No annual fee business credit cards are a convenient way to fund business purchases like maintenance, inventory, or travel. There are plenty of business credit cards out there, each with their own benefits and useful features. However, they often come with charges and fees. For example, a business credit card that offers air miles or cash back benefits may also come with an annual price tag of anything from $95 to $500. Therefore, despite the perks, this type of card isn’t necessarily the best option for many small businesses. Thankfully, most major banks and creditors offer no annual fee business credit cards, which is a good way to make sure your credit is affordable and manage your debt. In this article, we run down our top picks for the coming year.
Is your business eligible for a credit card?
The definition of what constitutes a business may be more flexible that you think. For instance, your business doesn’t necessarily have to be a corporation or an LLC – if you’re a freelancer or a sole proprietor, then it’s more than likely you can get a credit card for your business. Furthermore, your business could be as an informal as selling crafts on Etsy or vintage clothes on eBay. Essentially, anyone who offers goods or services in exchange for money can qualify as a business owner.
That said, it is crucial that you do not lie on a credit card application. On the application form, the creditor will ask what kind of business you own. They’ll then ask for your business tax identification number. If you’re a freelancer or sole proprietor, you enter your social security number instead. They will then ask for supporting documents to prove that you earn a self-employed income. Furthermore, applying for a business credit card will need a hard pull on your credit report – so make sure all your file is correct and in order.
How we’ve chosen our top no annual fee business credit cards
We’ve selected our top no annual fee business credit cards based on the value of the welcome bonuses and long-term benefits. So, for example, if a credit card offers cash back and air miles, the cash value of these perks is calculated to find how much you’re getting for your money. Furthermore, if a card offers tiered benefits, we’ve focused on the benefits you receive for meeting the lowest usage requirements. However, before deciding on the best way to get funding for a business, make sure you do your research – there are other affordable alternative financing routes aside from credit cards.
1. Chase Ink Business Unlimited Card
The first card in our countdown is the Ink Business Unlimited Card by Chase. This card is one of the best Chase business credit card, as it is essentially the commercial version of Chase’s Freedom Unlimited card. Like the personal credit card, this program offers 1.5% cash back on purchases, with no cap. Other stand out perks include Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program which earns you points you can spend with Amazon and several airlines. Furthermore, new applicants can boost their Ultimate Rewards points by transferring their cash back bonuses.
- Welcome bonus of $500 cash back after spending $3,000 in the first three months.
- 0% APR introductory rate for 12 months, 15.24%–21.24% variable thereafter.
- Employee cards at no extra cost.
- Foreign transactions are charged at 3%.
2. Brex Corporate Card with Exclusive Rewards
Brex is a young lender that tailors their offers to startups and tech, offering charge cards as opposed to traditional credit cards. Although their program doesn’t work through a traditional points system like a lot of lenders, Brex’s partners include Amazon, Zendesk, Salesforce, and Uber, to name but a few. These benefits only get better the longer you hold the card, with the Brex Exclusive Rewards program offering triple points on flights, hotel rooms, and even Airbnb. However, it’s important to bear in mind that you have to be able to pay off your balance in full each month.
- Welcome bonus of 25,000 points when you spend $1,000 in the first 60 days
- Charge card, so there’s no interest but you have to be able to pay your monthly statement.
- Employee cards for $5 per annum.
- No foreign transaction charges.
3. SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express
Although the American Express SimplyCash® Plus Card) doesn’t have the flexibility on redemption like Chase’s offering, it certainly gets you bang for your buck. For instance, this American Express small business credit card offers 3% back on a spending category of your choice. The options include airfares, hotels, dining, shipping, car rental, gas, and computing – so depending on where your business spends, you can get some great rewards. For more everyday purchases, there’s 5% back on wireless telephone services and office supplies capped at $50,000 per annum.
- 0% APR introductory rate on purchases for the first 15 months, 14.49% – 21.49% variable thereafter.
- Extra employee cards for no additional charge.
- Foreign transactions charged at 2.7%.
4. Capital One Spark® Cash Select for Business
The Capital One Spark® Cash Select Card is a basic version of Capital One’s flagship small business credit card. Although the rewards are less fruitful than the advanced option – holders earn 1.5% cash back as opposed to 2% – there is, of course, no annual fee. Furthermore, holders can enjoy an introductory APR free period and a $200 cash bonus when they spend $3,000 in the first three months.
- Welcome bonus of $200 cash back when you spend $3,000 in the first three months.
- 0% APR introductory rate on purchases for the first nine months, 15.24% – 23.24% variable thereafter.
- Free employee cards.
- No foreign transaction charges.
5. Bank of America Business Advantage Travel Rewards World Mastercard
The Business Advantage Travel Rewards World Mastercard is one of the most valuable Bank of America small business credit options, especially if you travel a lot with work. This program offers triple points on airfares booked with the Bank of America Travel Center and 1.5 times more points on any other purchase. Furthermore, the rewards don’t expire and there’s no cap on how much you can spend. Once the time comes to cash in your points, you can get 1% cash back on travel purchases – making the Business Advantage Travel Rewards Card one of the best no annual fee business credit cards for globetrotters.
- Welcome bonus of 25,000 points when you spend $1,000 in the first 60 days.
- 0% APR introductory rate on purchases for the first nine months, 13.49% – 23.49% variable thereafter.
- Free additional cards for your employees.
- No foreign transaction fees.