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