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Top small business credit cards of 2019

Last Updated, February 14, 2019

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Best small business credit cards of 2019Small business owners have a LOT to think about, spearhead and otherwise deal with. Keeping track of both personal and business expenses on a single credit card shouldn't be one of the things you're messing with. That's just one of several reasons you need a small business credit card.

Besides separating your personal and business expenses (you'll thank yourself come tax season), you could also be using a small business credit card to earn valuable rewards or cash back for your business' routine purchases. With the right credit card as your partner, you can enjoy travel perks, smoother cash flow, and access to specialized service professionals.

>MORE: Still not sure you'll qualify for a small business card? Check out our Small Business Credit Cards 101 guide to learn more.

Whether you're a wide-eyed entrepreneur or a seasoned business owner, there's a card for you. Below are a few business credit cards we think entrepreneurs, freelancers and CEOs alike should consider.

Featured Small Business Card

Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card

Why We Like It: The newest member of the Chase Ink business card family doesn't come with an annual fee, but it does come with a simple-to-understand rewards structure. We like to think of this card as an excellent complement to other cards in the Chase Ink family, the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card or the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card. With this new card, you earn a flat 1.5 percent cash back on all your purchases, which means you can rake in a half-percent (or half-point if you prefer to think in those terms) more per $1 spent on all the purchases that don't fall under a points bonus category with the other Ink cards.

The Bonus: Earn a $500 cash-back bonus after you spend $3,000 in the first three months from account opening. Plus, make a big purchase for your business or transfer an existing balance and enjoy 12 months no interest on purchases and balance transfers (then, 15.49% - 21.49% Variable)

The Annual Fee: $0; add employee cards at no additional cost.

The Rewards: Earn a flat and unlimited 1.5 percent cash back on all your purchases. Your rewards are Chase Ultimate Rewards® points, a common currency among numerous Chase rewards cards, including those other Ink cards we mentioned earlier. If you have other Chase rewards cards in your wallet, you can combine Chase Ultimate Rewards® points earned on those other cards into a single bucket as needed in order to redeem your points more quickly or, in some cases, for more value. Read our full review of the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card.

More Details: Cardholders are covered by travel and emergency assistance services as well as zero liability, fraud, purchase and purchase protections. You'll enjoy extended warranty protection and auto rental collision damage insurance, too.

Best overall small business credit cards

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

Why We Like It: The Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card offers plenty of value for a reasonable annual fee. You'll rake in three points per $1 spent in popular categories like travel and select business purchases, and the spending cap is fairly robust at up to $150,000 annually spent in the highest rewards-earning categories. After reaching the cap you'll still earn one point for every $1 spent.

The Bonus: Earn 80,000 bonus points (these are Chase Ultimate Rewards® points) after you spend $5,000 on purchases on your new card within the first three months. The bonus is worth up to $1,000 if redeemed for travel through Ultimate Rewards® or $800 if redeemed for cash back.

The Annual Fee: $95; add employee cards at no additional cost.

The Rewards: Earn three points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases each account anniversary year on travel; shipping purchases; internet, cable and phone services; and advertising purchases with social media sites and search engines. Earn an unlimited one point per $1 on all other purchases (and once you reach the cap in the bonus categories). Points are worth 25 percent more when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. That means 80,000 points are worth $1,000 towards travel. Read our full Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card review.

More Details: Cardholders will also enjoy fraud protection; trip cancellation/trip interruption insurance; zero liability protection; purchase protection; extended warranty protection; auto rental collision damage insurance; no foreign transaction fees; and cell phone protection, which includes coverage of up to $600 per claim for the primary user and all the employees listed on the monthly cell phone bill when you pay your cellular bill onyour card.


American Express® Business Gold Card

Why We Like It: (American Express is a CardRatings advertiser) This card has some excellent perks, but the real appeal is in the decision-making power granted to the cardholder. You get to choose two categories in which your business will earn four points per $1 spent up to $150,000 in combined spending in those two categories each calendar year. The category choices are:

  • Airfare purchased directly from airlines
  • U.S. purchases for advertising in select media (online, TV, radio)
  • U.S. purchases made directly from select technology providers of computer hardware, software, and cloud solutions
  • U.S. purchases at gas stations
  • U.S. purchases at restaurants
  • U.S. purchases for shipping

The Annual Fee: $295; add employee cards at no additional cost. Terms apply. See Rates and Fees

The Rewards: Earn four Membership Rewards® points per $1 spent in the two select categories of your choice from the list above (applies to the first $150,000 in combined purchases from these two categories each calendar year.) You also receive 25 percent of your points back when you use points for all or part of an eligible flight booked with Amex Travel, up to 250,000 points back per calendar year. Read our full review of American Express® Business Gold Card.

