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United Airlines Creates Sweepstakes For Vaccinated Travelers

A United 757-300 landing in San Francisco. (Photo: AirlineGeeks | Ben Suskind)

Over the past couple of weeks, the White House has been asking businesses to encourage Americans to get vaccinated against the coronavirus. Boosts on Bumble, free beer from Budweiser and $10 Cincinnati Reds tickets are just a few ways companies are getting involved in the vaccination effort. Now, United Airlines has come up with its own incentive program: a lottery for free flights for a year. 

“Your Shot To Fly” Sweepstakes

Air travel is recovering and summer bookings are up 214%, so the airline is making an effort to get as many of its passengers vaccinated as possible. The “Your Shot To Fly” sweepstakes will award five winners free flights for a year, valid for any class – including United Polaris Business – and to any global destination. The winners can choose one person as a companion to travel with them.

The lottery will run through June 26 and is available for those that can provide proof of their COVID-19 vaccination and are a loyalty member with United’s MileagePlus, which is free to sign up for. In addition to the grand prize winner, 30 others will win a roundtrip flight in any class to any destination in the United States.

To enter the sweepstakes, MileagePlus loyalty members will need to upload proof of their vaccination via United’s app or on its website. United spokesperson Maddie King told USA Today that people only need to prove they received one shot to enter, not two.

United CEO Scott Kirby said in a press release, “We’re proud to do our part to incentivize people to get their shot. Thanks to the vaccine, more and more destinations are opening up for travel — and we know our customers are eager to fly. We’re excited to give people one more reason to get vaccinated so they can reunite with friends and family or take that long-awaited vacation which all could be just one shot away.”

The Fine Print

The Sweepstakes will run from May 24 to June 26 and is open to all legal residents 18 or older who live in the 50 United States, Washington D.C., Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Five grand prize winners and their one companion will receive up to 26 free roundtrip flights that must be taken between July 15, 2021 and July 14, 2022. The flights are valid for any United or United Express flights that originate in the United States, but they cannot be used one-way. 

The five winners will be randomly selected and announced on July 1. Meanwhile, the 30 winners awarded with one free domestic roundtrip will be randomly chosen every Friday between June 1 and June 30.

United understands that there are people concerned about privacy or cannot be vaccinated due to health or religious reasons, so it has created a “mail-in sweepstakes” for those individuals. For mail entry, people can send their name, email address, full address, phone number and MileagePlus number to MileagePlus Vax Sweepstakes, PO Box 158, Freeburg, IL 62243-0158.

Taylor Rains


  • Taylor Rains

    Taylor Rains graduated from Florida Institute of Technology with a B.S. in Aviation Management in 2017. She has worked in the aviation industry for the past five years and has a specialty in safety analytics for part 121 airlines, but she has also worked for a part 135 company in Alaska. Her experience has allowed her to work in many areas of aviation, including airport operations, flight operations, security, inflight, dispatch, and maintenance. Taylor is also an avid traveler and has used her flight benefits to fly on as many airlines and aircraft types as possible. So far, her favorite flight has been aboard KLM’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

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