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Continental Airlines Miles

How much is a Continental Airlines mile worth? We did quite a bit of digging to come up with an estimate. By comparing the cheapest flight available for select routes, versus the number of Continental Miles it required to redeem the same flight, we came to the conclusion that they are worth around 1 cent per mile, inline with many other point programs out there.

Continental miles are being phased out with the United merger, and there’s an awkward blending of the two systems. Now, your miles earned on Continental/United will expire in 18 months, unless you have a credit card of theirs. Thankfully, the credit card’s not too shabby: the United MileagePlus Explorer can earn you up to 40,000 miles as a signup bonus, and you get a lot of perks like a free checked bag, priority boarding, and access to the United/Continental lounge, which even AmEx Platinum cardholders don’t get. See our review of the United MileagePlus Explorer.

United MileagePlus® Explorer Card
Chase United Airlines Mileage Plus Credit Card
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  • Start with 30,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months
  • Check your first bag for free - save up to $100 per roundtrip
  • Enjoy priority boarding privileges and visit the United Club with two one-time-use passes every year
  • No foreign transaction fees!
  • Earn double miles on United ticket purchases, and 1 mile per $1 on all other purchases
  • Your miles don't expire as long as you're a Cardmember, with no limit to the number of miles you can earn
  • Use your miles for any seat, any time, on any United flight
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95
thumbsupPros
  • No foreign transaction fee
thumbsdownCons
  • Has annual fee
  • Needs excellent credit
Annual Fee Signup Bonus APR , Variable* APR Promotions
$0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95 Start with 30,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months. 15.99% (Variable) Purchase: None
Transfer: None

See our complete analysis on the relative value of frequent flyer miles.