Redeeming United Airlines customer appreciation certs post system conversion

This past weekend I completed another mileage run with United rolling me past the 45,000 EQM mark for the year and I – as well as many other passengers in Business Class – scored a customer appreciation certificate for a faulty video system onboard a new configuration 777 from Los Angeles to Washington Dulles. Movies would begin to play, but then freeze partway through without being able to restart them or do virtually anything else but get to the airshow.

I’ve already flown more than 30 flights this year without so much as a bump or any other type of irregular situation, so was pleased to get the “We’re sorry…†certificate assuming it would likely yield the usual choice of miles or an e-certificate.

a close-up of a travel plana screenshot of a emailAs I always do, I chose the $200 domestic e-cert knowing I’ll be able to turn that into about 6,000 EQM in the coming months.

Then I got to thinking about the system conversion scheduled to take place this weekend and wondered if Continental’s website was already programmed to accept United e-cert numbers. I made a dummy booking and discovered the answer is a definitive “No.â€

a screenshot of a chatNeither of the two United reservations agents I spoke with this morning knew whether or not these type of certs will be redeemable online once the legacy United website goes away next week, but assured me they’ll still be valid and intervention by web support will likely be necessary to complete a booking.

I’ll be certain to make a follow-up posting once “the switch†occurs and outline the steps necessary to redeem these types of certificates. The next couple of weeks at United-Continental will be very interesting, to say the least.


  1. I’m still looking forward to getting one of these (but maybe that won’t be possible after the system conversion). Either I don’t complain enough, or I’ve been very lucky.

  2. I always always always take the IFE through the ringer when on board. Even though I never use it, I try it to make sure it works (doing a favor for the airline right??). Last time I did this was on a UA flight from ORD to SFO in F, and the volume control didnt work. I let the FA know, and the purser comes by later apologizes for the issue and hands me an E-Cert. They are probably easier to get than you think!!

  3. @Jon: Another good question!
    @Scottrick: There’s a whole routine many United flyers have when settling into their seat. Reading light working? All audio channels available? Seat functioning? If not, it’s “skykit” time.
    @LufthansaFlyer: Yup… they’re pretty easy to request.

  4. Flight 950 cancelled on 2/28. My upgrade to Business with lie flat seats downgraded to Economy on a 319. I got one of these certificates. I was expecting $350 but got $250. My travel companion, a non-elite flyer, got $75. I thought that odd since we were flying on the same PNR.

    Last week on an old configuration 777, I let the flight attendant know I couldn’t use the IFE as the plug was faulty. Should I have specifically asked for a Skykit as none was given.

    • @RDimperio: I wondered about 950 yesterday. I taxied by on a CO flight at that time and noticed a 777 over at maintenance. Compensation levels are all about each individual’s status, so being on the same PNR didn’t do anything, as you’ve discovered. For your travels last week, I might have asked to speak to the purser. Fortunately, I’ve never had to outright ask for a Skykit. I think I’d feel a little guilty doing so, but then again… that’s why they have ’em onboard.

  5. @Darren: Now that you mention it I too saw the 777 sitting in the maintenance area. I didn’t realize it was probably my 777.

    By the way our flight from OGG landed eastbound on runway 7L (possibly 7R) at 4:45 am. In 25 years I’ve never landed to the east at LAX. It appears ( that this early arriving flight usually lands that way.

    • @RDimperio: I believe from about midnight to 6am, they bring the flights in over the ocean for noise abatement issues. When I’ve taken that 10pm departure IAD-LAX, if we don’t speed across the country and make it to LAX in time before midnight, we’ve been pushed over the ocean to turn around for just that purpose.

  6. @ RDimperio:
    I have written to and complained when a companion on the same record locator received a lower value voucher and they have emailed a matching value with a written apology. I told them how unfair this was especially as being a 1k and paying for both ticket with my money they caused the exact same problem twice.

  7. By the way, I sent a pleasant email over to the 1K folks and they responded by saying they’d give us the same compensation. I replied with what I had selected and am hoping the $250 e-voucher for Tracy is issued before the March 3rd death of United as we know it.

  8. After getting off redeye this morning, I noticed the website is no longer valid, see message below. Has the website been moved or what is new procedure? Maybe wait a few days for the airline to work out the website kinks?

    We Apologize

    The page or file you requested could not be found. Please note:

    If you clicked a link, the link may be broken.
    If you used a bookmark or a link from another Web site, the page or file you requested may have been moved or may no longer exist.
    To help us improve, we encourage you to report this problem.

  9. I flew San-Francisco to Sydney Jan 21, the in flight entertainment in my section was not working. No audio for the movie, one music channel with no volume control and no light. That’s along flight with nothing to do. An announcement was made that everyone in sections that were malfunctioning should contact to apply for some form of comphensation. I’ve tried daily since returning home on Feb 12 but can’t access the site. A call to United didn’t help as I was told the system was done but I should try again. All very frustrating.

    • @Erin: Have you also called United reservations to ask about it? They may have no idea, of course, and I’ve so far found filling out the form on pretty worthless as I’ve received no response to two issues I sent in since March 3rd.

  10. Darren, no I have not called. My last call to them about a cancelled flight resulted in someone who spoke broken english, and had no idea what I was asking (can we take this flight instead? very straight-forward) and then being told to hold and then disconnected. Since we have 90 days I will keep trying now and then till my 90 days nears the end. I will call only in desperation.
    If anyone gets in, let us know!


  12. I am trying to get the promised voucher for appreciation, flight 1175 Houston, Tx to Portland, Or on Aug 6,2012. Unable to find the site to apply.
    Thanks, Helen Couture

  13. I am having trouble processing my appreciation issued on flight 5536 from SFO t o ABQ on 8-24-2012.Reporting this matter to United Airlines on 9-17-2012 resulted in no help. When I try to process the card per directions on the website( [Number removed] is entered and I get a message that it has already been used, What’s going on?

    • @james: I would call United to find out more – strange that the number was already used as those certificates carry rather unique codes. If you get no where by calling, contact and explain what you just did here with the number you have.

  14. I cannot find a place to compliment one of your employees who gave me wonderful service today regarding
    a lost voucher, so I will do it here. His name is “Param”, and you should be proud he is on your team. He made my day with his good service. He works in Customer Service and represents United Airlines very
    well. He made my day!

  15. my wife and i were flying on ua4633 on on june 4th 2013 we took off on time but an hour in to our flight our plain had to go back to were we started from due to a co pilot communication issue . were we were suppose to change planes and the plane we were suppose to board had 2 fix it issues they were fixed about 30m to 45 min later this flight then took off with out incident but caused major inconvenience at our arrival


  16. Tengo un problema tengo un saldo a favor de $ 1073.97. Pero me dicen que no aparecen
    El numero de confirmacion: [removed]
    Num.certificado: [removed]
    Pin: [removed]
    Airline ticket : [removed]
    Ese fue el primer vuelo del dia 4-febrero-2013

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