Chase Silently Removes Benefits for Some United Co-Branded Cards

Apr 7, 2018

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It looks like negative changes are coming to at least one Chase co-branded United credit card. A TPG reader sent us an updated Guide to Benefits that he received in the mail on April 6 along with his new United MileagePlus Explorer Visa Signature card. This guide, effective March 15, 2018, includes the following language on the first page of the guide:

Effective 06/01/18, Price Protection and Return Protection will be discontinued and Trip Cancellation/Interruption coverage will be reduced.

Prior to these changes being made, the United MileagePlus Explorer Card offered many travel and purchase protection benefits.

Pre-change benefits list.

According to this previous guide, the following three benefits were offered:

  • Price Protection: If a card purchase you made in the US is advertised for less in print or online within 90 days, you can be reimbursed the difference up to $500 per item and $2,500 per year.
  • Return Protection: You can be reimbursed for eligible items that the store won’t take back within 90 days of purchase, up to $500 per item and $1,000 per year.
  • Trip Cancellation/Trip Interruption Insurance: If your trip is canceled or cut short by sickness, severe weather or other covered situations, you can be reimbursed up to $10,000 per trip for your pre-paid, non-refundable travel expenses, including passenger fares, tours and hotels.

However, according to the new Guide to Benefits received by the reader, the price protection and return protection benefits are being discontinued and the trip cancellation and interruption insurance is being reduced as of June 1, 2018.

At this point, it’s unclear exactly what these changes will mean to United cardholders who make a purchase before June 1 but file a claim after the changes go into effect. TPG reached out to Chase for comment but hasn’t received an immediate response.

As Chase makes finding benefit guides online difficult, we weren’t able to locate an updated benefit guide for the United MileagePlus Explorer Card on Chase’s website. However, potential cardmembers who are considering signing up now see a trimmed list of benefits online.

The new, trimmed benefits list.
The new, trimmed benefits list.

If you have a United MileagePlus Explorer Card — or other co-branded Chase cards — keep an eye out for any new Guide to Benefits that you receive in the mail and be sure to examine them for changes. In the new benefits guide received by this reader, the changes were highlighted in bold on the inside of the cover page.

While it’s disappointing to see a loss of benefits, this brings the United MileagePlus Explorer Card more inline with cards like the Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card and the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card that already lacked price protection benefits. Here’s to hoping that the loss of benefits is confined to the United MileagePlus Explorer Card and that it doesn’t expand to other Chase cards.

Featured image by Eva Katalin Kondoros / Getty Images.

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