Last updated: 9/24/2021

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United℠ Explorer

Earns: United MileagePlus

GigaTake:

Worthwhile if you really want United perks, including free checked bags and a few Club passes. But the Chase Sapphire Preferred card is similar—with the same annual fee and 2x points on dining spending—while also earning bonus points for travel spending. Most importantly, it offers much more flexibility in using your points.

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Here’s how much you would earn with this card

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You could earn Worth Plus Welcome Bonus Total
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per year
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${{totalValueToUser | number}}

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Pros

  • Decent bonus miles on dining and hotels (2 points per dollar).
  • Good perks for United travel.

Cons

  • $95 annual fee after first year.
  • United miles can be hard to use at a good value.

See how the United℠ Explorer compares to other credit cards

United℠ Explorer Other Cards


Hover the dots to view other Credit Cards

Reward Rate = 2x

Value = 1.3 cents per point
Effective Value = 2.6 %

0%
5%

Reward Rate = 2x

Value = 1.3 cents per point
Effective Value = 2.6 %

0%
7%

Reward Rate = 1x

Value = 1.3 cents per point
Effective Value = 1.3 %

0%
3%

Welcome Bonus = 40,000

Value = 1.3 cents per point
Effective Value = $520

$0
$1700

Annual Fee = $95

$0
$995
Welcome Bonus
40,000

OK

Bonus Rating

Points

After you spend $3,000 in 3 months

GigaInfo about Welcome Bonuses Welcome Bonuses 101 Article
Spending Rewards
2x Hotels

Excellent

excellent

Excellent

In the top 15% of cards.

2x Dining

Good

good

Good

In the top 50% of cards.

2x United Airlines

Excellent

excellent

Excellent

In the top 15% of cards.

1x All Other

OK

OK

Is this card right for me?

That depends on your individual spending patterns. We have a tool that figures it out for you. Learn what you could earn.

Program Name
United MileagePlus
Gigapoints Value
1.3¢ per point
0.4¢ PER POINT
2¢+ PER POINT
Other Card Information

Earn an additional 10,000 bonus miles after you spend $6,000 in the first 6 months.

Annual Fee
  • $0 first year
  • $95 thereafter
Use this card for…

You can earn more rewards by using different cards for different purchases. We built a tool that tells you which card to use, when. Just plug in your favorite brand, store, or category to find out which card pays the most.

Use the Best Card For tool Go

Additional perks of owning this card

Free first checked bag

The primary cardmember and one companion traveling on the same reservation will each receive their first standard checked bag free – calculated as a $30 value for the first checked bag, each way, per person – on United-operated flights when purchasing tickets with their United Explorer Card.

25% off United onboard

25% back as a statement credit on purchases of food, beverages and Wi-Fi onboard United-operated flights when you pay with your Explorer Card.

Priority boarding

The primary cardmember and companions on the same reservation will be invited to board United-operated flights prior to general boarding.

Global Entry or TSA Precheck

Up to $100 as a statement credit for Global Entry or TSA Precheck® every 4 years as reimbursement for the application fee for either program when charged to your card.

2 Club Passes per year

Take some time to relax before your flight with two United Club one-time passes, which will be deposited into your MileagePlus account after account opening and each year for your Cardmember anniversary.

No blackout dates

As the primary Cardmember, you will also enjoy expanded award availability when you use miles to book any United-operated flight, any time, with no restrictions or blackout dates.

The Fine Print

PURCHASES APR 16.49% to 23.49%
BALANCE TRANSFER APR 16.49% to 23.49%
BALANCE TRANSFER FEE Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
CASH ADVANCE APR 24.99%
CASH ADVANCE FEE Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater.
RETURN CHECK FEE $0
FOREIGN TRANSACTION FEE 0%