United and Chase launch no annual fee credit card

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Recently United launched the first miles-earning pre-paid card in the US, the MileagePlus GO. Though not a lucrative way to earn United miles, it does provide an option for a very specific number of individuals. In keeping with the alternative types of credit card, United and Chase have launched the $0 annual fee United TravelBank Card, this one even stranger than its predecessor.

What this card is about

  • $0 annual fee
  • Earn 2% in TravelBank cash per $1 spent on airline tickets purchased from United
  • Earn 1.5% in TravelBank cash per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 25% back as a statement credit on purchases of food and beverages onboard United-operated flights
  • No foreign transaction fees

Bonus Offer

  • Earn $150 in TravelBank cash redeemable toward a future United or United Express-operated flight, after you make purchases totaling $1,000 or more during the first 3 months from account opening

As you can see, it’s a strange one in that it’s a cash-back card, except the cash you earn is United cash or credit. You can look at it as earning an e-cert. If you determine that you will make use of that ‘cash’ then this is not a bad idea, though there are other cash back cards that earn you a higher rate than the TravelBank card, though in actual cash rather than United travel credit.

Who should apply for this card

  • Those looking to build credit via a no annual fee card that earns travel credit
  • Those who would like to have a way to earn air

Unanswered questions

  • Is this card under the 5/24 rule
  • Does activity with this card keep United miles from expiring
  • Does it earn 25% bonus on the MileagePlus X app

The last two questions particularly would be key in determining whether to get this card or not. More to come on those.

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