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United Airlines Credit Cards

by on Sun July 31, 2011 • 13 Comments

United Airlines credit cardsThere are several airline credit cards that offer miles for travel on United Airlines via its Mileage Plus program. The United Airlines branded  credit cards offer the added benefit of checked bag fee waivers, while the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card offers the flexibility of transferring miles into other airline and hotel programs beyond United.

United Airlines is a member of Star Alliance, and its miles are good for travel on many airlines, including US Airways, Lufthansa, Swiss, Singapore Airlines, ANA, Asiana, and more. United is our favorite program for U.S. based global mile redemption.

Use our Mile Credit Card Value Calculator to see the size of travel savings based on your purchase and travel habits.

How will the merger of United and Continental impact United credit cards?

United and Continental have already revealed the main credit card for the combined airline — the United Mileage Plus Explorer. Its features align with the Continental OnePass Plus credit card, and holders of that card will be automatically migrated to the United Mileage Plus Explorer over the next year.

Prior United credit cards such as the Select, Signature, and Club are no longer actively marketed, but existing holders of these United Airlines credit cards will be able to retain their cards and features. Or, they may switch to a new Mileage Plus Explorer card.

Your Continental and United miles will also be consolidated into one account in early 2012, but you can already freely transfer miles between your United and Continental mileage accounts.

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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Miles dont expireas long as card is open
Learn more

Partner Offer

50,000 bonus points

Intro Offer

$0 introductory annual fee the first year, then $95

Annual Fee


Foreign Transaction Fee Waived

Yes - transfer to United MileagePlus, Southwest Rapid Rewards, Marriott Rewards, and more

Points Can Transfer to Airline Miles ?

Still confused? Have a question?

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13 thoughts on United Airlines Credit Cards

  1. Linda H

    I’m looking for a United sky miles card with no annual fees. I travel once a year to the states and a few short trips in between and I don’t want to pay annual fees,


      @Linda B – Yes, there is a separate business version of the card, and it has the extra benefit of double miles on certain spending categories like dining, gas stations, and office supply stores.


        @Jerry – It doesn’t apply for upgrades from coach cash tickets. But it does apply for first / business class seats paid entirely with miles.

  2. Carol Blodgett

    I have been on the phone for an hour trying the telephone numbers that representatives gave me for applying for a United credit card. Either the numbers don’t work, or I’m given still another number when I finally reach an agent. How do I call someone to help me????

  3. Fred

    Are there any other credit cards other than those issued by Chase that allow you to accumulate mileage on United?

    1. MileCards

      @Fred – No, they have a lock on that. The Starwood Amex lets you transfer but you lose 50% of your points in the process as it’s a 2:1 ratio.

  4. Rachael Paulson

    My husband purchased this card for two reasons. We felt that the free baggage was well worth the large fee cost of having this card. However, once at the airline desk, no one ever seems to have seen the card or are they aware of the free baggage bonus. We have held up lines and caused confusion not making this feel like it is worth being a card holder. We signed up because of my work in orphan villages thinking that the free baggage would help me in my taking supplies of medical need to the area along with water filters. However, we are now being told that only the main card holder gets the free baggage and even if the ticket for me was purchased on his card, he must be there to gain this bonus.
    I was also disappointed that the card could not respect my cancellation of travel to Haiti due to travel warnings.
    So, we are now looking into another card.

    1. MileCards

      @Rachael- Sorry to hear about that. Unfortunately yes, the free baggage is only for the primary card holder. Looks like Chase has tried to make that distinction more explicit more recently in marketing materials, probably because of confusion like yours.

      As for flight refunds due to the travel warning, that may be tougher. There was already a warning in place there…State Dept updated it late last month, but it wasn’t a brand new one, and the issues raised are pretty well known by all of us. Haiti has been a place to use extra caution for a while. But you might have luck being persistent with United on the phone, and noting the updated warning on Dec 28th.

  5. pjpuleo

    Recently traveled on United. Our Continental Presidential Plus card didn’t give us Premier Access. When asked the United staffer, indicated that things were changed now that we were flying “united”. Our tier, on boarding pass also didn’t reflect the Presidential Plus.

    When will the United Presidential Plus cards be distributed. United staff members seen unfamiliar with our current card. We actually couldn’t do luggage checkin at the curb because they wanted to charge us for our luggage.

    Very frustrating. Have another flight in June and do not wish to endure this again. HELP! Thanks!

    1. MileCards

      @pjpuelo – That’s definitely not how it’s supposed to work. The Presidential Plus accounts will remain active with the new United. The benefits are actually tied to your Continental frequent flyer number, which didn’t change with the merger with United. My suggestion is to call Chase at the number on the back of your card, who may be able to find the right folks at United to make sure your frequent flyer number is still linked.

      There have been some glitches in the computer system at United the last month or so, but the benefit should be linked to your frequent flyer number. Your boarding pass should show ‘Group 4’ boarding if it’s working properly.

      But also note, showing the credit card doesn’t do anything — the back end of your frequent flyer number is what signals to them you are eligible for the benefit.


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