Continental: Take Advantage While You Can…

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Update 2-01/12/11:  Another week, another big loss as predicted in this post from just 2 weeks ago.  Effective immediately Continental is no longer offering easy year-long status matches.  Instead they are adopting United’s policy that you will only get matched for 90 days and in those 90 days you must complete a challenge to fly 10,000 miles to keep Silver, 17,500 miles to keep Gold, and 35,000 miles to keep Platinum.

Update-01/05/11: Going, going, gone.  Chase is no longer offering a Continental debit card for their checking accounts.  Existing cards are still valid but will likely be phased out in the future. Take advantage of other offers while you can!

Originally posted on 12/28/10:

Continental’s Onepass program will be gone by the end of 2011.  Until then take advantage of everything you can, such as:

-Open a Continental OnePass Plus Mastercard free for the first year and get 30,000 miles after your first purchase, $50 cash-back, and free checked luggage.
Read all about the OnePass Plus card and the dozens of benefits and ultra-premium protections (primary CDW, baggage and trip delay coverage, roadside assistance, price, purchase, and return protection, and much more.) that come with it in this post.

-Open other Chase cards that give Continental miles.
-Chase Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card® Card: 28,000 miles after spending $3,000.
-Chase Sapphire (You need to have a Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or Ink Bold for points to be transferable to Continental): 10,500 miles after spending $500.
-Chase Ink Bold Business: 10,000 miles after your first purchase.

Open A Chase consumer checking account and get 25,000 miles, or 50,000 miles if you also open a business account.
Chase is phasing out reward debit cards so this may be the last chance to get miles just for opening a bank account!

-Transfer AMEX Points to Continental.  Points need to be transferred by 09/30/11.
Continental is a great option for AMEX point transfers. They have very lenient routing options, have dozens of Star Alliance and non-alliance partners, allow free date and route changes, don’t block award flights, and don’t charge a fuel surcharge. They also have great round-the-world award rates.
-AMEX Plat Charge Card: 51,000 miles after spending $1,000.
-AMEX Premier Rewards Charge Card: 16,000 miles after spending $1,000.
-AMEX Gold Charge Card: 10,500 miles after spending $500.
-AMEX Zync (You need to have another AMEX charge card to transfer points to miles): 10,000 miles after your first purchase.

If any of the card links don’t show the signup bonus you need to clear out your browser’s cache and cookies or try using a different browser!

-Get an elite status match. Continental will match your elite status that you have in other programs.  If you’re bottom-tier in another program they’ll give you Silver, mid-tier in another program will get you Gold, and top-tier will be matched to Continental Platinum. Continental won’t match the status of partner airlines.
You can only status match once in your lifetime, so with Continental going away now is the time to use that match!
Matched status will last through 01/31/12.

To get a status match just call the Continental OnePass Service Center at 713-952-1630, prompt #4, or email them at

Did you just get elite status on Delta thanks to just transferring over some AMEX points? Match now!

With Silver you’ll get:
-2 free bags for you and all your travel companions
-25% bonus miles on flights and 500 mile minimum flight earnings
-Priority phone line, check-in, security, and boarding
-Space-available upgrades 1 day before your Continental or United flight
-You will also get upgrades on award tickets starting in 2011 if you also have the Continental OnePass Plus card.
-Elite section seating on Continental and economy plus seating on United
-Expanded availability on saverpass mileage awards in coach
-Last-seat availability on easypass mileage awards
-Instant upgrades on B/Y fares
-Reduced $50 reward expedite and cancellation fees.

Gold will get you the above and
-3 free 70 pound bags for you and all your travel companions on all Star Alliance carriers.
-Star Alliance Gold, which gets you free lounge access at hundreds of lounges when traveling internationally
-100% bonus miles on flights
-Space-available upgrades for you and your companions 3 days before your Continental or United flight
-Reduced $25 reward expedite and cancellation fees.

Platinum will get you the above and
-Space-available upgrades for you and your companions 5 days before your Continental or United flight
-Free reward expedite and cancellation fees.
-Free same day flight changes
-Expanded availability on saverpass mileage awards in First and BusinessFirst.
-Instant upgrades on M fares

-Last chance to buy a lifetime lounge membership?

