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.
For a limited time, Chase has increased the sign-up bonus on the United Explorer card to 50,000 miles after you spend $3,000 in the 1st 3 months.
And you’ll get an additional 5,000 miles if you add an authorized user and make a purchase within the 1st 3 months.
Normally, the public sign-up bonus on this card is 30,000 miles, although folks in the past have been able to get targeted offers for higher bonuses.
Is This a Good Deal?
Usually, the sign-up bonus on this card is 30,000 miles. So 50,000 miles is a good deal, if you haven’t been able to get an increased targeted offer in the past!
Some folks have been able to get the 50,000 mile offer by applying at a Chase branch, but not everyone has a branch nearby!
With this card, you get:
- 50,000 miles after you spend $3,000 in the 1st 3 months
- 2 miles per $1 you spend on United Airlines
- 1 mile per $1 you spend on everything else
- 5,000 miles when you add an authorized user
- Free 1st checked bag saves up to $100 per round-trip
- Priority boarding
- 2 United Club lounge passes per year
- 10,000 bonus United Airlines miles when you spend more than $25,000 on the card each year
- $95 annual fee
- No foreign currency fees
I like this card because you get a free checked bag, priority boarding, and 2 lounge passes each year (worth $50 each). That’s a great deal for a card with the annual fee waived for the 1st year!
If you travel overseas, this is a good card to use because it doesn’t charge foreign currency fees.
If you’re a Big Spender, you’ll get 10,000 bonus miles after spending $25,000 in 1 year, or a total of 35,000 miles for spending $25,000. That’s like getting 1.4 miles for every $1 you spend (35,000 miles / $25,000 spent).
And if you spend $25,000 or more in a calendar year on the card, United Airlines will waive the Premier Qualifying Dollars requirement to earn elite status. This means that you only have to earn the miles required for a status level (with the exception of their top-tier Premier 1K status), and not meet a minimum spending requirement:
In 2014, the PQD requirement is waived for Premier Silver, Premier Gold and Premier Platinum qualification if you meet one of the following criteria:
You spend at least $25,000 in Net Purchases in 2014 on a MileagePlus co-branded credit card issued by Chase Bank USA, N.A.
The PQD waiver does not apply for Premier 1K qualification
And 50,000 United Airlines miles can take you to a lot of places!
What Can You Do With 50,000 United Airlines Miles?
Even though United Airlines has devalued its award chart in the past year, and recently announced changes to how it runs its frequent flyer program, many folks still consider them to be their favorite US airline frequent flyer program.
With 50,000 United Airlines miles, you could get:
- 2 round-trip domestic (Mainland US, Alaska, and Canada) coach class tickets (25,000 miles each)
- 2 1-way coach class tickets to Hawaii from the Mainland US (22,500 miles each)
- A 1-way saver award coach class ticket to South America, Asia, Africa, Europe, the Middle East, India, or Australia (between 20,000 and 42,500 miles)
I prefer using United Airlines miles on their own flights, because when they made changes to their program last year, it became much more expensive to use United Airlines miles on their partner airlines. Especially for First Class and Business Class award seats!
Other Ways to Get United Airlines Miles
Link: Chase Sapphire Preferred
Link: Chase Ink Bold
Link: Chase Ink Plus
Link: Chase Freedom
There are ways to earn United Airlines miles without a United Airlines credit card! If you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred, (no longer offered) Chase Ink Bold, or Chase Ink Plus cards, you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to United Airlines instantly at a 1:1 ratio.
Many folks prefer earning United Airlines miles this way, because the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Ink Bold, Chase Ink Plus, and Chase Freedom cards have category bonuses which help you earn lots of points!
That said, if you already have those cards or if you’d really like the perks such as the free checked bag and lounge passes, the Chase United Explorer increased sign-up bonus could be a good deal for you.
Chase has increased the public sign-up bonus on the Chase United Explorer card to 50,000 miles after you spend $3,000 in the 1st 3 months. This is usually a 30,000 mile sign-up bonus, so it’s a good deal.
That said, in the past folks have been able to get a higher sign-up bonus through targeted offers or applying through a Chase branch. And there are lots of other ways to earn United Airlines miles!
Will you apply for this card because of the increased bonus?