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Luxury travel is a massive industry, and for many travelers, lounge access is the pinnacle of the airport experience.
Lounges offer bar service, food, showers, and other amenities that can transform a layover from an hours-long purgatory into an oasis.
The United Club℠ Infinite Card is the top-end credit card for United Airlines and offers a generous 75,000-point introductory spending bonus, powerful rewards earning potential, and membership to the coveted United Club. However, it carries a steep annual fee, so read this review before committing to the card.
The United Club℠ Infinite Card offers robust bonus earning categories to help cardholders rack up rewards and fly for less on United.
The most powerful category is purchases made directly through United, which earn 4x miles per dollar spent with the airline.
Since this card is designed for the most dedicated United loyalists, earning miles should be a welcome reward. Other bonus categories include travel, dining, and even select delivery services, which earn 2x miles per dollar spent.
The United Club℠ Infinite Card has a leg up on its smaller United credit card siblings because it earns the most on United purchases and rewards all other travel outside of United, including hotels, cabs, trains, and more.
All other purchases earn 1x mile per dollar spent, making the United Club℠ Infinite Card a compelling everyday spending card aside from groceries and subscriptions.
Rewards redemption for United is straightforward, and cardholders can book flights in the United mobile app or online.
All your United points will be on display when you log in to your dashboard, but it’s important to ensure you have your frequent flyer number ready if you want to utilize your other perks and benefits.
The United rewards program does not have a static schedule detailing how many miles each route requires. Instead, it utilizes a dynamic model that considers travel days and overall demand when booking rewards flights.
The United Club℠ Infinite offers a powerful incentive for new cardholders in the form of a 75,000 bonus miles award after spending $3,000 in purchases during the first three months of card membership.
This bonus is worth a few round-trip domestic flights if you want to break it up, or it can be a strong foundation for a first-class trip of a lifetime if you want to save it until you have earned more points.
United Club lounge membership packages cost $650, so if you were considering purchasing it outright, then you may get more bang for your buck with the United Club℠ Infinite credit card.
Once you are inside the United Club membership, you have unlimited access to the lounges when you fly with United or a Oneworld Alliance partner when you book the flight with your card. Guests are allowed for two adults or one adult and children under 21 years old.
This perk is one of the most substantial benefits for the United Club℠ Infinite because it can save time and money over the long term if you can take advantage of the bar service, food, and other amenities.
There are currently 50 lounges available across 30 airports, not including affiliate lounges, so there are plenty of opportunities to utilize your membership.
Depending on your travel style, you may only need overhead storage on your flights, but for many others, checked bags are necessary for everything needed for a trip.
Cardholders receive up to two free bags for two passengers, which United estimates can save up to $320 per round trip flight.
Families can also take advantage of this perk if they regularly travel with more than two people because it can put a dent into an otherwise pricey recurring charge.
Airline incidental charges such as in-flight wifi, food, and drinks can add up, and the United Club℠ Infinite credit card gives cardholders a 25% statement credit for all onboard purchases made with their card.
This perk’s value is a nice addition to an already powerful card when flying with United.
The United Club℠ Infinite credit card’s primary benefit is membership to the United Club. This benefit can easily exceed $600 in value and helps offset the $525 annual fee carried by this card.
However, some flyers do not prioritize lounge access or travel quite enough to pay the price for unlimited membership. United offers the United Quest℠ Card for these flyers, a $250 annual fee, a $125 statement credit for United flights, and an 80,000-point introductory spending bonus.
It offers many of the same perks as the United Club℠ Infinite Card, but it is a better choice if you want to prioritize earning miles and saving money on flights.
It also offers a unique perk where cardholders can receive two 5,000-mile bonuses every year. The first bonus kicks in on your cardholder anniversary date, and the second applies if you book an award flight during the calendar year.
The Capital One Venture Rewards card is a popular travel reward credit card that offers flexible reward redemption and earns 2x miles per dollar spent on all categories.
Rewards are easy to redeem since cardholders can use their miles balance to cover any travel charges on their statement. In contrast, the United Club℠ Infinite Card is a premium luxury card designed to enhance the flying experience for United loyalists by offering unlimited lounge access, checked bag credits, and more.
Both of these cards are excellent choices for avid travelers but deciding between one, or the other comes down to your budget for annual fees and rewards priorities.
If lounge access is important to you, and you are regularly waiting in airports, the United Club℠ Infinite Card is certainly your best bet, but if you want flexible rewards that apply to more than one airline,
then the Capital One Venture Rewards card is the winner.
Cut from the same cloth, the United℠ Explorer Card provides two United Club passes to cardholders, offers a 40,000-mile introductory spending bonus, and waives its $95 annual fee for the first year.
If you are newer to airline co-branded cards or want a flexible way to save money on flights, the United℠ Explorer Card edges out most of its competition.
However, if you are already flying with United a lot and need more luxury perks, the United Club℠ Infinite Card should be the card you choose.
Since these cards are in the same family, you can give the United Club a try with your credits from the United℠ Explorer Card and always upgrade to the United Club℠ Infinite Card down the road if you want to use the lounges more.
ThePlatinum Card® from American Expressand the United Club℠ Infinite Card are two of the top-end ultra-luxury credit cards on the market, but they serve different purposes.
The Platinum Card® from American Express offers both travel and lifestyle benefits, including Uber statement credits and gold-tier loyalty status to Hilton and Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
The United Club℠ Infinite Card offers hyper-specific benefits for United flyers in the form of United Club membership, baggage discounts, and more.
The biggest decision between these two credit cards is the preference between airline loyalty and overall luxury travel. The United Club℠ Infinite Card is a better choice for the former, but for all other travel options, the Platinum Card® from American Express takes the cake.
The United Club℠ Infinite Card is an ultra-premium airline credit card, and applicants should have excellent credit.
If lounge access and in-flight discounts are priorities, the United Club℠ Infinite Card is definitely worth it. The annual fee is less than the membership fee for the United Club, and it offers generous bonus earning for everyday spending categories.
Yes, the annual fee for the United Club℠ Infinite Card is $525.
Yes, the United Club℠ Infinite Card offers lounge access by granting membership to the United Club.
Overall, the United Club℠ Infinite Card is hands-down the best option for United flyers who enjoy access to the United Club, especially if they are considering purchasing a membership outright. Not only will this card cut the cost of the membership, but it will also enable you to fly more for less.