United doesn’t sell a lifetime lounge membership (they do give one after you have 2,000,000 hard-earned BIS miles) and the combined company may very well stop selling this.
Continental has raised the price on the lifetime membership just about every year for the past 20 years. While it took just a few hundred dollars to buy one originally, about $1,400 to buy one 10 years ago, and about $2,700 to buy one 5 years ago, it now sells for $4,600-$5,900 depending on your elite status.

You get lounge access at hundreds of partner lounges across the globe where you are pampered with free drinks, food, wi-fi, and a comfortable place to relax.

A lounge membership also allows to you and your guests to access the secure part of the airport even when you don’t have a ticket whenever you feel like it.

Having a lifetime membership gets you a $295 annual discount off the $395/year presidential plus mastercard which gets you stuff like 25% more bonus miles for elites, 2 free bags for non-elites, and bonus elite miles for spending.

So are there any other Continental offers that are worth doing before it’s too late? Hit the comments!

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77 Comments On "Continental: Take Advantage While You Can…"

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.


If I have no status on delta, a new account with 1400 miles, will continental status match me to silver. And also dan, I don’t see why you hate united so much. I have silver with them and I love it.


If you have United “Silver” (2P) than why do you need Continental Silver?
Anyway if you want you can have Delta match your United status to Delta Silver and then Continental would match your Delta status to Continental Silver.

As for United, I already spoken my piece here:
I’m very encouraged that it seems like Continental folks will be running the new airline so I’m going to keep an open mind and see what happens.


Hi Dan – what will happen to my Continental OnePass miles once the program is phased out? Will they merge into my United MileagePlus account or be lost forever?


Your miles are 100% safe. All Continental and United miles will be merged into a new program by 2012.
Also at some point in 2011 you will be able to transfer redeemable miles from Continental to United or from United to Continental. And all elite miles earned in 2011 from both United and Continental will be merged by the end of 2011.


Will the one pass miles lose quality? As they will not be United Miles…


It looks like the Chase Business Checking account offer is down to 25K miles.

Continental Onepass CC Offers Recap - FlyerTalk Forums

[…] credit card and banking OnePass program offers before OnePass program is gone by the end of 2011. (Hope I posted this in the correct […]


Hey Dan,
Hope your enjoying the trip!
I had a question…..
We have the continental onepass VISA card ($45) a year and have 310,000 miles with Continental. Do you think I should cancel the card and open the Onepass plus card?
Also, any good ideas on how to spend these miles well?


Dan- I am a Delta Gold and will match to Continental thanks to your advice. Question though, is it worth waiting till later in the year and then getting Gold through 2012?


i have alot of miles with continental… is there any way to switch them to AA?


in your linked post you wrote

Emergency evacuation, transportation, and medical coverage.

could you tell me more about that? or where to find info? thanks!


If that is the case that United and Continental miles will merge shouldn’t we apply for a united credit card and get 30,000 miles?


I currently have platinum with AA. Will they status match and wats the process?

Eli H

I have Gold Delta (the hard way)& United via a match – was CO gold via a match a few years ago –
My question – will the United gold work to get me the CO benefits? Or should I open a new CO account and get them to match status?


are we ‘sure’ that the new combined program will not ‘remember’ who got status matched on the old OnePass program? does the same hold true for United MP program?


If I used CO Elite Platinum to get Delta platinum, can I know use my Delta platinum to get another year of Contineental platinum by matching status?



Can you explain how that works, that airlines match the status u have on another airline?


Do miles on any airlines ever expire? maybe ill apply for all these CC and retire on them!!! (30 now!)


Dan, I opened a Chase account a few months ago in order to get the continental miles but I forgot to use the debit card within 60 days so I didn’t end up getting the miles. If I close the account and open a new one will I get the bonus miles or would they say that because I did open an account with a coupon code, it’s my fault that I didn’t get the miles so I can’t get the bonus…


dont you think it would be a good idea to start doing co account opening after the mileathon starts (feb 2011) , so as to get more points?


Just got denied the CO onepass card because i have too many credit cards open with chase. I REALLY want to get this card before they cancel it. Any advice? I’m scared to close my united card (even though i scarcely use it, and its only a few months old) because then my credit utilization will go down.
Any advice for me?
thanks in advance


And how long do you have to wait to get the miles?