More Details: With the American Express® Business Gold Card, cardholders can rest easy with purchase protection, extended warranty, travel accident insurance, baggage insurance, premium roadside assistance, car rental loss and damage insurance, no foreign transaction fees and more.


Best small business credit cards for travel rewards

The Business Platinum® Card from American Express

Why We Like It: This charge card offers a slate of features and perks that, for the regular business traveler, will likely make it well worth the above-average annual fee. Plus, since it is a charge card, you can't carry a balance over across statement cycles which means you shouldn't be tempted to let a balance run up and end up paying tons of interest. And, as we mentioned, The Business Platinum® Card from American Express offers a number of premium benefits and travel perks, which certainly help to cancel out the cost of the annual fee.

The Bonus: Earn up to 75,000 bonus points. Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after spending $10,000 and another 25,000 points after you spend an additional $10,000 on qualifying purchases within your first three months of card membership.

The Annual Fee: $595; add employee cards at no additional cost. Terms apply. See Rates and Fees

The Rewards: Earn five Membership Rewards® points per $1 spent on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com. In addition, earn 1.5 points per $1 on eligible purchases of $5,000 or more and one point for each $1 you spend on everything else. When you use your Membership Rewards® points to Pay with Points for a first class or business class flight with any airline available through American Express Travel, you'll receive 35 percent of the points back (or get 35 percent of the points back when you book a flight in any class with your pre-selected qualifying airline). With thhis benefit, you can receive up to 500,000 points back per calendar year. Read our full review of The Business Platinum® Card from American Express.

More Details: Cardholders of The Business Platinum® Card from American Express receive access to 1,100-plus airport lounges in more than 500 airports around the world; a $200 airline fee credit with a pre-selected airline to use for things like checked bag fees and in-flight refreshments; a fee credit every four years to cover your Global Entry or TSA Pre✓® application fees; complimentary travel benefits like room upgrades, daily breakfast for two people, late check-out, complimentary WiFi, and a unique amenity such as a food and beverage credit or a one-way private sedan transfer when you book your travel through FINE HOTELS & RESORTS; as well as a number of other elite shopping and travel benefits.


Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business

Why We Like It: The Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business credit card is a good card to have in your wallet for the businesss traveler who appreciates flexibility. The annual fee is reasonable and the rewards structure is simple. Plus, since you can add employy cards at no additional cost and those employees also rack up rewards on the account, you'll be on the way to travel rewards in no time.

The Bonus: Earn a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles after you spend $4,500 on your new card in the first three months.

The Annual Fee: $0 intro for first year; $95 after that; add employee cards at no additional cost.

The Rewards: It's a simple rewards structure: Earn two miles per $1 on every purchase, every day. The rewards you can earn are unlimited and they don't expire for the life of the account. Read our full Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business review.

More Details: Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business offers purchase security and extended warranty protection, travel and emergency assistance services, auto rental collision damage waiver insurance, no foreign transaction fees, quarterly and year-end summaries, and more.

If you are looking for a card with no annual fee, Capital One also offers the no-annual-fee Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business credit card, which offers 1.5 miles per $1 spent and a 20,000-mile bonus once you spend $3,000 on the card within the first three months of card membership .


Best small business credit cards for cash back

Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card

Why We Like It: The no-annual-fee Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card could be an excellent fit for a business where the expenses are concentrated in one or two categories; it offers 5 percent cash back on your first $25,000 in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone service purchases each account anniversary year; 2 percent cash back on your first $25,000 in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants; and 1 percent cash back on all other purchases. Plus, the welcome offer isn't too shabby either.

The Bonus: Earn a $500 cash-back bonus when you spend $3,000 on your new card in the first three months from account opening.

The Annual Fee: $0; add employee cards at no additional cost.

The Rewards: Earn 5 percent back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases each account year at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services. Earn 2 percent cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases each year at gas stations and restaurants; and earn 1 percent cash back on all other purchases. There are no limits on the amount of cash back you can earn. Read our full Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card review.

More Details: With the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card, you'll have access to fraud protection, travel and emergency assistance services, zero liability protection, purchase protection, extended warranty protection and auto rental collision damage insurance.


SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

Why We Like It: Earning 5 percent cash back in popular business categories is sort of the best-case-scenario for a business card, but this card goes a step further and offers cardholders the chance to choose where they'll earn 3 percent back from among a list of categories that include everything from gas stations to shipping. Add in that there's no annual fee to worry about. Talk about a flexible, valuable cash-back rewards small business credit card.

The Bonus: There's no traditional bonus right now, but you can take advantage no interest on purchases for 15 months (then, 14.49% - 21.49% Variable), which could save you a ton of money if you have some big expenses coming up.

