Chase Ink Business Unlimited℠ review: Earn 1.5% on all purchases
Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card
CardRatings Editor's Analysis: Pros & Cons
- Pay no annual fee and rack up some healthy rewards at 1.5 percent cash back on all your purchases without the hassle of caps or categories to keep up with.
- Take your business to the next level – or help it get off the ground – with 12 months no interest on purchases (13.24% - 19.24% Variable after the intro period).
- Used alongside the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card , you can earn three points per $1 (or 3 percent cash back) in certain business categories and 1.5 percent back on everything else.
- Flat-rate cash-back cards are great options for business owners who spend regularly in a wide variety of categories, but if a big chunk of your spending is in a particular category, like travel or office supplies, you stand to earn more rewards with a card that offers bonus rewards in those categories.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- CHASE INK BUSINESS UNLIMITED℠ BENEFITS
- WHAT OUR EDITORS LIKE MOST ABOUT CHASE INK BUSINESS UNLIMITED℠
- CHASE INK BUSINESS UNLIMITED℠ FOREIGN TRANSACTION FEE
- CHASE INK BUSINESS UNLIMITED℠ APPROVAL ODDS
- HOW CHASE INK BUSINESS UNLIMITED℠ COMPARES TO OTHER CARDS
- IS CHASE INK BUSINESS UNLIMITED℠ A GOOD CARD?
The Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card, which is the latest addition to Chase's Ink credit card line, is a flat-rate small business card that offers cardholders an unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase. Given its no-annual-fee nature and that flat-rate cash-back opportunity, this card would be an excellent complement to the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card with which you earn three points per $1 spent (3%, essentially) on travel and some business categories, but only one point (1% back) on your other purchases. More on how to maximize your rewards by combining these two cards below.
The Ink Business Unlimited℠, which doesn't have an annual fee, lets you redeem rewards (you get them in the form of highly useful Chase Ultimate Rewards® points) for gift cards and travel, too.
This card also offers added benefits for new card members, including introductory 0% APR on purchases for the first 12 months (then, 13.24% - 19.24% Variable). There's also a welcome bonus opportunity: New card members can earn $500 bonus cash back after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first three months.
Plus, being a business card, it allows card members to add employee cards to the account at no additional cost. You can set individual employee spending limits and money spent on those cards will help you earn rewards faster.
- Designed for businesses
- Earn 65,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening.
- First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries to reduce travel costs and boost your bottom line
- 25% savings on American Airlines inflight Wi-Fi when you use your card
- Enjoy preferred boarding on American Airlines flights
- Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
- Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on purchases at telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers, car rental merchants and at gas stations
- Earn 1 AAdvantage® mile per $1 spent on other purchases
- No Foreign Transaction Fees
The Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card is a cash-back card, but since your rewards accumulate as Chase Ultimate Rewards® points, it gives you the flexibility to use what you earn in other ways.
With the Ink Business Unlimited℠, you can pool points you earn with those you earn from other Chase cards with Ultimate Rewards®, including the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card or the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card. You can combine points from those cards and then use all your points together for redemption. If you choose to redeem your points for travel through the Ultimate Rewards® program, remember that Ink Business Preferred® members' points – even those they've pooled from other cards – are worth 25% more when redeemed for travel through the portal. So, rather than getting a 1:1 redemption of your points with the Ink Business Unlimited℠, you can pool those points with the Ink Business Preferred® for a better reward value and get even more from your cards.
Here's another reason why it's a smart idea to pair this card with another in the Ultimate Rewards® program...
Say you have the Ink Business Preferred®, which gives you three points for every $1 spent on travel; shipping purchases; and Internet, cable and phone services (up to $150,000 spent annually), but it only gives you one point for every $1 on all your other purchases. You can get strategic with these two cards by using your Ink Business Preferred® for the purchases in which you get three points per $1 and then the Ink Business Unlimited℠ for other purchases since you get 1.5% back on all your purchases with that card. Then, as discussed above, move all your points into the Ink Business Preferred® bucket (it's easy to do via your online account) so you'll receive 25% more value when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
If you're a frequent international traveler, the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card might not be the best travel companion as it charges a 3% fee on all foreign transactions. This might not seem like much in the grand scheme of things, but think of it this way: If you travel abroad four times a year, spending on average $3,000 on foreign transactions each time you go, you'll end up spending an extra $360 in fees.
This is another reason why it's potentially a great idea to use this card in combination with the Ink Business Preferred®, which doesn't charge foreign transaction fees.
A small business credit card is a great way to separate personal and business expenses, but how do you know if you qualify for a small business credit card?
