As the next step into the merger of United and Continental Airlines, the respective affiliated credit cards have announced some improved benefits that also bring them much closer together. Replacing the ole’ gray United MileagePlus Signature card is the new United MileagePlus® Explorer Card.
Here are the perk highlights for the card (application link):
- 30,000 Bonus Miles. Start with 30,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months. Just 25,000 miles is enough for a roundtrip flight within continental US.
- First Checked Bag Free. Cardholders receive their first checked bag free on United - Save up to $100 per roundtrip.
- Priority Boarding – Cardholders get to board right behind First Class and Elite, before the rest of Economy. This should allow you to avoid the lines and grab a nice overhead bin on the plane.
- Miles Never Expire. Right now, Continental miles never expire but United miles do. After the merger, miles will expire after a period of inactivity, but if you have this card they won’t no matter what.
- Primary Rental Car Insurance. Almost all personal credit cards only offer secondary rental car insurance, which means you have to file a claim with your own auto insurance first, which means you have to pay the deductible and possibly face higher future premiums. With primary collision damage waiver (CDW) even for personal use, you get coverage for damage or theft without having to make a claim. Also includes trip cancellation insurance, trip delay coverage, and roadside assistance.
- Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on tickets purchased from United and 1 mile per $1 for everything else.
- Two one-time-use complimentary passes every year to the United Club lounges.
- Elite members can now get free upgrades to business/first on award tickets as well as paid tickets.
- $95 annual fee, waived for the first year for new cardholders.
- NEW! No foreign transaction fees!
Current Chase United cardholder?
The old Chase United Signature card lacks some of the nicer perks above, but has a lower $60 annual fee. If you want to keep it, don’t do anything and Chase will not upgrade you automatically. If you do want to upgrade, simply call the number on your card and it will be converted without changing your card number.
This card does offer unique features, yet be sure to compare with the other ways to rack up $500+ in credit card bonuses…
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