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Chase just announced a series of changes to their United-branded credit cards, including extra perks and a lower spending requirement on the United℠ Business Card: Earn 75,000 bonus miles after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.
New card perks include the following:
Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on local transit and commuting. This bonus applies to taxis, mass transit, tolls and ride-share services.
5,000 bonus miles each anniversary when you have the new United℠ Business Card along with a personal United card.
$100 annual United travel credit after purchasing seven United flights of $100 or more.
25% back on in-flight United purchases, including Wi-Fi, food and beverages.
These are all practical perks that can make the United℠ Business Card worthwhile, especially considering the annual fee of $0 intro for the first year, then $99.
But here, we’re going to focus on the welcome bonus. With over 100,000 miles (including those you'd get from spending to earn the bonus itself), there are lots of great destinations you can knock off your bucket list. Here are seven ways to spend the welcome bonus from the United℠ Business Card.
Fly around the U.S., starting at 6,000 miles each way
Have you had a cross-country trip in mind? Want to fly the kids to see their grandparents? With the welcome bonus from the United℠ Business Card, you can cover the cost of airfare for four round-trip economy class tickets without digging into your wallet.
We found plenty of availability for this round-trip transcontinental flight from San Francisco to New York starting at 12,500 miles each way.
And some shorter flights (think Boston to New York) start at 6,000 miles each way.
The best part? With United eliminating close-in booking fees, all you have to pay are taxes, which start at $5.60. That provides you with much more flexibility in terms of redeeming miles when it’s convenient for you, versus planning in advance to avoid extra fees.
Just keep in mind that United has implemented dynamic pricing, so redemption rates may vary depending on demand and your travel dates.
Cover two round-trip tickets to Europe
Many people scrimp and save for a trip to Europe, but with the United℠ Business Card you’ll have enough miles from the welcome bonus to cover two. A round-trip economy class flight between Los Angeles and Paris can be booked for as little as 51,000 miles round-trip, even during the summer.
Contrary to what your flight attendant may have told you during the in-flight sales pitch, there aren’t many credit cards with welcome bonuses that cover two round-trip economy class tickets to Europe. The United℠ Business Card is definitely notable in this regard.
Fly Polaris business class to Europe
If you want to fly to Europe in style, book a flight on United Polaris. A one-way ticket to Europe starts at just 60,000 miles and $23 in taxes.
Put some extra spending on the United℠ Business Card, and a round-trip business class ticket isn’t too far off.
Spend spring break in Cabo
Whether you’re on a college break or planning a family vacation, Cabo San Lucas is a great destination. Hunker down at the Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos for just 20,000 Hyatt points per night and use your United℠ Business Card bonus to cover airfare. A one-way economy class ticket between Denver (DEN) and Cabo San Lucas (SJD) starts at 17,500 miles and $35.60.
At this rate, you can use your welcome bonus to cover three round-trip tickets.
Jet off to Singapore
If you’ve watched "Crazy Rich Asians" and at any point wondered, “Is that real or CGI?” we’re here to tell you — yes, it’s real. Singapore is one of those magically beautiful places that seems straight out of a dream.
Incredibly, the city is actually affordable to visit. Hawker centers offer cheap eats, there are tons of hotels you can book with points, and your United miles can cover airfare. An economy class ticket starts at just 40,000 miles each way.
Want to travel like the characters in "Crazy Rich Asians"? At 90,000 miles each way, a business class award isn’t cheap. But if you want to treat yourself to a premium flying experience, the welcome bonus from the United℠ Business Card can help you do that, too.
» Learn more: United Airlines MileagePlus program: The complete guide
Fly to Brazil
United miles are great for flights to South America, since the airline offers nonstop service between Houston (IAH) and Rio de Janeiro (GIG). It will set you back 30,000 miles each way in economy class or 60,000 in business, which isn’t bad for a 10-hour flight.
With the welcome bonus from the United℠ Business Card, you can book a round-trip economy ticket to Rio and still have tons of miles left to play with.
» Learn more: Chase 5/24 rule explained
Get round-trip tickets to the Caribbean
If the calm waters of the Cayman Islands are calling your name, United miles are a great way to get there. Flights between Miami (MIA) and Grand Cayman (GCM) start at just 35,000 miles round-trip.
With the welcome bonus from the United℠ Business Card, you can cover round-trip economy class airfare for up to three people (including points from the spending you’d do to earn the bonus itself). Or travel solo and snag a business class seat for 60,000 miles round-trip.
How to Maximize Your Rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2021, including those best for:
Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card