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|Issuer Customer Experience||3.6|
In a Nutshell:
Business owners who simply want to “set it and forget it” will likely enjoy earning unlimited 1.5 percent cash back with the Chase Ink Business Unlimited card.
Average Yearly Rewards Value ($4,000 monthly spend)
Chase Customer Service Ratings
Other Notable Features: No fee for employee cards, set individual limits per card, mobile wallet app to track receipts
The Chase Ink Business Unlimited card mirrors the simplicity of the consumer Freedom Unlimited card: Business owners get a no-annual-fee card that offers unlimited 1.5% cash back on all their purchases (and their employees’ purchases), with no spending caps or bonus categories to fret about.
To add to the appeal, this straightforward, flat-rate business card comes with an impressive welcome offer for a no-annual-fee business card and throws in some travel and purchase protections as well. As long as you’re not looking to earn maximum rewards on your business purchases, the Ink Business Unlimited has the potential to be one of the best business cards around.
Why you might want the Ink Business Unlimited
The Ink Business Unlimited is a good choice for small-business owners who want a hassle-free way to earn straightforward cash back on their purchases. For added value, the card comes with plenty of perks, including a generous sign-up bonus and an intro APR offer on new purchases. You can also add employees to your account for no annual fee, set individual limits for each employee and file and track receipts on the go.
Solid sign-up bonus
The Chase Ink Business Unlimited card recently updated its sign-up bonus: You can now earn $750 back after you spend $6,000 in your first three months. And thought that’s a $150 drop from the card’s previous bonus of $900 (an all time high), it’s still very valuable for a no-annual-fee business cash back card.
Plus, since the Ink Business Unlimited card is part of the Ultimate Rewards family, the bonus translates to 75,000 Ultimate Rewards points, making this a great opportunity to score a large number of points toward your next free plane ticket.
Hassle-free cash back rewards
Business owners who prefer a no-annual-fee card without spending caps or bonus categories to keep track of will earn an above-average flat rate of 1.5% cash back on every purchase with the Ink Business Unlimited card.
While this is a pretty good rewards rate for a no-annual-fee card, you can earn more cash back for your business if you’re willing to pay for a card with an annual fee.
For instance, the Capital One Spark Cash Plus offers unlimited 2% cash back on every purchase for a $150 annual fee (and no fee for employee cards). Plus, you can earn 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. For business owners with large business expenses, it should be easy to rack up enough cash back on business purchases to quickly outmatch a $150 annual fee.
Plus, if you’re not fazed by some extra maintenance and you want to maximize the rewards on your business purchases, you should seriously consider signing up for a travel rewards card – particularly a card with category bonuses. The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card, for instance, offers 3X points on business-related purchases (on up to $150,000 in select combined category purchases each year, then 1X) – twice the rate of the Ink Business Unlimited card.
See related: Make the most of the Chase Ink cards’ bonus categories
Flexible redemption options
Chase makes it relatively simple to redeem your cash back. Points don’t expire and you have a variety of options for redeeming your rewards – you can redeem your points for a statement credit or as a deposit into a checking or savings account, or you can redeem them for a variety of other rewards, including travel rewards, gift cards, Amazon purchases and experiences.
Unfortunately, for cardholders seeking the ultimate low-maintenance credit card, Chase falls a little short of some of its competitors. There’s no option to automatically redeem your cash back (the Capital One Spark Cash Select card offers this feature), and you have to wait until you collect at least 2,000 points to redeem them.
Pair it with a premium card from Chase
The Chase Ink Business Unlimited card isn’t just for low-maintenance cardholders. It’s also a great card for rewards maximizers. You can pair the card with a premium Ultimate Rewards card, such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, which offers 5X points on travel purchased through the Chase portal, 3X points on dining and 2X points on other travel purchases, or the Chase Ink Business Preferred card, which offers a 3-point bonus on business purchases.
Not only can you juggle the Chase Ink Business Unlimited card with these cards to earn a 1.5% bonus on purchases that don’t qualify for the other cards’ bonus categories, but you can then transfer your points to the Sapphire Preferred card or the Ink Business Preferred card and redeem them for travel to earn a 25% redemption bonus on your points (basically boosting their value to 1.25 cents per point).
To get an even better value on your points, you can also transfer them from these cards to a number of airline loyalty programs, such as United or Southwest airlines.
0% interest for 12 months
Aside from cash back rewards, the Chase Ink Business Unlimited card has another appealing feature for business owners: a 0% introductory APR on new purchases for 12 months (after that, the ongoing variable rate is 17.74% to 23.74%). If you are planning a large purchase for your business, this could be a great opportunity to finance it at 0% for a year, while using your sign-up bonus to help pay down the purchase.
Why you might want a different card
With responsible use, there’s little downside to carrying the Ink Business Unlimited card in your wallet. But it only offers a flat-rate of 1.5% on purchases, so it will be tough to maximize the amount of cash back you earn. An easy remedy for that is to pair it with a business card that earns bonus rewards in select categories you spend the most in.
