Continental Mastercard: No Fee the First Year, 30,000 Mile Bonus

I signed up for a Continental Mastercard back when there was a 46,000 mile signup offer. I considered that worth the price of an annual fee, especially considering that since Continental joined the Star Alliance their frequent flyer program has become one of my favorites.

For the first time that I’m aware of, though, they’re now offering a no fee the first year deal which also comes with 25,000 bonus miles. Not 46,000 to be sure, but at no cost other than a hard pull on your credit it’s still pretty good.

The biggest reason not to do it? Chase has become more and more difficult getting new credit cards if you’ve applied for other cards with them in the past six months. So if you’re considering in the future a Hyatt Visa from Chase, or waiting around for the British Airways 100,000 mile bonus offer to re-appear, you might well take a pass.

But for a no-fee offer, this one is pretty good.

Update: Here’s a link offering 30,000 bonus miles (25,000 with first purchase and 5,000 for adding an authorized cardholder to the account) with fee waived the first year.  Very Nice.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Gary, any word on when the new Mileathon starts?

    2 weeks ago I received an email from CO which said:

    “Mileathon is returning soon. Watch for details on how to register again and earn more credits redeemable for up to 100,000 bonus miles, and a chance at the Grand Reward — a cruise vacation for two. ”

    It is probably worth waiting for it to begin and get more miles.


  2. i got the continental mastercard a few months ago with the mileathon program. miles have already posted. do you guys know when i can cancel the account? or do you suggest waiting a year to get the presidential club passes? thanks!

  3. I have the Continental Mastercard and the annual fee will be charged on Oct 1, 2012. I DO now have at least 100K miles available to me.

    Question: I want to book flights to Florida in November. Should I book them on this card and will I still be eligible for 1 free checked bag RT per traveler? OR should I just use points and then I expect I will have to pay for the checked bag.

    Purchasing flights in August, for travel in November. Cancelling card in September.

    Sorry if this is not the right place to post this question!

    I’m new to all of this for sure!

  4. @Heidi – yes your reservation should reflect the free checked bag based on time of purchase… but of course you could wait until the fee hits your card and then the billing cycle for that card closes, actually i believe you even have 60 days from statement close to extricate from your fee

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