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Finally! United Airlines is Waiving Redeposit Fees on Award Tickets

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Written by Charlie

Finally, United Airlines is waiving the redeposit fees on award tickets. This was a fee of up to $125 that customers had to pay – even when flights were canceled.

I wrote last week about how United was really messing up in regards to their treatment of customers, specifically with award reservations. In a time when reservations are getting canceled left and right, United had chosen to not waive redeposit fees on award tickets – even when the flight was canceled.

United Airlines is Waiving Redeposit Fees on Award Tickets

Normally it is a cost of $125 for general members to actually be able to use their miles again after cancelling a trip. But, that is when the customer cancels the trip. Even with United cancelling the flights, members were still being made to either reschedule the same itinerary for a different date or pay the $125. This was unacceptable, especially since it actually is the easiest thing to do – simply a click of the button. This was nothing more than a cash grab by United since they didn’t have to expend any expense at all but could get the $125.

To Cancel Your United Airlines Award Due to COVID-19

While there is a redeposit button online, some members are saying it is not working. So, you may need to call in to do this. I would not call unless your flight is in the next few days or that you need the miles for another booking. You could also try Twitter with them.

The waiving of the fee is something that is being done for many now – this is not a one-time, one-off occurrence. Dustin (Waller’s Wallet) said that, at first, they tried to get him to pay the fee and then said they would refund it in the form of a voucher. But, they eventually backed off. So, even though it is common now, be ready to push a bit if they don’t do it right away.

Bottom Line

I understand airlines are in a big need for cash right now – and they are getting a bunch of it from the US taxpayers. But, customers need their money now as well and it is wrong for airlines to insist that they get to charge customers for something that is out of the customer’s hand or to hold the customer’s money when the customer has not done anything.

Thankfully, United finally made the right move here.

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About the author

Charlie

Charlie has been an avid traveler and runner for many years. He has run in marathons around the world for less than it would cost to travel to the next town - all as a result of collecting and using miles and points. Over the years, he has flown hundreds of thousands of miles and collected millions of miles and points.
Now he uses this experience and knowledge to help others through Running with Miles.

9 Comments

  • @ Charlie — A little late now. Everyone should boycott United. They have shown that they won’t hesitate to rip off their customers.

  • Well, damn. I just paid the cancellation fee last week after cancelling my award ticket with 61 days out as I didn’t want to get the ‘voucher’ where I’d have to re-book by the end of December.

    Quick note on cancelling: the cancellation/redeposit button didn’t work for me at all on the website – I kept getting an error message – but I was able to cancel and redeposit the points through United’s phone app.

    Question – Is it even worth trying to contact United somehow to get that $75 fee reversed in light of this news? Or because I proactively cancelled my trip rather than waiting for my flights to be cancelled I’m out of luck?

    • I would send them a Twitter direct message and highlight that you had paid it because United was refusing but now you know that their new policy is to waive that same exact fee. Give it a shot that way before trying to call.

  • Yup, cancelled two award tickets on May 3rd via the website last night, refunded me the miles and the fee paid. Easy Peasy

    • Hi Eric – the award tickets were cancelled by you, even though United had not cancelled the scheduled flights. Right? Thx.

  • Question: If my flight has not been cancelled by United, but I still need to cancel my award ticket (convention I was going to was called off due to Covid-19), do I qualify for a fee waiver? (Flight is on May 10). Thanks!

    • Definitely give it a shot. Given that it is coronavirus related, it should be ok. I may even suggest you wait just a little bit longer as chances are very good their May schedule could cut more flights anyway.

  • THANK YOU so much for this announcement. My wife and I were going to Morocco from LAX and between the two of us we had 3 segments with two award tickets each. I cancelled them on March 10. Low and behold, I called the refund desk and all 6 restock fees were refunded to my CC.
    At first she said, “We can only issue travel certs”!! I asked for supervisor and told him all other airlines are refunding and he relented, “Because I am such a loyal customer” BS, they have to do it for everyone>>

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