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March 12, 2019

United Airlines Revamps Meetings Product

United Airlines is beefing up its offerings for the meetings and events industry. Central to this effort is the launch of a new United Meetings product, which is available on the airline’s business portal, United Jetstream

“The needs we have been hearing loud and clear: we have to have some more flexible offerings, more rewarding offerings and offerings that are faster to market and easier to transact,” United SVP of Sales Jake Cefolia tells International Meetings Review of the thinking behind the new product. “We heard that and took that feedback to heart.”

Cefolia says that the airline has spent the better part of the last year completely redesigning its meeting product. Now, the new portal will allow meeting planners to make a request and receive flexible discounts for participants within one business day, and quickly turn travel funds into rewards such as beverage coupons, travel certificates, United Club passes and memberships, and more. 

“Since it’s housed on Jetstream, it takes a matter of minutes to self-serve,” Cefolia says. “There’s no call that needs to be made, and nothing that needs to be sent in for redemption.”

The site also includes a personalized dashboard that allows meeting planners to track the number of tickets booked, flights flown, amenities funds earned and the number of tickets needed for the next amenity award. 

Another key feature: “We’re going to be allowing all meetings volume to count toward corporate contract compliance,” says Cefolia. 

United Meetings is available to organizations worldwide hosting a meeting of 10 or more participants. Discounts are extended to travel on the airline’s Star Alliance and joint venture partners. 

The new product is part of a broader shift in the way in which the airline views sales, Cefolia says. 

“We’re viewing customers more as strategic partners, rather than the antiquated buyer / seller relationship,” Cefolia says. 

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