Increased Offer: Up to 65,000 Miles with United Explorer Card

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Chase has launched a limited-time-offer on the United℠ Explorer Card, offering up to 65,000 bonus miles after you meet a two-part spending requirement. The current deal is the largest bonus since January 2019 and matches the all-time high for Chase’s flagship United card. If you’ve been considering the United Explorer Card, now is an ideal time to pick up over 60% more miles than the standard 40,000 point offer.

The United Explorer Card consistently ranks as one of Chase’s best value co-brand cards thanks to a noteworthy list of perks. Cardholder benefits include a free checked bag for you and a companion, complimentary United Club Lounge passes, priority boarding, a Global Entry/TSA Pre-Check credit, free roadside assistance, and primary car rental coverage. The card also offers a unique benefit providing expanded award space available only to co-brand cardholders and elite-status MileagePlus members.

United℠ Explorer Card
United℠ Explorer Card
Annual Fee$0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
Welcome Bonus Limited time offer! Earn up to 65,000 Bonus Miles. 40,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. Plus earn an additional 25,000 bonus miles after you spend $10,000 total on purchases in the first 6 months your account is open.
  • Limited time offer! Earn up to 65,000 Bonus Miles.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Earn 2 miles per $1 spent at restaurants and on hotel stays
  • Up to $100 Global Entry or TSA Pre✔® Fee Credit
  • 25% back on United inflight purchases
  • Check your first bag for free (a savings of up to $120 per roundtrip) when you use your Card to purchase your ticket
  • Enjoy priority boarding privileges and visit the United Club℠ with 2 one-time passes each year for your anniversary
  • Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on purchases from United, and 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • 2X miles per $1 spent on purchases from United
  • 2X miles per $1 spent at restaurants and on hotel stays
  • 1X mile per $1 spent on all other purchases

United Explorer Card Signup Bonus

New cardholders will earn up to 65,000 bonus miles after meeting a two-tiered minimum spend. You’ll receive 40,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,000 in the first 3 months, plus an additional 25,000 bonus miles after you spend $10,000 total in the first 6 months your account is open. When you include the miles earned completing the minimum spending requirement, cardholders will take home at least 75,000 United miles. If you value United miles at ~1.6¢ per mile, 75K United miles is worth a cool $1,200.

Everyday Earning Potential

The United Explorer Card isn’t the most lucrative way to earn United Miles. The free-checked bag benefit is tied to using the card to pay for United flights, so you’ll want to keep the card handy for those purchases in particular, but otherwise, there are better options for ongoing spending.

The card earns 2 miles per $1 spent at restaurants and on hotel stays, 2 miles per $1 spent on purchases from United, and 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases. The bonus categories overlap with those on the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, which has a similar annual fee and earns 2X Ultimate Rewards points on all travel and dining purchases. Ultimate Rewards points transfer to United at a 1:1 ratio, plus another nine airline partners and three hotel partners, providing much more flexibility than earning United miles.

While the welcome offer and cardholder benefits on the United Explorer Card offer an outstanding value, there are plenty of flexible rewards cards earning better than 2x points per dollar on travel purchases, and it’s a similar story for cards earning bonus points on dining.

United MileagePlus Program

United is a member of Star Alliance, which means your miles can be used to book flights with 27 member airlines and around a dozen independent partners. In addition to having one of the most expansive partner route networks, the MileagePlus program stands out because frequent flyers won't pay high fuel surcharges on award tickets—keeping your overall costs low when it's time to use your miles.

It’s worth noting there are some significant changes on the way to how United prices saver awards. From November 15, 2019, saver awards will no longer have a fixed minimum floor price. Instead, the number of miles required for a flight will adjust to demand. The changes only apply to United flights, not those on partner airlines like Air New Zealand, Singapore, and ANA. So you can still take advantage of the same partner award pricing. However, we’ll likely see the cost of saver awards on United metal creeping up incrementally without notice.

United Explorer Card Feature Benefits

The United Explorer Card is one of a handful of co-brand cards you hold long-term for the benefits, as opposed to the return on spending. Even folks that only fly United once or twice per year can leverage excellent value from the benefits on the United Explorer Card, particularly when you factor in the expanded award availability you receive just for holding the card.

