The New United Credit Card is the "Explorer Card"

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by gleff, Jul 18, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Looks like Chase put up the website a bit early.
    http://www4.chasecreditcards.com/MPConsumer40kAFW.aspx

    There's also a business version of the card
    http://www4.chasecreditcards.com/MPBusiness35kAFW.aspx

    25,000 miles with first purchase
    5,000 miles for adding an additional cardholder to the account (personal card only, not business)
    10,000 miles for $25k in spend each year

    Terms and conditions say that if you've had a United Visa before, no signup bonus for you. We'll see whether or not that's enforced.
    $95 annual fee, waived the first year

    Priority boarding (presumably with 2Ps? They say after elites and before general boarding but doubt they'll create a new zone) and first checked bag free.

    Primary rental car collision damage waiver and 2 annual club passes, like the Continental Onepass Plus card.

    So it's the Onepass Plus card, but a Visa not a Mastercard, add priority boarding and bump the fee $10, more or less.

    But here's something buried in the benefits -- keep this card and your miles won't expire. Who cares, right? One charge on the card in 18 months will keep your account active anyway. But it means that the combined program will have expiring miles (unlike the current Continental program).
     
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  2. Mackieman
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    Mackieman Gold Member

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    To be clear, CO has a mileage expiration clause in the T&Cs, they simply choose not to enforce it. My hope is that the same stance is being taken with the new UA; time will tell.
     
  3. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    If the program wasn't going to enforce expiring miles, they would make non-expiration of miles an explicit benefit of the new card product.
     
  4. Mackieman
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    I dunno, seems to me they might leave it in as an option for themselves later on, a la CO. But I could be way out in left field, too.
     
  5. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    After 1Q10 United announced they had booked an incremental $64mm in revenue from expiring miles and expected similar amounts in future quarters. Now they have a whole mileage program with legacy liabilities. The balance sheet revenue recognition possibilities are just way too tempting. And for all intents and purposes Chase has made the announcement for them.
     
  6. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Having the expiry option is probably of decent value to a carrier.

    DL made the call to do away with expiry, but I don't think it's the right call. Rather, what works the best is to expire and have an easy reinstatement program. Ie: if someone calls within a year or two of expiry, and they ask for reinstatement - and book a flight - then give the points back. No fees, no questions - just a new flight!

    Most pax assume points will expire - and a "waiver" for a special reinstatement makes them feel a little special if done properly. Against that, there are costs to implement the transactions - but would be more than offset by the savings realized from miles that truly did expire and were not replaced.

    I got sloppy and let 100k UA miles expire. They ran me through so many hoops to get them back that I said f-it and moved my limited *A travel (in paid f or j) elsewhere. Their expiry and lack of waiver and cumbersome hoops that they offered to get them back really ticked me off.

    I also signed up for AwardWallet so I won't let this happen again - no matter how much I dislike a carrier or alliance.
     
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  7. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Delta actually did a not entirely stupid thing. They shortened expiration of miles to 18 months. They expired a TON of miles. Then -- when they had only active members left -- they said "we're really great guys and we won't expire miles." And they reaped a bunch of love for it.

    Jeff Robertson said the pricey buyback options was one of the things that angered customers (give us $8k for the 800k miles that you just expired...).

    Assuming other programs keep expiring miles, and i think UA and AA certainly will, I wonder if in a few years Delta will quietly go back to expiring miles... expire a ton... and then pull the same trick of no more expiring miles? :)
     
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  8. mht_flyer
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    mht_flyer Gold Member

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    Looks similar to current CO card. (except CO card is MC)

    I don't like that it allows priority boarding for a 95.00 a year card.
    :(
     
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  9. BurBunny
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    BurBunny Silver Member

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    Interesting. I see no EQM benefits. Makes my legacy Platinum/Signature MP card look better and better. IF they don't sunset the benefit and especially if they remove the forex fees.
     
  10. travelgourmet
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    travelgourmet Silver Member

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    Foreign transactions carry a 3% fee with this new card. Disappointing.
     
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  11. legalalien
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    legalalien Gold Member

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  12. Casey Friday
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    Man, I was really hoping for a huge UA bonus, like 100k. Even 50k. Maybe in a few more months, a nice bonus will come down the line.
     
  13. JLSocks
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    There is a 50K sign-up bonus, but it appears to be targeted. I found out about it after logging into my MP account.
     
  14. legalalien
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    legalalien Gold Member

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    Probably status dependent. The ad on my MP page showed 60k bonus :p) but when I followed it, the actual application only showed 40k. Go figure.

    Update: Seems to work properly today, 60k bonus offers, 50k after first use, plus 10k after $25k spend.
     
  15. Black Cloud
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    I think I got an Explorer Card, when I got my Explorer Cub Scout Badge. :rolleyes:
     
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