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Displaying & Understanding Fare Class Codes

From the Mileage Plus section of United.com, when logged in, click the User Profile link. From this page, scroll down and select the Display Preferences link. Then, select "an expert" as your choice for Availability Format, and Submit.

Now, whether searching for award or regular travel by schedule, the availability column will show you detailed but coded information about fare (or award) availability (note - some of United's availability displays have a new condensed format with a details link that will bring up the availability):

The above flight's Availability column shows: P9 C9 D9 Y9 B9 M9 H9 E9 U9 Q9 V9 W9 S0 T0 L0 K9 G0 A2 Z9.

Every airline uses a letter system for fare classes, and the number after each letter indicates the number of seats that are available in that fare class. (The system is limited to booking a maximum of 9 seats at a time.)

Nearly all airlines - United included - use F for full-fare first class; C for full-fare business class, and Y for full-fare economy. Beyond that, the letters may differ among airlines.

United has fare class codes reserved for saver award travel and will display them if you've updated your User Profile:

The saver award fare class codes are: R X O I N (and E).
R = First Class [XF]
O = Business Class  [XC]
N = economy  [XY]
E = economy for United 1K and Global Services members  [NY*]
(X is the code for First Class Upgrade Award from Paid Business Fare.  [NF])
(I is the code for a Business Class Upgrade Award from Paid Economy. [NC])

*[NOTE: The codes United.com displays are not the actual booking codes that United uses for tickets: Free tickets are booked in XF, XC, or XY for First, Business, or Economy. Upgrade awards are booked in NF or NC for First or Business. Since E is now used for Ted Flights, E/NY availability for GS/1K's is not displayed at all and cannot be booked on United.com. You have to call United Reservations to see if there is NY award inventory availabile.]

The display above tells you that there are 2 award seats available in economy (N2), and none for first or business class.

(Standard awards allow you to get a seat if any seats are available for purchase, and award lookup for standard awards will display purchased-fare class availabilities.)

United purchased-fare class codes include:

FIRST CLASS: F  (P= Premium Class)
BUSINESS CLASS: C D 
ECONOMY CLASS: Y B refundable economy fares.
All the other letters are various discounted fares with various restrictions:
W is a web-fare
 

 

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