Benefits include:

  • Expanded award inventory available only to co-brand cardholders and elite-status members
  • Free first checked bag for the primary cardmember and one companion traveling on the same itinerary, valued at up to $120 per roundtrip. (You must pay for your ticket using your United Explorer Card to use this benefit.)
  • $100 Global Entry/TSA Pre credit every four years
  • 25% back on in-flight purchases
  • Priority boarding for the primary cardholder and companions traveling on the same reservation
  • Two United Club one-time passes each anniversary – over a $100 value. (You must be traveling with United or a partner airline to use this benefit.)
  • Primary Auto Rental coverage in the United States and abroad
  • Free roadside assistance
  • No foreign transaction fees

Who’s Eligible for the United℠ Explorer Card?

If you are a current United Explorer Card cardholder, or you have received a welcome bonus on this card in the previous 24 months, you won’t be eligible for this card.

“This product is not available to either (i) current Cardmembers of this credit card, or (ii) previous Cardmembers of this credit card who received a new Cardmember bonus for this credit card within the last 24 months.”

Essentially, if you’ve had the United Explorer Card before but canceled the card due to a change in award travel strategies, you can apply for this offer, provided it’s been 24 months since you last received the signup bonus.

Like all Chase cards, the United Explorer Card is also subject to Chase’s 5/24 policy, meaning if you’ve opened five or more credit cards in the previous 24 months, you will not be approved for this card.

Our Take

If you fly United two or three times per year, the cardholder benefits on the United Explorer Card will more than account for the out-of-pocket expense to hold the card for the long term. In addition to the stellar list of perks and travel protection benefits the card offers, new applicants can earn up to 65,000 bonus miles after meeting the minimum spending requirement.

With the current offer matching the all-time-high bonus available to the general public, you likely won’t find a better time to pull the trigger and add this card to your wallet.

United℠ Explorer Card
United℠ Explorer Card
Annual Fee$0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
Welcome Bonus Limited time offer! Earn up to 65,000 Bonus Miles. 40,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. Plus earn an additional 25,000 bonus miles after you spend $10,000 total on purchases in the first 6 months your account is open.
  • Limited time offer! Earn up to 65,000 Bonus Miles.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Earn 2 miles per $1 spent at restaurants and on hotel stays
  • Up to $100 Global Entry or TSA Pre✔® Fee Credit
  • 25% back on United inflight purchases
  • Check your first bag for free (a savings of up to $120 per roundtrip) when you use your Card to purchase your ticket
  • Enjoy priority boarding privileges and visit the United Club℠ with 2 one-time passes each year for your anniversary
  • Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on purchases from United, and 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • 2X miles per $1 spent on purchases from United
  • 2X miles per $1 spent at restaurants and on hotel stays
  • 1X mile per $1 spent on all other purchases
Increased Offer: Up to 65,000 Miles with United Explorer Card
4.7 (94.29%) 7 votes
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Comments

  • Donald T Morgan says:

    What does “limited time offer” mean? Is there a specific end date?

  • This is a better offer than the regular one, but the spend is high and there are so many better ways to earn United miles that this card. I’d definitely skip it unless I had no other card at all.

  • peter vandertuin says:

    Chase is evil. My wife and I took a first class ride on a 320,000 points booking 2 years ago and we’ve been blacklisted ever since, despite having great credit ratings and no new Chase cards for 3 years. They’ll play the points game with you but only if they can come out the far side as winners.

    • You made the award redemption(s) through United right? I do not get your story.

    • Alison Kenda says:

      Pete, Chase has a 48 month policy for some of their cards (e.g. the Chase Sapphire), 24 months for others. And, they won’t give you a new card with bonus if you are still a card holder. So, to get a new card, you have to close the current account, wait out the ‘waiting period’ and then re-apply. If you get denied, you can call them and get an explanation as to why. Sometimes it is weird technicality that can be rectified easily. (Be sure to check you full credit report for any anomalies, accounts that you don’t own, etc!) I haven’t ever heard of someone getting blacklisted for using points, unless you violated some rule or other (and they will tell you that). We took 22 flights in one year, all on points, and all on Chase cards, and haven’t been blacklisted, so I don’t think it was your first class booking that is at issue. Try calling their customer service.

      • Thanks for taking the time to respond and with solid advice. I as well certainly don’t think it was the first class redemption of points that’s causing the problem here.

