Credit Cards Credit Card Reviews

United Business Card Review

overall rating
3.9

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The United Business card charges $99 a year and offers 2 miles per dollar spent on United purchases as well as on office supplies, gas, and restaurants. The card offers a bonus of 60,000 miles, an annual 5,000-mile bonus if you also have a personal United credit card, and such other benefits as a free standard checked bag and priority boarding.

United℠ Business Card

overall rating
3.9
United℠ Business Card
On Chase's Secured Site.

Current Offer:

60,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.

Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Good - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 16.49% - 23.49% variable
Annual Fee $99
Rewards Earning Rate Earn 2 miles per $1 on United purchases, at restaurants, gas stations, eligible local transit, and office supply stores. 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases.
Balance Transfer Fee Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Cash Advance APR (%) 24.99%
Cash Advance Fee Either $15 or 5% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater.
how this card stacks up
When compared among all business cards in our database:
Rewards
Benefits
Low Fees
Security/Customer Experience
Low Interest
worst best

Full Review of United Business Card

Pros
  • Huge bonus

  • Annual miles bonus if you also own a personal United card

  • Annual statement credit opportunity and complimentary United Club passes

Cons
  • Fewer free checked bags than other airlines

Pros Explained

  • Huge Bonus: If you can afford to charge more than $3,600 a month to this card for a few months, the payoff is enormous. You receive 60,000 miles—worth $1,296, according to our valuation of United miles at 2.16 cents each—provided you spend $3,000 with the card in the first 3 months of account opening. While that’s one of the larger spending requirements for a card offer, it’s also one of the most valuable, especially for a card with a relatively modest annual fee.
  • Annual Points Bonus if You Also Own a Personal United Card: If you have this card—and a personal United credit card, you get 5,000 bonus miles on your anniversary of owning both. Since these miles are worth about $100, and the United Business costs $99, this benefit can justify paying the annual fee. That’s a helpful option for employees who want to keep their business and personal spending separate, and yet be able to combine the miles earned on both cards on one MileagePlus account. If you acquire both cards, you’re even allowed to earn bonuses on each, since United doesn’t prohibit earning bonuses on both a personal card and a business one in the same year.
  • Annual Statement Credit Opportunity, and Complimentary United Club Passes: After you open your account, as well as on each card anniversary, you receive two one-time passes for United Club lounges, with the passes each worth $50. With their complimentary food, drinks, and Wi-Fi, the lounges are invaluable respites for a stopover or if your flight is delayed. Provided you’ve made seven flight-related expenditures for things like seat upgrades, food, or baggage fees of $100 or more over the course of the year, you’ll also earn a $100 statement credit. That alone would also justify the card’s annual fee. 

Cons Explained

  • Fewer Free Checked Bags Than Other Airline Cards: With the United Explorer card, you and one more person on your itinerary will get one free checked bag. But if you’re flying with a family of four, you’ll still end up paying $60 each way if everyone checks a bag. Many other airline credit cards offer a free checked bag for more people. The Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express, for instance, provides one free checked bag for up to nine people on one reservation.
  • Card Service May Be Below Par: Businesses don’t necessarily interact with their credit card issuer very often. But when that’s necessary, it’s often a matter of some urgency and even stress, and you want a satisfying experience. Unfortunately, that’s less likely to be the case for businesses who deal with the issuer of this card, Chase, than with most other card issuers scored in the J.D. Power Small-Business Credit Card Customer Satisfaction Study. In its 2019 survey, Chase ranks in the lowest group, in a virtual tie with U.S. Bank as the least-satisfying issuer of business credit cards among nine that are scored. Chase’s score of 833 out of 1,000 was 14 points below the national average.

This Card is Best For

  • Avatar for Loyalty Status Seeker Persona
    Seeks the recognition and perks of branded travel partner status
    Loyalty Status Seeker
  • Avatar for Frequent Flyer Persona
    Flies often for business or leisure
    Frequent Flyer
  • Avatar for International Traveler Persona
    Travels outside of U.S. on occasion or frequently
    International Traveler
  • Avatar for Business Owner Persona
    Earning a primary or side income from a small business
    Business Owner

This card is a great fit for businesses who have United fliers and want an inexpensive card that allows those employees to earn rewards and enjoy welcome, if modest, benefits when flying with the airline. The bonus of 60,000 miles, while requiring $3,000 in spending, delivers over a thousand dollars in value when the miles are used to buy flights. The United Business is especially well-suited to those who travel on the carrier at least every few months and who also own a personal United card. Making at least seven flight-related expenditures of $100 or more a year allows you to earn an annual $100 statement credit, which helps justify the card’s annual fee. And owning two United cards—one business, one personal—entitles you to 5,000 bonus miles, which are also worth about $100.

This card is also worth considering by businesses who frequently rent cars. When renting for business purposes with this card, you receive primary insurance coverage, a relatively unusual perk. 

