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INSIDER SECRET: Using United Airlines miles to book partner award flights can save you money compared to using other airline miles, because United doesn’t add fuel surcharges to partner awards!
The trick to using airline miles to unlock free travel is learning how you can redeem them for partner award flights to just about any destination in the world.
This is especially true with United Mileage Plus miles, because you can use these miles for award flights on 35+ airlines between United’s Star Alliance and non-alliance partners, including Singapore Airlines, Lufthansa, SWISS, Air Canada, Aer Lingus, and more! United Airlines NEVER adds fuel surcharges to award tickets, even on partner airlines.
Plus, you can earn United miles easily with cards like the United Explorer Card and United Explorer Business Card, or by moving points from cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, because United Airlines is a Chase transfer partner.
I’ll show you how to find and book United Airlines partner awards online.
4 Quick Steps to Search and Book United Airlines Partner Award Seats With United Miles
Read about how to search for and book United Airlines award flights with United miles
You can use United Airlines miles to book award flights on these Star Alliance partner airlines:
- Adria Airways
- Air Canada
- Air China
- Air India
- Air New Zealand
- Asiana Airlines
- Austrian Airlines
- Brussels Airlines
- Croatia Airlines
- Ethiopian Airlines
- EVA Air
- LOT Polish Airlines
- Shenzhen Airlines
- Singapore Airlines
- South African Airways
- TAP Portugal
- Thai Airways
- Turkish Airlines
And you can also redeem United Airlines miles on these non-alliance partners:
- Aer Lingus
- Air Dolomiti
- Boutique Air
- Cape Air
- Hawaiian Airlines (inter-island flights only)
- Juneyao Air
- Olympic Air
- Silver Airways
Million Mile Secrets team members have used United Airlines miles to book business-class award flights to New Zealand on Air New Zealand, and award flights on Brussels Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines, and TAP Portugal to take multiple trips to Europe!
To book a partner award flight, you’ll follow the same steps as if you were searching for a flight directly on United Airlines.
Step 1. Go to the United Airlines Website
First, visit the United Airlines website to start your search. You do NOT need to have an account to search for award seats.
Step 2. Enter Your Travel Details
On the search engine, enter:
- Whether it’s a one-way, round-trip, or multi-city trip (you’ll need to open the “Advanced Search” window to search for multi-city itineraries)
- Origin and destination
- Departure and return dates
- Number of passengers
- Class of service
- Select “Book with miles”
The example below shows a search for flights between Chicago (ORD) and Singapore (SIN).
Step 3. View Award Flight Options
Next, you can sort through the search results and view flight options on United Airlines and partner airlines.
Underneath flights on partner airlines, it will say “Includes Travel Operated By“. If this doesn’t appear, it means the itinerary includes only United Airlines flights.
If there are multiple partner airlines for your award flight, you can click “Details” to expand and see which airline you’ll fly on each leg.
Once you find an award flight that meets your travel preferences, just click “Select” below the award flight cost. You can check our guide for how to book United Airlines award flights to learn more about award flight pricing and make sure you’re getting the best deal. Keep in mind, as United Airlines eliminates its award chart, prices are becoming much more variable, though partner awards seem not to be affected yet.
Step 4. Log-In and Book Your Award Flights
After you select your flights, it’s time to book!
If you haven’t already done so, log into your United Airlines account to book your trip.
At the time of booking, you’ll be given a summary of the total award flight cost, including the number of miles and any taxes & fees.
Note: If you don’t have enough United Airlines miles in your account, you won’t be able to proceed past this step.
However, you can instantly transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to United Airlines if you need to top-off your account when you have any of the following cards:
You’ll also have to provide a credit card for payment of the taxes and fees.
You can use United Mileage Plus miles to book partner award flights on more than 35 airlines! For example, you can travel to Europe by redeeming miles on partner airlines like Austrian Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, and several others. Or travel to New Zealand by booking a partner award on Air New Zealand.
It’s extremely easy to search and book United Airlines award flights, including partner awards, directly on the United Airlines website. Just search for award flights on your desired travel route and the website will do the rest. The award flight search results will show you all flight options, including itineraries on partner airlines. Then, it’s up to you to select a flight and book!
For more tips and tricks with United Airlines miles, check out these posts:
- Our United Mileage Plus review
- How to book United Airlines award flights
- What to expect for United miles value
- Our United Airlines status review
- Do United Airlines miles expire?
- Our page for United Airlines promotions
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