A business credit card can offer flexibility and boost your spending power. And if it can earn you a few pounds along the way, well, you’re not going to say no, are you?
There’s a range, albeit limited, of cashback business credit cards on the market that can do just that. These cards tend to have fairly strict eligibility requirements and may come with an annual fee attached. If you’re likely to carry an outstanding balance on the card from month to month, then you’d probably be better off focusing on business cards offering the lowest rates because a cheaper card is likely to save you more than you’d earn in cashback.
But, if your company puts a significant amount on plastic and tends to pay off the card bill in full each month, then one of the cashback deals below could offer a return that’s not to be sniffed at.
Earn uncapped cashback on business spending
Up to 1% cashback or 1 Avios per pound spent
Up to 10,000 bonus points when you spend £5,000 in 3 months
Up to 20 free supplementary cards
Up to 56 interest-free days on purchases each billing cycle
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 39.41% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 39.9% APR (variable).
Approval for any credit card will depend on your status. The APR shown represents the interest rate offered to most successful applicants. Depending on your personal circumstances the APR you're offered may be higher, or you may not be offered credit at all. Fees and rates are subject to change without notice. It's always wise to check the terms of any deal before you borrow.
How do business cashback credit cards work?
Business cashback credit cards will pay you a percentage of whatever you spend (aka the card’s “earn-rate”) back into your account. The cashback will be transferred automatically, either monthly, quarterly or annually, depending on the card.
Some credit cards place a cap on the amount of cashback you can earn. Others will only pay cashback when you make purchases with specific retailers.
If a number of employees are set up as additional cardholders, you (not they) will stand to earn cashback on all their spend too… and it’s up to you whether you tell them! While this probably sounds like a great deal, if you’re paying an annual/monthly fee for each cardholder, it may not be.
Cashback isn’t seen as income for tax purposes. Rather, it’s seen as a discount, so you don’t need to worry about declaring it.
Look out for introductory “welcome” bonuses or enhanced earn-rates (especially if you’re about to shell out on something), but equally, beware of transactions that aren’t eligible, like cash advances (when you withdraw cash using a credit card).
How can I maximise my cashback?
Get acquainted with the terms of your credit card so you know what purchases will allow you to earn cashback, then complete as many of your business purchases with your cashback credit card as possible.
Don’t fall into the trap of making unnecessary purchases just to chase the cashback. It’s also important not to overspend to the point where you can’t afford to repay your credit card bill at the end of the month. Any interest incurred as a result of doing this is likely to eclipse the cashback earned.
How should I compare cashback business credit cards?
This is pretty cut and dried. You should try to work out what the card will cost you and what it will earn you.
Once you’ve estimated how much your company would spend on the card each month, the first two features you should check are the cashback earn-rate and the annual fee (if there is one). Calculate how much cashback you’re likely to earn per year using our tool below, then subtract the annual fee to get an idea of your annual earnings. If the annual fee eclipses the amount of cashback you’re likely to earn, you’re best off applying for a different card with a lower fee.
It’s highly recommended to pay off your balance in full every month to avoid paying interest. If you’re not planning on doing that, you should compare the interest rate and credit limit on each card to ensure you get a good deal. It’s rare for cashback credit cards to have introductory 0% interest deals attached, but if they do you should make the most of these.
Some credit cards may offer reward schemes that will allow you to earn air miles or points that can be exchanged for retail vouchers. If these rewards are available with retailers that you’d spend money with anyway, these cards might be a better option.
This tool is designed to help you establish whether or not a particular cashback card would be worth it for you. Bear in mind that the calculation is based on clearing your balance each month, not using the card for cash advances, etc, so that you don’t incur any interest or fees other than any obligatory annual/monthly account fees. Don’t forget that, depending on the card issuer, some transactions might not be eligible for cashback, and cash advances definitely won’t be.
Expected annual spend
Account fee (per annum)
Expected annual spend
You’d earn £ in cashback over the year. Taking into account fees of £, you’d pocket £.
Dos and don’ts
Choose a credit card with the best cashback rates.
Ensure your annual fee doesn’t eclipse the amount of cashback you’re likely to earn.
Use your credit card whenever possible to maximise your cashback.
Spend unnecessarily just to earn cashback.
Overspend to the point that you pay interest on your purchases.
Frequently asked questions
If you’re planning to repay your credit card bill in full each month, a cashback or rewards credit card is likely to be the best option for you. These types of credit card are the only ones that reward you for spending, and you won’t have to worry about interest payments eclipsing your earnings.
If you’re planning on borrowing money for a longer time, you’re better off focusing on a credit card with a 0% interest deal or a low interest rate. Our guide will show you some of the best business credit cards for people in this situation.
Cashback is paid the same way for personal and business credit cards.
However, business credit cards are designed specifically for work spending, which is why lenders will assess your business credit score first.
They often include features such as additional cards for employees, customisable spending limits for different users and expense tracking.
The business will be liable for any debts incurred, not the user (unless a personal guarantee has been signed).
Most business credit card providers allow you to make applications online or over the phone. You’ll need to provide identification, proof of ownership and financial details for you and your business.
Chris Lilly is a publisher at finder.com. He's a specialist in credit-based products including business and personal loans, mortgages and credit cards, and is passionate about helping UK consumers make informed decisions about their borrowing. In his spare time Chris likes forcing his kids to exercise more.
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