2 Ways to Get the Targeted 65,000 Mile Offer for the Chase United Explorer

Posted By Trav

55,000 easy United miles sure hits the mark!

[UPDATE:  This deal has changed.  Please see the Best Current Deals or Airline Credit Cards pages for most up to date offers.]

There is ALOT to love about the Chase United Explorer card, such as:

  • Annual fee waived for the first year
  • Earning United miles (no fuel surcharges, good availability)

The reason not everyone’s jumping on this deal?  The public offer has a pretty weak signup bonus:

30k United miles after spending $1,000 in 3 months, 5k for adding an  authorized user and an additional 10k United miles after spending $25,000 in the first year.

Basically, its a 35k deal.  Pretty lame, right?  So why am I wasting my time writing a post on it?

Because there are two ways that you can receive the targeted offer, which has a 65k signup bonus, and that, ladies and gentlemen, is a pretty sweet deal!

Ok, so how do you do it?

First Way:  Get Targeted by Chase with the 65k Offer

The 65k deal (which gives you 50k after first spend, 5k for authorized user, and 10k for spending $25,000 in one year) is a targeted offer sent out by Chase.

According to many reports, the people who were targeted with this much better offer were people who already had United miles in their United frequent flyer account

If you have United miles in your account, you very well may be targeted.  Here’s how to check:

  • Sign in to your United account through the homepage here.
  • If you are targeted for the 65k offer, you should see a banner ad right above where you signed in to apply for the card.
  • Click on the banner and apply for the card as you normally would.  Just to be safe, make sure to take a screenshot of the 65k offer page.  You shouldn’t need it, but better safe than sorry.  That’s it!  You’ve got 55k easy United miles!  SCORE!

If you don’t have United miles in your account, you can transfer miles to your United account and see if that triggers a targeted offer for you.  This is exactly what happened to me, as I originally only saw the 40k offer until I transferred miles and then got the 65k offer.

The easiest transfer is from Chase Ultimate Rewards points since they transfer “instantly” (last time I did it, it took 2 hours, but still, it was pretty quick).  Here’s how to transfer UR points to United:

1.  Sign in to your Chase Ultimate Rewards account

2.  Click on Transfer Point

3.  Select United Mileage Plus.

4.  Transfer the amount of points you’d like.  1,000 is the smallest amount possible, but is big enough to trigger the bonus, so choose that unless you want to transfer more points anyway.

After Transferring

Sign back in to your United account and see if the miles have appeared.  If they have, check to see if the 65k offer is promoted as a banner ad above your account information.

If you get the targeted offer after transferring miles, then just apply as usual.  Again, make sure to take screenshots just in case.

If you have miles in your account and still don’t get the targeted 65k offer, or you don’t have any way to get United miles in to your account, don’t worry.  There is another way to potentially get the 65k offer.

Just Bump It!

Second Way:  Send a Secure Message to “Bump” the Bonus

While I was personally targeted for the 65k offer, many, many people have reported success in getting Chase to award them the extra miles after they’ve applied for the regular 40k offer.  For those unfamiliar with this technique, it is  called “bumping the bonus.”  Here’s how to do it:

1.  Apply for regular 35k offer.

2.  Once your United Explorer card arrives, send Chase a secure message (if you don’t have any other Chase cards, you’ll have to set up an online account with Chase before you can send a secure message.)

Sending a secure message

To send a secure message, click on the secure message tab in the top right side of your Chase account homepage. If you’re unsure what to write, feel free to use my example below:


I just applied for the Chase United MileagePlus Explorer card and am really happy with all the perks and benefits that come along with it.  However, I just noticed that there was a 65,000 offer available, with 50,000 coming after the first spend, which is a better deal than my current offer of 40,000 miles.  I’d really appreciate it if you would bump my signup bonus to the better current offer.

Thank you for your time and assistance in this matter!

As with everything, there is no guarantee that Chase will bump your bonus, but they are usually very, very good with matching the best available offer and many people have reported success with getting their bonus bumped. If you do use this second way, please report back your result so I can pass it along to others in the same situation!

Last Word(s)

The 65k (55k easy) offer for the Chase United Explorer is a great deal!  If you are looking to get United miles this is the largest signup bonus out there right now so it is definitely worth getting.

If you have United miles in your account, first check to see if you are targeted.  Only after you’re sure you aren’t targeted should you consider applying through the normal offer and bumping the bonus. Nothing is guaranteed, but at least you stand a really good chance of getting the 65k deal since Chase is normally very generous with their bumps and others have reported have success.

Has anyone out there had success either getting Chase to target them or bumping the bonus?  If so, help others out and leave your experience and advice in the comments below!

