Skip Navigation LinksHome > MileagePlus program > Premier benefits and more > Premier qualifying dollar FAQs

Premier qualifying dollar FAQs

Earning PQD

How do I earn Premier® qualifying dollars (PQD)?

You will earn PQD on the following:

  • Most flights operated by United, United Express® or Copa Airlines;
  • Most flights operated by a Star AllianceTM or MileagePlus partner airline and issued on a United ticket (ticket number starting with “016”); and
  • Most Economy Plus® purchases.

You earn PQD for the base fare and carrier-imposed surcharges on eligible flights. Certain specialty tickets, including but not limited to unpublished, consolidator/bulk, group, tour and opaque fares, do not earn PQD. Just as with Premier qualifying miles (PQM) and Premier qualifying segments (PQS), we will credit the account of the member who travels, not the member who purchases the ticket.

Which qualification year will my PQD apply to?

PQD will count toward qualification in the year when you travel, not necessarily in the year when you purchase the ticket, as long as the flight is eligible to earn PQD.

What Economy Plus purchases earn PQD?

You will earn PQD for Economy Plus purchases, whether a one-time purchase or a subscription.

PQD from one-time Economy Plus purchases credit to the member who travels in Economy Plus seating. PQD from Economy Plus subscriptions credit to the holder of the subscription.

Can I earn PQD for baggage service charges, a United ClubSM membership or other purchases?

No. The only non-ticket purchases that may earn PQD in 2014 and 2015 are Economy Plus purchases.

Do taxes count toward PQD?

No. Government-imposed taxes, fees and charges do not count toward PQD.

How can I make sure that I earn PQD?

No matter where you purchase your ticket, flights operated by United, United Express and Copa Airlines* are eligible for PQD, even when marketed by another airline or issued on another airline’s ticket. In addition, when flying with Star Alliance and MileagePlus partner airlines, you will earn PQD as long as the ticket is issued by United (ticket number starting with "016").

All tickets issued through United channels, such as united.com, are issued as United tickets (ticket number starting with "016"). As always, be sure to include your MileagePlus number in your reservation.

Certain specialty tickets, including but not limited to unpublished, consolidator/bulk, group, tour and opaque fares, do not earn PQD. Additional information can be found in the PQD terms and conditions.

Do I have to purchase my flights with a MileagePlus co-branded credit card in order to earn PQD?

No. Eligible flights can be purchased with any form of payment accepted by United.

Will I earn PQD if I purchase a ticket using a credit, such as an electronic travel certificate, as a form of payment?

Yes. When a ticket is purchased and a dollar-value credit is applied as a form of payment for some or all of the ticket value, the base fare and carrier-imposed surcharge amount quoted before applying the credit will count toward PQD for eligible flights.

Will I earn PQD if I purchase a ticket using a discount code (such a percent-off or dollar-off certificate or offer code)?

Yes. When a discount (such as percent-off or dollar-off certificate or code) is applied, it adjusts the base fare to reflect a new discounted price. This new base fare is displayed along with any carrier-imposed surcharges, and this total amount will count toward PQD on eligible flights. Please check your ticket receipt for the discounted base fare and the carrier-imposed surcharges.

I purchased a flight that was eligible to earn PQD but I was rerouted to a flight that wasn’t. Will I still earn PQD?

Yes, however, PQD will not credit to your account automatically. Please call 1-800-UNITED-1 (1-800-864-8331) to request PQD credit. For general questions about missing credit (award miles, PQM, PQS, PQD), call 1-800-421-4655.

Tracking PQD

How will I know how many PQD I’ve earned?

Your PQD balance will display alongside your PQM and PQS balances on your “My Account” page on united.com. The PQD you earn for each eligible flight and Economy Plus purchase will show on your “Account Activity” page.

PQD from eligible flights and one-time Economy Plus purchases will usually credit to your account two days after you take your flight.

PQD from Economy Plus subscription purchases will usually credit to your account two days after purchase, or for recipients of a gifted Economy Plus subscription, two days after activation. If you have an existing Economy Plus subscription, PQD will credit two days after the renewal is purchased.

In some cases, it may take up to 14 days for flight PQD to finalize, in which case your account will display that PQD credit is “Processing.” Once finalized, the PQD value will appear if the flight is eligible to earn PQD. If the flight is not eligible to earn PQD, “Ineligible” will appear.

My itinerary includes more than one flight. How do you determine the PQD for each?

We use an industry-standard method to determine the portion of the ticket’s base fare and carrier-imposed surcharge value to allocate to each eligible flight segment. This method takes into account both the distance of the flight and the cabin you purchased.

If I have a MileagePlus co-branded credit card issued by Chase, how will I know if I met the PQD waiver?

You can view your progress toward the PQD waiver at mystatus.united.com

For questions about your Net Purchase balance that counts toward the PQD waiver, please call the Chase number on the back of your credit card.

