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Need 250 United Miles? There’s an App for That

Need 250 United Miles? There’s an App for That

United has apparently set itself the goal of being the market leader in shopping miles.

When the airline launched its revamped Mileage Plus Shopping mall late last year, it boasted the following enhancements over the previous miles-for-shopping feature:

  • Members can now register a credit or debit card to earn miles at participating in-store retailers and catalogs.
  • Mileage Plus Visa credit cardholders are automatically registered.
  • More online retailers.
  • Earn miles for dining reservations via OpenTable.
  • No need for members to register to shop online anymore—they can just login to Mileage Plus Shopping using a membership number and password.

Taken together, the improvements put United’s mileage mall a step ahead of similar offerings from American, Delta, and other airlines.

United has now further bolstered the miles-for-shopping superiority of Mileage Plus with the release of its new shopping toolbar.

Once downloaded and installed, the toolbar lets program members know if they can earn miles when shopping at various vendors, alerts them to special offers, and awards one mile for every three Yahoo searches, up to a maximum of 100 miles per month.

To promote it, United is offering 250 bonus miles to Mileage Plus members who use the toolbar to perform at least one toolbar search or make one toolbar purchase before April 30. The bonus award miles will post to members’ Mileage Plus accounts within 10 weeks after the promotion’s end date.

Toolbar or No Toolbar?

I make it a point to keep my computer screen as uncluttered as possible, so I’m generally disinclined to install toolbars and other non-essential apps.

While I occasionally earn miles for shopping at online retailers, it’s not a high priority.

And really, one mile for every three Yahoo! searches? Yawn.

But it so happens that I need a qualifying transaction to keep my United miles from expiring. And this fits the bill nicely, both for now and for the future.

So I’ll download the toolbar and take the 250 bonus miles, thereby extending the life of all the miles in my Mileage Plus account; and thereafter I’ll periodically switch from Google to Yahoo! for searches to keep my miles alive.

Your mileage may vary.

Reader Reality Check

Have you used the toolbar? Is it a worthwhile download?

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  • Inga

    I added the United Shopping Tool Bar to my computer, but I did not get any 250 mile bonus. Was there something I needed to do?

  • ochogger

    How do you get a 250 bonus miles link? I can not find any mention of this offer on there website??

  • Tim Winship

    The bonus was promoted in an email, but doesn’t seem to be mentioned on UA’s website. From that email: “To qualify for the 250 bonus award miles, you must download the toolbar and perform at least 1 toolbar search or make 1 toolbar purchase before April 30th, 2011. Bonus award miles will post to your Mileage Plus account within 10 weeks after the promotion end date.”

    So, 1) download, 2) use the toolbar for 1 search or purchase, and 3) wait 10 weeks after April 30 for the miles to post.

  • hello

    “To qualify for the 250 bonus award miles, you must download the toolbar and perform at least 1 toolbar search or make 1 toolbar purchase before April 30th, 2011. Bonus award miles will post to your Mileage Plus account within 10 weeks after the promotion end date.”

  • Karen

    I never got those miles, after contact united back in june… i am still waiting for ananswer

  • Tim Winship

    While United promised to post the miles w/in 10 weeks, in my own experience it took closer to 3 months for the miles to post. By now, tho, all miles from this promo should have been posted — if not, best to contact United and have them look into the holdup.

  • Sooz

    Is the toolbar gone? My computer was updated, tool bar erased, and now I can’t find it to download again! Help!

  • Apple2guy

    My toolbar also vanished on 10/02/2011

  • Tiffany

    My toolbar is also gone and when I try to search “toolbar” on the mileage plus mall website it says there’s an error.

  • Maria C

    I downloaded the Tool Bar, I also made a purchase through Mileage Plus Shopping, do you think I ever got any mile posted into my account? Never. They say the miles were credited to another loyalty program, but not mine, for sure. Their customer service has ignored my e-mails asking for clarification.
    Help would be appreciated

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