We devote thousands of hours of research to help you get Big Travel with Small Money. You support us by signing-up for credit cards through partner links which earn us a commission. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.

Targeted United 55,000 Mile Card & United Club Card With No Annual Fee

Targeted United 55,000 Mile Card & United Club Card With No Annual Fee

Million Mile SecretsTargeted United 55,000 Mile Card & United Club Card With No Annual FeeMillion Mile Secrets Team

We devote thousands of hours of research to help you get Big Travel with Small Money. You support us by signing-up for credit cards through partner links which earn us a commission. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.

Update:   One or more card offers in this post are no longer available.  Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers. 

Chase United Explorer

I first wrote about the Chase United Explorer credit card with 55,000 miles about a year ago.  This is a great deal because you get 50,000 United miles after spending $1,000 within 3 months and another 5,000 miles for adding an authorized user.  And some folks have got a $50 statement credit as well!

You also get 10,000 miles after spending $25,000 within a calendar year which is a lot of spending, so I consider this a card with a 55,000 mile sign-up bonus.

The card also gets you 1 free bag and priority boarding on United flights.

50,000 United miles is enough for 2 domestic coach tickets or a 1-way business class ticket to Europe.

You can usually get approved for a business card from Chase as well,  so you could apply for the Chase Ink Plus or Chase Ink Bold for another 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points, which you can transfer to United miles and use for a return business class ticket to Europe.

If you do apply for a business credit card, see this post on how to fill up the application and this post on how to call the reconsideration department and get approved.

However, not everyone is able to see the 55,000 mile offer in their account, so here are a few different ways to get the offer.

1.   Email.  You may receive the Chase United Explorer 55,000 mile offer via email.  Here’s what my email looked like.

The subject line read “Daraius, earn 50,000 bonus miles and perks like United Club passes.”  You could search your email account for an email from United with those terms (use your name instead of mine!)

2.   Bank Branch.  If you live in a city with a Chase branch, you could just pop into the bank and sign up for the card in the bank branch.  You can search for a Chase branch here.

Thanks to Tesa & sona for commenting on their recent experience getting the 55,000 United Explorer card in a Chase branch.  The offer available in bank branches requires $2,000 in spending (instead of $1,000) within 3 months.

However, if you plan on applying for multiple cards in the same day, it could be better to visit the branch in the morning and apply for your other cards after that so that you can call the reconsideration department to get your other applications approved during business hours.

3.   Targeted Links.   In my earlier post on the Chase United card, I’ve listed different links which get you to the 55,000 mile offer.  But those links are temperamental.  Sometimes they get you to the offer and sometimes they show you the regular 30,000 mile offer.

I wasn’t able to use the links to get to the 55,000 mile offer despite having an email with the offer which was valid until January 15, 2013!

The FlyerTalk thread discussing the offer suggested you may be able to see the offer if you have recent mile-earning activity in your United account.  So I transferred 1,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points to my United account and I was able to see the 55,000 mile offer!

Check out this post for other ways to earn United miles besides flying.

Interestingly, I also got an offer to the United Club card with the $395 annual fee waived for the 1st year!

4.   What Else?   You could apply for the regular 30,000 mile United Explorer and send Chase a secure message asking for the 55,000 mile version along with the $50 statement credit.

Readers have reported success the 55,000 mile version (as has Emily), but your miles may vary.  However, this has worked for the last year, but could end anytime.  So try steps 1 to 3 first.

What If I already have a United Explorer card?

If you have an older United credit card which is not a United Explorer card, you should be able to get the sign-up bonus again.

The terms do state:

“This bonus offer is valid only for first-time United MileagePlus Visa cardmembers with new accounts. Previous and existing United MileagePlus Visa cardmembers/accounts are not eligible for this bonus offer.”

But Emily, other blog readers, and folks on this Flyer Talk thread have got the bonus again.

Readers have also written in that they were able to get the sign-up bonus on a new Chase United Explorer card despite having a Continental card which was later converted to a United Explorer card, but your experience could be different.

And if you got the United card with a 30,000 mile bonus in the last 3 months it doesn’t hurt sending a secure message to ask to get matched to the 55,000 offer.

United Club Card With No Annual Fee

The United Club card gets you:

  • Access to United & Star Alliance lounges
  • Free Premier Access (priority boarding, security, etc.)
  • Free Hyatt Platinum status (free internet)
  • Earns 1.5 United miles per $1 spent
  • Waives the $75 late ticketing fee on award bookings

However, the card has a high $395 annual fee.  But you can get the fee waived by either going to a Chase branch or sending Chase a secure message before applying for the card and asking if they will waive the annual fee.

But I was also able to see the annual fee waived for the 1st year when I logged into my United account (see #3 above) after recent mile-earning activity (in my case transferring Ultimate Rewards points to United).

I’m not sure if I got lucky, or if this works for everyone who can see the United Explorer with 55,000 miles in their account.

If I had to pick one card between the United Explorer with 55,000 miles or the United Club card with lounge access, but no sign-on bonus, I’d choose the Chase United Explorer card because the sign-up bonus is higher.

But if I was a Big Spender, I’d choose the United Club card because it offers 1.5 miles per $1 spent.

Bottom Line

The Chase United Explorer card with 55,000 miles after spending $1,000 within 3 months is a great way to earn more United miles, and is one of the best offers available.

If you liked this post, why don’t you join the 25,000+ readers who have signed-up to receive free blog posts via email (only 1 email per day!) or in an RSS reader …because then you’ll never miss another update!

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

Add comment

E-mail is already registered on the site. Please use the Login form or enter another.

You entered an incorrect username or password

Sorry that something went wrong, repeat again!


by Newest
by Best by Newest by Oldest


I got the Chase United Explorer and I spent the 2000$ required to get the 50k bonus miles, I also did a purchase with my additional card so I’m expecting 5k more miles.

Yesterday my statement closed but I still don’t see the miles transferred to my united account.

How log will it take, anyone knows?

Thanks Luca

For my trip San Francisco to India, the United mileageplus mileage credit did not get processed for the Lufthansa section of flight, but it was processed for the United sections. Has anyone else seen this ?

I got the following response from Mileage Plus :

In reviewing your flights from Los Angeles to Frankfurt to Bengaluru with Lufthansa, these flights were purchased on “K” booking classes. Lufthansa does not award MileagePlus® credit for this booking class for flights. We are sorry to disappoint you;MileagePlus credit will not be eligible for these flights.

Each partner sets the booking classes that will be eligible in the MileagePlus program. These booking classes are subject to change by each partner.

Please note that the booking class that appears on your passenger receipt or E-Ticket receipt may differ from the booking class that the operating airline uses to determine MileagePlus flight credit.

All Economy class tickets are identified with the generic letter “Y” on the boarding pass, regardless of the actual booking class of the Economy fare that was purchased. Similarly, the identification letter on boarding passes for Business class is a “C” and First class is an “F”. The letter identifies the cabin of the aircraft in which you are seated.

For the most current classes of service, please visit United. Under “Earn Award Miles” in the MileagePlus tab, click on “Airline Partners”, then choose the partner airline from the list.

We realize that this can be very confusing, especially when it comes to earning miles. We hope that we have been able to fully explain your partner credit. If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact Mileage Plus

Hi Darius;

Does purchasing a United ticket with the MileagePlus Explorer card lead to 2 miles per dollar spent on the ticket AND miles for the actual distance flown (credited to one’s MileagePlus account)?



Libby Barland

Can these points be used for trip to SE Asia? I am new at this.

Just got my card and wondering if i should get one for my husband.

You should be able to apply for the regular version of the card and then send a secure message to get them to match it.

Load more