Qualifying activity

Does the PQD requirement apply to all MileagePlus members?

In 2014 and 2015, the PQD requirement only applies to members whose primary address on their MileagePlus account is in the 50 United States or the District of Columbia. Members who use U.S. military or diplomatic addresses (APO, DPO or FPO) are exempt from the PQD requirement.

Will I earn Premier status if I meet the PQD requirement but not the requirements for PQM or PQS, or if I meet the PQS or PQM requirement but not the PQD requirement?

No. In order to earn Premier status, you will need to:

  • Earn the required number of PQM or PQS; AND
  • Fly at least four paid segments on United, United Express or Copa Airlines*; AND
  • Earn the required number of PQD.
Examples:

If you earn $6,000 PQD and fly the four-segment minimum, but earn only 30,000 PQM, you will qualify for Premier Silver status.

If you earn 65 PQS and fly the four-segment minimum, but earn only $3,000 PQD, you will qualify for Premier Silver status.

Please note that certain waivers to the PQD requirement apply in 2014 and 2015.

Do PQD affect how I earn PQM, PQS or lifetime flight miles?

No.

Do PQD affect Million Miler status?
No. The PQD requirement for Premier qualification does change will not affect any Premier status earned by being a Million Miler. However, if you are a Million Miler and want to qualify for a higher Premier status, the PQD qualification requirements will apply.

PQD waiver

Does spend on my MileagePlus co-branded credit card earn PQD?

No. Spending on your credit card does not earn PQD.

However, in 2014 and 2015, the PQD requirement for Premier Silver, Premier Gold and Premier Platinum qualification is waived for primary Cardmembers whose address with MileagePlus is within the 50 United States or the District of Columbia and who, in combination with their authorized users, spend at least $25,000 in Net Purchases during the applicable calendar year on MileagePlus co-branded credit cards issued by Chase Bank USA, N.A. Net Purchases made between January 1, 2014, and December 31, 2014, or January 1, 2015, and December 31, 2015, will count toward the $25,000 threshold in the applicable year.

There is no PQD waiver for Premier 1K® qualification.

How are Net Purchases defined for the purposes of the PQD waiver?

Net Purchases are purchases of goods and services made by you or any authorized user on your account minus any returns or refunds, and do not include balance transfers, cash advances, cash-like charges such as travelers checks, foreign currency, and money orders, any checks that are used to access your account, overdraft advances, interest, unauthorized or fraudulent charges, or fees of any kind, including an annual fee, if applicable. Purchases made by authorized users will qualify toward the primary Cardmember’s Net Purchases total but authorized users are not eligible for the PQD Waiver. If the primary Cardmember has multiple MileagePlus Chase credit cards, Net Purchases on those cards will be combined to calculate the $25,000 spend for the PQD waiver.

Does a PQD waiver apply if I have a United MileagePlus Presidential PlusSM card?

In 2014 and 2015, the PQD requirement for Premier Silver, Premier Gold and Premier Platinum qualification is waived for primary United MileagePlus Presidential Plus Card members whose accounts are open and not in default. There is no PQD waiver for Premier 1K qualification.

Please note that the Presidential Plus card is no longer available to new applicants.

I have more than one MileagePlus co-branded credit card issued by Chase. Will my eligible purchases be combined toward the $25,000 in Net Purchases for the PQD waiver?

Yes, provided that your cards are issued by Chase Bank USA, N.A., you are the primary Cardmember for all applicable cards, and your accounts are open and not in default, then the Net Purchases during the same calendar year on those cards will be combined toward the $25,000 spend for the PQD waiver for the applicable calendar year. See the PQD terms and conditions for more information about qualifying Net Purchases.

Where can I find more information?
For information about the MileagePlus Premier program, please visit the Premier Benefits and More page.

