MileagePlus Explorer Card 50,000 Mile Sign-Up Bonus Last Chance

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Update: This offer for the United MileagePlus Explorer Card is expired. You can find the current offer details here.

Link: United MileagePlus® Explorer Card

For a while now Chase has been offering an increased sign-up bonus on their co-branded United card. They’re offering a sign-up bonus of 50,000 MileagePlus miles after spending $2,000 in the the first three months. You can also earn an additional 5,000 bonus miles when you add an authorized user and they make a purchase in the first three months. That’s potentially a total of 55,000 MileagePlus miles.

Anyway, rumor has it that the offer is set to end in the coming days, so if you want to be sure you get in on the offer, I would suggest applying by tomorrow.

Ultimate Rewards points can be added to your MileagePlus balance

This isn’t the biggest sign-up bonus in the world, but is a very good bonus for this card. The good thing about MileagePlus is that you can transfer points from Chase Ultimate Rewards to “top off” an account. So any points you have from the Chase Sapphire Preferred® CardInk Bold® Business Charge Card, and Ink Plus® Business Credit Card can be transferred to MileagePlus.

In general I prefer the cards which accrue Ultimate Rewards points, given that:

  • They fairly consistently have higher sign-up bonuses than what is publicly available for the United Card
  • They offer generous category bonuses on dining, travel, office supply stores, cable, internet, TV, etc.
  • I find the flexibility of Ultimate Rewards points to be incredibly valuable, since you can also transfer those points to Hyatt Gold Passport, Korean Air SkyPass, Singapore KrisFlyer, etc.

However, the United MileagePlus® Explorer Card is great for bolstering your United balance, and particularly for United flyers. Admittedly MileagePlus miles aren’t as valuable as they were pre-devaluation, but there are still some good uses of them.

EVA-Air
Redeem MileagePlus miles for EVA Air Royal Laurel Class

The United MileagePlus® Explorer Card can be good for everyday spend

This card can potentially be lucrative for everyday spend as well. That’s because you earn 10,000 bonus miles after spending $25,000 on the card in a calendar year (that basically means you’re earning 1.4 MileagePlus miles per dollar spent on non-bonused categories for the first $25,000, which is pretty tough to beat)

So this actually can be a rewarding card for everyday spend, assuming you spend quite a bit in non-bonused categories and spend at least $25,000.

United perks for having the card

The card also comes with some potentially useful benefits, both when flying United and through the MileagePlus program:

  • Two United Club passes per year
  • Priority boarding for the card member and passengers on the same reservation
  • Free first checked bag on United operated flights for card member and one companion on the same reservation that use the card to pay for the ticket
  • By having a co-branded MileagePlus credit card, the Premier Qualifying Dollars requirement for Premier Silver, Premier Gold and Premier Platinum qualification is waived if you spend at least $25,000 on the card in the year (given you’d also receive the threshold bonus for spending $25,000 on the card, this is a good option for those flyers)
  • Cardholders have “last seat” availability when redeeming miles for standard awards

Bottom line

This is a great sign-up bonus, and the card comes with some worthwhile benefits for United flyers. Furthermore, this is a card that it can make sense to put spend on, assuming you spend at least $25,000 on the card per year. If you’ve been considering applying for the card, you’ll want to do so ASAP.

Link: United MileagePlus® Explorer Card

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Comments

  1. @ beachfan — Well the Chase Ink Cards always have good sign-up bonuses, but unfortunately there’s not a MileagePlus Card with a similar sign-up bonus.

  2. Lucky,

    I know premium cabins are more your game but I’m trying to help my brother out with sign-ups with the targeted goal of redeeming for coach from continental Europe or Dublin to the U.S. Looking to fly AA to Lon via alaska, but flying back out of LHR is damn expensive for a family of four with those fees. Would this sign up be worthwhile to find another one-way back? USairways would be cheaper, but this is a better bonus and with the merger who knows what new changes there will be.

    PS I’ll make sure he uses your links. 😉

  3. I just checked the award calendar and it looks pretty good though they’re stingy with saver awards on UA DUB-IAD still decent availability on less direct routes.

    Thanks for the reminder Lucky.

  4. @ Beefeater — Yes, for economy redemptions MileagePlus miles are still quite valuable, so I’d say this is a great option for that.

  5. @Lucky,

    Need your help…..I break down into parts so it’s easier for you to answer each:

    1. I got approved for SPG Amex card on June 30, today is Sept 1, (same situation with Chase, I got Ink on June 30) so it’s not 91 days yet…. what do you think on my chance of getting approved if I apply for the limited increased sign up bonus Amex Delta card (and Chase United card)? since I read that it’s better to wait 91 days between applications for card issued by same bank.

    2. Also can I get approved if I apply American Express Gold Delta SkyMiles Personal and Business version in same day (if you have affiliate link for this, please let me know)? What about for Chase United card, does it have personal and business version as well and can I apply both on same day?

    3. I have plan to use Marriott points for my upcoming trip in Asia next year. And as you know Chase also have increased 70k points sign up bonus for Marriott card and 140k for Ritz. When will this end, is this limited time to as with United and Delta one? Do you think I should apply for Chase United or Marriot card first for app-o-rama this time? If I apply for Chase United, then I have to wait 91 days before I can apply for Chase Marriott or Ritz and maybe their sign up bonus is less than now.

    Please confirm as soon as possible, I need your answer before I can apply using your affiliate links today.Thank you.

  6. @ Amanda — There is no 91 day rule, so you’re fine. I’d say you have good odds of getting approved. You can’t officially get approved for personal and business the same day, but you can apply same day and then one will simply be processed a few days later, so that’s a good option.

    The Marriott and Ritz bonuses are both limited time, so if they interest you I’d recommend applying ASAP.

    There is no 91 day rule, though I would wait 30 days between Chase applications.

  7. Thanks Lucky! So this is what I plan to do , please let me know if I missed something or wrong:
    1. Apply for Chase United card today(along with Amex Delta), and then maybe couple weeks later apply for Ritz card to get the 140k bonus. Is this ok, will I get denied when I apply for Ritz because “too many cc inquiries in 2 months”?

    2. Also apply for Delta personal and business version on same day today. As you pointed out, that both might not be processed same day, so if I applied and got pending status for both, do you recommend to call recon line or just wait few days until it automatically processed?

    Or

    Apply personal version first, if got pending status call the recon, then after got approved, apply for business version, if got pending , call the recon.

    Which version do you suggest to apply first to maximize the chance of getting approved, personal or business first?

    Thanks a lot !

  8. @ Amanda —

    1) No way to ever know for sure, but that strategy sounds good to me.

    2) That sounds good as well, though I would just let it process naturally, it will just take a short while.

    That’s certainly all that I’d do — good luck!

  9. Can I use my new Mileage Plus explore card to buy $2,000 worth of miles to:
    A. Meet the 2k minimum spend to earn my 50k bonus miles
    B. Get 2 miles for 1 dollar spent at United
    C. Get the bonus miles promotion that ends Sep. 4th (could be up to 100% bonus)

    Any info would be appreciated!

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