Fellow blogger Point Princess recently wrote about a lesser known benefit of being a Chase United Club Credit Card holder — Close-in booking fee waivers on United metal (United & United Express).

Other perks she mentioned, besides the big ones like United Club access, 1.5x United miles earned per dollar on all purchases, and a $100 statement credit, included:
First and Second Checked Bags Free (big $ saver!)
No Foreign Transaction Fees 
Complimentary Hyatt Platinum and Avis First (changing to Hertz Presidents Circle status on 1/1/2015)
Primary Rental Car Insurance Coverage

However, one of MY very favorite benefits of my United Club Card (over the Explorer Card) is the United Premier Access benefits!
Why? Since I often travel with baggage (and much more to come with twins on the way!), I value this benefit even more than United Club lounge access (me + spouse, kids or two guests). Sure, a free drink, ultra-mini bag o’ carrots, and dry bagel ain’t bad, but United Premier Access (especially for a non-status flyer like me) is golden!

united premier access

United’s Premier Access Checkin Counter at Chicago O’Hare ORD

United Premier Access Benefits Include (in my order of preference):
Premier Access check-in: Time saver upon immediately arriving at the airport! Use of designated airport check-in areas/lines means little to no waiting when you have baggage to check (and better customer service directed towards preferred customers, IMO). Value really increases during heavy travel times when the “economy lines” are longer than an iPhone release day.
Premier Access priority baggage handling: My second fav perk comes at the beautiful moment when your bag is the first one out of the mysterious baggage claim portal. Having the red priority tag on your baggage gets it among the first bags to be delivered, which can mean getting on with your travels faster, and sometimes makes a BIG difference in getting to that taxi line before a big rush!
Premier Access priority boarding: I personally go back and forth on the “perk” of boarding priority, as I weigh the desire to spend as little time as possible on the plane in a confined space verses getting that high-demand overhead storage space and getting situated before takeoff.
Premier Access security lane: Exclusive security lanes may be important to some, but we have ALWAYS received PreCheck (batting 1.000, which I attribute to our Global Entry). Nevertheless, I have seen different PreCheck areas for premier travelers verses economy travelers.

Sure, a $395 annual fee is a nice chunk of change, but the benefits can, and do, add up quickly. For now, I’m still sticking with it.

You may apply here (non-affiliate link): Chase United Club Card


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