Save a form of payment to buy snacks and drinks

To make your trip safer and more enjoyable, all inflight purchases on our flights must be completed with contactless payments instead of physical cards or cash. To buy snacks and drinks on board, you’ll need to save a form of payment before your flight. You can do this easily using the United app or using PayPal (only for registered PayPal users on select flights). If you’re a MileagePlus member, you can even redeem miles for inflight purchases.

Whether you are using the United app or PayPal, be sure to save or verify your United MileagePlus® Chase Card as your primary form of payment before traveling. When you pay with your card, you’ll receive 25% back on inflight purchases of food, beverages and Wi-Fi. To pay with miles, make sure your MileagePlus number is added to your reservation.

How to save a form of payment before your flight

There are multiple ways to save a form of payment for inflight purchases using the United app or on united.com:

Save to your MileagePlus account (preferred)

By saving your form of payment this way, it’ll be available for all future flights.

  1. Sign in to your MileagePlus® account on united.com
  2. Under “Profile & Preferences,” go to “Saved form of payment”
  3. Select “Add saved form of payment”
  4. Fill out information and select “Save”

At check-in on the United app

  1. Make sure you’ve downloaded the latest version of the United app
  2. When reviewing your reservation details, select “Inflight purchases” at the bottom of the screen
  3. Select “Save credit card for inflight purchases”
  4. Fill out information and select “Save”

At check-in on united.com

  1. When reviewing your reservation details, select “Add credit card”
  2. Fill out information and select “Save”

After check-in on the United app

  1. On the home screen below the box with details about your trip, select “Save a credit card for this trip”
  2. Fill out information and continue until you select “Save”
  • Save to your MileagePlus account (preferred)

    By saving your form of payment this way, it’ll be available for all future flights.

    1. Sign in to your MileagePlus® account on united.com
    2. Under “Profile & Preferences,” go to “Saved form of payment”
    3. Select “Add saved form of payment”
    4. Fill out information and select “Save”
  • At check-in on the United app

    1. Make sure you’ve downloaded the latest version of the United app
    2. When reviewing your reservation details, select “Inflight purchases” at the bottom of the screen
    3. Select “Save credit card for inflight purchases”
    4. Fill out information and select “Save”
  • At check-in on united.com

    1. When reviewing your reservation details, select “Add credit card”
    2. Fill out information and select “Save”
  • After check-in on the United app

    1. On the home screen below the box with details about your trip, select “Save a credit card for this trip”
    2. Fill out information and continue until you select “Save”

 

Download a version of the United app:

Browse our inflight menu

Once you’ve saved your preferred form of payment, you’ll be all set to enjoy your favorite snack or drink on board. Find a menu of food and beverages available to purchase on United flights here, on the United app, or inside a copy of Hemispheres, our inflight magazine.

Frequently asked questions

  • No. You’ll only be able to buy something on board with a saved form of payment. We don’t accept physical credit cards or cash on board.

  • Even if you plan to check in at the airport, you can save your card for your flight on united.com or the United app. If you’ve already checked in, download the latest version of the United app to your phone or other smart device. Under the “My Trips” section, you can find a trip using your confirmation number and last name. Save that trip and you should see a prompt on the home screen allowing you to save your credit card information.

  • If you save your form of payment on your MileagePlus profile, you can use it on all future trips when this type of payment is available.

    If you save your form of payment at check-in, we’ll only apply it for the specific trip you’re checking in for. If your travel plans are spread across multiple reservations, you’ll need to add your card separately for each trip. We’ll remove your saved form of payment within 12 hours of arriving at your final destination.

  • Nope – you can keep your credit card in your wallet or purse. If you choose to buy something, the flight attendant may ask for you to confirm the name on the card you have on file. Once you confirm, you’ll be charged for what you receive. As always, you can retrieve any receipts through the email you have on file or by visiting our website.

  • Yes. Eligible Premier members will once again receive a complimentary Choice Menu item and/or alcoholic beverage when traveling on an eligible flight segment.

  • While you can remove your face covering briefly to eat or drink, you must immediately put it back on afterward. Learn more by reading our FAQs about face coverings

  • Yes, MileagePlus members can redeem award miles to pay for inflight purchases as long as they have enough miles available in their account. To use your miles on board, just ask your flight attendant when you make your food or drink selection.

*25% back on food, beverage and Wi-Fi purchases onboard United- and United Express-operated flights: You will receive 25% back, in the form of a credit card account statement credit, on purchases of food, beverages and Wi-Fi onboard United- and United Express-operated flights, when you use your United MileagePlus® Card to make such purchases. The statement credit will post to your account within 24 hours of your onboard purchase posting to your account. You will also receive 25% back on onboard food, beverage and Wi-Fi purchases made by authorized users who use your United MileagePlus® Card account to make such purchases. To qualify for the 25% back, account must be open and not in default at the time of fulfillment.