Deciding where to use my airline voucher

departure board

Good news on the lost luggage front: I received my reimbursement!

A brief recap: When I flew to Alaska this summer, United misplaced my camping gear, causing Felip and I to have to scramble, running around the state buying new camping gear for our week there. The bag finally showed up more than a week after we returned to Chicago.

Now, I can report that I did receive the $100 travel voucher as well as full reimbursement for my emergency purchases. It took a while and many phone calls, but United delivered what the company promised.

alaska from plane

The only question now is when and where I should use the voucher. This is the first time I’ve ever had the luxury of a voucher (btw, if you want to play the voucher game, check out these tips from John at Travel Rinse Repeat, the voucher-acquisition expert.)

I have about a half-dozen potential trips planned in the next six months or so. But I’ve checked the flight prices for all them, and United’s prices are just not competitive. Pittsburgh to Chicago is $253 one way. That’s crazy! I’m used to going for $79 each way on Southwest.

Searching for airline tickets is usually a fun experience for me – nothing is more fun than scoring a deal – but trying to redeem the voucher has proven a challenge. Even with the $100 discount, I’m finding that prices on United are still more expensive than other airlines. I suppose I’ll keep waiting for a sale, and if none shows up, I’ll look for a one-way ticket to somewhere not far from Chicago, like Detroit or St. Louis, where I could get a flight for close to $100, therefore making it nearly free. I only have until June to use the voucher.

Do you have any suggestions on how to redeem travel vouchers?

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About Scott Shetler

Scott is a Chicago-based journalist and blogger who seeks out quirky sights and awesome destinations throughout North America and beyond.

4 comments on “Deciding where to use my airline voucher

  1. Have you looked into flying to Seattle from Chicago? I live in Seattle, and travel to Moline International Airport in Illinois to visit my hometown and I always fly United.

    • I’d love to go to Seattle but I haven’t seen any affordable tickets yet. I’m not familiar with Moline Airport but it looks a little far for me to get to. I’ll keep waiting for a sale!

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