One of my hobbies is playing the mileage and frequent flier points game. I travel a lot, therefore I earn a lot of miles. I also like to maximize my benefits here, so I am always looking for easy ways to earn bonus miles. With that in mind, an email I received today from United Airlines piqued my interest.
It was a promotion for Lending Club. Basically, you can earn up to 100,000 United Airlines MileagePlus miles for opening and funding a new account at Lending Club. The minimum investment is $2,500 and that will earn you 1,250 miles, so basically you are earning 0.5 miles per dollar invested up to a maximum $200,000 investment.
Now, this is only open to new investors so people like myself will be unable to take advantage of this offer unfortunately. Here is some of the fine print from the email:
Upon the transfer and investment of the first $2,500 of New Funds, a new investor will qualify to receive 1,250 miles. For every dollar of New Funds transferred and invested in excess of $2,500, a new investor will qualify to receive .5 miles, up to a maximum aggregate bonus of 100,000 miles per calendar year. One bonus per United MileagePlus® account for new investor registration (investors will be eligible for future offers, if any, once they become existing investors). Offer expires on or before October 12, 2019. Offer not valid for non-taxable IRA accounts. Notes on Lending Club platform may have limited inventory or availability and Investor ability to invest in Notes is subject to Note inventory and availability on Lending Club platform.
It will be interesting to see what comes of this campaign. If you have not received the email you should be able to go to this link to sign up for a new Lending Club account and get the bonus miles. The first thing you must do is enter your MileagePlus number in order to get credit for the miles. Then you walk through the typical investor signup process that happens to be co-branded with United MileagePlus.
Lending Club Continues to Reach Out to Retail Investors
I have seen borrower offers before where you can earn frequent flier miles for taking out a loan (Prosper ran one a couple of years ago) but this is the first time I have seen an effort like this targeting investors.
What this email tells me more than anything is that Lending Club is focused on adding new retail investors. And they are putting some real dollars into this effort. I don’t know what the cost per mile is to Lending Club but it likely isn’t cheap. Lending Club has shared that they have more than 135,000 retail investor accounts, they will likely add to that number with this promotion.
Peter Renton is the chairman and co-founder of Fintech Nexus, the world’s largest digital media company focused on fintech. Peter has been writing about fintech since 2010 and he is the author and creator of the Fintech One-on-One Podcast, the first and longest-running fintech interview series.