UPDATE: Qatar space is still bookable. That’s the good news. The bad news is that there will be more errors than usual online when trying to book. And if you call, many agents believe they can’t book Qatar or that they can’t book Qatar flights that depart on 9/15 or later. Hang up and call back until you get a competent agent. My clients are headed to the Seychelles on Qatar with United miles, and you can too… if you book by 9/14.
I’ve been warning everyone that the ability to book Qatar Airways with United miles would disappear Friday September 14.
The basis for that statement is this section on United’s website:
Specifically reserving it through the phone-hold-trick and purchasing awards with Qatar Airways have both failed.
Twenty-fours ago, a client placed on hold a roundtrip to the Seychelles with four segments on hold. Because of a delay in an Ultimate Reward transfer, he couldn’t place his companion’s award on hold.
Today when trying to get his companion’s ticket, we’ve gotten the standard error message on united.com saying reserving the itinerary had failed and to call United. Calling United and talking to several agents revealed that none could see the Qatar space visible online.
Going back online, I was able to use the phone-hold-trick to reserve some individual segments. But going back in to look at those reservations revealed a message I’ve never seen on united.com.
Ignoring the odd error that united.com thinks QR703 lands a day later than it does, both segments are listed as “waitlisted.” That’s also how United’s agents saw the segments, though, they couldn’t explain to me how that happened.
The good news is that reservations put on hold yesterday before these “waitlistings” and errors started can be ticketed today. But new United reservations with Qatar segments do not seem bookable.
It would be outrageous if United pulled the availability six days before they said they would, so I hope this is a temporary glitch, and I await United’s response.