Chase Sapphire Reserve Travel Redemption - Hack or Screw-up?

I have a work trip coming up and wanted to bring my daughter along and book her ticket through the Chase UR portal. I thought it would be relatively simple to book her ticket, then call United and ask them to associate our itineraries to avoid the UM fee. I learned that the Chase portal and travel center will not allow you to book tickets for anyone under 18 traveling alone, whether considered a UM or not, in direct contradiction to their written policy (the supervisor said it was a recent change).

So, I booked the ticket anyway but with a birth year that would have made her over 18 and using her actual MileagePlus number. Then, I called United and asked them to fix it. But, the rep said that her correct birthdate was on the ticket, I presume because they used her MileagePlus profile instead of the information I gave when booking.

So… is this an ingenious hack for manipulating the terrible UR policies or is it going to come back to bite me when we get to the airport?


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It’s neither here nor there, but it looks like they updated the info on the portal since I spoke to them a few hours ago. It used to say “ does not book flights for unaccompanied minors under 15” and now it says “Chase Ultimate Rewards does not book flights for unaccompanied minors under age 18.”

So how did this play out?

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Take this info at your own risk, obviously. Things may have changed since this happened a few years ago, and you risk running afoul of United’s terrible computer system and/or TSA Secure Flight.

It worked fine. United had her correct info from her frequent flyer account. She couldn’t check in online or using self-service because she appeared to be a UM. When we arrived at the ticket counter I showed the agent that I had the same itinerary and there was no issue.

It actually was my best experience ever with United, who has consistently failed me since then…

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