If you’re a frequent traveller, you’ll know that a standard business credit card won’t cut it for you. Foreign transaction fees are just too expensive – you need a card that doesn’t charge them.
Ideally, you want to combine this with some kind of rewards (travelling means lots of expenses, you may as well make the most of them) and nice travel perks such as airport lounge access.
We’ve browsed the market for you. It’s difficult to find a card that ticks all the boxes, but we’ve done our best. Let’s have a look.
Best business credit card for travel: Earn Avios points and avoid fees
Capital On Tap’s business credit cards make good travel companions. None of the three deals available charges any foreign transaction fees, so you can spend as much as you want abroad without having to worry.
The basic option doesn’t charge an annual fee either, but it earns no rewards. If you travel often, it may be worth considering one of the two upgrades instead, which do come for an annual fee but offer interesting rewards too.
If you do, you’ll get a solid introductory bonus and will be able to choose between earning Avios points or cashback on all your credit card spending. If you’re a frequent flyer and an Avios aficionado, this deal can give a real boost to your Avios account. Depending on what you redeem them for, Avios points can be worth more or less than the cashback, so you’ll have to see which rewards are better value for money for your business.
The deal with rewards credit cards is that the more you use them, the more you’ll make of them. So they’re more suitable for businesses that have a lot of expenses to meet and are happy to put them on a credit card. The most important thing to look at is whether the rewards you’ll earn are worth more than the annual fee. If they aren’t, your business will be better off with a regular credit card.
As far as rewards go, you want to look at two main factors:
How much you’ll earn after the annual fee. This depends on how much you’re expecting to spend on the card.
The kind of rewards you want to get. For example, if you travel often, air miles or Avios points may be better for you than regular rewards points.
However, while rewards are cool and all, don’t forget that a credit card is also supposed to help you manage your business finances. You definitely want to look at a card’s financial features, such as the length of any interest-free period, the interest rate on purchases and any other relevant fees and charges.
How to compare business credit cards for travel
As we said, you probably won’t find a card that ticks all the boxes, but here’s a basic list of factors to consider and prioritise when you compare your options:
Foreign transaction fees. These are a big no for us. If you have to go abroad, look for a business credit card that doesn’t charge them.
Rewards. Are they any good? What’s the earn-rate? What’s the introductory bonus?
Annual fee. Is it worth it? Do the rewards outweigh it?
Travel perks. Some credit cards offer complimentary travel insurance, mobile phone insurance and airport lounge access. If that’s the type of card you’re after, you definitely want to check out the Amex Platinum Business card, which has the most comprehensive set of travel perks on the business credit card market. Unfortunately, these perks are rarely found in credit cards that don’t charge foreign transaction fees.
Interest rate. This is only important if you’re expecting to occasionally carry a balance on the card. It tells you how much doing so will cost you.
Additional cards. Are other people in your team travelling often? How much are additional cards for them going to cost?
Facilities. Can you manage your credit card from your phone? Can you set individual spending limits for different cards? Does it integrate with your accounting software?
Frequently asked questions
It depends, but generally speaking, you may want to take both with you. If you have a business rewards credit card with no foreign transaction fees, you want to use it as much as possible.
However, if you need to get cash, do it on your business debit card – cash advances on credit cards accrue interest from the very day they’re taken out and may also incur a fee. Some business debit cards, like Starling, don’t charge any foreign transaction fees, not even on cash withdrawals, so they’re good to have in your wallet when you go abroad.
Unfortunately not – Avios is a “personal” scheme, so even the points you earn on your business credit card will have to be transferred to your personal account. If you don’t like the idea, you can consider this Amex card, which also earns you On Business points. On Business is a business frequent flyer scheme powered by British Airways.
They basically work the same way, but a business credit card is for business purposes and its features will be tailored to business (and not personal) needs. Among other things, you can expect a slightly more complicated application process, a higher credit limit and more additional cards available. Business credit cards also tend to offer less favourable financial conditions – 0% deals are quite rare and shorter, most cards charge an annual fee and it’s hard to find low-rate deals.
Valentina Cipriani is a writer at Finder UK. She writes news, features and guides about banking and credit cards, helping people to improve their financial lives. She holds an MA in International Journalism and loves taking complicated topics apart and giving them back to the readers in a clear and easy fashion.
Can you get a 0% balance transfer credit card for your business? How about 0% purchase deals? We’ve put together a handy guide on 0% business credit cards.
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