How many cards do you have open with Chase?
You can try calling the reconsideration numbers that I posted in the comments on the OnePass Plus post to get the application approved by shifting credit lines between cards.
If you have a Chase bank account you can also go into the bank and have a banker write a reconsideration letter for you. Those usually work to get you approved.

They should post on the same statement when you make your first purchase.


You said: “A lounge membership also allows to you and your guests to access the secure part of the airport even when you don’t have a ticket whenever you feel like it.”

Is this true for any other airlines?


How often can I have a chase banker do a reconsideration for me? I have 1 in the process for the Hyatt card, is it probable for another 1 to work for the CO card?


“You can only status match once in your lifetime, sp with Continental going away now is the time to use that match!
Matched status will last through 01/31/12.” what does sp mean?…. I checked google and I got spelling…


I’m assuming that the status match is for only one year… they won’t match my lifetime aa gold status for lifetime right?


status match year is from july? not like the rest of the mileage status year that goes by calendar year?


I recently applied for the CO 30k offer and was declined. I called them and was told its cuz I recently opened a lot of CC’s(true, taking adavantage of every offer mostly amex). I have the united mileage plus with a 5K limit and requested to have the line transferred to the new CO account but was denied after speaking to 3 reps on different occasions. Any suggestions dan? Thanx again in advance for all your help!


hi, i love your site, gr8 info,

i can’t find the link for the amex add a card.

(-AMEX Premier Rewards Charge Card: 16,000 miles after spending $1,000.)



he meant sO (o/p next to each other on keyboard)


josh< U HAVE TO OPEN THE ACCOUNT BEFORE END OF THE YEAR OR DO WHAT I did and ask your buddy in chase bank to call the onepass number and ask them to reissue a new debit card and to reset your eligibility bc you didnt know u had to do it in 60 days


Hey dan I hope ur enjoying ur flght. I just reserved a American airlines miles ticket is their a way to get the 100 dollar fee waved if I’m a gold or platinum status ?


@anon: Thanks


hey dan thanks for answering my post!
I currently have 4 chase cards open. 2 are fairly new (chase saphire and chase united card. Both opened within the last few months. I also have two very old cards: the chase freedom, and some sort of chase college card that i got like 4 years ago)


Which card is better for mileage awards, Continental One Pass, Chase Sapphire Preferred, or Chase Ink Bold?


I had applied for the amex gold rewards in the summer got approved and the bonus points, canceled applied in october again. I called amex 2 expidite posting my bonus points, the rep said she was going 2 put in a request and something that she didn’t see the promo on my account. I got a call today saying that I already had and canceled the card and was therefor ineligible for the 2nd bonus points. Is there anything else I can try or should I apply again and let the system do its thing?


For the Chase Debit card, it says you have to take the generated coupon to a local branch office. It looks like there is no presence in my state (I live in Raleigh, NC) Is there any way to take advantage of this if you don’t have a local chase branch? Thanks!


All I know is that it’s true for Continental.

As often as they’ll write one.


Correct. Although some reports say that June 1st is he cutoff and others say July 1st.

Try going into a bank?

Did you clear your browser’s cache and cookies or try using a different browser?

What $100 fee?

Time to close some down!

They all have their own advantages.
Onepass plus gives 10K bonus miles for spending $25K
Sapphire Preferred gives 7% bonus at the end of the year, Ink Bold is a business card so using it won’t hurt your personal credit score and your credit utilization ratio.



maybe its time to put a number next to the comment so that when people check ina second time they could see at what number they left off at instead of having to read all the comments.

thank you very much


i have chase united, freedom, BA,cards when i opened my BA card they cut my credit line with 20k can i try for the continental



Agree +1


can u link me the onepass post

Dovid K

Dan, please clarify… I opened this account and have since received the miles and subsequently closed the account due to the low credit limit I received. I would like to open a new account, get the miles again, and this time keep the account open (because Chase said they can transfer my credit line from my other One Pass card to this account). What is the best approach?


dan< is there a chase business credit card with a good signup bonus?


lol your right dan!
Which should i close? I feel really uneducated on these matters so sorry for sounding like such an amateur

Thanks again for your deals/advice!


if i have delta silver will i get continental gold


@Chaim Thanks. I called Chase and they said that since I already applied the coupon code this year that I cannot get the bonus even though I didn’t get the miles. So I wouldn’t be able to open a new account either… Any other ideas?


