United Explorer Card, Check Your Snail Mail For Best Offer?

There have been a number of reports that you can fiddle with the United website to get it to offer you a pretty lucrative sign-up bonus for the United Explorer Card.  I have a predecessor to this card that I prefer, but if I were to be offered this sign-up bonus, I’d probably give it a swing (I haven’t been offered it yet).

For some, though, the offer doesn’t appear online.  My father is one of them.  I manage my father’s loyalty accounts for him, so snail mail comes to my house for the programs he belongs to.  Lo and behold, he got a letter from MileagePlus detailing a very simliar offer for the Explorer Card.

There’s still 50,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months.  And, there’s still 5,000 bonus miles for adding an authorized user.

There’s 10,000 bonus miles after you spend $25,000 in the first year on the card, though I would surely direct that kind of spend to more lucrative cards like the Ink Bold, depending on what types of things you’re charging to the card.  Others have seen a $50 statement credit.

The card also comes with a free checked bag, priority boarding, 2 United Club passes and a few other odds & ends.

So, it might be worth keeping an eye on the mail over the next couple of weeks.  Absent that, follow the directions in the first link, which I’ve also summarized below:

Login to your United MileagePlus account.

Try clicking this link.  If it doesn’t work, try copying and pasting the link into a new browser window.

You can also try clicking on the “Credit Cardmembers” link under the “MileagePlus” header in the menubar.

This card is not churnable (meaning, you can’t apply for, and receive the bonus over and over again).  More on churning in future posts.



  1. Thanks for the info on a great offer. I was looking for a card without ridiculous fees and lots of miles! I was able to apply by clicking on your link!

  2. I got this card a little over a year ago with all the sweet benefits you mention, and it wasn’t targeted then. Perhaps it’s a seasonal offering.

  3. I don’t miss the weekly Continental credit card offers (and I kept a special stack of them to verify frequency). But PMUA doesn’t seem interested in inundating me with nearly as many offers. Ah, the inconsistencies of marketing organizations….

  4. I got the 50,000 offer on my acct and my husband’s acct offered 30,000. Funny – we both have a little over 9000 miles!

      1. The post above (50,000 offer to me, 30,000 to my husband) is what popped up online. But I just checked my desk and the United snail-mail offers there are 50,000 for each of us! Sometimes I wonder about these airlines – does the left hand know what the right is doing?
        I do have a question: I started trying to accumulate points on 11/25/12 when H and I got four cards: separate Barclays US Airways cards, an Amex Hilton Honors for H, and a joint Chase Sapphire Preferred. I think on my next app-a-rama I will be a little more bold but this was my first effort and since he earns most of the family income, I was unsure how well it would go for me.
        Now for the question: My H’s snail mail offer for 50,000 miles expires on 1/15/13. Should I apply for it for him even though it will only be about 50 days from when I started? Or should I wait the full 91 days, possibly losing the chance to get it? The United offers are from Chase, and I did get the Chase Sapphire card in November. My credit score from Transunion was 795; H’s was at least that high.
        Thanks for any advice you can offer!

        1. Elaine,

          Since it’s worth an extra 20K in free miles, I’d probably give it a try before your husband’s offer expires. I suspect you’ll be able to get some sort of worthwhile backup offer for him further down the road if he doesn’t get approved now. Congrats on your first churn!

  5. Is there an alternate way if you can’t get the website to work and don’t get it in snail mail? Perhaps call the number of the card customer service to ask for the deal upfront?

    1. Jacob,

      I haven’t heard of anyone specifically getting the 50K offer from a phone call, but it can’t hurt. When you say you can’t get the website to work, do you mean that the 50K offer doesn’t come up or you get no offer at all?

      Regards, Edward Pizzarello

  6. Received an email for the 30,000 offer and in todays snail mail I received the 50,000 offer….says “You’re In” on the envelope. Question is: I already have this card…..got it March 2012. Will I get approved for another since they targeted me?

    1. I’ve heard varying reports on the “churnability” of the card. Is it specifically the Explorer card you have, or one of the previous Chase United cards no longer offered?

        1. The conventional wisdom with Chase cards is they do not allow churning. There are some reports on Dan’s Deals of people doing it, but I think there is some risk. In your specific instance, the bonus is higher now than when you applied before, so they might give you the difference between the two offers. I probably wouldn’t do it myself, since there are lots of other great signup bonuses out there. But, if you’re talking about trying it once I think your likely worst-case scenario is getting told no as opposed to getting your accounts shut down. So, is it worth an extra credit pull that may ultimately yield no miles?

          Regards, Edward Pizzarello

          Sent from my iPhone

  7. I have this card and I don’t think I’ll ever give it up …they always have some kind of promotion going on ei. chase united vip lounge and bonus miles for spend throughout the year.

  8. Sounds like a great deal, but I think I’m going to give Chase a short hiatus. I got the 2 Southwest cards (100k points together) and am working toward the Companion Pass for 2013-14.

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