The Annual Fee: No annual fee; add employee cards at no additional cost. Terms apply. See Rates and Fees

The Rewards: Earn 5 percent back on the first $50,000 spent each calendar year on wireless telephone service purchased from U.S. providers and on office supply store purchases. Earn 3 percent back on the first $50,000 spent each year in a category of your choice from a list of eight (airfare purchased directly from airlines; hotels stays purchased directly from hotels; car rentals from select rental companies; purchases at U.S. gas stations; purchases at U.S. restaurants; U.S. purchases for advertising in select media; U.S. purchases for shipping; and U.S. computer hardware, software and cloud computing purchases made from select providers). Earn 1 percent back on all your other purchases and once you hit the spending cap in the 5 and 3 percent categories. Read the full review of the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express.

More Details: This card allows you to earn rewards on spending ABOVE your credit limit (amount over limit is due in full each billing cycle in addition to your minimum amount due), which is just another way this card provides flexible value. You can set individual employee card limits and assign a trusted Account Manager. You'll have access to financial tools like Spend ManagerSM can rest assured with rental car insurance, purchase protection and a baggage insurance plan among many other business-friendly perks and features.


Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business

Why We Like It: This is the cash-back version of the Spark card mentioned above. With a flat-rate rewards structure, it's a simple card to have in your business' back pocket. Your cash back could rack up quite quickly.

The Bonus: Earn a one-time $500 cash bonus when you spend $4,500 on your new card in the first three months of opening your account.

The Annual Fee: $0 intro for first year; $95 after that; add employee cards at no additional cost.

The Rewards: Earn 2 percent cash back on every purchase made with the card. The amount you can earn is unlimited and there are no categories or caps to keep up with. Read our full Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business review.

More Details: The Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business offers purchase security and extended warranty protection, travel and emergency assistance services, auto rental collision damage waiver insurance, no foreign transaction fees, quarterly and year-end summaries, and more.

If you like the idea of this card but are looking for a card with no annual fee, Capital One also offers the no-annual-fee Capital One® Spark® Cash Select for Business card. This one features 1.5 percent cash back on all purchases and a $200 one-time cash bonus once you spend $3,000 on the card within the first three months of card membership .


Best card for airline loyalty

Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®

Why We Like It: This isn't technically a small business card, but it still offers plenty of perks for the business owner who finds themselves a frequent guest on American Airlines. Collect rewards for all that time you're spending in the air and enjoy ongoing perks and features that an avid business traveler truly values, such as Admirals Club® access, priority check-in and boarding privileges and free checked bags. (Citi is a CardRatings advertiser)

The Bonus: Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $5,000 in purchases on the card within your first three months of account membership. You can also earn 10,000 AAdvantage® Elite Qualifying Miles each year you make at least $40,000 in purchases.

The Annual Fee: $450; add up to 10 authorized users for free.

The Rewards: Earn two miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases and one mile per $1 on everything else. Read our full review of the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®.

More Details: Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® offers a number of money-saving perks including a Global Entry or TSA Pre✓® application fee credit and complimentary Admirals Club® airport lounge access (or a prorated refund of your Admirals Club® membership fee if you're already a member). Travel more comfortably with priority check-in, priority airport screening, and boarding privileges for you and up to eight traveling companions on the same reservation. Your first checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to eight companions on the same reservation.


Best card for hotel rewards

The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card

Why We Like It: Having a home away from home is a must for the busy business traveler. If Hilton is that home for you, this card is tough to beat. Rack up rewards, enjoy some complimentary airport lounge passes and don't overlook that healthy welcome offer.

The Welcome Offer: Earn 125,000 Hilton Honors bonus points after putting $3,000 in purchases on your new card within your first three months of card membership.

The Annual Fee: $95; add employee cards at no additional cost. Terms apply. See Rates and Fees

The Rewards: Earn 12 points per $1 at hotels and resorts in the Hilton portfolio. Earn six points at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers, on U.S. shipping purchases, at U.S. restaurants, on flights booked directly with airlines or with AmexTravel.com, and on car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies. Lastly, earn three points on all your other purchases. Read our full The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card review..

More Details: The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card cardholders receive complimentary room upgrades; the chance to earn weekend reward nights; 10 airport lounge passes each year; no foreign transaction fees; year-end summaries; extended warranty coverage; purchase protection; and a number of other travel and shopping perks and business management tools.


To see the rates and fees for the American Express cards mentioned in this post, please visit the following links: American Express® Business Gold Card (See Rates and Fees); The Business Platinum® Card from American Express (See Rates and Fees); The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card (See Rates and Fees); SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express (See Rates and Fees)

Disclaimer: The information in this article is believed to be accurate as of the date it was written. Please keep in mind that credit card offers change frequently. Therefore, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information in this article. Reasonable efforts are made to maintain accurate information. See the online credit card application for full terms and conditions on offers and rewards. Please verify all terms and conditions of any credit card prior to applying.

This content is not provided by any company mentioned in this article. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed here are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any such company. CardRatings.com does not review every company or every offer available on the market.

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