Short on Elite Qualifying Miles on United or Continental? Here’s the solution – Elite Maximizer.


Last week I wrote about Delta’s offer of selling Medallion Qualifying Miles (MQM’s) for ca$h. United doesn’t sell EQM’s but their Continental part does. It is called Elite Maximizer, but you cannot buy just EQM’s, you need to buy Reward Maximizer miles at the same time.

Here’s how it works. You need to have Continental ticketed itineraries on your My Bookings at, if you don’t have any; I have some tips later for that. Then you just choose the View of the itinerary, and you presented the screen below:

Continental Buy Extra Miles

As you can see, the itinerary that you want to “Maximize” doesn’t even need to be on a Continental or United metal, or even a revenue ticket. You can use the “Elite Maximizer” on all Continental issued tickets.


You then have to options. Buying roughly the number of miles of the distance of the two airports on this instance 1063 miles. You have to purchase redeemable miles at 3 cents per mile before you can buy elite qualifying miles at 10 cents per mile. The other option is to buy both double.

Continental Buy Extra Miles Payment Information

Here’s a tip if you need the miles but don’t have any itineraries open. You can buy even a non-refundable ticket, apply for the Elite Maximizer once the ticket has been issued, and cancel the ticket within 24 hours after the Maximizer miles have been posted. Of course you can buy a refundable ticket as well, although those tend to be bit on the expensive side. On my example above, I had actually bought an award ticket. As a Platinum member with Continental, I can refund award tickets without any fees.

How does this work with United? You can link your United MileagePlus and Continental OnePass accounts online. The elite qualifying miles are pooled every few days. You can after linking also transfer redeemable miles between Continental and United accounts freely. Some people prefer booking awards on because they have integrated greater number of partners that can be booked without having to call. Sometime next year both of the accounts will be merged.

Does it make sense to use the elite Maximizer? It depends how close you would be to a meaningful status with MileagePlus. Especially if you are close to 1K, I could imagine buying up to 10K Elite Maximizer miles, if not more.

Here are the Terms and Conditions of this offer:

Get closer to your next travel reward.

OnePass Maximizer allows you to increase your mileage balance faster by purchasing additional OnePass miles.

For example, if you will be earning 1,000 miles for your trip, OnePass Maximizer will allow you to double this by purchasing an additional 1,000 miles, or triple it by purchasing an additional 2,000 miles.

Qualify for Elite status faster with OnePass Elite Maximizer.

The miles you purchase with OnePass Maximizer will be added to your current mileage balance but do not count toward Elite qualification. To purchase additional miles that count toward Elite qualification, you can add the OnePass Elite Maximizer option to your OnePass Maximizer purchase.

Purchase at any time after your ticket purchase.

OnePass Maximizer and OnePass Elite Maximizer are offered after you purchase your ticket when managing your reservation, checking in online or at an airport kiosk.

You must be a OnePass member to purchase OnePass Maximizer.  Not a OnePass member? Enroll online instantly.

Is OnePass Maximizer offered for all flights?
OnePass Maximizer is valid for most types of tickets, including reward tickets. The specific number of miles offered for purchase may vary based on the length of your flight and type of ticket. In these cases, miles available for purchase may not be directly related to the miles you’ll be earning for your flight. Certain types of tickets may be excluded.
When will the miles I purchase post to my account?
OnePass Maximizer miles will post to your account within 24 hours of purchase. The base miles you’ll earn for your trip will continue to post once you take your flight.
Why do offers differ at check-in and at
When you purchase miles during online check-in or at a kiosk, offers are based on the flights for which you are checking in. When purchasing at outside of checking in, offers are based on the total remaining flights in your itinerary.
What happens if I change or cancel my flight after purchasing?
All purchases through OnePass Maximizer are non-refundable. You’ll be able to keep any miles you’ve purchased even if you change or cancel your trip. This also applies when your flight is re-routed or interrupted on account of conditions outside your control.
How often can miles be purchased with the OnePass Maximizer offer?
OnePass Maximizer miles can be purchased once for each traveler for each flight.
Do these miles expire?
Once OnePass Maximizer miles are deposited into your OnePass account and are subject to all terms and conditions of the OnePass program.
Are there other ways to purchase miles outside of OnePass Maximizer?
Yes. Even without a reservation, you can always purchase OnePass miles for yourself or as a gift for someone else through our Buy Miles program. Additionally, if you’d like to transfer miles from one OnePass account to another you may do so using our MilePass program.
Terms and Conditions
  • All miles purchased are non-refundable.  A federal excise tax of 7.5% is included in the displayed price.
  • These miles credit to your OnePass account within 24 hours of purchase.
  • The miles you purchase with OnePass Maximizer are redeemable miles and do not count toward Elite qualification, unless OnePass Elite Maximizer is added to your purchase.
  • Purchased miles are subject to all OnePass terms and conditions.
  • Offer applicable on base miles only.
  • Offer may be for a fixed mileage amount instead of double or triple the actual miles traveled.


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