Anyone else being turned away from Lounge for a lack of UA 2014 card?

united logo 2

I was flying from Vienna Airport on Saturday and was initially turned away from the Senator lounge operated by Austrian Airlines because my United 1K card had expired on 31 January 2014 and the new card had yet to arrive.

Some years ago, United used to have its cards valid until the end of February to allow for problems getting cards to members. Although living outside the US I accept I am the poor relation for United – we don’t get any of the promos that US-residents do, but we don’t have to earn Premier Qualifying Dollars so it might be considered even!

Anyway, last year my United card turned up in the UK on 31 January – just in time.

Of course, I re-qualified for 1K in early December, so United could have chosen to send my card then. In fact, as a 3 million mile passenger, United knew I was going to be 1K in 2014 from the start of the year, as 3MM’s get 1K for life.

Luckily, a Lufthansa Senator guested me in, and so I could spend a happy few hours waiting for my LH flight to Frankfurt.

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  1. I have not received mine either, but did not have any trouble at the ANA or TG Lounges last week at NRT and BKK, at least they did not ask for the card. Sometimes ANA does, but lately they have not.

  2. I’ve been waiting since July when I qualified as a Premier Platinum for the first time. Absolutely horrible service and one of the reasons why I’m not going to requalify with them.

  3. Couldn’t you just bust open the United app and show them the virtual “card” in there? Would they really need the physical card in 2014?

  4. BTW, I should have added, it seems that VIE is the airport where they most demand the card. I’ve had no trouble with US lounges, LH or LX lounges but when I go to VIE and the OS lounges they demand a physical card, very annoying.

  5. Luckily, as a 1K before my EU flight I got mine on the 23rd Jan.
    But makes one wonder, why not do it when we qualify for the status, like DL does?
    It does not make sense not to travel abroad for 1 month of the year waiting for the card. If we had a long international trip on Jan 21st, we would have been toast. For us it was Jan 28th, so worked out.

  6. My wife and I had that happen last week at PHL’s US Airways lounge! They wanted the card and wouldn’t let us in without it (was on international US Airways flight).

  7. I had a similar problem with the USAirways lounge (soon to be closing) in T-1 at LAX. But I waited at their front desk while I demanded that they call over to someone in PHX who could “authorize” my entry.

  8. I plan on filing a dot complaint against United each time I am denied by another airline, since they have known I’d be 1K since June and we’re still processing as of Feb 1

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