It’s always a good idea to pay your credit card bill on time to avoid any late fees and negative marks on your credit report, but the Ink Business Unlimited gives you another important reason to ensure you make timely payments. The card comes with a hefty default APR of 29.99, which is a penalty you’re given if you make a late payment. To make matters worse, Chase could leave this penalty APR in place indefinitely, which is far longer than other cards that only keep a penalty APR in place for 6 to 12 months. So if you’re not sure you can stay on top of your credit card bills, it’s a good idea to stick with a business card that doesn’t come with a penalty APR.
How does the Ink Business Unlimited compare to other no-annual-fee business cards?
The Ink Business Unlimited is a great card thanks to its top-of-the-line sign-up bonus, easy rewards program and additional benefits. But it’s not the only business card with straightforward rewards and sold perks. Though they won’t be able to match the Ink Business Unlimited’s sign-up bonus, here’s a look at three other business cards that could be a better fit for businesses looking to earn more than just a flat rate of 1.5% on purchases.
Bank of America® Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card
|Rewards rate||Rewards rate||Rewards rate|
$300 statement credit online bonus after you make at least $3,000 in net purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening
$500 after spending $4,500 in the first 3 months
$250 statement credit if you spend $3,000 in first 3 months
|Other things to know||Other things to know||Other things to know|
Ink Business Unlimited vs. Bank of America® Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Mastercard®
The Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Mastercard has a much smaller sign-up bonus, and its flat rate of 1% cash back on general purchases falls short of the Ink Business card. But the Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards card has a couple of standout features that make it worth a look.
This Bank of America Business card gives you a chance to earn bonus rewards in select categories: 3% cash back in one category of your choosing (which include everyday business expenses like gas stations, office supplies or travel) and 2% cash back on dining purchases. The main catch is that you only earn bonus rewards on the first $50,000 in the combined 3% and 2% categories, which may not be the best fit for businesses with big expenses. But modest spenders could rake in considerable cash back in these bonus categories. Plus, the Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards card has no penalty APR and doesn’t charge a late fee if your balance is $100 or less, which is far more forgiving than the Ink Business Unlimited card.
Ink Business Unlimited vs. Capital One Spark Cash Select
The Capital One Spark Cash Select is another low-maintenance card with a 1.5% flat rate. It can’t match the sizable sign-up bonus offered by the Ink Business Unlimited, but it does offer bonus rewards: 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. This makes it a good fit for small-business owners with occasional travel purchases who aren’t interested in transferring rewards to airline partners for potentially better value.
The Spark Cash Select also lets you redeem your rewards at any time, with no minimum, and you can even set your account to automatically deposit your cash back rewards once you’ve reached a predetermined amount. This gives the Spark Cash Select a new level of low-maintenance that the Ink Business Unlimited can’t match.
Ink Business Unlimited vs. American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card
The American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card is a solid pick for small businesses with moderate expenses. It offers a higher flat rate compared to the Ink Business unlimited: 2% cash back on every purchase, up to $50,000 per calendar year, then 1%. It also has a few perks similar to the Ink Business Unlimited card, including an intro APR offer and a nice welcome offer (though much smaller than Ink Business Unlimited’s sign-up bonus).
The main downside of the Blue Business Plus card is the spending cap on purchases. You’ll also have to watch out for a penalty APR that will be in effect for at least 12 months if you make two late payments within a 12-month period or fail to make an on-time minimum payment. But if you can pay your balance in full and on time and have expenses that fall under $50,000, the Blue Business Cash card is a better long-term choice compared to the Ink Business Unlimited..
How do businesses use the Ink Business Unlimited card?
Given its generous travel perks, the Ink Business Unlimited card could be a good option for business owners that want to rack up points for business or personal travel. Here’s how one small business owner made the most of the card:
Small Business Credit Profiles
How Emily’s Maids uses the Ink Business Unlimited card
|“[My credit cards] have gotten me around the world and it’s always been for free!“|
Greg Shepard of Emily’s Maids, a low-cost maid service in Dallas, Texas, used the Ink Business Unlimited card to rack up points and perks on travel. Here’s his advice to other business owners considering the card:
|Read more of our Small Business Credit Profiles|
How to use the Chase Ink Business Unlimited card:
- Spend at least $6,000 on the card in the first three months to earn the sign-up bonus.
- Use the card for all your purchases (and your employees’ purchases) to earn a consistent cash back rate.
- Pair this card with a premium Ultimate Rewards card, such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred card or the Chase Ink Business Preferred card – you can transfer your points to those cards and redeem them for travel to get a 25-percent boost on your point value.
Is the Ink Business Unlimited card right for you?
The Ink Business Unlimited is a great choice for small-business owners who want to earn an easy 1.5% cash back on purchases, with no categories to track. For added value, the card comes with a number of business-friendly perks like an intro APR offer on purchases and one of the best sign-up bonuses around. As long as you pay your balance on time and avoid the card’s penalty APR, this is a solid business card to hold on to. And since it doesn’t charge an annual fee, you can pair it with another card that earns bonus rewards in your top spending categories to help maximize your credit card rewards.
*All information about the Chase Freedom Unlimited® has been collected independently by CreditCards.com and has not been reviewed by the issuer.
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