Review of United MileagePlus® Club Card

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If you are the owner of United MileagePlus® Club card, you can access any United Club lounge for free, enjoy Premier access to travel services and never have to pay for checking your first two bags. All that is available not only for you alone, but for your family and friends as well. And yes, you can book an award flight whenever there are seats available — no blackout dates and capacity controls for you.

How the card works

The United MileagePlus® Club credit card earns you 1.5 mile per each dollar spent on purchases and 2 miles per each dollar spent on airline tickets bought directly from United. That’s a very decent offer, the best one among the cards earning you United frequent flyer miles.

However, with the Club card you can hardly get your first award flight soon after the account opening. Unlike many travel cards offering signup bonuses sufficient to cover an international round-trip flight, this card works differently. As a welcome bonus, you may get $100 after your first purchase in credit statement but not frequent flyer miles. This reduces the card’s first annual fee but doesn’t approach your first award flight.

To book an award flight, you need at least 10,000 miles. You can earn them by spending $5,000 on United tickets or $6,666 on any other purchases.

So what’s the point of this travel card? It focuses first of all on free luxuries in travel; award flights come later. To make the most out of the card, when you pay with it for your United airline tickets, include your MileagePlus number in your reservation. Doing so, you turn your travel into a luxurious experience — for you and your companions.

How well the benefits are worth the costs

This card is valuable first of all for its United Club membership. It normally costs up to $550 per year but the United MileagePlus® Club credit card primary owner get it for free. You and your travel companion get unlimited access to all the United Club lounges with free Wi-Fi, complimentary snacks and beverages, zones of relaxation and all the services. Please bear in mind that you may enjoy this benefit as long as your card account is active and in a good state.

You may know that the United lounges are located in the U.S. mainly so you can benefit from them when flying United Airlines domestically. But not only, since United Airlines is a member of Star Alliance, one of the largest airline alliances in the world. So having the United MileagePlus® Club credit card, and therefore the United Club membership, you get also access to some Star Alliance lounges around the globe.

Additionally, you and your companion (if on the same reservation) get:

  • Two standard bags per person checked for free. For domestic flights, checked baggage service charges are $25 for the first bag and $35 for the second one. So on just one round trip, two people with four bags can save $240.
  • Premier Access including priority boarding, baggage handling, and security lanes, as well as designated check-in lines.

Taking into account the costs of the available benefits — $550 for lounge access per year and up to $60 per person per flight for checked baggage service, a $450 annual fee doesn’t look that bad.

Who may benefit

You, your friends and family members, and actually, any your travel companion may get a VIP travel experience with this card. This includes free access to lounges, priority during boarding and checking-in, up to two standard bags for free per person, and much more. That’s a lot and may save you hundreds of dollars even on a single round trip.

However, if you do fly United Airlines regularly but have neither companions, nor luggage, nor need in lounges, better pick the United MileagePlus® Explorer credit card. It offers less benefits, but much more bonus miles and has a considerably lower annual fee — just $95.

The bottom line

The United MileagePlus® Club credit card offers premium benefits to its owners. It suits best people prioritising their comfort and willing to save on it at the same time. The costs of the card’s benefits far outbalance its annual fee.

If you often fly United Airlines domestically and love travelling in luxury, that’s your card. Apply and enjoy premium benefits while travelling with United Airlines.

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