United℠ Explorer Card

United℠ Explorer Card

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9.7/10 (Expert Score)
Product is rated as #1 in category Credit Cards
PROS:
  • Double miles:
  • - United Purchases
  • - Restaurants
  • - Hotel Stays
  • $100 reimbursed for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry fees every 4 years
  • Free Checked Bag for you and one traveling companion (on the same reservation) - $35 per bag value
  • Priority Boarding for cardmember and companions traveling on the same reservation
  • 2 United ClubSM one-time passes each year (upon account opening and upon each 12-month anniversary thereafter  (each pass having an approximate value of $50)
CONS:
  • $95 annual fee (waived first year)
  • May not be well suited for those living outside of United hub cities

Last Updated on January 3, 2021

9.7Expert Score
Offers tremendous value for those in or near United Airlines' hub cities.
PROS
  • Double miles:
  • - United Purchases
  • - Restaurants
  • - Hotel Stays
  • $100 reimbursed for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry fees every 4 years
  • Free Checked Bag for you and one traveling companion (on the same reservation) - $35 per bag value
  • Priority Boarding for cardmember and companions traveling on the same reservation
  • 2 United ClubSM one-time passes each year (upon account opening and upon each 12-month anniversary thereafter  (each pass having an approximate value of $50)
CONS
  • $95 annual fee (waived first year)
  • May not be well suited for those living outside of United hub cities

The United℠ Explorer Card (issued by Chase) offers tremendous value for those in or near United Airlines’ hub cities (Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, NYC, San Francisco and Washington, DC) and/or for those frequent travelers very loyal to the airline.

The card currently offers up to 70,000 bonus miles (60,000 bonus miles if you make $3,000 in purchases within 3 months of account opening plus 10,000 additional miles if you make a total of $6,000 in purchases within 6 months of account opening).  Additionally, the annual fee of $95 is waived for the first year.

Standard Benefits:

  • 1 MileagePlus mile for every $1 in card purchases
  • 1 additional Mileageplus mile for every $1 in card purchases on airline tickets purchased from United and on other selected United purchases (seat upgrades, inflight food and beverages, WiFi and other select airlines fees
  • 1 additional Mileageplus mile for every $1 in card purchases at restaurants and on hotel stays
  • Up to $100 reimbursed for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry fees charged to the card (up to $100 every 4 years)
  • 25% back on food, beverage and Wi-Fi purchases on board United and United Express-operated flights
  • Free Checked Bag for you and one traveling companion (on the same reservation) – $35 per bag value
  • Priority Boarding for cardmember and companions traveling on the same reservation
  • 2 United ClubSM one-time passes each year (upon account opening and upon each 12-month anniversary thereafter  (each pass having an approximate value of $50)

If you travel on United at least a few times each year, the potential baggage savings along can make this card worthwhile.  However, overall value declines a bit if you already have a United MileagePlus Premier® status as status generally provides free or discounted baggage fees (although free baggage allowances stack so travelers can combined the card allowance plus the Premier® allowance).

CARD DETAILS

Issuer & Payment Network

Issuer

Chase

Payment Network

Visa

Network Benefit Level

Visa Signature

Estimated Purchase Yield

Estimated Purchase Yield

1.95%

Notes

Based on mile buying power as of December 22, 2020. Mile buying power usually high due to COVID. Assumes miles are used to redeem travel.

Bonus Offers

Bonus Offer Value

$1,465

Bonus Offer

Up to 70,000 bonus miles (requires $3,000 in new purchases within 3 months and $6,000 in new purchases within 6 months) plus up to $100 toward Global Entry or Pre-TSA fees

Ongoing Bonuses

Up to $100 toward Global Entry or Pre-TSA fees every 4 years. Two United ClubSM passes each year.

Estimated Annual Card Value

Yr 1 @ $5k in Purchases

$1,802.50

Yr 1 @ $15k in Purchases

$1,997.50

Yr 1 @ $30k in Purchases

$2,290.00

Yr 2+ @ $5k in Purchases

$242.50

Yr 2+ @ $15k in Purchases

$437.50

Yr 2+ @ $30k in Purchases

$730.00

Valuation Notes

Bonus Offer Value plus Ongoing Bonus Value (if any) plus value of rewards at stated annual purchasing level less the annual fee. 4 checked bags assumed and use of lounge passes.

Airport Lounge Access

Lounge Access?

No

Lounge Network

Not Applicable

Guests

Not Applicable

Access Restrictions

Not Applicable

Reward Points

Do Points Expire?

No (as long as the account remains open)

Redemption Options

Travel, Gift Cards, Merchandise

Can Points Be Transferred?

No

Fees & APRs

Annual Fee

$0 intro for the first year, $95 thereafter

Foreign Transaction Fees

None

Late Payment Fee

$39

APR - Intro (Purchases)

16.49% to 23.49%

APR - Intro (Balance Transfers)

16.49% to 23.49%

APR - Cash Advance

24.99% + $10 or 5% (whichever is greater)

APR - Regular (Purchases)

16.49% to 23.49%

APR - Regular (Balance Transfers)

16.49% to 23.49% + $5 or 5% of the amount transferred, whichever is greater

Grace Period

21 Days

Protections & Services

Zero Liability Protection

Yes

Purchase Protection

Covers your new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per year.

Extended Warranty Protection

Extends the time period of the U.S. manufacturer's warranty by an additional year, on eligible warranties of three years or less.

Trip Cancellation / Interruption

Trip Cancellation/Interruption: You can be reimbursed up to $1,500 per person and $6,000 per trip for your pre-paid, non-refundable passenger fares, if your trip is canceled or cut short by sickness, severe weather and other covered situations. Trip Delay: If your common carrier travel is delayed more than 12 hours or requires an overnight stay, you and your family are covered for unreimbursed expenses, such as meals and lodging, up to $500 per ticket. Baggage Delay: Reimburses you for essential purchases like toiletries and clothing for baggage delays over 6 hours by passenger carrier up to $100 a day for 3 days.

Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver

Yes: Decline the rental company's collision insurance and charge the entire rental cost to your card. Coverage is primary and provides reimbursement up to the actual cash value of the vehicle for theft and collision damage for most rental cars in the U.S. and abroad.

Other Items

Recommended Credit Level

Very Good+ (FICO Score: 740-850)

Link to Issuer Website

https://creditcards.chase.com/travel-credit-cards/united/united-explorer

Date Information Confirmed

December 21, 2020

(Image: Chase)

United℠ Explorer Card
United℠ Explorer Card
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