United MileagePlus® Explorer Card

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4.0 out of 5 stars
27 Reviews

From Cardholders in the last year

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Application Process

4.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Service

4 out of 5 stars

4 5

Card Details

  • Balance Transfer Intro APR Not Applicable
  • Balance Transfer Regular APR 16.49% - 23.49%* Variable
  • Annual Fee $95
  • Purchase Intro APR Not Applicable
  • Purchase Regular APR 16.49% - 23.49%* Variable

Most Helpful Positive Review

May 02, 2016
Excellent card if you fly often
Anonymous Cardholder

I fly about twice a month with United. As a frequent flyer, this card has many perks. However, I will admit if I didn't fly so often, I'd be hard pressed to justify the yearly fee. Other than that, customer service is awesome. I use my miles for cheaper/free flights all the time, and it's an overall wonderful card.

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Most Helpful Negative Review

Apr 30, 2016
Just here for the trip insurance
crabspy Cardholder

I've had this card for 2 years now. Was able to get the old 50,000 miles spending bonus when it was offered back then. The priority boarding benefit lets you board as a Group 2 member which is good if you have carry on bags that you place in the overhead storage. The lounge passes are pretty ehhh especially with what is in the lounge. If you are flying solo you have to fly 2 round trips to break even with the annual fee if you are checking 1 bag. I fly 4 round trip domestic flights a year so I will never get status with the airline. The reason I keep this card is for the trip insurance. For that $95 annual fee I was able to get $250 in food and hotel when my flight was delayed. Which is actually a Visa Signature benefit and not really one with United.

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These reviews were written by current and former cardholders in the last year.

Mar 15, 2017
I love my United Card
CrNa2020 Cardholder

I've had this card for about a year now. Here is some background. So when I was 18 I had 2 credit cards that I let go into default (crazy teen not really aware of credit how important credit is) I think my credit score was somewhere in the low 500's. Fast forward 10 years later in 2015 I had no real credit history of my own (my mom co-signed for 2 cars for me).  I went to the dealership to look at a car and ended up buying it on my own . I remember calling my mom at the dealership saying how I probably wasnt going to get approved but I did. My credit score was 644 according to the salesman. The 2 cards had fallen off of my credit report I only had a couple of small medical things like $200 total on the negatives. I applied for a Capital one Quicksilver one card and I was app for $1000 it's now at $3000 and the United MilagePlus card. With the MilagePlus Card I was so scared because I didnt think I would get it but I got app for $5000! My limit is still at $5000 because I dont want another credit inquiry from them Chase does a hard inquiry but I think I am just going to go for it so the limit increase helps my overall utilization. Oh, when I first applied for the card I was supposed to get 2 club passes. A couple of months went by and I didnt get them. I called customer service and they saw that they infact were not mailed. I wanted them for an upcoming trip I was about to go on.They overnight shipped the passes +2 extra for my trouble to my front door through UPS. I thought that was awesome.

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Feb 17, 2017
Was given 30,000 instead of 50,000
Anonymous Cardholder

Was somehow signed up for 30,000 after spending $1,000 despite all the literature, blog posts, advertising, etc offering 50,000.

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Dec 07, 2016
Much better than American Airlines card
Brrich1 Cardholder

They post the miles quickly painless approval process, and unlike America and they give you access to the lounge twice a year as part of your card services

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Nov 02, 2016
Great benefits so far
Iguananaut Cardholder

I'm confused by the reviews from people who were unable to take advantages of this card's perks. I never once had a problem. There is at least one thing they might be missing: in order to take advantage you have to pay for the flight *with* this card. I think you might also need to make the reservation directly through United but check on that. The first free checked bag alone has been worth the annual fee to me. I believe you also need to explicitly link the card to your mileage plus account. I got the card when it came with 50,000 free miles, which was a free flight right there. Now I think it's only 30,000 but if you fly a lot the miles will rack up fast. I've already gotten 2 flights out of it in the last year. I know some people hate United and that's fine, but my personal experience with their customer service has been pretty positive in the last several years so I'm somewhat loyal.

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Sep 23, 2016
Did not provide promised benefits
Anonymous Cardholder

I signed up for this card mostly because i offered free checked bag for me and travelling companion. The very first time I travelled with it, the United checkin person asked me to pag for my checked bags. When I showed her the card, she said I would have to pay for the bags and then "contact the bank's customer service". I did so, paying $50 for the bag for me and my companion. Then I contacted Chase, which told me to contact United, and said that I would need to show my baggage tags. I did not have my baggage tags, since the United checkin person had not told me I needed to keep them. She just told me to contact the bank.

I contacted United to ask them to reimburse me the $50. That was more than a week ago, and I have not heard back.