(photos courtesy of Richard_of_England, Joe Shlabotnik)


  1. Margo Roberts says:

    This works! I requested the bump and within 48 hours had an affirmative response. Simple and effective

    1. Trav says:

      @Margo Roberts- Thanks for confirming that it still works. Just as a data point, when did you apply? Recently?

  2. Mark B says:

    Dear Sir/Madam-
    I apologize for not seeing the name of whom to address this. But…
    I just came across this site and had a question. On April 15, 2011, I opened a Continental Airlines One Pass Plus MasterCard from Chase but I did not receive a 50,000-mile offer bonus at the time because they had told me I had gotten that offer recently (which I’m sure I did). But, if I cancel this card now and then apply for the United Mileage Plus Explorer, also by Chase, which currently has a 65,000 mile bonus sign up, would I be eligible to receive this bonus? As you know, Continental has merged with United and I believe that by the end of 2012, I am supposed to get a United card that would basically “replace” my current Continental card. So, I was wondering if I should quickly cancel my current card and then apply to get the United Explorer card in order to get the bonus (I have never had a “United Explorer card”). Otherwise, I think I will miss out when they simply convert my Continental card into the United card sometime soon (I would then have a United card and wouldn’t qualify for a “new cardholder” bonus ?). Thanks for any advice.

  3. Mark B says:

    Sorry. A follow-up to my question above. Can I simply apply for the 65000 mile bonus offer from United Explorer Card by Chase first, before I cancel my current Continental Airlines One Pass Plus card. Or would they say, “sorry, you already have a One Pass Plus/United Explorer Card”. I just want to make sure I can get the new bonus if it is even at all possible. But, again, I know they are soon going to be “converting” the One Pass Plus cards “into” the United Explorer cards and so I want to act before this happens. Thanks!
    Mark B. (again)

    1. CH40 says:

      I wasn’t targeted because I have a Continental OnePass card. However, tonight when I logged in as my husband, he was targeted so we applied immediately. We also saved a screen print. The application was prepopulated with his data – also, we got instant temporary approval if that info is helpful. I think they give you a different card if you don’t qualify for this one. Thank you very much for your tip – we thought the program was over when I couldn’t find it again after seeing it last week.

      1. Trav says:

        @CH40- Don’t forget that even if you aren’t targeted you can still get the 65k offer by signing up through the regular link in the post and asking for the bump. Many people, including readers, have reported that this has worked without a hitch.

        Just make sure that you got your Continental OnePass card BEFORE July 14, 2011. If you got it after, you won’t be eligible for the bonus.

    2. Trav says:

      @Mark B- According to most people on the Flyertalk forums they were able to get the Chase United Explorer even if they already had the Continental OnePass Plus card. As far as I can tell, here is what most people did:

      1. Kept the Continental OnePass Plus card open.
      2. Applied for the Chase United Explorer, either through a targeted offer or through a regular link like in the post above and then asked for the bonus.
      3. Didn’t get instantly approved but called in a few days later and got approved.
      4. The rep asked them to close the Continental OnePass Plus card and transferred that credit line over to the United Explorer card.

      My suggestion would be to not close the Continental OnePass card first but keep it open and apply for the United Explorer soon, before it converts over. Seems as if Chase is treating them as separate cards until it converts over, so you should be able to get the bonus for the United Explorer seeing as you’ve never had the card before.

      If you could, please report back your experience, as I’m sure many would like to know!

      Good luck!

      1. Trav says:

        Just to clarify, it seems that getting the bonus for the Chase United Explorer card will work for anyone who got the Continental OnePass Plus card BEFORE July 14, 2011. It seems that anyone who got the Continental OnePass Plus after July 14, 2011 is not getting the sign on bonus for the Chase United Explorer, but all those who go the card before July 14, 2011 are. That would include you Mark B!

      2. Mark B says:

        Hello. Just an update on my applying for the United Mileage Plus Explorer Card. I first called and found that since I never had an actual “United” card, I could simply apply while still keeping my Continental Airlines One Pass Plus card open. I asked about the 65000 mile bonus offer. They said I needed to just try to find it online. I finally found a 60000 mile offer that would come up and so I applied for that one. It automatically populated my info but after I hit “submit” and waited for 30 seconds for what I hoped would be an instant approval, I only got “your application will be determined within the next 10 days and we will notified you by mail”. I know my credit score is very high (800 or so). But, I did just apply and receive a Chase Freedom card in the last 2 weeks. I also have applied for and received 2 other non-Chase cards over the last few months. Not sure why the delay in the answer. Any ideas on why ? And should I call them in a few days to see about a decision (maybe ask for approval but a lower credit limit?) And should I wait to send the mentioned “secure message” asking about getting the bump up in bonus from 60000 to 65000 with the $50 statement credit too ? Thanks for any advice.