      • There’s always two sides to the story. I’m skeptical that redeeming points (through United?) got someone blacklisted. Maybe he earned the points through MS? Just a hypothesis but this doesn’t add up.

    • I don’t get your. Who blacklisted you? Was it united or Chase?

  • I applied and was approved for the Explorer card last month at a Chase branch. My offer was 50,000 miles after a $3000 spend in 3 months.

  • Steven William Van Meter says:

    So cardholders can earn +/- 65,000 miles after achieving a two-tiered “minimum” spend. I can get 40,000 bonus miles after I spend $2,000 in the first 3 months, plus an additional 25,000 bonus miles after spending $10,000 total in the first 6 months… Doable, but there’s always an issue of interest rates…

  • Can you get approved if you recently also received bonus for explorers business card?

  • This is a good deal for someone who is going to be a bit spendy!!

  • That seems like a very high spend requirement to get the full bonus.

  • Michael Skelly says:

    Sounds like a good opportunity for anyone with 5/24 slots to burn, if they ever fly United. I’d be all over this if it was a business card but at 4/24 I have to stick with business cards for quite awhile!

  • I’m on the fence on this offer. It is tempting to say the least, but spend requirement will require putting all charges on this card. Not sure if it would make sense.

  • I think I had a similar sign up bonus for this card but the minimum spend was only $3000 for the full bonus so this is worse.

  • I was rejected for the card because I had opened to many cards in the past few years even though I have excellent credit. If I were United Airlines I would be pissed at Chase who operates the card.

  • The expanded award availability is a great benefit. However, as some others have said, the $10,000 spend in six months to get the full bonus on a consumer card is really unfortunate.

  • They need to have a big bonus now that their miles have been so devalued

  • We would love to have that kind of sign-up bonuses with argentinean cards 🙁

  • IMHO, the 10K spending requirement is too steep for the amount of miles you get.
    This is actually a deal breaker for me, even though the total sign up bonus is one of the highest ever.

    • Exactly. It’s always a good idea the weight the opportunity cost spend-heavy offers like these. that is to say, that spending $8k to get the last 25k miles of the offer is very likely not the best use of those dollars. Even if one really needs UA miles, your better off going for a UR-point earning card and transferring the UR to UA.

  • I think I’m going to pass on this one. There are better offers out there that work better for me at this time.

  • With the number of destinations that United has in their routes, I think this is a great deal! I could see our family taking advantage of this.

  • too bad you need to live in the US for most of these to work

  • I agree that the spend is a bit steep to get the full bonus. However, if you can swing it and fly United, it would get you some nice miles.

  • Dexter Ohama says:

    I’ve been on the watch for this to roll around. I was patient & it arrived. This is a good deal & doesn’t come around that often. I’m jumping on this, just in time for the holiday spending.

  • 10k spend is high, the club passes are hard to use since they frequently limit entry with passes and the program just got a massive devaluation. I suspect there will be better offers soon.

  • This is a good initial bonus for this Chase United card. If you fly United could be worthwhile. In general I’d stick with Chase Ultimate Reward cards for their flexibility and the 5/24 slots.

  • Spending requirement of 10K is too much!

  • Great topic. It sounds as an opportunity. However, you need a big spend requeriment for bonus.

  • Two thumbs up for the first year waiver of the $95.00 annual fee!

  • The spend is too much for me.

  • Chase cards are not available in Canada anymore which is too bad

  • I have yet to jump on the United bandwagon. I thought that travel on United tended to cost more miles than say American.

  • $10,000 is not for the average consumer. I live in a United hub so I’m looking to pick one up but United is really good at shooting themselves in the foot. 🙁

  • Too many problems listed here for our interest.

  • What is the two-part spending requirement?
    We need to spend $12,000 or $10,000 for the first six months or

  • Spending 10k for six months is not easy.

  • Removing the $75 close-in booking fee but using it as a tactic to take more miles… No fun, MileagePlus.

  • The 10K requirement seems rather high when considering United tends to devalue its miles in comparison to other airlines.

  • Good chunk of miles, but that elevated spend is not a welcome change. Seems like more and more banks are now doing the math in trying to recoup cost of SUB’s faster by elevating spend requirements (and thus earning more interchange revenue).

  • Excellent bonus offer! Great for anyone that can hit the spending level.

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