In contrast to the coverage on most credit cards, United pays the upfront cost of any liability you incur while at the wheel of a rental car. That spares the business from having to pony up for the bill until the rental company settles with the insurer of your cars at home, which typically covers damage to cars you rent. 

United Business Card‘s Bonus

You receive 60,000 miles—worth around $1,300, according to our valuations—provided you spend $3,000 with the card in the first 3 months you own it.

After you qualify for the bonus, it may take six to eight weeks to post to your United Explorer Business card account. Your account must be active and not in default at the time of fulfillment to receive the bonus points

Rewards Earning Details

You’ll earn 2 miles per dollar spent with United purchases. Eligible United purchases include airline tickets, seat upgrades, Economy Plus upgrades, in-flight food and beverages (for which you also receive 25% back, if you use the card), along with Wi-Fi and baggage service charges. Ineligible United purchases include those on United Cruises and to purchases more miles. 

The same 2-miles-per-dollar-spent rate also applies to expenditures on transit and commuting, including taxicabs, mass transit, tolls, and ride share services, as well as purchases at restaurants, gas stations, and office supply stores. The card earns 1 mile per dollar spent on all other purchases. 

There are also two annual rewards, albeit with conditions. You earn 5,000 bonus miles every year in which you own this United business card one and a United personal credit card. And you receive a $100 statement credit at the end of every year in which you’ve made 7 United flight purchases over $100.

United miles don’t expire. 

Rewards Redemption Details

Your United miles can be redeemed in many ways, but you usually get the highest value by redeeming miles for premium air travel. Using United miles for business and first class tickets, we estimate, may earn you up to two-and-a-half times what you’d make when redeeming them for economy air travel. The airline can impose blackout dates and limit award seat availability at any time. 

If you prefer not to redeem miles for airfare, you can instead use them (typically at lower value per mile) to book hotels, cruises, and rental cars or to buy merchandise from Apple and other retailers, and to obtain gift cards or experiences. You can also choose to donate them to a charity.

Transferring Points

If you have MileagePlus Premier Gold elite status or higher, you can sign up for RewardsPlus. This program allows you to transfer your United miles to Marriott Bonvoy points at a one mile to one point ratio. Despite this, such transfers remain poor value. We value Marriott points at just 1.43 cents when redeemed for hotel stays, which is considerably less than the estimated average worth of of 2.16 cents when United miles are redeemed for flights.

How to Maximize Your Rewards

Making the most of this card begins by ensuring you charge $3,000 to it within the first 3 months of membership. That entitles you to earn an extra 60,000 miles. That bonus is so valuable—at an estimated $1,296 when used for flights—that it’s probably worth diverting purchases from other cards you use in order to earn it.

Indeed, even after the bonus is earned, continue to put all qualifying United, restaurant, gas station, and office supply store purchases on this card, unless you have other cards that offer richer rewards in these spending categories. Once you’re ready to redeem miles, the most lucrative option is typically to use them for premium award flights. However good a value these are, though, they of course demand a far higher number of miles per flight than redemptions for economy award flights.

United Business Card's Outstanding Benefits

  • Primary auto-rental coverage: When renting for business purposes with this card, you receive primary insurance coverage. That means, in contrast to most credit-card coverage, United pays the cost of any liability you incur while at the wheel of a rental car, rather than you having to do so. As is customary, you must decline the rental company’s collision insurance and charge the entire rental to your card.
  • Baggage delay and lost-luggage reimbursement: Baggage delay covers reimbursement for essential purchases for delays over six hours, up to $100 a day for three days. Lost luggage reimbursement covers up to $3,000 per passenger when you or an immediate family member have luggage damaged or lost by the carrier.
  • Trip-delay reimbursement and trip cancellation/interruption insurance: Trip delay reimbursement covers costs such as meals and lodging for delays of more than 12 hours or that require an overnight stay for you and your family up to $500 per ticket. Trip cancellation or interruption insurance covers up to $10,000 per person and $20,000 per trip for pre-paid and non-refundable travel expenses for covered situations such as sickness or severe weather.
  • Two one-time United Club passes: The carrier has more than 45 lounges in airports around the world. 
  • 25% back on in-flight food, beverage, and Wi-Fi purchases: On United and United Express operated flights. 

Standard Benefits

  • Free standard checked bag: For the primary cardmember and one companion.
  • Priority boarding: The primary cardmember and companions on the same reservation board United operated flights prior to general boarding.
  • Concierge services
  • Extended warranty
  • Purchase protection
  • Return protection

Cardholder Experience

J.D. Power’s 2019 U.S. Small Business Credit Card Study awarded Chase, the issuer of this card, with a score of 833. That score is 16 points below the industry average of 849.

You can access your account through the Chase mobile app or call 800-888-8756 to reach a customer service specialist 24/7.

