There is a newly-increased welcome bonus offer available on the United℠ Business Card that can be highly valuable, offering enough miles to potentially fly partner business class one way to virtually any destination in the world (pending availability) and in most cases have miles left over. In fact, if you leverage the excursionist perk the way we’ve written about in the past (and indeed if you nested excursionist perk flights like Greg did), this could be enough mileage to put together quite a trip.
Click the card name below to go to our dedicated Frequent Miler page for more information about this card and a link to apply.
Key Card Details
This card has now added some new perks on top of the perks of its predecessor, the United Mileage Plus Business Explorer card. New perks include:
- 2x on local transit and commuting, including taxicabs, mass transit, tolls, and ride share services
- $100 annual United travel credit after 7 United flight purchases greater than $100
- 25% back on United in-flight purchases
- 5,000 bonus miles at anniversary when you have this card and also a personal Chase United credit card
Those perks are in addition to the previous features of the United Business Explorer card. As I read the marketing material, I believe that having any personal Chase United card, including the annual-fee-free Chase United card (only available via downgrade from the personal Mileage Plus Explorer card) should be enough to trigger the 5,000 bonus miles at anniversary, which helps toward mitigating the annual fee on this card. The good news is that since this card is a new product, you will not be precluded from earning the bonus if you previously earned the bonus on the Business Explorer card. That means those who recently opened that card could potentially get another hundred thousand miles here if approved.
United’s newly-adopted more dynamic pricing model could actually help you stretch this offer pretty far if you’ve got cheap one-ways from your local airport. Even if you only got one cent per point in value, the welcome offer would be worth a thousand bucks. Of course, in many cases, you could do better. Unfortunately, United got rid of its award chart in November 2019. However, partner awards to most regions of the world should still be possible in business class for 100K or less (for example, partner business class awards to Europe should be 70K miles each way; to Asia 80K miles each way; etc). With the right partner redemptions, this bonus could be quite valuable.
Of course, as noted at the top, leveraging the Excursionist Perk, you could potentially do even better. For more on that, see these posts:
- Maximizing (and understanding) United Excursionist Perks
- United Excursionist Perk Maps. Visualize regions to optimize awards.
- How Greg toured Madrid & Africa for 40K points and $400 (#40kfaraway)
Keep in mind that this card is subject to the Chase 5/24 rule, so you will not be eligible if you have opened 5 or more personal cards in the past 24 months. However, this card will not add to your 5/24 count.
|Chase's 5/24 Rule: With most Chase credit cards, Chase will not approve your application if you have opened 5 or more cards with any bank in the past 24 months.
To determine your 5/24 status, see: 3 Easy Ways to Count Your 5/24 Status. The easiest option is to track all of your cards for free with Travel Freely.
|Chase 5/24 semantics ("Subject to" vs. "Count towards"): Most Chase cards are subject to the 5/24 rule. That means the rule is enforced in making approval decisions. In other words, you probably won't get approved if your credit report shows that you opened 5 or more cards in the past 24 months. Meanwhile, most business cards (such as those from Chase, Amex, Barclaycard, BOA, Citi, US Bank, and Wells Fargo) are not reported on your personal credit report. These cards do not count towards 5/24.
Example: Chase Ink Business Preferred is subject to 5/24, so you likely won't get approved if over 5/24. If you do get approved, it won't count towards 5/24 since it won't appear as an account on your credit report.
Furthermore, this is a business card. The good news is that many people have a business without realizing it.
|Applying for Business Credit Cards
Yes, you have a business: In order to sign up for a business credit card, you must have a business. That said, it's common for people to have businesses without realizing it. If you sell items at a yard sale, or on eBay, for example, then you have a business. Similar examples include: consulting, writing (e.g. blog authorship, planning your first novel, etc.), handyman services, owning rental property, renting on airbnb, driving for Uber or Lyft, etc. In any of these cases, your business is considered a Sole Proprietorship unless you form a corporation of some sort.
When you apply for a business credit card as a sole proprietor, you can use your own name as your business name, use your own address and phone as the business' address and phone, and your social security number as the business' Tax ID / EIN. Alternatively, you can get a proper Tax ID / EIN from the IRS for free, in about a minute, through this website.
Is it OK to use business cards for personal expenses? Anecdotally, almost everyone I know uses business cards for personal expenses. That said, the terms in most business card applications state that you should use the card only for business use. Also, some consumer credit card protections do not apply to business cards. My advice: don't use the card for personal expenses if you're not comfortable doing so.
Overall, this is a great offer that is worth consideration if you’re in the market for a United card. We do not often see offers this large on airline credit cards apart from the Avios ecosystem, and those require twice the spend.