        1. Trav says:

          @Mark B.- You probably didn’t get instant approval because you just got the Chase Freedom not too long ago, which is also a personal card. It doesn’t hurt to call Chase up and talk to them about it. They will most likely ask you why you want another card so shortly after you just got the Freedom. Make sure to have a reason that is specific to the United Explorer card, such as “I fly United and I love the fact that I can get 2x per $1 spent on purchasing United flights.” Don’t mention the signup bonus as the reason you want it.

          Check out this post for 6 tips I use to nail the reconsideration call:


          As far as sending the secure message, I’d do that after you call in and get approved for the card. I don’t know about the success rate of getting the bump from the 60k to 65k, but everyone has said it worked for the 40k to 65k, so I don’t see why it wouldn’t work for you. Worth a try, and keep us updated to your progress. Good luck!

          1. Mark B says:

            Hey Trav –
            I was approved for the United Explorer Card with a 60000 bonus !!
            Awesome. After applying on Monday morning, I called the reconsideration line this morning (Tues.), and was all prepared to give a good presentation, but after I gave her my social, she told me that it was approved !
            So, now, as you suggested above, I will send a secure message in a day or two perhaps, asking for the bump up from the 60000 to the 65000 + the 50 statement credit. Even though its only 5000 extra and 50 bucks, I thought I’d still ask for it, eh.
            Now, that I’ve been approved for the United Explorer Card, should I wait a while to cancel my Continental One Pass Plus card (from Chase which actually has already merged into the United Explorer Card) or would that look bad to cancel that Chase card. Perhaps it would look responsible if I cancel that since I just sort of got the replacement card for it ? Now that I have the new Explorer Card, and also a Chase Freedom from just a few weeks ago (I just have these two cards from Chase now), I wanted to attempt to get the Chase Sapphire Preferred card and the 40000 bonus but I would like some advice on the timing of going after it. Thanks !!

          2. Trav says:

            @Mark B- Congrats on getting approved. I can’t hurt to ask for the extra 5k miles and statement credit. Worst they can say is no.

            I wouldn’t cancel they Continental OnePass until you have a reason to. Keeping a card open longer is better for your credit score. The only reason I cancel cards is if my annual fee is due and I don’t want to pay it because I don’t feel like the card is worth it. Then, I call to cancel. It doesn’t hurt to have it open, so I’d wait until the annual fee is due and then call to cancel.

            I’d wait 90 days from when you got the Chase United Explorer to get the Chase Sapphire Preferred. 90 days is usually a long enough time to wait between Chase cards to give yourself the best shot of getting approved. Since you just got two Chase personal card in such a short time, I highly doubt you’ll get approved for the Chase Sapphire Preferred if you apply now. You could always take your chances with the reconsideration line, but if you don’t need the card immediately, I’d wait the three months.

          3. Mark B says:

            Trav –
            Thanks again for the info. If I keep the Chase Continental One Pass open and with me now having the Chase Freedom (got in early June) and the Chase United Explorer (got in mid June), would I be able to get the Chase Sapphire Preferred in 90 days, even though I would already have 3 Chase cards at the time of that potential application?
            And another separate question — is there a Chase Sapphire Business Card that I could apply for now (since its a Business card) that gives the 40000 bonus points? I was hoping not to miss out on the Sapphire’s 40000 bonus. Do you know how long they’ll offer the 40000 on the Chase Sapphire.
            Thanks again.

          4. Trav says:

            @Mark B- Yes, you should still have a shot at getting the Chase Sapphire Preferred even with having 3 other Chase cards open. It is best to keep the Chase Continental One Pass open and then apply fo the Sapphire Preferred. If you don’t get automatically approved, you can call the reconsideration line and then offer to close the Chase Continental OnePass and move the credit line to the Sapphire Preferred. This usually works really well.

            There is no Chase Sapphire Preferred business card but there is the Chas Ink Bold, which is similar to the Chase Sapphire Preferred but is a business card, and actually, the bonus is 50,000 instead of 40,000. I would definitely consider getting this card; personally, I love it. Check out these two posts for more information on it:



            Also, please feel free to email me: trav@extrapackofpeanuts.com if you want more specifics. I’d be happy to help.

          5. Mark B says:

            Trav –
            Thanks so much for all the advice. I opened a Fifth Third Bank real life rewards credit card (no annual fee) in January 2012 and met the minimum spend to get a small cash reward of $100 (before I started following all you guys) but I have a large credit line of $ 17,500 on that line. Should I cancel that card now to “make room” within my total credit line to all creditors so when I apply for that Chase Sapphire Preferred, I would then not have that large credit line for Chase to see. I don’t really see any reason to keep the Fifth Third Bank card open, unless it would hurt me with a Chase application in a few months.