This seems kind of a scam. They did not provide the benefit which they promised, and which you would think they are contractually required to provide. Now I am kicked back and forth between Chase and United. They know they charged me for the bags, since they have the credit card record (I paid for the bags with my Explorer card - the same card I used to book the trip). But it looks like they are not going to refund me for their mistake, because I didn't keep the bag tags, which they never told me I needed to keep. They charged me for something that they shouldn't have, and now ignore me when I ask for the refund I am entitled to. I fulfilled all the criteria they required (I booked the trip with my Explorer card, I travelled on United, and my companion was booked with the same card, at the same time as me, and was travelling on the same flight, with me).

This wasn't a mistake on their part - it was deliberate. I specifically told the United checkin person that I had an Explorer card which entitled me to free checked bags. She took the card, looked at it and asked me if I was the cardholder. I confirmed that I was. She then told me Ihad to pay for the bags. So it wasn't an oversight on the part of United - it was deliberate. 

I don't plan to keep this card. I don't like being taken advantage of.

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Jan 13, 2017

I am going through similar fight between United and Chase for the checked in baggage fee of $200 charged for my recent international trip which I booked via united .com using chase explorer card and two different mileage plus and credit card to get the free checked in bag for primary and companion for 2 adults + 2 kids. United still charged me and I do have all the baggage tags for which I have submitted a refund request and the first response from United is that United charged for extra luggage. I have resubmitted the claim again via United refund and contacted Chase for an explanation as the ticket also clearly states that first checked bag is free. Though the promised offer was made as part of the chase explorer card activation/opening, Chase is not able to do anything and just told me to contact United. This was an international trip for which I paid about $2200/ticket/person. I am planning to close the two United Explorer cards opened from my household if they don't honor the first checked bag+companion bag option as promised at the time I opened the accounts. I have recently been approved for Chase Sapphire Reserve and plan to use that card after closing the United Explorer.

Feb 05, 2017

YOU SHOULD POST THIS on the Chase AND the United sites under "reviews"! People NEED to see what these people do to the customers AFTER the "con" them into signing up! F*** them!

Feb 05, 2017

I just applied for this card, IF THEY "SCREW" ME EVEN ONCE....it's NOT ONLY "adios" Chase, but "adios" United as well....I don't take that S*** from ANYONE in corporate America out to screw as many people as they can! I will NEVER use the card again, and I will NEVER fly United again....there is TOO MUCH competition out there to be abused by any one firm... I HATE "SCAMMERS" and I HATE "CON" and I HATE....THIEVES.....*******S!

Sep 14, 2016
Pmedic Cardholder

Update, I did get approved after 4 days of waiting..... I recieved a really great CL from them as well. 

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Aug 29, 2016
2 billing cycles later
orangeco1 Cardholder

  Talked to chase after recieving a 50,000 mile invitation 3 weeks after recieving the card and they honored the invitation.The 50,000 showed up on my united frequent flyer miles within 2 days after my 2nd billing cycle.Thanks Chase.

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Aug 23, 2016
Anonymous Cardholder

I love  Chase Sapphire preferred but the United MileagePlus Explorer  is total waste of money and time.

They advertise free introductory membership offer for one year and yet still charge the 95 USD membership fee. You can’t speak with Chase Customer Service – they direct you to mileage plus explorer (worst customer service) and send you back and forth between chase and mileage plus.

The united part is pretty bad – 75 USD fee if you book your flights with awards within 21 day of travel date which is not mentioned anywhere.  Mile to USD conversion is 10000 miles to 75 USD – Pretty low.

Compare this to Chase Sapphire which offers 20% bonus rewards on your reward points when you book travel through their site. Going to cancel this card soon.

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Aug 23, 2016
not useful for holiday/casual traveler
Anonymous Cardholder

Other cards from Chase are way more better and offer greater befits


Unnecesary charges for using award miles. (75 USD if ticket booked withing 21 days of travel day) - Charges are in some fine print somewhere (not clear had to check my credit card statement)

First year was supposed to be free as advertised - but charged me 95 USD. 

Only bonus rewards on United flights

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Aug 23, 2016
Great but......
rikfan Cardholder

This is an update. I posted  a few months ago about getting this card by accident walking off a plane..... Well now that I used it a bit I'm finding out that's its a monster card. IF you're a United flyer..... I use it for Primary insurance when renting cars. And all the United perks are great. I really feel that you need a companion card to complement this card. Maybe a Chase Sapphire or American Express Premier Rewards card. I have the AE Rewards card but It's a Charge card. It has a pay over time feature for any charge over 100 bucks. I may try it.......  So all in all, if you're a United flyer it's perfect. If not, try the cards mentioned above. They both are rock solid. Good luck all. Thx Karma for the site......

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United MileagePlus® Explorer Card