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So I just got the Mileage Plus X app and am kicking myself, because it’s been available for points-earning potential since 2014.
But better late than never. And I’m discovering all these cool uses for it.
If you have the Citi AT&T Access More card, you can use it as a payment method on the app to earn a total of 5X miles on Amazon and eBay.
And, a step beyond, you can use it as a defacto shopping portal to get a better payout either in-person OR online.
I got some ‘splainin’ to do!
In This Post
What’s MileagePlus X?
The MileagePlus X app lets you instantly earn United miles for gift card purchases made through the app.
When you select a merchant, United buys you a gift card and gives you the number to use right away.
And yup, the United miles post within seconds. (This would be a great way to quickly reset the expiration on your United miles!)
There are lots of “in-store” merchants available, too. And a few that are online-only, like Amazon and eBay.
Both Amazon and eBay currently earn 2X United miles per $1 spent via the app.
Add the Citi AT&T Access More card to the mix
But, even better, the purchases made through the app code as online purchases, which means you can also earn 3X Citi ThankYou points with the Citi AT&T Access More card (which is also excellent for shopping at Costco, paying rent, and paying your mortgage).
I’m loving the Citi AT&T Access More card lately. I use it almost daily to purchase things online, and pay my rents and mortgage. Between all of these, I’m racking up Citi ThankYou points left and right!
How’s it work?
With the MileagePlus X app, all ya gotta do is pull up Amazon or eBay and set your Citi AT&T Access More card (or any other card) as the payment method.
It instantly generated a gift card code:
Alls I did was open up the Amazon app and paste the code in. It was applied instantly to my account:
You can use it right away for shopping.
The eBay gift cards, I assume, work the exact same way.
Papa John’s experiment
In addition to Amazon, I also tried one of the “in-store” merchants. You can earn 5X United Miles at Papa John’s.
I say “in-store” because in reality, you don’t have to be at the store location. I was able to buy a Papa John’s gift card via the MileagePlus X app and order a pizza for online delivery. I simply used the gift card as the payment method.
This is good to know because some of the “in-store” merchants actually have higher payouts on the MileagePlus X app than many online shopping portals!
Take Gap for instance. You’ll earn 5X United miles via the app.
But only 1 or 2 miles via an online shopping portal – including the United shopping portal!
You can also earn 5X United miles at places like:
- Foot Locker
And 4X United miles at:
- Barnes & Noble
You even get 3X United miles at Kohl’s – more than the shopping portals pay out.
It’s a limited list, but if you shop at big retailers often, you can often do better buying gift cards through the MileagePlus X app than clicking through a shopping portal.
How’s it stack and code?
I saw online that purchases made via the Mileage Plus X app code at airfare or travel from United.
Not so in my case.
In my limited trials, the gift cards have coded appropriately to match the merchant.
However, Amazon and eBay both earn 3X with the Citi AT&T Access More card anyway.
But my using the Mileage Plus X app, you have the added benefit of double United miles on top of that.
Papa John’s coded as a restaurant. So you could use your Chase Sapphire Preferred for 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points. But shop through the app to scoop up 5X United miles too.
In both instances, I had the United miles in my account instantly.
So if you spend $100 at Amazon or eBay and pay with Citi AT&T Access More, you’ll earn:
- 200 United miles
- 300 Citi ThankYou points
That’s 5X altogether.
For $100 at Papa John’s on your Chase Sapphire Preferred, you’ll earn:
- 500 United miles
- 200 Chase Ultimate Rewards points
- A spare tire in the belly area
And 7X altogether.
You can combine and stack appropriate to your card’s earning potential at each merchant (i.e. you could use Citi ThankYou Premier at restaurants – you’d earn 2X Citi ThankYou points in that case).
Other things to note
Because the Mileage Plus X app gift card purchases are coding correctly, I don’t think you could buy Amazon gift cards and expect to be reimbursed with the AMEX Platinum Card. That is, these purchases are not showing up as travel, or necessarily from United. Some peeps say that still works. I’d say YMMV.
Worst case, you might just earn some miles for an Amazon gift card and still have to pay the bill at the end of the month. So only buy gift cards you genuinely want to use/redeem.
Also, I’ve heard some peeps have complained about multiple charges coming through. This issue seems to’ve been corrected. My purchases have posted just fine – no issues here. But it’s something to be aware of.
If you shop frequently at Amazon or eBay, there’s no reason not to download the MileagePlus X app, even if you don’t have the Citi AT&T Access More card (that’s just icing on the cake).
The real draw is racking up lots of United miles with little added time and no added cost – in addition to what you’d normally earn.
In many cases, the Mileage Plus X app pays out higher than shopping portals.
From here on out, it’ll be the first place I check to see where I can earn some extra United miles.
The app has been around for a while, so let me know if you’ve had an experience with it. And feel free to ask a question if there’s something I missed!
Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.