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TPG reader Paul emailed me with a question about the United MileagePlus Club Card:

“In your list of recommended cards, you rarely mention the United MileagePlus Club Card. It gives you Club access and 1.5 miles per $1, but even if you don’t use the Club privileges, and charge more than $75,000 per year, the 37,500 extra points are well worth it. As far as I can tell, if you’re a United Club member the card is a no-brainer. Am I missing something?”

Paul, you’re not missing anything. If you want United Club access, the United MileagePlus Club card is a great option and there are certainly a lot of perks beyond just club access as well and if you walk into a Chase branch, there are reports that they are giving customers offers where the $395 annual fee is waived the first year.


Cardholders earn 2 miles per dollar spent on United purchases and 1.5 miles per dollar spent on all other purchases. Like United Explorer cardholders, United opens up extra seats for awards at the Saver level. Club cardholders also receive a waiver from the airline’s close-in award booking fees that can cost up to $75, depending on your status level (note, this is only on United-operated flights, not codeshare partners).

United Club cardholders receive primary rental car coverage, as well as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost luggage, and baggage delay coverage. Other benefits include extended warranty protection, purchase protection, return protection, and price protection coverage. It also waives foreign transaction fees.

Cardholders who have not yet earned Premier status immediately receive Premier Access travel services, which include priority check-in, security screening (where available), boarding, and baggage handling. Cardholders and one companion receive their first and second pieces of checked baggage for free.

In addition to the benefits with United, cardholders can join Avis First and receive Platinum status in the Hyatt Gold Passport program. Finally, existing United Club members can have a pro-rated remainder of their United Club membership reimbursed when they receive this card based on their membership year dates.

Spending Assessment

All this said, I have to disagree with you that spending the $75,000 per year gets you a lot of extra points; it really depends on what you’re spending that money on. If none of the money you spend is in a bonus category like gas or travel, I could agree with you that getting 1.5 miles per dollar spent is better than getting just one mile per dollar spent.

However, there are other cards you can use to rack up more points and United miles. For example, the Chase Ink Bold and Ink Plus both earn 5x points per dollar spent at office supply stores (and you can buy gift cards to other retailers there) and 2x on gas and groceries. Those Chase Ultimate Reward points can then be transferred to United, therefore giving you more United miles for every dollar you spend at those merchants.

I do think the United MileagePlus Club card is good to have, especially if you value airport lounge access, but you should also carry some other card options as a great way to rack up as many points as possible, using distinct cards at different retailers.

If you value lounge access, this is the card for you.
If you value lounge access, this is the card for you.

Always go into a Chase bank branch to see if you can get the card’s annual fee waived, and check for targeted promotions and offers related to your card.

In addition, please check out these related posts:

Let me know if you have any other questions by messaging me on Facebook, tweeting me or emailing me at

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

With great transfer partners like United and Hyatt, 2x points on travel & dining and a 50,000 point sign up bonus, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great card for those looking to get into the points and miles game.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, July 2016
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
16.49% - 23.49% Variable
Annual Fee
Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.