Change your flight on the fly

These days, flexibility is more important than ever when you’re traveling, so we’re giving you more ways to adjust your travel plans all the way up to the day of your trip.

Change your travel plans within 24 hours of booking

We know that plans can change, so our 24-hour flexible booking policy lets you change your reservation or cancel it and get your money back within 24 hours of booking your trip, as long as you purchased your ticket one week or more before your flight.

Change or cancel your flight on united.com or the United app, or by calling your local United Customer Contact Center.



Fly with flexibility

If your trip is coming up and you’re more than a day away from departure, you may be able to change your reservation with no change fees.

You can adjust your travel plans without any change fees — including for award tickets — for flights within the U.S., or for international travel originating in the U.S. This applies to most United Economy® and all premium cabin tickets. You’ll just pay the fare difference if your new flight is more expensive.

For award tickets not originating in the U.S., there won’t be a change fee as long as the ticket is changed more than 30 days before departure, but there may be a difference in the fare.

Basic Economy tickets are non-changeable, except when you’d like to stand by for an earlier flight.

Change or cancel your flight on united.com or the United app, or by calling your local United Customer Contact Center.

Change to a different flight on the same day

You can make changes to your flight either before or after you check in, even if you booked with miles.

Premier members icon Premier members

Premier members have extra flexibility for flight changes made within 24 hours of departure. Premier members may be able to confirm a seat on another flight within 24 hours of your originally scheduled departure time for no cost at all.* If a Premier member’s original ticketed fare class isn’t available on the new flight, a fare difference may apply. If your original ticketed fare class isn’t available, you can always stand by for free.

All travelers icon All other travelers

If you’re a customer or MileagePlus member without Premier® status, you may be able to confirm a seat on another flight within 24 hours of your originally scheduled departure time. A fare difference may apply even if the same original fare class is available. And don’t forget — you can always stand by for free.

boarding pass icon Basic Economy Tickets

Basic Economy tickets are not eligible to confirm changes on different flights, but you may stand by for other flights within 24 hours of your original departure time.

    1. You can change your flight on united.com or the United app, at an airport kiosk, by calling your local United Customer Contact Center or by talking with a United representative at the airport.
    2. If you’re switching to a different flight on united.com or the United app, select “My Trips” to get started. Select "Change flight" and then "Edit" to update your itinerary to another flight.
    3. Your new flight must:
      • Have the same origin and destination
      • Leave within 24 hours before or after of your original flight (in order to qualify for free same-day confirmation)
      • Be operated by United or United Express® with a ticket number beginning with 016
    4. In order for Premier members to confirm a new seat on a different flight for free, space needs to be available in the same fare class, but if it’s not available, you can pay the difference. For all other ticketed customers who’d like to make a same-day change and confirm a seat, a fare differential may apply — even if your same fare class is available.
    5. Select “Continue” to see your options and confirm a new flight.
    6. Have you already checked your bags for your original flight? You’ll need to confirm any changes at least 60 minutes before your new departure time, and we’ll do our best to move your bags to your new flight.


Join the standby list for an earlier flight

If you can’t confirm a seat on another flight or can’t change without a fee, you can always join the standby list for an earlier flight for free. If your itinerary includes several flight segments, you’ll need to stand by for each flight individually.

    1. You can add yourself to the standby list on united.com or the United app, at an airport kiosk or by talking with a United representative at the airport.
    2. Add yourself to the waitlist at an airport kiosk by reviewing your itinerary and selecting “View Flight Options,” or by talking with a United representative at the airport.
    3. Once you’ve been added to the waitlist, the first three letters of your last name and your first initial will display on the screens near the gate for your new flight. You can also check your real-time standby status on the United app and at united.com/flightstatus. The order of the standby list is prioritized by MileagePlus® Premier status unless you have a Basic Economy ticket.
      •  
      • Waitlist priority for all flights
      • Premier status iconPremier status of the traveler
      • Fare classFare class
      • United MileagePlus Club iconChase United MileagePlus Club cardholders and Presidential Plus cardholders
      • United Corp iconUnited Corporate Preferred participants
      • United Chase Cardmember iconUnited Chase Cardmembers with $25,000 in annual spending
      • date iconDate and time of request
    4. If you have a Basic Economy ticket, we’ll add you to the standby list after all other ticketed customers and then follow the same prioritization listed above.
    5. If a seat is available, we’ll automatically assign you one about 30 minutes before departure for domestic flights and 60 minutes for international flights. If you’ve signed up for day-of-travel notifications, we’ll text or email you to let you know we’ve assigned you a seat. You can refresh your boarding pass on the United app or check the screens near your gate to view your seat.

Frequently asked questions

Same-day flight changes

  • Yes. If you want to change your ticket at no cost, it must fall within the rules of the same-day confirmation policy and the new flight must depart within 24 hours of your original scheduled departure (earlier or later).
  • Premier members are eligible to confirm changes on other flights for free when the original ticketed fare class is available on the new flight. For all other customers, a difference in fare may apply even if the same original ticketed fare class is available.

  • If you want to change the departure or arrival airport, you’ll have to pay the change fee and any difference in fare.

