United Airlines Passengers Can Travel Now And Pay Later

United Airlines is going to be allowing passengers to travel right now and pay for it later, under a new partnership announced today with Californian firm Uplift. Passengers booking flights from the US to United’s many global destinations will now be offered the option to pay for their tickets monthly through the Uplift credit system.

United Airlines Fly now pay later
Fly today, pay later! Photo: United Airlines

Travel now, pay later

The partnership between United Airlines and Uplift has been announced today, and promises to let passengers travel right away on flights with payments spread over time. Uplift uses a pay monthly set up to let passengers pay off flight bookings over the following 11 months.

Uplift CEO Brian Barth told Simple Flying in a statement,

“Our mission to make travel more accessible, affordable and rewarding for everyone perfectly aligns with United’s purpose of connecting people and uniting the world. Travel has become a fundamental part of our lives and consumers today demand more flexibility. We’re excited to help more people experience the world with this partnership with United.”

United Airlines Fly now pay later
The new United Airlines homepage showing ‘travel now, pay later’ options. Photo: United

According to the company, Uplift will integrate seamlessly into the United Airlines payment processing system. From the launch of the service, passengers making bookings on United.com will see an option to pay in installments for their tickets.

Although passengers will be subject to credit checks, Uplift promise that this will be fast, convenient and easy to do. Their system uses advanced artificial intelligence which the company says provides consumers with “the highest approval rates in travel”.

A proven system

Uplift has already been put through its paces by United through their United Vacations arm. Since 2017, pay monthly via Uplift has been an option for vacationers booking holiday packages through the service, so it is something of a natural evolution to see this extended to flight only bookings also.

Praveen Sharma, VP of Digital Products and Analytics at United, said of the new service,

“We began offering Uplift Pay Monthly in 2017 with United Vacations and received great feedback from our customers about the option to pay over time. Expanding Uplift’s flexible purchase option to flight tickets now allows even more customers to travel the world and create memories that will last a lifetime.”

United travel now pay later
Fly away today with no need to pay on United. Photo: United Airlines

Uplift’s payment system was purpose-built for travel, so is seamlessly aligned to the needs of both the passenger and United themselves. Already the pay monthly option is in use alongside some of the biggest names in travel, including Kayak, Norwegian Cruise Line, Universal Studios and many more.

Although details on the offer are, at this stage, somewhat sketchy, it seems Uplift is already being used in the US by Volaris. The terms of Volaris’ pay monthly scheme include being restricted to US citizens only who are over the age of 18 and are booking a fare with a minimum value of $300. We expect United to have similar terms imposed. Interest and fees are calculated at the time of making the offer.

What do you think? Would you like to travel now and pay for it over time, or do you prefer to save up for your travel? Let us know in the comments!