Ouch! United Club Card’s $450 Annual Fee…16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile

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The United MileagePlus® Club card recently increased its sign-up bonus to an all-time high 50,000 United Airlines miles after meeting the minimum spending requirements.

The sign-up bonus can help get you around the world on United Airlines and Star Alliance partner airlines, like Singapore Airlines and Air New Zealand.  And you could easily fly to places like Singapore, Australia, or anywhere in the world for Big Travel.

I’ll explain the many benefits of the Chase United Club card and how to get every bit of value from it!

Ouch United Club Cards 450 Annual Fee 16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile
Relax and Unwind at United Club and Star Alliance Lounges With Your Chase United Club Card

United Club Card Series Index

  • Part 1 – Ouch! United Club Card’s $450 Annual Fee…16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile

Chase United Club Card Benefits

Link:   Chase United Club

Link:   Here’s the Best Offer Ever for This Airline Card – Lounge Access, Free Checked Bags, and 50,000 Miles!

1.    Increased Sign-Up Bonus of 50,000 United Airlines Miles

The previous sign-up bonus for this card was a $100 statement credit after meeting minimum spending requirements, but now that’s been increased to 50,000 United Airlines miles after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of opening your account. 

The $450 annual fee is NOT waived the first year.  But if you can make the most of the card’s perks, you can more than offset the cost!

I’ll explain the best sweet spots later with United Airlines miles, but 50,000 miles is enough for some amazing trips, including to Central and Northern South America, or for anywhere in the United States and Canada!  For example, you can use 50,000 United Airlines miles for 2 round-trip coach tickets within the mainland US and Canada.  These could cost $800+!

United Airlines miles are terrific because you aren’t just limited to using them on United Airlines!  You can redeem them for award flights on partners like Lufthansa, Air Canada, and ANA.  And I like that there are often lots of award seats available, unlike using other airline miles like American Airlines.

2.   A Better Airport Experience With United Club Membership

One of the best benefits of the card is a complimentary United Club membership!  If you bought the membership directly from United, it could cost $550.  You and 2 companions can access United Club lounges when traveling on any flight in any cabin.

Airport lounges make the airport experience much more civilized.  😉  They’re a quiet place to relax, unwind, or get work done with free Wi-Fi.  And the food and drinks are complimentary!

And here’s the best kept secret about United Club membership!  You and 1 companion can access non-United Airlines Star Alliance lounges!  You’ll get in free if you’re flying on any Star Alliance airline in any cabin!

It’s like having top-tier frequent flyer status, without having to fly 50,000+ miles a year!

Ouch United Club Cards 450 Annual Fee 16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile
Grab a Cocktail and Some Snacks at United Club Lounges and Save on Overpriced Airport Food and Drink!

3.   Save up to $240 Round-Trip With Complimentary Checked Bags

When you fly United Airlines or United Express, the primary cardholder and 1 companion on the same booking will get their first 2 standard-sized checked bags free.

This could save you $120 per person, round-trip every time you fly on United Airlines and United Express – this really adds up!  But you have to use your Chase United Club card to buy your flight or pay the taxes and fees on your award ticket, or you won’t get free checked bags.

4.   Skip the Lines With Priority Check-In, Security, and Boarding

On United Airlines or United Express flights, the primary cardholder and all companions on the same booking get complimentary Premier Access, which gives you priority check-in, security, and boarding.

This can save you time at the airport and helps ensure that you get valuable overhead bin space for your carry-on bags!

Ouch United Club Cards 450 Annual Fee 16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile
Skip Lines and Board First With the Premier Access Benefit

5.   Unlock More United Airlines Saver Award Seats

Cardholders will get expanded saver award seats on United Airlines and United Express flights.  That means you’ll have more access to discounted award seats than people who don’t have the card.

You’ll also get access to more expensive standard award seats, even if it’s the last available seat on the plane!

This only applies to the primary cardholder.

6.   Last Minute Travelers Pay No Close-In Booking Fee

United Airlines normally charges a $75 fee to book award seats within 21 days of departure (though there’s a trick to avoid the fee).

