Is the United MileagePlus Explorer Business card worth it? | April 2018

Review: United MileagePlus® Explorer Business card – April 2018

An airline card for businesses that spend big on gas, dining and office supplies.

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  • Get this card if… you fly with United and make business expenditures on gas, dining and office supplies.
  • Pick something else if… you don’t fly United or your business expenditures are on things other than gas, dining and office supplies.
  • Recommended good to excellent credit score of 680 to 850.
Product NameUnited MileagePlus® Explorer Business card
Balance Transfer Rate (not intro)17.24% to 24.24% variable
APR for Purchases ( Purchase Rate )17.24% to 24.24% variable
Annual fee$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
Cash Advance Rate26.24% variable
Card TypeVisa
Interest Free Period
The interest-free period on purchases is the period or number of days you do not have to pay interest on your card purchases. You will be charged interest either from the day you make a purchase or from the statement date, unless you pay the closing balance in full by the due date (or within the interest-free period) on your statement.
Up to 20 days
Returned Payment Fee$39
Foreign Currency Conversion Fee (VISA)
Foreign currency conversion fees are charged when you make a transaction that is converted by a credit card network, such as MasterCard, Visa or American Express, from Australian dollars to a foreign currency. You’ll also incur a currency conversion fee if you make a purchase or obtain a cash advance in Australian dollars while overseas or shopping online with a foreign merchant or financial institution.
0% of transaction value
Minimum Interest$0
Minimum Credit ScoreFair (660-699)
Minimum Age18 years of age
Annual fee$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
Returned Payment Fee$39
Late Payment Fee$39
Cash Advance Fee$15 or 5% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater

The Basics

If you want a mile boost for business expenses, the Explorer Business card is for you. You’ll earn 2x miles on United ticket purchases. You’ll also earn 2x miles on gas, dining and office supplies. (Earn 1x miles on everything else.) What’s more, you can open a few employee cards if you need help accumulating miles. It’s free to do, and you’ll earn rewards for anything spent on those cards.

The Explorer Business card has a large sign-up bonus like the Explorer, but it doesn’t offer the extra 5,000 miles for adding an authorized user. On the plus side, it has a $0 first-year annual fee ($95 every year thereafter).

Read our review for the United MileagePlus Explorer card.

Should I get the card if I don’t fly with United often?

Unlike the Explorer card, the Explorer Business might be worth picking up if you don’t fly United often. As long as you spend more heavily on gas, dining or office supplies, you can accumulate miles quickly.

Chase United Airlines cards compared

United MileagePlus ExplorerUnited MileagePlus® Explorer Business cardUnited MileagePlus Club
Annual fee$95$$95 p.a.$450
Sign-up bonus
  • 50,000 miles after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months
  • 5,000 miles when you add an authorized user and make a purchase within your first 3 months as a cardholder
@cc_bonus_points_signup@ bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.$100 statement credit after your first purchase
Miles
  • 2x on United ticket purchases
  • 1x on everything else
  • 2x on gas, dining, office supplies and United ticket purchases
  • 1x on everything else
  • 2x on United ticket purchases
  • 1.5x on everything else
United perks
  • One free checked bag for you and one companion
  • Priority boarding
  • 2 United Club passes each year
  • One free checked bag for you and one companion
  • Priority boarding
  • 2 United Club passes each year
  • Two free checked bags for you and one companion
  • No close-in fees when booking reward flights
  • Premier Access: priority boarding, dedicated check-in and security lines, priority baggage handling
  • Complimentary United Club membership
Hotel benefitsYes — room upgrades, complimentary breakfast, etc.Yes — room upgrades, complimentary breakfast, etc.Yes — room upgrades, complimentary breakfast, etc.
Hotel loyalty program upgradeNoNoDiscoverist tier in World of Hyatt
United Club membershipNo — 2 United Club passes each yearNo — 2 United Club passes each yearYes
Miles boostYesYesYes

The Perks

  • SIGN-UP BONUS: Lots of miles.
    You’ll receive 50,000 miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.
  • MILES: More miles on business expenses and United ticket purchases.
    Earn 2x miles in business categories — restaurants, gas stations and office supply stores — and on tickets you purchase from United. Earn 1x miles on everything else you buy.
  • United perks.
    On each flight, you and one companion can each check one bag free. Enjoy priority boarding for you and your travel companions, and get two United Club passes every year.
  • Employee cards cost nothing.
    Pay nothing to open employee cards. These cards contribute to your spending limits to help you earn rewards.
  • Hotel benefits.
    Enjoy room upgrades, complimentary breakfast, early check-in, late checkout and more at select resorts around the world.

You’ll also like …

  • Miles boost. Each year you spend $25,000 or more on your card, you’ll receive 10,000 miles.
  • No foreign transaction fees. You can use your United MileagePlus Explorer Business card internationally without incurring transaction fees.
  • Travel and purchase coverage. Enjoy benefits like baggage delay insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, trip cancellation insurance, trip delay reimbursement and auto rental collision damage waivers. Also, get purchase, return and price protection — on top of extended warranties — on your purchases.
  • Access to Visa Concierge. Use the Visa Signature Concierge to make dining and entertainment plans.

What to watch out for

  • It hurts to pay late. Making late or returned payments could result in fees as high as $39.

Consider other cards if …

What should I know before I apply?

To apply for the United MileagePlus Explorer Business card, you must be at least 18 years old (or 19 in Alabama and Nebraska).

Always consider your options and your financial situation before you apply for a credit card.

Information you’ll need

  • Full name
  • Address and residential status
  • Annual income, source of income and employment information
  • Contact information
  • Social Security number and mother’s maiden name

What credit score do I need?

You’ll have a better chance of being approved for the United MileagePlus Explorer Business card if you apply with a good to excellent credit score of 680 or higher.

How to apply for the United MileagePlus Explorer Business card

1. Go to the Chase website and click Apply Now.

step 1 United MileagePlus Explorer Business card

2. Complete the application with your business name, business type and annual business revenue, as well as your name, address, annual income and Social Security number. Then review your application and submit it.

step 2 United MileagePlus Explorer Business card

How long will it take to be approved?

Because conditional approval is automated on the Chase website, you’ll often get a decision immediately. In some cases, you’ll need to wait a few days to a few weeks to receive a response.

I got the card. Now what?

  • Making payments. You can pay your card bill online at the Chase website. You can also enroll in auto pay.
  • Avoiding interest payments. After the close of each billing cycle, you have a grace period of 20 days to pay your balance. If you do, you won’t pay interest on your purchases.
  • Avoiding fees. Late and returned payments come with hefty fees of up to $39. Balance transfers and cash advances also come with fees.
  • Customer service. If you have questions, you can contact Chase support by phone, email or even Twitter.

Bottom line

The MileagePlus Explorer Business card is a good choice if you want airline rewards. You can earn accelerated miles for common business expenditures, and you’ll earn rewards on employee cards.
Compare Chase credit cards

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