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Are business cards worth it?

Streamline your company finances and monitor employee spending.

Updated

Fact checked

A business credit card is designed for small companies that want to separate private from business spending. In addition, you can use a business credit card to easily manage your budget, track business purchases or set employee spending controls.

How do I know if it’s worth getting a business credit card?

To answer this question, here’s what to consider:

  1. You’re mixing business with personal spending.

    Business expenses are often tax deductible. But if you’re mixing office supplies purchases with groceries on one card, it may be hard to tell them apart. If this is the case with your business, it may be time to consider getting a business credit card.

  2. You want to earn rewards on business spending.

    Some business credit cards reward business-related purchases such as office supplies, advertising, computer services, Internet, gas, travel and more. If you spend a lot money on these categories, you might as well get something back.

  3. You want to simplify bookkeeping.

    If your business is growing and you’re providing credit cards to your employees, getting a business credit card will help you streamline your finances, add purchasing limits to employee cards and simplify expense monitoring. All these tools are often a complimentary feature to most business credit cards.

  4. You want to establish business credit.

    Looking long term, establishing business credit could be an important step for your future business endeavors. With solid business credit you can get better loan terms should you need money. But to build business credit, you need a business credit card.

Who are business credit cards best for?

Anyone looking to streamline business finances and earn rewards on business purchases, should consider applying for a business credit card.

What are the pros and cons of business credit cards?

Business credit cards can help you manage your company finances, but there are drawbacks to consider.

Pros

  • Simplify bookkeeping. Get separate card statements for your card and your employees’ cards.
  • Build business credit. Build business credit with responsible card use. This can help you get better loan terms in the future.
  • Earn rewards on business spending. Earn cash back or points on purchases such as shipping, office supplies, gas or travel.
  • High credit limit. Get a higher credit line than you would with a personal card.
  • High signup bonus. Earn a higher signup bonus compared to a personal card. Keep in mind, spend requirements to earn the bonus are also higher.

Cons

  • Personal guarantee. You are personally liable for paying the card’s balance. Luckily, there are credit card options that don’t require a personal guarantee.
  • May report to personal credit. Some banks report all your business card activity, while others report only delinquencies. This can have a serious impact on your personal finances if your business fails.

Our pick for a business credit card

Brex for Startups

  • The first corporate card for startups
  • No personal liability or security deposit needed - your personal credit score won't be affected
  • Minimum of $100,000 of funds in corporate bank account and US EIN required
  • Earn 7x points on rideshares, 4x points on travel booked through Brex Travel, 3x points at restaurants, 2x points on software subscriptions and 1x points on all other purchases
  • Get a credit limit 10 to 20 times higher than traditional business cards
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Build business credit - Brex partners with Experian to report your on-time payments
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Compare business credit cards

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Rewards Purchase APR Annual fee
Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
3x points on the first $150,000 on travel and select business categories annually, then 1x after and on all other purchases
15.99% to 20.99% variable
$95
100,000 bonus points after you spend $15,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening. That's $1,250 toward travel rewards when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
5% at office supply stores, on Internet, cable and phone up to $25,000 combined annually (then 1%), 2% on gas and dining up to $25,000 combined annually then 1% after that and on all other purchases
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 13.24% to 19.24% variable)
$0
$500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months.
Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card
1.5% cash back on all purchases
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 13.24% to 19.24% variable)
$0
$500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening.
United℠ Business Card
2x miles on United, transit and rideshares, and at gas stations, office supply stores and restaurants, and 1x miles on all other purchases
16.49% to 23.49% variable
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($99 thereafter)
Earn 60,000 miles once after spending $3,000 in your first 3 months.
Universal Premium Mastercard®
3 cents off per gallon when you buy 30,000 or more gallons in a month plus 3 cents off at the Retail Savings Network
27.24% variable
Up to $120
Earn 3 cents off per gallon when you buy 30,000 or more gallons in a month plus 3 cents off at the Retail Savings Network.
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When shouldn’t you get a business credit card

If you don’t need to make business-related purchases, or if the amount of those purchases is minuscule, using a personal credit card would likely serve you better. Until your business purchases start to add up to more substantially, you could wait a while until you really need a business card.

Bottom line

Business credit cards can come in handy for smaller businesses that want to separate personal from company spending. Depending on the card, it’s possible to earn rewards on business-related purchases.

If your company revenue grows in the millions and you increase the number of employees, a business credit card may not be enough. In that case, you might want to compare corporate credit cards to find a more suitable option.

Frequently asked questions

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