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As of today, the entry-level United Explorer Card comes with some additional benefits: a credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck every four years, 2x miles on new bonus categories and 25% off in-flight purchases. Plus, new cardholders will now get a $100 statement credit as part of the sign-up bonus.

Overall, these new perks are an improvement. Especially for a sub-$100 card (with a $95 fee that’s waived the first year), having a Global Entry/PreCheck application fee credit worth $100 is a big plus, and more bonus categories for an airline co-branded card are always welcome. And the sign-up bonus is also getting a bit sweeter: In addition to earning 40,000 miles after you spend $2,000 in the first three months, you can get a $100 statement credit after your first purchase. This current offer will be available through July 16, 2018.

Just note that the card is also removing some protections and one annual benefit. The card no longer offers

  • 10,000-mile bonus after spending $25,000 will be removed
  • Trip cancellation coverage will be reduced (details TBA)
  • Price and return protection will be discontinued (details here)

The rest of the card’s benefits, including a free checked bag when you pay with the card and two United Club passes per year, are staying the same. If you currently have the Explorer Card, you’ll automatically be moved over to the new version of the card.

Not bad news if you’re a current cardholder, and the new benefits and improved sign-up offer (available through July 16, 2018) could provide additional incentive to apply if you’ve already been considering it. Even with the new 2x miles on hotel and dining, this card isn’t the best option for either of those categories of purchases, but the Global Entry/TSA PreCheck is great to have — even if you don’t need it yourself, you can gift it to someone else.

United℠ Explorer Card


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More Things to Know
  • Limited time offer - ends 7/16/18. 40,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open plus $100 statement credit after your first purchase.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • New! Earn 2 miles per $1 spent at restaurants and on hotel stays
  • New! Up to $100 Global Entry or TSA Pre✓® Fee Credit
  • New! 25% back on United inflight purchases
  • Check your first bag for free (a savings of up to $100 per roundtrip) when you use your Card to purchase your ticket
  • Enjoy priority boarding privileges and visit the United Club℠ with 2 one-time passes each year for your anniversary
  • Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on purchases from United, and 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
17.49% - 24.49% Variable
Annual Fee
$0 Intro for First Year, then $95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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