Home Airfare Deals TODAY ONLY: United Airlines Fares From $29 or 3,000 Miles One-Way

TODAY ONLY: United Airlines Fares From $29 or 3,000 Miles One-Way

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Earlier this month we saw American Airlines promoting a series of one-day sales in which some of the deals on offer were surprisingly good. Today it’s United’s turn and while it looks like today United won’t be running a series of offers like American did, today’s flash sale may be worth a closer look.

United’s ‘National Plan For Vacation Day’ Sale

I can’t say that I’ve ever heard of ‘national plan for vacation day’ and to be completely frank, it sounds more than a little ridiculous (especially during a pandemic) but if it persuades airlines to offer good fares I guess I shouldn’t complain.

Key Terms

  • Tickets must be purchased at least 14 days prior to departure, but no later than January 26, 2021.
  • Roundtrip purchase is not required.
  • Travel may not begin until February 9, 2021, and must be completed by May 26, 2021.
  • The fares being promoted are valid for travel on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
  • Fares are valid in the Economy (Coach) cabin on United/United Express carriers and certain codeshare operated flights only. Some flights may be operated by the following airlines, doing business as United Express: Air Wisconsin, CommutAir, ExpressJet Airlines, GoJet Airlines, Mesa Air, Republic Airlines, or SkyWest Airlines; or may be operated pursuant to a codeshare agreement, such as Silver Airways.
  • The cheapest fares are for Basic Economy tickets
  • No minimum stay required
  • Passenger is responsible for all taxes, fees, baggage fees, and surcharges applicable to award travel, including, with respect to government imposed taxes and fees, September 11th Security Fee of $5.60 per one-way trip that does not include a government defined stopover, US Customs, Immigration and APHIS User Fees of $16.95 for each international arrival in the U.S.; and non-U.S. government ticket taxes, fees and airport charges may add up to $300 per ticket as of January 1, 2021. Such taxes, fees and surcharges must be paid at the time of ticketing and are subject to change.
  • Any valid unused award ticket may be returned to the MileagePlus Service Center, for a service charge, up to one year from the date of issue. Award seats are subject to availability and capacity-control restrictions apply.

Full terms and conditions can be found on the promotion page.

Example Fares

  • Boston – New York (EWR) – $29 or 3,000 miles
  • Charlotte – Washington D.C. (IAD) – $29 or 3,000 miles
  • Chicago – Pittsburgh – $29 or 3,000 miles
  • Dallas (DFW) – Houston – $29 or 3,000 miles
  • Hartford – Washington D.C. (IAD) – $29 or 3,000 miles
  • Las Vegas – Los Angeles – $29 or 3,000 miles
  • Las Vegas – San Francisco – $29 or 3,000 miles
  • Los Angeles – San Francisco – $29 or 3,000 miles
  • Los Angeles – Palm Springs – $29 or 3,000 miles
  • Nashville – Chicago (ORD) – $29 or 3,000 miles

There are a variety of other routes offering fares for $29/3,000 miles and you’ll also find routes on which one-way fares cost $79/6,000 miles, $99/7,000 miles, $109/7,500 miles, $119/8,000 miles, and $129/8,500 miles.

Quick Thoughts

Ok, yes. This sale is based on Basic Economy fares and it requires a traveler to book today so there’s little time to make plans so it’s far from perfect…but it’s not bad either.

I’d happily “suffer” Basic Economy if it meant that I could fly between LA and San Francisco or LA and Palm Springs for $29, and I’m sure there will be people thinking that Chicago – San Diego for 8,500 miles is a pretty reasonable deal and that Miami – San Francisco for 8,500 miles isn’t bad either, so there are definitely some interesting deals to be found in this sale.

Be aware that anyone considering booking a fare in this sale should first check what fares are being offered by other airlines on the same routes as it’s possible that there are some equally good fares out there that don’t book into Basic Economy. They may not be easy to find but given the state of the airline industry right now I wouldn’t be surprised to discover that there are some very good Main Cabin transcon fares for around $250.

Book Using The Right Card

Make sure you get the best deal out of whatever fare you book by using a card that gives you a good return on your travel spending and, preferably, one that also comes with good travel protections.

The Platinum Card from American Express and the Business Platinum Card from American Express both earn 5 points/dollar for spending made directly with airlines while the Chase Sapphire Reserve card earns 3 points/dollar for just about all travel spending. Also, and this is key, all three of these cards offer good trip delaytrip interruption, and trip cancellation protection.


The Amex Green Card earns 3 points/dollar for just about all travel spending but doesn’t offer the same level of protection as the Platinum Card or the Sapphire Reserve, and although the Citi Prestige Card matches the Platinum Card with its earnings of 5 points/dollar on spending made directly with airlines, the fact that it offers no travel protections at all makes it a less appealing option.

Bottom Line

For the rest of today, United Airlines is offering domestic fares starting at $29 or 3,000 miles for one-way travel. Travel may not begin until February 9, 2021, and must be completed by May 26, 2021, and the best deals are only available on select days of the week.

A Fantastic No Annual Fee Card

The Freedom Flex Credit Card is a no annual fee card from Chase and although it was only released in September 2020, it has quickly become a “must-have” credit card for fans of Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program. Fantastic earning rates, useful benefits, and no annual fee is always a winning combination.

Some Of The Great Earning Rates & Benefits:

  • 5% cash back (or 5 points/dollar) on:
    • Up to $1,500 of spending in quarterly revolving categories
    • Travel purchased through Chase’s travel portal
    • Lyft rides through March 2022
  • 3% cash back (or 3 points/dollar) on:
    • Dining (includes take-out and delivery)
    • Spending at drugstores
  • 1% cash back (or 1 point/dollar) on spending in all other categories
  • Complimentary cell phone protection

Click for more details on the Chase Freedom Flex Credit Card

Regarding Comments

Responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser or any other advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility or any other advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.


  1. Cheap way to 900 PQP. From United – “Premier members will receive a minimum of 300 bonus PQP per trip for their first three PQP-eligible trips” in 2021. Basic Economy qualifies for PQP. Book and fly three $29 one ways and get 900 PQP.


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