Premier qualifying dollar terms and conditions

  1. The Premier® qualifying dollars (PQD) requirement only applies to members whose primary MileagePlus account address is in the 50 United States or the District of Columbia. Those who use military or diplomatic addresses (APO, DPO or FPO) are exempt from the PQD requirement. 
  2. Members must fly at least four paid flight segments operated by United, United Express® or Copa Airlines during a calendar year to qualify for any Premier status. In 2014 and 2015, members who hold a United MileagePlus Presidential PlusSM or Club Credit Card are exempt from the four-segment minimum as long as they are the primary Cardmember and their Credit Card account is open and not in default at the time of qualification.
  3. In 2014 and 2015, the PQD requirement is waived for Presidential Plus Card members whose accounts are open and not in default, for Premier Silver, Premier Gold, and Premier Platinum qualification. There is no PQD waiver for Premier 1K qualification. The Presidential Plus card is no longer available to new applicants.
  4. 2014 and 2015 PQD Waiver: In 2014 and 2015, the PQD requirement is waived for Premier Silver, Premier Gold and Premier Platinum qualification for members (i) whose address with MileagePlus is within the 50 United States or the District of Columbia; and (ii) who during the applicable calendar year have spent at least $25,000 in Net Purchases, on a MileagePlus co-branded credit card issued by Chase Bank USA, N.A. at the time in 2014 or 2015 when they qualify for Premier status. There is no PQD waiver for Premier 1K qualification. Only the primary Cardmember is eligible for the PQD waiver. "Net Purchases" are purchases of goods and services made by you or any authorized user on your account minus any returns or refunds, and do not include balance transfers, cash advances, cash-like charges such as travelers checks, foreign currency, and money orders, any checks that are used to access your account, overdraft advances, interest, unauthorized or fraudulent charges, or fees of any kind, including an annual fee, if applicable. Purchases made by authorized users will qualify toward the primary Cardmember's Net Purchases total but authorized users are not eligible for the PQD Waiver. If the primary Cardmember has multiple MileagePlus Chase credit cards, Net Purchases on those cards will be combined to calculate the $25,000 spend for the PQD waiver. For MileagePlus Chase Credit Card members who open an account in 2014 or 2015, the "Calendar Year" includes only the portion of the year from the date when the Cardmember's credit card account is approved through December 31 of the same year. Therefore, the Cardmember may have less than 12 months in 2014 or 2015 to qualify for the PQD Waiver.
  5. These Frequently Asked Questions contain certain information relating to the United MileagePlus Program and/or the Premier Program, including the PQD requirement and the PQD waiver benefit. Such information does not purport to be complete or comprehensive and may not include all of the information that a member may believe is important, and is qualified in its entirety by reference to all of the information on the united.com website and the MileagePlus rules.
  6. United and MileagePlus reserve the right to modify the United MileagePlus Program and/or the Premier Program, including the PQD requirement and the PQD waiver benefit, at any time, with or without prior notice. All MileagePlus program rules apply and are expressly incorporated herein.
  7. MileagePlus membership and benefits, including the United MileagePlus Program and/or Premier Program, are offered at the discretion of United Airlines and its affiliates, and United has the right to terminate the Program and/or the Premier Program or to change the Program Rules, regulations, benefits, conditions of participation or mileage levels, in whole or in part, at any time, with or without notice, even though changes may affect the value of the mileage or certificates already accumulated. Bonus award miles, award miles and any other miles earned through non-flight activity do not count toward or qualify for Premier status unless expressly stated otherwise. Taxes and fees related to award travel are the responsibility of the member. All calculations made in connection with the United MileagePlus Program and/or the Premier Program, including without limitation the accumulation of mileage and the satisfaction of the qualification requirements of the Premier Program, and/or the revisions of calculations (including any estimates), will be made by United Airlines and MileagePlus in their discretion and such calculations will be considered final. United and MileagePlus are registered service marks. For complete details about the MileagePlus program, go to united.com/mileageplus.
  8. The following exclusions on earning award miles and Premier qualifying credits, including PQD, apply:
    • Certain premium cabin flight segments may earn different award miles and Premier qualifying credits than those defined for your ticketed fare class in the fare class chart on the Premier Status Qualification Requirements page. (Your fare class for each flight segment is displayed during booking and when viewing a ticketed itinerary on united.com.) In these cases, earning is based on the first letter of the fare basis code, which may correspond to an economy cabin fare class including Y, B, M, H, Q, U, V, W, S, T, L, K, G or N. You can determine your fare basis code when booking a reservation on united.com by selecting the Fare Rules and Restrictions link on the itinerary review page prior to purchase.
    • Codeshare and partner flights: If you purchase a ticket for a flight that is marketed by United but operated by another airline (known as a codeshare flight), the operating airline determines how many miles you earn. The fare class that appears on your ticket may differ from the fare class that the operating airline uses to determine flight miles earned. If a partner flight is not eligible to earn award miles, then it is also not eligible to earn Premier qualifying miles, segments or dollars.
    • MileagePlus award miles and Premier qualifying credits may not be earned on certain United and MileagePlus partner airline tickets. These include, but are not limited to:
      • United tickets purchased and used in violation of United’s Contract of Carriage, fare tariffs and the MileagePlus Program
      • All free travel, and all MileagePlus award travel
      • Unpublished charter flights
      • Industry free or industry reduced-rate tickets
      • Promotional certificates
      • Unpublished or opaque fares, including but not limited to those booked through priceline.com and Hotwire
      • Tickets, products or services purchased and used in violation of the terms and conditions applicable to United’s MileagePlus partners
    • Certain specialty tickets beyond those outlined above (including but not limited to unpublished, consolidator/bulk, group, tour and opague tickets) are not eligible for earning toward Premier qualifying dollars (PQD).
  9. See additional MileagePlus terms and conditions.

*Some MileagePlus benefits on Copa Airlines flights will change on July 1, 2015, as Copa Airlines will launch its own loyalty program in July 2015. Learn more>