United Rewards – Mileage Plus Dining from United Airlines

air-travel-plane You want to travel, but with the recession, you want to travel cheap, or travel for free.  Here is one way to help.  United Airlines offers a non-flight way to earn free Milage Plus points without flying that can add up fast and help get you those last miles you need to get a free flight.  Its a dining rewards program called United Mileage Plus Dining.

The best part is that it is really easy and you don’t really have to do anything once you set it up.

Basically, you go to Mileage Rewards Dining website and create a Dining Rewards password to go with your United frequent flyer miles number.  Then, you register your credit cards with the dining miles rewards program by entering the credit card number, expiration date, and so on.

Once your credit cards are registered, then you earn miles whenever you eat at a participating United Mileage Plus Dining restaurant if you pay with any of the credit cards you registered.  That’s it!  It couldn’t be any simpler.

You don’t have to remember a coupon, you don’t have to remember to tell the waiter, or give someone your Mileage Rewards number or anything.  It’s all electronic behind the scenes.  You pay like normal, and voila, free points in your account. As a double bonus, this has nothing to do with the regular credit card rewards points you are earning.  So, for example, if you buy dinner with your Capital One Rewards Credit Card, you still earn Capital One No Hassle Miles for the dinner PLUS the United Miles.

For each dollar you spend, you get one free United frequent flyer mile.  But, from now until June 30th, you get double points on the Dining Rewards program so that is 2 free miles per dollar spent eating out at restaurants.  Depending on the kind of person you are, this can add up to big points.  Eat out twice a week at $40 each and that is 160 miles earned per week without flying anywhere!

If you take clients out for meals, try and setup your meetings at restaurants in the program and you can earn points for those meals too.  Pretty soon, you’ll be setting up your free vacation.

There is no cost and no charge to register your credit cards, so I registered every credit card I have.  I never even look at the list of participating restaurants.  I just go out to eat where I want to eat and just by coincidence hit rewards restaurants all the time.

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3 thoughts on “United Rewards – Mileage Plus Dining from United Airlines”

  1. I presently have close to 300K United Airlines Miles and I have come to the conclusion they are worthless or close to that. I would like to take my family overseas for a trip. I cannot find a single destination with open seats, even a year out, with Standard Miles. I even tried one seat from Denver to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) for every day for a year out. Not a single Standard Mileage opening. I sent United customer service an email with my issue and they have not replied… that was a few months ago.

    These mileage programs are like Wall Street and a big implosion of all these programs has occurred, but there is no one to bail them out. United Airlines is just not telling everyone that there is nothing in the accounts to redeem against. A big fat scam.

    1. Your experience sounds a little atypical. However, I have also found that finding “available” seats to use miles on a constant challenge. That is why I’ve gone to using non-airline specific credit card travel rewards programs instead for getting free flights. I am still a member of the airline frequent flyer programs (it’s free, why not?) but I use those miles for other things. Unfortunately, even using miles to upgrade to first class has become a battle against tight-fisted airlines more interested in short-term profitability than customer loyalty, the very thing frequent flyer programs were originally designed to build up.

      However, there are some things that can be worthwhile in certain circumstances. Free day pass to the membership club can be priceless if you have a long layover or there are delays (get there early and stake out a seat.) Also, some other travel programs allow you to convert over your airline miles. The exchange rate isn’t good, but if you can’t find anything with your miles it might be an option.

      Send a letter to the company. Email is good and calls are ok, but old world companies (the airlines are one of them) still respond best to regular old mail. Actually send five letters: one to customer service, one to the manager or director of the same, and then three to whatever executives you can find info for.

      One last pointer. I don’t know how long it took you to get 300K but if you are a gold or silver member call the VIP Desk and see if they can’t help. Sometimes, those folks are willing to put a little effort into it.

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