When people ask my thoughts as to the best business credit card, I usually recommend the Ink Plus® Business Card and Ink Bold® Business Card, which I find to be the most valuable cards for small businesses.
- Both cards offer mega sign-up bonuses of 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points after spending $5,000 within three months, and are also incredibly lucrative for everyday spend.
- Both cards offer 5x points on the first $50,000 spent annually at office supply stores, landlines, internet, and wireless phones, as well as 2x points spent on the first $50,000 annually on gas and hotels.
Ultimate Rewards points are so versatile given that they can be transferred efficiently to both airline and hotel partners, and given the bonus categories on the Ink cards, the points add up really quickly.
While the annual fees are waived the first year, I think both cards can be worth the $95 annual fee even after that. For example, just factoring in the 5x points you earn on expenses that most small businesses have every month (cell phones, cable, internet, etc.), you can already come out way ahead.
The No Annual Fee Alternative:
People often overlook the Ink Cash® Business Card, which is the no annual fee version of the “premium” Ink Cards.
- This card also accrues 5x points on spend at office supply stores, landlines, internet, and wireless phones, as well as 2x points spent on gas and restaurants (rather than hotels).
- The major difference is that it only accrues those bonus points on the first $25,000 spent in the above categories annually, as opposed to the first $50,000, which for most of us is probably a moot point.
- The sign-up bonus on the card is lower than the Ink Plus or Ink Cash, as it offers 20,000 points after spending $3,000 within three months rather than 50,000 points after spending $5,000 within three months.
However, there’s no annual fee on the Ink Cash, so it’s a trade off that might make sense depending on how long you plan on keeping the card.
As you’ll notice if you look at the the Ink Cash application, the sign-up bonus is marketed as being in the form of “cash back”.
That being said, if you have a card that accrues “premium” Ultimate Rewards points, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Ink Plus, Ink Bold, etc., you can pool all your points and use all of them as “premium” Ultimate Rewards points that can be transferred to the above partner programs.
That means as long as you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred (which just about everyone should have given the double points on dining and travel, no foreign transaction fees, and 7% annual points dividend) as well as the Ink Cash, the points are just as valuable as the ones you’d earn on the Ink Plus or Ink Bold.
So am I better off getting the Chase Ink Plus/Bold or the Chase Ink Cash?
It’s tough to say. The cards are considered different products so you could actually qualify for all cards if you wanted to. With the Ink Plus or Ink Bold you’re earning 30,000 more Ultimate Rewards points from the sign-up bonus, though they do require an extra $2,000 of minimum spend.
I value Ultimate Rewards points at 1.8 cents each, so the sign-up bonus for the Ink Plus and Ink Bold offers an additional $540 by my valuation. That covers more than five years of the $95 annual fee.
However, if you’re looking for a long term, no annual fee credit card that’s extremely rewarding, it’s tough to beat the Ink Cash. This is definitely the best no annual fee business credit card.
(In the interest of full disclosure I earn a referral bonus for anyone approved through the above links — thanks for your support!)