          6. Trav says:

            @Mark B- Having a large account open with a different company should not have any real affect on what Chase will or will not give you. If anything, it should help because it keeps your utilization ratio low and they see that other creditors are granting you large credit lines, which makes you more “trustworthy.” I would not suggest canceling your account with Fifth Third Bank unless there is some other reason you want to.

  4. Mark B says:

    I’m preparing for my first app-o-rama in late July (I received four offers in the mail that all expire around Aug. 1. ; City Thank You Premeir (50,000 points), PNC Bank ($250 bonus), Barclay Rewards (20,000 points) and a Bank of America card ($100). My big question is…I really want to have my wife and I both apply for the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, too, to get the 40,000 bonus each but I don’t know if I should do the Chase Sapphire apps a few days before the app-o-rama or if it’s ok to do the Chase apps after the app-o-rama. I currently have 3 Chase cards (Continental Airlines from April 2011, Chase Freedom from early June 2012 and United Explorer from mid June 2012). Didn’t know if it’s better to do Chase before or after the app-o-rama (or as part of it?). Also, I have Chase checking and savings relationships (checking in March; savings last month). Thanks!

    1. Trav says:

      @Mark B- I would recommend doing the Chase Sapphire cards at the same time as the others. The reasoning behind an App-o-Rama is that if you do them all on the same day the lenders won’t see that you applied for a bunch at once because they will all be processing at the same time. If you do the Chase Sapphires first, you run the risk of not getting the other cards you are looking at. If you do the Chase Sapphires afterwards, there is a very good chance Chase will deny you for having “too many recent inquiries” because they will see the other recent applications.

      I’m not sure what other perks the Barclays Rewards and Bank of America cards offer but it seems like those signup bonuses are fairly low. If you’d like to discuss other potential cards that might net you bigger bonuses, feel free to email me directly at trav@extrapackofpeanuts.com

  5. Ramona says:

    I just got the 40k mile Explorer card and requested to get bumped to the 65k, but they said I needed to use the card first, then wait until I got my bonus miles, then ask to get “bumped up” if the offer was still available. I’ve already made a purchase and will be paying off the balance shortly, but I wonder if the offer will be still available when I get the bonus miles (which I believe will be at the start of my mew billing cycle in October.
    Anyway, it doesn’t seem they would just “bump me up”. Should I do something else while I’m waiting to see if they will offer it to me?

    1. Trav says:

      @Ramona- Did you call them or send a secure message through Chase? I’d recommend doing whichever you didn’t already do. Sometimes, it’s just depends what rep you talk to and it never hurts to ask again. If they tell you the same thing again, then you’ll probably just have to wait. The good news is that the bonus has been around for a while and since you’ll probably get the miles in October, you don’t have much longer to wait and I’m guessing the better offer will still be there.

  6. Bobby says:

    It worked for me. Sent a message asking for the better offer and they kindly did. Thanks

    1. Trav says:

      @Bobby- Awesome, thanks for letting us know it still works! For reference sake, when did you apply?

  7. jayxxxx says:

    what do you do if you got the 65 k offer but didnt apply in time ie the offer has now expired

    1. Trav says:

      @jayxxxx- If I were you, I’d either send a secure message to Chase or call their customer service number. Tell them that you had a targeted offer for 65k but that you think it expired and ask them if you could sign up for the card now and get bumped up to the 65k offer. Do this BEFORE applying and see if they will confirm that you’ll be bumped.

      If they can’t confirm that you will get bumped, you’ll have to sign up for the card with the deal as it is now and hope they’ll bump you afterwards. It’s not perfect, and I don’t know whether they are still bumping up bonuses or not, but it might work. If you do decide to do this, I’d love if you let us know if they gave you the bump to 65k. Good luck!

  8. Karl says:

    As far as the MileagePlus® Explorer Card is concerned I noticed in a Chase Bank in San Diego that their Promo card displayed was for 50+5+10 but when I looked on-line I could only find 30+5+10 and even when I signed into my 60k UA mileage account it was only 30+5+10…so i have just applied in-branch and been accepted. I am not a Chase customer so no secure messages, pleading or transferring of miles. Simple actually. They also expedited the card so i should have it in 2-3 days.

    1. Trav says:

      @Karl- Interesting. I also just heard from another reader that he was able to get the 65k deal (50+5+10) from a branch as well. If you’ve got a branch near you, that seems like the way to go. Thanks for the advice!

  9. Louis says:

    Just as a heads up, you can still get the offer by just walking into a physical Chase bank. Just ask for the United 55k signup and they will know exactly what you are talking about. And, since the tellers benefit from sign ups, they will guarantee let you do it.

    Just did this yesterday 11/12/2013

    1. Trav says:

      @Louis- Very true, and thanks for the data point. If you have a Chase bank near you, it’s the most surefire way!

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