight on a credit card that gives me at least 2 miles/points per dollar, although its usually 3 miles/points per dollar. I also have made it a point to enroll in Airlines’ Small Business Programs (because, after all, I am a small business, what with reselling and such – besides, I have an Ink Plus!). There are a variety of Small Business Travel Programs out there, today I’ll cover United, and try to get through the major ones by this time next week.
About the United PerksPlus Program
United’s PerksPlus is designed, for lack of a better way to say it, to entice small businesses to book the majority of their business with United and partners Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, and Swiss International Air Lines.
You earn points based on each dollar in Qualifying Revenue which is defined as actual flown revenue, multiplied by each multiple in the chart below. Qualifying Revenue is murky, just like the Mileage Plus Program, in that it excludes taxes, fees, surcharges, and refunds. Here’s your multipliers, remember, you multiply this per qualifying dollar spent, not per mile flown.
The distinction of hub or non-hub is clearly a recognition that while they have a sizeable network, it might not be the most advantageous to fly United (or partners) if you have to fly from a non-hub to a hub to make it anywhere. Of course for those of you in airports served by limited airlines, this is an extra bonus.
I completely realize in writing this, that unless you work for yourself or a business that chooses not to have their own program, it may take years for you to earn enough points to be meaningful, but, hey, every point helps.
Ok, now that you’ve got your points, here’s what you can get:
- United MileagePlus Premier Gold and Silver Memberships
- United Club Annual Membership
- Book of One-Time Passes to United Clubs
- Award Travel Certificates
You can check out the full reward chart here, but I’ve summarized things below:
First – the travel awards – here I’ve just summarized the cheapest for each Economy and Business awards.
Note: Even though the booking class is shown, United reports that travelers won’t earn miles, but still attach a frequent flier number to the reservation just in case!
Second – Elite Status and other non-award redemption options.
For larger small businesses, this is a great opportunity for employers to gift employees with status, United Club Membership, etc. For the rest of us, these might be nice gestures of goodwill for those who put up with our mile and point obsession.
Qualifying and Signing Up
So now that I’ve gotten you excited for it, here are the breaks. The company needs to have at least 5 employees (for some harder than others), but they need to reach eligible revenues of $25,000 on United, United Express, or Lufthansa within a 12-month period, however, you can start redeeming points after the company has had $5,000 per month for three consecutive months (e.g. $15,000).
Ok, that part may make this one more difficult, but some of the other programs that I’ll cover are a bit more attainable.