New year, new United: Grab the all-new United Business Card, plus new card offers of up to 100k miles
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Out with the old, and in with the new. Chase and United have announced the launch of an all-new business card option: the United Business Card. To celebrate the launch, potential cardholders can also take advantage of new limited-time welcome offers across four United cobranded credit cards.
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New business card for United flyers
Chase and United are closing the United Explorer Business Card to new applications, announcing an all-new United Business Card in their cobranded credit card lineup. The new card builds upon the current Explorer Business Card’s benefits but adds new features. The United Explorer Business Card will be closed to new applications after today, Jan. 23, 2020.
New cardholders will earn 100,000 bonus miles on the United Business Card after they spend $10,000 within the first three months of account opening (offer ends 4/2/2020). TPG values United miles at 1.3 cents each, making this bonus worth $1,300. While $10,000 is certainly higher than your typical sign-up bonus spending threshold, keep in mind that this card is for small business owners. For many businesses, this bonus will not be hard to hit.
Cardholders will earn 2x miles on United purchases, gas stations, office supply stores, restaurants and local transit and commuting. This earning structure is similar to the existing Explorer Business Card, with the addition of transit/commuting (which includes taxis, mass transit, tolls and ride shares). Just like with the existing Explorer Business Card, you’ll receive 25% back on United inflight purchases (including Wi-Fi, food and beverages), your first checked bag free, priority boarding, two United Club one-time passes at account opening and on each cardmember anniversary, and travel and purchase protections.
But this new card is also introducing new benefits into the mix.
You’ll have the opportunity to earn a $100 annual United travel credit (which can be used to cover the cost of airline tickets, among other United purchases) after making seven United flight purchases of $100 or more on the card. Keep in mind that your yearly count is based on your cardmember anniversary year and when your transaction posts, not when the flight takes place. If you have both the United Business Card and any of Chase’s personal cobranded United cards, you’ll also receive 5,000 bonus miles each cardmember anniversary.
The new United Business Card will come with a $99 annual fee. Those who are current United Business Explorer cardholders will continue to have access to their existing benefits. This is considered an all-new product from Chase, meaning you are able to apply for it even if you have the current United Business Explorer. You can also request a product change, though, you would be sacrificing the potential to earn 100,000 bonus miles by doing so.
Keep in mind that because this is a Chase-issued credit card, it will likely fall under the 5/24 rule. So if you’ve opened five or more credit card accounts in the last 24 months, it’s unlikely you’ll be approved for the new United Business Card. However, because this is a business credit card, it shouldn’t count towards your 5/24 slots.
Limited-time offers for United credit cards
The new United Business Card isn’t the only United cobranded card offering an elevated bonus for a limited time. The United Explorer Card, United Club Card and United Club Business Card will also offer special sign-up bonus opportunities from now until April 2, 2020.
United Explorer Card
Limited-time offer: Earn 60,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in the first three months — worth $845 according to TPG valuations.
Annual fee: $95, waived the first year
This card just came off a 65,000-mile bonus, however you had to spend $10,000 to get that full 65,000 miles. While this is 5,000 miles less than that offer, you only have to spend a manageable $3,000 over the course of three months to earn all 60,000 miles. You’ll earn 2x miles on United purchases, hotels and restaurants. The card also offers elite-like benefits, including a free checked bag, priority boarding, 25% savings on inflight purchases and two one-time, United Club passes per year. Plus, it can help you fast-track your way to United elite status. Cardholders can earn 500 Premier Qualifying Points (PQPs) for each $12,000 spent on the card each calendar year (up to 1,000 PQPs annually). You’ll also get up to $100 in statement credits for your Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application.
All in all, this is a solid card for any casual United flyer who wants help earning elite status.
Limited-time offer: Earn 75,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in the first three months — worth $975 according to TPG valuations.
Annual fee: $450
If you’re looking for a card that grants you United Club access, this is the choice for you. You’ll earn 2x miles on all United purchases, plus 1.5x miles per dollar on all other expenses. The card also offers a suite of luxury benefits best suited for frequent United flyers. You’ll get a United Club membership (existing United Club members can be reimbursed for the unused portion of your current membership once approved for the card), your first and second checked bags free (up to $280 per roundtrip ticket), 25% savings on inflight purchases and Premier Access® travel services (which includes priority check-in, security screening where available, boarding and baggage handling). If you are a MileagePlus Premier member traveling on an award ticket, you’re also eligible for Complimentary Premier Upgrades on United flights when available.
For the frequent flyer who is loyal to United, this is a great card to have in your wallet.
United Club Business Card
Limited-time offer: Earn 100,000 bonus miles after you spend $10,000 in the first three months — worth $1,300 according to TPG valuations.
Annual fee: $450
The business version of the United Club Card offers almost identical benefits. You’ll get a United Club membership (existing United Club members can be reimbursed for the unused portion of their current membership once approved for the card), your first and second checked bags free (up to $280 per round-trip ticket), 25% savings on inflight purchases and Premier Access® travel services (which include priority check-in, security screening where available, boarding and baggage handling). If you are a MileagePlus Premier member traveling on an award ticket, you’re also eligible for Complimentary Premier Upgrades on United flights when available. Employee cards are offered at no additional cost.
Related reading: Best United Airlines credit cards
The information for the United Club and United Club Business cards has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
The new United Business Card offers a number of improvements over the previous United Explorer Business Card — all without an increased annual fee. For casual United business flyers, it will be a great option to help you hit elite status faster while earning United miles and experiencing a few elite-like benefits.
The limited-time offers across the United Explorer Card, United Club Card, United Club Business and United Business Card are a great way to jump-start your earnings for any 2020 redemptions you’re hoping to hit. Because United has moved to a variable pricing model, it’s harder to know exactly how far you can go with 100,000 miles. But it is possible to find one-way flights in United’s Polaris business class product for as low as 70,000 miles (plus $5.60) on a limited number of dates. Additionally, partner awards, even in premium cabins, are still pricing at a relatively stable rate, so there’s certainly still great value to be had from MileagePlus miles no matter what your travel style.
While the United MileagePlus program has undergone significant changes heading into 2020, flyers can still find value in the program — especially when you have one (or more) of United’s cobranded credit cards in your wallet.
Featured image by John Gribben for The Points Guy.
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