I had applied for the amex gold rewards in the summer got approved and the bonus points, canceled applied in october again. I called amex 2 expidite posting my bonus points, the rep said she was going 2 put in a request and something that she didn’t see the promo on my account. I got a call today saying that I already had and canceled the card and was therefor ineligible for the 2nd bonus points. Is there anything else I can try or should I apply again and let the system do its thing?


You should have let the system work by itself, now you’ll just have to wait and hope for the best.


FYI gold will not get you three 70 lb bags on all star alliance carriers – for example US Airways limits it to three 50 pound bags, I am a United 1K and its always annoyed me that they do that. Its true for the vast majority though.


Hey dan is this promo still valid and if not are their ay current promos or any coming up soon


For the chase checking account ?


I don’t think the checking accounts offers are available anymore.
The links don’t work.


dan i cant get the 25k bank account bonus anymore? thanks for everthing




Did you guys read the post update (which was the reason for bumping the post)?


Yes, but you had not crossed off the post, below that, the checking account offers, as you have it now corrected to.


Just got status match with CO. They changed my status right away to Platinum, and said in March they will send me a new packet with all the info for 2011. Do I get 4 SWU with CO for the status match?


Dan. Hope u enjoy ur trip!

I signed up for the continental on pass card a few months ago. What will happen to the card and point once they discontinue one pass and complete the merger?


HI Dan
I called Continental for a elite status match, told them I’m a AA member lowest tier they should give me silver, they said its only if your elite status elsewhere they can match it otherwise they can’t do nothing???????
you wrote-“If you’re bottom-tier in another program they’ll give you Silver,”


Dan I opened a chase business account and got the debit card. I saw a $55 debit on my checking account and my guy tells me they charge you for the card if you want the 25k points. Is this true and is there anyway to not have to pay the $55 and if not , can I just wait till the 25k posts and then cancel the debit card or will they take my points? Please advise. Thank you


It will work that way as well.

I crossed it off because it seemed like people weren’t reading the post update.

@G F:
No SWU’s for status matched people though.

It will become the card for the combined program.

Non-elite is not an elite tier. Bottom-tier AA would be AA silver which would get you CO Silver.

You can try downgrading to the free card after you get the miles and ask for a refund.


Is it still possible to get a chase checking account and receive conntinental miles for
signing up?


I spoke with Continental for matching my Delta Silver medallion status (the one I got from the amex transfer – thanks Dan!)

They advised that I need to e-mail with a copy of my delta silver medallion card and current miles statement from Delta as well. I e-mail all the information requesting an elite status match and have yet to hear anything…but thats what you need to do.

good luck and THX DAN!


I got Platinum, would I get to keep it, or would it only last for 90 days. I got approved last week already


@G F:
If you got it last week it should be good until 01/31/12.


Dan –

I e-mailed Continental all of my Delta Silver Medallion info on 1/9 and received an e-mail that they received my request and a service representative will “review and research” my message.

Since my original e-mail was sent before they made status matches obsolete, do you think they will honor my request anyway? Or no chance?



Dan, is there any CO business card with a good sign up bonus (similar to the personal card 30K etc.)?


does the amex zinc cost 25$ annual fee? or am i missing something and its free for the first year..?


Thanks Dan, I hope your having a blast. Try to top off your trip with getting bumped and making money after its all said and done 🙂 have fun!!!


I got the Continental OnePass card from Chase. I just spoke with two different CSR’s, including the “MasterCard specialist” who said that the CDW on the card is only secondary to my insurance. It is primary only if I don’t have existing car insurance.

Morton Weintraub


Hope you are enjoying your honeymoon.

Am curious whether Continental will match Starwood Gold. Has anybody tried this?



They’re both dead wrong. I have it in writing that’s it’s primary.
Try asking for a manager or get the benefit in writing yourself.

@Morton Weintraub:
They won’t.


@steve: Did anyone respond to you?
I had the same question, is there any CO business card with a good sign up bonus?


this program with Continental is for 90 days , after which to keep the upgrade you need to fly 25000 miles


I spoke to Continental and they told me the status will only last 90 days unless i fly 15 times or 10,000 miles, if i dont they will downgrade me. True?


Read “Update 2” from a week ago.