United Airlines Status Miles Optimization

United offers two loyalty programs, one is the well known Mileage Plus program and the other one is Miles & More. This United Airlines Status Miles Optimization enables you achieve a Miles & More status (e.g. Frequent Traveller) faster. The status you can achive include Frequent Traveller, Senator or HON Circle. 

Status Miles With United Airlines

Status Miles With United Airlines

Index Of United Airlines Status Miles Optimization


Collecting Miles & More status miles with United Airlines is simple. You basically book a flight and while booking it you enter your Miles & More number. If you missed to enter it whilst booking, you still can do it at check in or request the miles after the flight. 

The devil is however in the detail! Not all flights give you the same amount of status miles. This means, if you do not care whilst booking, you certainly will collect your status miles, but it potentially with some little research could have been more.

This How To helps you to max out the amount of status miles you can collect with United Airlines.

How To: United Airlines Status Miles Optimization

Basically collecting Miles & More status miles with United Airlines is simple. Every flight (as long you deposit your Miles & More account number) will provide you with status miles. However, not all of them with the same amount.

In this how to I help you to understand how you can tune or max the amount of status miles the you can collect with United Airlines. The good message is, its totally transparent, but there are certain thing you need to know.

Booking Class

Booking classes define that business class not always equals business class, or economy not always equals economy. This at least if it comes to collecting status miles. This means, that the assumption of booking business class provides you with more status maile than for example premium economy is maybe wrong. For example, if with United Airlines you book Business Class in the booking class P, then you will earn less miles than by booking in the most likely cheaper booking class premium economy call O or A. Why this?

Simply because if it comes to status miles, there is a key behind each of the booking classes. Some of the classes give you 0,25 x the distance, some of them up to 2,0 times. Same is for the minimum, some booking cases give you only 250 status miles whilst others give you as a minimum 1000 status miles.

The good news is, this information is fully transparent available on the Miles and More website. Note, the below may changes over time and you like to double check the Miles and More website before booking. 

United Airlines Booking Classes

United Airlines Booking Classes

Booking Class Optimization

Knowing the above information about booking classes, you know now that you need to find the right booking class when you book a flight. These steps help you to do so. There are three great tools that allow you to understand the booking classes. One is the United Website itself, the other other one that I frequently use is expedia.com and finally, there is the official Miles & More Milage Calculator. These three tools help already a lot in order to max out the collection of status miles. 

The below helps you to learn in simple steps how to do it. The tutorial assumes you like to fly from Washington to Frankfurt. Of course, you can have for your trip  any different routing and destination. Like the approach of; Nothing is impossible…

So let’s see what United tells me. I am asking for a trip from DC to Frankfurt. It tells me:

Miles and More Washington Frankfurt

Miles and More Washington Frankfurt


On this one, there is a little small peace of information that is key for you! It shows the booking class:

Booking Classes United Washington to Frankfurt

Booking Classes United Washington to Frankfurt

With this information and the information you found in the above Booking Class chapter, you have now the amount of status miles you like to collect in your hands! Let’s assume, since it’s a long trip, you like to fly business class. The first thing you will note is that all of these trips in Business class have booking class D. As you would expect, Business and Business (fully refundable) have a different price tag. Yes, both are ridiculous expensive and I never would book this flight for 7k USD.

  • Booking class D gives you 2x the distance, the minimum of 1,000 miles is not relevant as the distance is longer than 1,000
  • Booking class R give you 1x the distance
  • and booking class S gives you 0,5x the distance

Now, let’s check Expedia.com, as for sure it gives us more price options, incl. the booking classes:

Expedia Flight Washington to Frankfurt

Expedia Flight Washington to Frankfurt

You will immediately observe, that Expedia.com offers the same flight (business class) at 6.05pm for 6,848 USD. This is already a minimum of 587 Doller cheaper. Let’s check the Booking Class. To do so, you select the flight, in this case the 6:05pm flight. A new window will pop up in which you click (Show Details):

Expedia Flight Frankfurt Show Details

Expedia Flight Frankfurt Show Details

In this case, you can see, that this one is Booking class D too! That means, whilst saving 587 Dollars, you can get Booking class D that is 2x the distance of the flight. Now, we can further optimise! OK, it’s gona to be a bit more painful if you do not like to change flights, but it’s possible.  There is in the above picture an option at 5:05 pm. That flight makes a stop in Newark, but it’s the same price. Lets see the booking class:

Expedia Washington Frankfurt one stop

Expedia Washington Frankfurt one stop

When you look at the above picture, you will observe, that there is a stop included and each flight is booking class D. That means, because you fly first to Newark, you will get additional 1,000 status miles for this flight and on top, the distance from Newark to Frankfurt is more far, a couple of additional miles for the distance! Perfect. With this flight, you can optimise and your original flight that you saw on United.com is 

  • compared with Expedia.com cheaper but you get more miles
  • you added for the same price 1 stop that is actually easy (1hr in Newark, you go to the lounge (for free))
  • you maximised status miles with a low pain level

Lets get better….

Expedia.com offers you actually something interesting! There is TAP Portugal and this airline is member of Miles & More. Furthermore, the flight with them seems much cheaper! Lets check this out!


TAP Portugal Washington to Frankfurt

TAP Portugal Washington to Frankfurt


This flight is actually amazing as it brings me for 3,620 USD instead of 7,435 USD that we had when we started this turtorial (first part of the chapter). It includes a stop and twice the booking class D. With this flight, not taking United, I would reduce my costs by nearly the half whilst maximise the miles I can earn!

In this case, and since booking class D is the best one, there is only one option to save more money and gather additional miles, which is to watch out for the route with cheaper prices or, add additional steps in order to increase paid USD per Mile.

Additional Information

Find additional information about Miles & More here!

Book cheap flights with Expedia.com

Follow me

It would be amazing if you follow my myhowto.blog. To my blog is actually easy! You can leverage on

  • Click to follow me on Twitter
  • Bookmark this page and comeback from time to time

Help and Comments

I am really looking forward for you to contact me if for example you found a better option or other idea then in this how to. Also, please touch base if you found an error or anything not working or if you have something that you would love to be added to the myhowto.blog. Simply click this link to touch base with me.

Linking Or Recommending The How To Or The myhowto.blog

I would love to see you are recommending this how to or link it to your website. Also, I would love if you link or recommend the whole myhowto.blog. Please feel free to do so! In case you like to touch base regarding this topic with me, then simply click this link. I look forward!