If you ever fly on airplane, sign up for your favorite airline free mileage program and also apply for their credit card (there is an annual fee) – the perks are worth it for a few years. Almost EVERY airline company offers their own branded credit card and sign up bonuses that are now at an all time high. You can always cancel if your travel and/or spending habits change after a year or two. For United MileagePlus members, there are two Chase Visa credit cards available: United MileagePlus Explorer and United MileagePlus Club. We will briefly review the former here – the later card includes a United Club membership ($550 annual value) and an annual fee of $450.

This product is available to you if you do not have this card and have not received a new cardmember bonus for this card in the past 24 months.

Bonus Miles

  • Earn 50,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus miles after you add the first authorized user to your account and make a purchase with your Card during the first 3 months your account is open.
  • Earn 10,000 bonus mile after you spend $25,000 on purchases on your Card each calendar year.
  • Earn 2 miles for each $1 spent on tickets purchased from United.
  • Earn 1 mile for each $1 spent on all other purchases.

An alternative fee-free way (without using Plastiq – see our Plastiq post here) is to buy Amazon.com gift cards (no expiration) to meet your sign up bonuses AND earn the miles.

Miles don’t expire as long as your credit card account remains open and there is no limit to the number of miles you can earn.

Travel Perks

Any Seat Any Time on United-operated flights
The primary Cardmember can use miles to book any seat, any time with no limitations, restrictions or blackout dates. If seats are available for sale on United-operated flights, you can use miles to book an award ticket at the Standard Award level when you sign into your MileagePlus account before starting the booking process.

Free First Checked Bag
The primary cardmember and one companion traveling on the same reservation will each receive their first standard checked bag free (currently a $25 value for the first checked bag, each way, per person for a savings of up to $100 per roundtrip) on United-operated flights when purchasing tickets with their United MileagePlus Explorer card.

Priority Boarding
The primary cardmember and companions on the same reservation will be invited to board United-operated flights prior to general boarding.

2 United Club Passes
Take some time to relax before your flight with two United Club one-time ($100 value) passes each year for your anniversary. Enjoy complimentary beverages, snacks, and other amenities like work spaces, free Wi-Fi and more.

Note: The Secondary cardholders will not be able to leverage the above perks by themselves – they have to be travelling with the Primary cardholder’s reservation…

No Foreign Transaction Fees
Purchases made with your Explorer Card outside the U.S. will not be subject to foreign transaction fees. This is a frugal way to skip fees and bad exchange rates if you had to use other credit cards or cash or travelers checks.

Annual Fees
$95. Free to add secondary card holders.

United is a member of Star Alliance, so you can use your United miles for award flights on any airline in the alliance. Some other airlines in the Star Alliance program are Singapore Airlines, Lufthansa, Air New Zealand, ANA, Air Canada, and Swiss Air. Having these airlines as options gives you incredible flexibility when redeeming your United miles.

Don’t wait any longer and start building United mileage points with your United MileagePlus Explorer credit card. Act now for the sign up bonus and get your vacation sooner!

If you apply through our referral links, we will earn from 5,000 to 10,000 points per credit card if you apply using our referral links AND are approved. YOU get the BONUS POINTS and card benefits, Wear Tested Gear Review get the REFERRAL POINTS, a win-win for both. Thank you for your support!