Goodbye Continental…Hello United

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Yesterday marked the last day of Continental Airlines, and I must admit, I am pretty sad to see them go. Growing up, we used to fly Continental once or twice a year from Boston to Ft. Lauderdale with a layover in Newark. 9 times out of 10, my family would volunteer for a bump and we’d be put on the next plane down to see our snowbird Grandparents. We loved the thrill of being bumped and knowing that this would secure us another vacation down to sunny Florida to see our Grandparents. I remember loving Continental and as I grew older continued to think highly of them with their phenomenal customer service. Well today is the start of a new era = the Continental and United systems have been fully integrated. My hope is that once everything is sorted out, customer service will go back to the way things used to be and best practices will be similar to what we once knew and loved about Continental (I personally think things went way downhill once United got involved).

If you’ve been checking your account today, you might notice a few issues – miles being wiped away, reservations all over the place, lifetime status not updated, etc. From working on many system integrations the past years, these things are not easy and I am actually impressed that the United site is actually running this morning. If your account is incorrect, DO NOT PANIC. Give it about 24 hours to let the tech guys fully do their thing and figure out all the bugs. Give it to Monday morning for things to be back to normal.

Fortunately, my profile is fully up to date with the correct number of year-to-date miles, segments, and lifetime miles. I previously only had miles in my Continental account and nothing with United. I also did not link my accounts previously since I was keeping my Continental account number anyways and had no United miles to be added. Seems as those with just Continental accounts are working fine in the system. You can read more about the United/Continental integration that took place today on this FlyerTalk thread.

The new changes:

  • The United and Continental site is now one and has kept the same look and feel as the prior Continental site, however, the URL is now:
  • All flights that were scheduled to operate as Continental Airlines (CO) will be operating as United Airlines (UA)
  • MileagePlus is the single loyalty program
  • Your frequent flyer number will be your existing Continental OnePass account number, not your existing United MileagePlus number
    • If you previously only had a MileagePlus account and NOT a ContinentalOnePass, you should have received an email with your new converted 8-character account number
    • If you previously had both a Continental OnePass account and a United MileagePlus account, your OnePass account number will be your new MileagePlus number

Things to note:

  • If you have a flight scheduled today and you need to check in at the airport or check bags, I’d suggest getting to the airport slightly earlier than normal, the check in process could take a tad longer with a new system and place and some potential pandemonium
  • Make sure to update your number in all places where your MileagePlus number is stored, i.e., AwardWallet, hotel programs, etc.
  • If you are not seeing your full mileage balance displayed and looking to reserve an award ticket, you are able to put your itinerary on hold for 72 hours for free with United’s FareLock option

After 78 years, goodbye Continental, you will be missed. C’est la vie.

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  1. Personally, I refuse to recognize the merger….in fact, next week, I am taking a CO flight….after I make a connection via Eastern and Braniff. I am on my way to Constantinople. 🙂

  2. RIP Continental. My last experience with you this week was rough. 3/4 of the flights were delayed totaling 5 hours of waiting. But I will still miss you so.

  3. Awwww crap!!! My chase one pass card just swiched to united on the chase website! I hope they don’t send me another united card!

  4. Continental was one airline that almost understood the definition of customer service. My recent trips have confirmed that the united influence has totally wiped that out.

  5. What a nightmare…I traveled on March 3rd and everything that could go wrong did go wrong. Their systems were down and they could not issue boarding passes. The flight had to have emergency landing to refuel. Begs had to be rechecked and of course they lost them. They still have no idea where they are. Agents are more than rude. I am thinking it is time to fly some other airline…

  6. I just noticed that I flew yesterday on USAirways, with my United (old United) FF # attached to the reservation. I am sure that I booked it before I knew what date the switch would take place. I wonder how long it is going to take to get this mileage credit!

    • @YourFoodSherpa – Interesting… would love to hear the end result. Ultimately, you’ll get your miles, I just wonder if you’ll need to make a phone call or if it will all work out for you in the back end. Keep me posted.

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