  • Yes, you can do so when a change can be confirmed, but only if the fare allows for the new routing and there are no changes to the origin or destination airports. You can’t change your routing when you’re standing by.

  • Yes. But when your itinerary includes three or more flights, you can only confirm the change by calling the United Customer Contact Center or talking with a United representative at the airport. All of the flight segments in your itinerary must fall within the same-day confirmation policy.

  • Yes, as long as you meet all other requirements.

Standby

  • For your privacy, we only display a portion of your name on the list. Specifically, the first three letters of your last name and your first initial will be displayed. For example, if your name is Mary Sample, your name will be shown as "SAM, M." on the list.

  • Customers standing by are prioritized by their Premier status. The published Premier status that has the highest priority is Premier 1K®, followed by Premier Platinum, Premier Gold, Premier Silver, other MileagePlus members, and then all remaining customers.**

    If there are multiple members with the same Premier status, we’ll use the fare class they originally purchased to determine their priority. In the event there are multiple members with the same Premier status and fare class, we’ll then determine priority by Chase United MileagePlus Club cardholders, United Corporate Preferred participants, United Chase cardmembers with more than $25,000 in annual spend, and lastly by the date and time they were added to the standby list.

    All United customers, including customers who purchase Basic Economy tickets, may fly same-day standby on an earlier United flight. Customers with Basic Economy tickets will be placed on the standby list after all other ticketed customers and then follow the same prioritization for members on the waitlist mentioned above.

  • We continually update and prioritize the standby list as customers check in and request to be added to the list.

  • Some of the most common types of standby customers are:

    • Involuntary standby customers – Customers who did not travel on their original flight because a flight is canceled or an itinerary is changed by United.
    • Voluntary standby customers – Customers on eligible fares who are voluntarily standing by for a different flight from their original flight.
    • Pass riders – United employees or their eligible dependents standing by on a space-available basis. Pass riders are prioritized last, and are only assigned seats after all other standby customers are accommodated.
  • Eligible customers can add themselves to the standby list at an airport kiosk by reviewing their itinerary and selecting "View Flight Options" or by contacting a United airport representative.

    If you've requested to be added to the standby list, but don’t see your name on the list, please check with a United airport representative. This issue can only be resolved at the airport.

  • If you’re using the United app, you can change your seat if we assign it an hour or more before your flight departs. If you receive a seat assignment within an hour of departure, you won’t be able to change your seat on the United app.

    If you still want to change your seat after you receive an assignment, please see a gate agent and they’ll try to help you out.

  • If you're a MileagePlus Premier member with a restricted* ticket, you may be able to confirm a seat on a different flight within 24 hours of your originally scheduled flight at no charge. Same-day flight changes aren’t available for Basic Economy or certain United Economy fares except in connection with same-day standby. The following conditions apply:

    • Your itinerary must be operated by United or United Express, and your ticket number must begin with 016.
    • The same-day flight change option will be available within 24 hours before your original scheduled flight. The flight you request must be leaving within 24 hours from the time your request is made and can include any fare class, though you may have to pay the difference in fare. Changes must be made before your original scheduled flight.
      • When a Premier member is within 24 hours of their original scheduled departure time, and you’re able to get the same original ticketed fare class on your new requested flight that also departs within 24 hours of departure, you may confirm the change for free.
      • For customers who do not hold MileagePlus Premier status and who want to change flights within 24 hours of your original scheduled departure time, you may change to a new flight but a fare difference may apply.
    • You may change to cheaper flight or a flight in a lower fare class than the one you purchased, and may receive the future flight credit for the fare difference.
    • You can stand by for other flights within 24 hours of your original departure time for free. Route changes aren’t allowed when standing by. You can ask for standby on the day of your departure at an airport kiosk or with a United representative at the airport, but you can also request standby through United.com or the United mobile app. Once you’re added to the flight standby list, you can check your real-time standby status at united.com/flightstatus or on your mobile device at mobile.united.com/info
    • If your ticket is upgraded, it will automatically be added to the upgrade standby list at your applicable upgrade priority. Once you’re added to the upgrade standby list, you can check your real-time upgrade status at united.com/flightstatus or on your mobile device at mobile.united.com/info
    • Changes are only available for the same origin and destination airport. Your connection points can be changed if the fare you’ve bought allows for the new routing.
    • You can confirm same-day flight changes when you check in online, at any airport kiosk, by calling your local United Customer Contact Center or with a United representative. If you checked baggage on your original flight, you’ll need to complete any changes at least 60 minutes before your new flight’s departure to allow time for us to move your baggage to the new flight.

    *Restricted tickets exclude certain specialty tickets (including but not limited to unpublished, consolidator/bulk, group, tour and opaque tickets where the fare you paid is not provided to United) and fares that don’t allow changes of any kind, such as United Specials and tickets bought through certain wholesale outlets (e.g. where you don’t know the identity of the airline until after you buy the ticket).

*Effective January 1, 2021. Same-day changes are free for Premier members when the same fare class is available, otherwise a fare differential may apply. If your new flight costs less, you’ll be able to change for free and may receive a future flight credit for the fare difference.

**Some standby customers with an unpublished Premier level may receive higher prioritization.