Best Chase Airline Credit Cards

United Airlines Boeing 787-10 stock photo
Fabian Gysel / iStock.com

Airline credit card rewards make flying less expensive and more convenient. As America’s largest bank, Chase has plenty of airline cards to choose from, and it offers its best in partnership with United or Southwest airlines.

You can use any of the cards included in this roundup for all your travel — without paying foreign transaction fees. However, you’ll earn the best rewards on travel and purchases made with the airline named on the card.

5 Best Chase Credit Cards for Airline Travel

Here’s a handy guide to help you learn more about the features of the best Chase credit cards for air travel. All of these cards offer airline miles as rewards and have no foreign transaction fees.

Card Best For Features
Chase Overall Value APR
– 3x miles on United purchases after earning $125 statement credit
– 2x all other travel, dining and select streaming
– 1x on any other purchases
– $250 annual fee
Chase Low-Cost Generous Perks APR
– 2x miles on United purchases
2x miles on dining and hotel stays booked with card
– 1x miles on all other purchases
– $0 annual fee for first year, then $95
Chase Luxury Travel Benefits APR
– 4x miles on United purchases
– 2x other travel purchases and dining, including eligible delivery services
– 1x all other purchases
– $525 annual fee
Chase Gas Rewards – 0% APR for the first 12 months, then APR
– 2x miles on United purchases
– 2x miles per dollar spent at gas stations, on local transit and commuting
– 1x miles on all other purchases
– $0 annual fee
Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card Budget Travelers APR
– 3x points on Southwest Airlines purchases
– 2x points on Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partners, local transit and commuting — including rideshares — internet, cable, phone services and select streaming
– 1x points for all other purchases
– $149 annual fee
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Chase

Best for: Overall Value

The number one card on this list gives you three miles per dollar spent on United Airlines, plus 25% back on in-flight purchases. Add a 70,000-mile new cardmember bonus issued after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months and anniversary mile credits, and the savings add up.

Additional Perks

  • $125 annual statement credit for United purchases
  • Up to $100 Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® application fee credit
  • Two 5,000-mile anniversary award flight credits per year
  • 500 Premier qualifying points for every $12,000 you spend on purchases, up to 3,000 per calendar year
  • Free first and second checked bags for you and a travel companion
  • Priority boarding

Pros

  • Generous 3x miles earned per dollar on United purchases
  • Several ways to earn cash back
  • New cardmember bonus of 70,000 miles
  • Can earn up to 3,000 Premier qualifying points per year
  • Use of United Club
  • Money-saving travel benefits

Cons

  • Steep $250 annual fee
  • High purchase requirement to earn bonus miles

Who would benefit from this card? Frequent flyers who expect a lot of perks from their card.

Chase

Best for: Low-Cost, Generous Perks

The United Explorer card from Chase is a good choice for those who don’t travel enough to justify an annual fee totaling hundreds of dollars but still want a robust reward and bonus program.

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Additional Perks

  • Up to $100 Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® application fee credit
  • 25% back on United in-flight purchases
  • 500 Premier qualifying points for every $12,000 you spend on purchases, up to 1,000 per calendar year
  • 2 one-time United Club passes per year, worth over $100
  • Free first checked bag
  • Priority boarding

Pros

  • Earn two miles per dollar on United purchases, two miles per dollar on dining and hotel stays booked with the card and one mile per dollar on all other purchases
  • Earn 50,000 bonus miles after spending $3,000 in purchases in the first three months
  • Can earn up to up to 1,000 Premier qualifying points per calendar year
  • A variety of money-saving travel benefits
  • $0 introductory annual fee in the first year

Cons

  • $95 annual fee after the first year

Who would benefit from this card? Those who’d like to earn rewards when using the card but don’t travel as often.

Chase

Best for: Luxury Travel Benefits

Although the Chase United Club Infinite card’s annual fee is high at $525 per year, the free United Club membership alone more than makes up for it.

Additional Perks

  • Up to $100 Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® application fee credit
  • 25% back on United in-flight purchases
  • 500 Premier qualifying points for every $12,000 you spend on purchases, up to 4,000 per calendar year
  • United Club membership worth up to $650 per year
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Pros

  • Earn four miles per dollar on United purchases, two miles per dollar on other travel and dining and one mile per dollar for all other purchases
  • Generous bonus mile reward offer of 80,000 miles after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months
  • High Premier qualifying point eligibility
  • Free United Club membership worth up to $650 per year
  • Valuable travel benefits
  • Premier Access travel services where available

Cons

  • Expensive $525 annual fee
  • High spend requirement to earn bonus offer

Who would benefit from this card? Current United Club members and travelers who plan to join.

Chase

Best for: Gas rewards

The Chase United Gateway card could be the right choice for travelers who don’t travel as frequently but need a solid airline rewards card that doesn’t make you jump through hoops to get rewards.

Additional Perks

  • 25% back on in-flight purchases onboard United
  • Additional benefits for cardholders at luxury hotels and resorts
  • Events exclusively for cardholders

Pros

  • Earn two miles per dollar on United purchases, two miles per dollar spent at gas stations, local transit and commuting and one mile per dollar on all other purchases
  • 20,000 bonus miles offer after spending $1,000 in the first three months
  • Earn cash back on United purchases
  • No annual fee
  • Introductory APR on purchases for first year

Cons

  • Fewer perks than other cards
  • 2x miles only valid for gas station purchases, not groceries or restaurants

Who would benefit from this card? Casual travelers

Chase

Best for: Budget Travelers

The Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority card helps you accumulate bonus miles and points quickly due to its generous welcome offer and by allowing you earn 3x points per $1 spent on Southwest purchases and 2x points on a variety of other purchases.

Additional Perks

  • 7,500 anniversary points each year
  • $75 annual Southwest travel credit

Pros

  • 50,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in purchases in first three months
  • Earn 2x points per $1 on a variety of purchases, including internet, cable and phone services and select streaming

Cons

  • $149 annual fee

Who would benefit from this card? Budget travelers who already fly Southwest

Which Is the Best Chase Airline Card for Me?

If you’re shopping for an airline card, the first thing to consider is which airline you’ll fly most. From there, selecting the right card is a matter of comparing the benefits against the annual fees to find the card that provides the most value on flights to the destinations you want to visit.

Cynthia Measom contributed to the reporting for this article.

Rates are subject to change; unless otherwise noted, rates are updated periodically. All other information on accounts is accurate as of Sept. 12, 2022.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by any entity covered in this article. Any opinions, analyses, reviews, ratings or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any entity named in this article. The information related to the Chase United Quest, Chase United Explorer, Chase United Club Infinite, United Gateway and Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority credit cards was collected by GOBankingRates and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this product/card. Product details may vary. Please see the issuer’s website for current information. GOBankingRates does not receive commission for this product.

Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create content that’s accurate, impartial, and up to date. We fact-check every single statistic, quote and fact using trusted primary resources to make sure the information we provide is correct. You can learn more about GOBankingRates’ processes and standards in our editorial policy.

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About the Author

Daria Uhlig is a personal finance, real estate and travel writer and editor with over 25 years of editorial experience. Her work has been featured on The Motley Fool, MSN, AOL, Yahoo! Finance, CNBC and USA Today. Daria studied journalism at the County College of Morris and earned a degree in communications at Centenary University, both in New Jersey.
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