The list of people who can apply for a small business credit card is long, and includes freelancers/self-employed individuals, entrepreneurs, small business owners/officers, owners/officers of established businesses, and owners/officers of startups. Most credit card companies define "business" quite broadly when it comes to considering applicants for small business credit cards. To qualify for a business credit card, you must be an "authorized officer" of a company. Basically, this means that you must have the legal right to enter into borrowing arrangements with financial institutions on behalf of a business. If you are the owner of a sole proprietorship business or the sole owner of a small business, you are already an "authorized officer." You are, after all, the only owner of the company. It can be more complicated determining who ranks for businesses that have multiple owners. In general, though, most owners are also "authorized officers."
Credit card issuers consider each application on its own merits, so don't assume you don't qualify for the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card just because your business might not fit a standard business model. Do keep in mind though that your personal credit history will likely be what is used to determine your eligibility and/or credit limit on a business card before you've built up a credit history for your business.
If your business doesn't have a tax ID number (EIN), you can enter your personal social security number instead. In general, try to have the following information handy when you apply:
- Business name
- Business name as you want it to appear on the card
- Business address
- Type of business
- Tax ID number (or your social security number)
- Number of employees
- Annual revenue/sales
- Monthly expenses
- Number of years in business
- Ownership type (publicly traded, privately owned, etc.)
- Business structure (LLC, corporation, non-profit, etc.)
To learn more about who can qualify for a small business credit card, and how to apply for one, be sure to check out our "Small Business Credit Cards 101" guide.
Chase Ink Business Unlimited℠ vs. Chase Ink Business Cash℠
The welcome offers for the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card and Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card are the exact same: they both offer introductory 0% APR on purchases for the first 12 months (then 13.24% - 19.24% Variable for Cash℠ and 13.24% - 19.24% Variable for Unlimited℠), and new cardholders can earn $500 bonus cash back after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first three months of opening an account.
The cards start to look different when you compare the ongoing rewards. With the Ink Business Cash℠ you'll receive 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services each account anniversary year; 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year; and 1% cash back on all other card purchases with no limit to the amount you can earn.
With Ink Business Unlimited℠, the cash back you receive looks less generous at first glance, and it may be, but if you do the math, it also may work out far better in your favor. That's because it offers an unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase - or you can redeem rewards for gift cards and travel. So if your business spends a lot, and you don't want a cap on how much you can spend to get your rewards, it may be a more beneficial option. Or, like we mentioned above, it might make good sense to hold both cards and use them simultaneously, especially since neither card charges an annual fee.
Chase Ink Business Unlimited℠ vs. Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Neither card charges an annual fee, and they both offer 1.5% cash back on every purchase made; however, Chase Freedom Unlimited® offers 5% on travel purchased through Chase, 3% on dining at restaurants, and 3% at drugstores. Plus, new cardholders can earn 5% cash back on up to $12,000 spent at grocery stores (excluding Target and Walmart) during your first year.
When comparing welcome offers, Chase Freedom Unlimited® cardholders will earn less than what's offered with Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card, but the spending threshold is lower - earn a $200 bonus after spending just $500 in the first three months of card membership.
The introductory APR offers differ a bit as well. With the Chase Freedom Unlimited® you can enjoy 0% intro APR for the first 15 months on purchases, then 14.99% - 23.74% Variable. With the Ink Business Unlimited℠ card, the intro period is a bit shorter, at 12 months of 0% APR on purchases. After the intro period, 13.24% - 19.24% Variable APR will apply.
Chase Ink Business Unlimited℠ vs. Chase Ink Business Preferred®
We've already briefly compared these two cards above, and explained why they could be two good options to use simultaneously, but let's go over some of the card details again:
The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card earns new cardholders 100,000 bonus points after spending $15,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening (worth $1,250 toward travel when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards®); three points per dollar on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year, and one point on all other purchases with no limit to the amount you can earn. Points are worth 25% more when redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, and don't expire as long as your account is open. There are no foreign transaction fees and additional employee cards are free, but there is an annual fee of $95. However, we consider this a small price to pay considering the exceptional rewards this card can earn its users.
Since Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card points can be pooled with Ink Business Preferred®, and they're worth more in an Ink Business Preferred® account, if you don't mind paying an annual fee, holding both cards might be your key to earning the most rewards. If an annual fee isn't something your business can justify though, the Ink Business Unlimited℠ is a solid card to hold.
The Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card is a good card for business owners looking for a card without an annual fee and that offers a simple-to-remember rewards program. The card also makes sense for people with other Chase cards that operate on the Ultimate Rewards® program, so you can take advantage of each card's perks and pool your points to get the most out of your rewards.