US Airways Changes Terms and Conditions of its Double Miles Offer

On Monday when US Airways came out with its double elite qualifying miles offer for tickets booked on their website and paid for with a Mastercard, I pointed out that the terms and conditions were confusing and left several questions unanswered.

US Airways has since updated the terms and conditions to clarify some of those questions.

The original, full terms and conditions said:

Registration is required. You must purchase a ticket on usairways.com September 17 – October 31, 2012 for travel September 17 – December 31, 2012. Use a valid MasterCard card to get double miles or use a valid US Airways Dividend Miles MasterCard card to get double Preferred-qualifying miles on flight activity. US Airways will award miles 6 – 8 weeks after travel has been completed. All Dividend Miles terms and conditions apply. MasterCard and the MasterCard Brand Mark are registered trademarks of MasterCard International Incorporated.

I pointed out that this left open to interpretation:

  • Whether you would earn double miles with any Mastercard and if that happened to be a US Airways Mastercard that you would also earn double elite qualifying miles, or if it was one bonus or the other depending on which card you chose (in other words, if you weren’t interested in elite qualifying miles if you were better off notusing a US Airways Mastercard).
  • Whether the offer applied to partner airline flights as long as they were booked on the US Airways website.
  • Whether a flight booked online and then subsequently changed by reservations over the phone would still qualify.

The new US Airways terms and conditions for the offer now say (bolding mine):

Registration is required. You must purchase a ticket on usairways.com September 17 – October 31, 2012 for travel September 17 – December 31, 2012. Travel must be on US Airways or US Airways Express operated flights. Award travel and travel with our airline partners does not qualify. Use a valid MasterCard card to get double miles or use a valid US Airways Dividend Miles MasterCard card to get double Preferred-qualifying miles on flight activity. You’ll get either double Preferred-qualifying miles OR double miles depending on your card type. US Airways will award miles 6 – 8 weeks after travel has been completed. All Dividend Miles terms and conditions apply. MasterCard and the MasterCard Brand Mark are registered trademarks of MasterCard International Incorporated.

It reads to me now

However, Mommy Points reports that US Airways says if you book with a US Airways Mastercard you get both elite qualifying and redeemable miles.

If you use a US Airways MasterCard do you just receive double elite qualifying miles, or do you receive double redeemable and double elite qualifying miles?

Their answer via Twitter was, “All miles are redeemable. If you book & travel using your US Airways MasterCard, the miles count towards Elite status”.  So, if you use the US Airways MasterCard you earn double redeemable miles that are also elite qualifying (just like most miles earned when you fly).

Sure seems like the rewrite could use a rewrite to me.. 🙂

No word on whether a ticket booked online but subsequently changed over the phone will still count.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community Milepoint.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I think Mommy Points was told that it’s always RDMs and they qualify as PQMs if using a USAir card (which I think the T&Cs could be read to mean):

    “If you use a US Airways MasterCard do you just receive double elite qualifying miles, or do you receive double redeemable and double elite qualifying miles?

    Their answer via Twitter was, “All miles are redeemable. If you book & travel using your US Airways MasterCard, the miles count towards Elite status”.  So, if you use the US Airways MasterCard you earn double redeemable miles that are also elite qualifying (just like most miles earned when you fly).”

  2. It’s incredibly annoying to add excluding the codeshare flights after the fact. I’ve booked several flights through US on United specifically to get this promotion. The fare on Orbitz was about $15 cheaper and I could have used Ultimate Rewards portal. I’ve contacted US to honor my the original terms butI’m not holding my breath.

  3. I agree this has all been very confusing. They were responsive to my questions via Twitter, but it’s too bad the terms are still very confusing when you read them.

  4. I understand being upset about the codeshare thing. Personally, I’d never thought they would give double miles in any capacity for flying non-US metal…just seemed like the behavior they wanted to incent was to fly them, not someone else.

  5. You (and Lucky) have dealt with UA and AA for so long that you don’t fully understand US. US doesn’t have any kind of situation where an elite qualifying mile is NOT redeemable.

    So:
    Buy with Ink Plus Bold Mastercard, fly 1000 miles: Your US balance increases 2000 miles (two line items – 1000 and 1000). And one of those line items will be marked as preferred.

    Buy with US Airways Mastercard, fly 1000 miles: Your US balance increases 2000 miles (two line items, 1000 and 1000). BOTH of those line items will be marked as preferred.

    In either situation, you will still gain 2000 redeemable miles. The card used determines whether only the flown portion or the full double miles are counted toward status.

    This is how every prior double qualifying mile promo has run on US and this time it’s no different. The only real clarification required in my mind was the US metal only – and MommyPoint’s outstanding question of whether multiple people booked on one itinerary will all get the double miles or just the cardholder.

  6. Just got this back from US.

    “Thank you for contacting US Airways.

    We will honor your miles as stated on original promotion.

    We will post your Preferred Miles after these flights are taken.

    If they are not posted within 2 weeks of travel, please contact us to
    resolve.

    Please accept our sincere apology for the error on this promotion.”

    I’m not going to book more on UA metal but I’m glad they stepped up and will credit my miles. I had booked in 24 hours of the promo starting.

  7. Correct. (And please, nobody drag in the 10K preferred conversion from the credit card, that’ll just confuse people more.)

    Every mile earned, be it from flights or partners or promotions is redeemable. Every mile earned has the possibility of counting towards Preferred status – which is reflected with a check mark in the “Preferred” column when viewing your activity. Such check marks appear next to flight activity and limited other situations (like Grand Slam PQM bonuses, club sign-up bonuses, etc).

    Keep in mind these check marks still do NOT show up properly in Firefox to this day. Use Chrome. Or IE if you must.

  8. What Arizona Guy said in post #9 above. That’s the perfect example and explanation, end of story. This really isn’t that difficult to understand.

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