Monday, December 21, 2009

Interesting New United Visa

United Airlines has come out with what may be an enticing new Visa Select card (through United’s credit-card partner Chase, of course).

For a $130 annual fee (not waived the first year), you receive:

  • 30,000 initial bonus miles
  • 3 miles per $1 spent with United
  • 2 miles per $1 spent with other Star Alliance airlines
  • 2 miles per $1 spent on gas, groceries, dining, home improvement stores
  • 1 mile per $1 for everything else
  • $100 United Discount Travel Certificate.... PLUS....
  • up to 5,000 EQMs (Elite Qualifying Miles) for the first $5,000 spent with United
  • 5,000 annual bonus miles

The catch seems to be that you can probably get the card if you’ve had a United Visa in the past, but none of the bonuses (30K initial miles, EQM miles, 5K annual bonus) are available. (From the T&C: “This bonus offer is valid only for first-time United Mileage Plus Visa cardmembers with new accounts. Existing United Mileage Plus Visa cardmembers/accounts are not eligible for this bonus offer.”)

Nonetheless, and as much as we resist putting spending on airline cards (we do apply for them sometimes for sign-up bonuses), and also as much as we resist annual fees (unless waived for the first year), the mileage-per-spend sounds quite good, as do the other bonuses.