Security Features

If your card is lost or stolen, you can quickly get a replacement. Within the United States and Canada, a replacement will arrive within 24 hours. Outside of these areas, you should get a replacement within one business day.

Fees to Watch Out For

The United Business card charges a $99 annual fee which, unlike some other credit cards, isn’t waived during the first year. Also, a cash advance will cost you more than some competing cards at $15 or 5% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater

Our Verdict

The United Business card offers significant value to travelers who fly United at least every few months. The annual bonuses of 5,000 miles for taking seven or more flights within a calendar year and of two complimentary United Club passes are together worth roughly double the card’s $99 annual fee. And the bonus of 60,000 miles for spending $3,000 within three months could alone justify the card’s cost for years to come, provided the miles were used to buy flights. 

It's also an unusually good card with which to rent a car. That’s because for business rentals, it offers primary coverage. That is, United/Chase pay the cost of damage for you and then pursue your car-insurance company for reimbursement.

Apply Now
For United℠ Business Card
on Chase's Secured Site.
Compare This Card
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CURRENT CARD
United℠ Business Card
overall rating
3.9
Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Good - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 16.49% - 23.49% variable
Annual Fee $99
Rewards Earning Rate Earn 2 miles per $1 on United purchases, at restaurants, gas stations, eligible local transit, and office supply stores. 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases.
Investopedia Credit Card Rating Methodology
Investopedia is committed to delivering the best credit card recommendations in the industry. We’ll tell you when a card is good, we’ll tell you when a card is bad, and we’ll only call a card the best if we would recommend it to our friends or family members.
Overall Star Rating Explained
To rate credit cards we objectively assess, score and weight nearly 100 individual card features which roll up into five major feature sets: fees, interest, rewards, benefits and security/customer service. Here’s how we weighted those feature sets for the overall star rating of a card:
We have applied our proprietary rating methodology to every generally-accepted credit card in the U.S. domestic market to allow consumers to make fully informed choices. It’s important to note that for our overall score that we make a number of assumptions about how you would be using your credit card:
  1. While we make no assumption as to whether balances are carried on a given card we do assign varying weights to all credit cards’ introductory APR (if present) in addition to the regular, long term purchase and balance transfer interest rates.
  2. We utilize BLS (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics) income and average category spending data to calculate annual earnings rates for rewards cards that offer cash back, points or miles rewards at a set rate on all spending or in consideration of bonus rewards for certain spending categories, like gasoline, groceries, restaurants or travel.
  3. We determine the maximum points value of rewards cards by dividing the points, cash back or miles required to exchange for the retail price of the most valuable redemption option (for example, in the case of a card that offers a domestic roundtrip airline ticket as a redemption option vs. another redemption option of lesser value that requires the same amount of points or miles to acquire, we would base the rewards value on the airline ticket).
  • Cards that are selected best overall in their respective categories generally feature most if not all of the following attributes:
  • Low or Reasonable Fees Credit card fees come in many forms but the primary ones involve those for annual card membership and balance transfer. There are a myriad of reward and non-reward card options that charge no annual fee but for the many that do assess an annual fee the cost is often justified by their lucrative ongoing rewards and initial signup bonuses. Balance transfer fees are occasionally waived during introductory periods with certain cards, a factor which is heavily and positively weighted in our scoring model for cards offering this benefit. When charged, balance transfer fees range between 3% - 5%, which we grade accordingly. Other standard fees can generally be avoided, such as those for paying late or taking cash advances but we rate those relative to other cards in the market for reference, though with less weight assigned
  • Competitive Interest Many cards offer 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for varying lengths and then revert to a permanent or regular APR (based on a variable rate tied to the prime rate) that applies to any balances not paid in full. We rate both introductory APR percentage and length (in months) along with the midpoint of the variable regular APR interest rate range.
  • Valuable Rewards Credit card reward programs can be based on cash back, points or travel rewards (which can be generic or travel partner-specific, as with airline and hotel co-brand card programs). For cards that offer rewards we determine the value per dollar spent along with average redemption values and assign more favorable ratings to cards that offer superior consumer value. We also assign value to sign-up bonus offers and their initial spending requirements, when present.
  • Excellent Benefits Credit card benefits cover a range of offerings like concierge service, TSA Pre-check, auto rental coverage, travel accident insurance, lost luggage assistance and free credit scores. We rate cards on the number and level of over a dozen standard and upscale benefits and provide extra weighting emphasis for those travel-related perks that apply to premium travel cards when present.
  • Solid Security/Customer Service Security and customer service features like lost or stolen card replacement, being able to lock one’s card from an issuer app and 24 hour customer support are becoming more standard across the card market and we provide a significant amount of weighting to features in this area.
  • You can also read the full version of our methodology for a more in-depth look at how we assess cards and award them the best in various categories.