As a cardholder, United Airlines will waive the close-in booking fee for United Airlines and United Express award tickets for yourself and for authorized users (booked under the primary cardholder’s United Airlines account).

Ouch United Club Cards 450 Annual Fee 16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile
United Airlines Waives the Close-In Booking Fee for Chase United Club Card Members!

7.   Get Late Check-Out and Better Rooms With Complimentary Hyatt Status

The primary cardholder will get complimentary Hyatt Discoverist status, which normally requires 10 qualifying nights to earn.  You’ll get hotel upgrades, free premium internet, late check-out, and a number of other benefits.

8.   Free Upgrades and Bonus Points With Complimentary Hertz Gold Plus Rewards President’s Circle Membership

The primary cardholder will get complimentary Hertz Gold Plus Rewards President’s Circle Membership, which normally requires 20 bookings or more to earn.  You’ll get car upgrades and other benefits when renting cars with Hertz.

Ouch United Club Cards 450 Annual Fee 16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile
Get Free Car Rental Upgrades with Hertz

9.   Elite-Style Perks With the Luxury Hotel and Resort Collection

You’ll get access to Chase’s Luxury Hotel and Resort Collection, which is a hotel booking website that gives you benefits at partner hotels.  Benefits depend on the hotel, but they include:

  • $100 food and beverage credit
  • Early check-in and late check-out
  • Free breakfast
  • Room upgrade
Ouch United Club Cards 450 Annual Fee 16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile
Get VIP Benefits With the Luxury Hotel and Resort Collection

10.   Save on Travels Abroad With No Foreign Transaction Fees

This card does not charge foreign transaction fees on purchases in foreign currencies.  This means when you travel, you won’t be paying the ~2.5% to ~5% foreign exchange fee that many banks charge.

11.   Higher Complimentary Upgrade Status for United Airlines Elites

If you’re an elite member with United Airlines, you’ll receive higher priority for complimentary upgrades as a cardholder, and be eligible for upgrades on domestic award tickets.

Ouch United Club Cards 450 Annual Fee 16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile
United MileagePlus Elite Members Get Higher Priority for Complimentary Upgrades as a Cardholder

12.   Your United Airlines Miles Won’t Expire

As a cardholder, your United Airlines miles won’t expire as long as you keep the card.  Otherwise, your miles will expire after 18 months without any activity on your United Airlines account.

13.   Travel Without Worries With Comprehensive Travel Insurance

When you purchase travel using your Chase United Club card, you’ll be covered by numerous comprehensive travel insurance benefits:

  • Trip Cancellation / Interruption
  • Baggage Delay and Loss
  • Trip Delay
  • Primary car rental insurance
Ouch United Club Cards 450 Annual Fee 16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile
Protect Yourself When You Travel With Complimentary Travel Insurance Benefits
Note:   The primary car rental insurance only covers theft or collision damage, NOT liability.

14.   Peace of Mind With Purchase Insurance

When you purchase items using your card, your purchase will be covered by comprehensive purchase insurance benefits:

  • Purchase Protection
  • Price Protection
  • Return Protection
  • Extended Warranty

15.   Live Like a VIP With Inside Access and MileagePlus Events

Cardholders get access to Inside Access and MileagePlus Events.  These are specially curated events, such as private dining with celebrity chefs or exclusive seats at sports events or music performances.

Ouch United Club Cards 450 Annual Fee 16 Quick Tips That Actually Make It Worthwhile
Get Access to Exclusive Events With Inside Access and MileagePlus® Events

16.   Extra Perks and Protection With Visa Signature Benefits

As a Visa Signature credit card, you’ll get a number of benefits from Visa:

Bottom Line

The Chase United Club card comes with amazing benefits, including lounge access, complimentary checked bags, and priority check-in, security, and boarding.

With a brand-new sign-up bonus of 50,000 United Airlines miles after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of card membership, the Chase United Club card is worth a look , especially if you travel with United Airlines or Star Alliance partner airlines.  All of these benefits more than offset the $450 annual fee.

What benefit are you most excited about?

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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