If you want elite status next year on United Airlines, you're going to have to spend a bit more money.
United recently published next year's qualification requirements on its website. Just like in 2014, travelers who want Silver, Gold, Platinum or 1K status will have to fly a certain number of miles and reach a spending threshold. The required number of miles is the same next year, but the dollar amounts have increased. This year was the first time United required passengers seeking elite levels to spend a certain amount of money. In the past, passengers only needed to amass miles.
Let's take a look at the 2015 requirements:
- Premier Silver. 25,000 miles. New spending required: $3,000. (Up $500 from 2014)
- Premier Gold. 50,000 miles. New spending required: $6,000. (Up $1,000 from 2014)
- Premier Platinum. 75,000 miles. New spending required: $9,000. (Up $1,500 from 2014)
- Premier 1K. 100,000 miles. New spending required: $12,000. (Up $2,000 from 2014)
There remain some exemptions. You can get Silver, Gold and Platinum without reaching the spending threshold if you spend at least $25,000 per year on a MileagePlus branded credit card. And you do not have to reach the spending limits if you live outside of the United States.
If this all sounds familiar, it could be because Delta has a nearly identical program and recently also raised its spending thresholds for 2015. American Airlines still has no spending requirement for its elite customers.