The Ultimate Guide to Credit Cards
Saturday, May 18, 2024

Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card Review

Eric Bank

By: Eric Bank

Eric Bank
Eric Bank

Eric Bank is an M.B.A. who has covered financial and business topics since 1985, appearing regularly on Credible, eHow, WiseBread, The Nest, Zacks, Chron, BadCredit.org and dozens of other outlets. Eric specializes in taking complex subject matters and explaining them in simple terms for consumer audiences, particularly in the world of personal finance. Eric holds a Master's in Business Administration from New York University and a Master's in Finance from DePaul University.

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Editor: Ashley Fricker

Ashley Fricker
Ashley Fricker

Ashley Fricker has more than a decade of experience as a finance contributor and editor, and has specialized in the credit card industry since 2015. Her credit card commentary is featured on national media outlets that include CNBC, MarketWatch, Investopedia, and Reader's Digest, among many others. She has worked closely with the world’s largest banks and financial institutions, up-and-coming fintech companies, and press and news outlets to curate comprehensive content and media. Ashley holds a bachelor's degree in multimedia journalism from Florida Atlantic University.

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Reviewer: Jon McDonald

Jon McDonald
Jon McDonald

Jon leverages 15-plus years of journalism expertise to inform financial consumers about emerging trends and companies making an impact in the industry. He is most knowledgeable in the areas of budgeting, credit card rewards, and responsible credit use. Jon has a passion for writing and editing, and his articles have appeared in publications produced by The New York Times.

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Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card Review

Rated 4.6 /5.0 ★★★★★

Some entrepreneurs would rather concentrate on their businesses than their credit cards. The Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card caters to these business owners by offering simple rewards that don’t favor any particular type of spending.

We examine this card and three worthy competitors that appeal to small business owners. If you run a small-to-medium-sized company (or are about to start one), one of these cards could figure prominently in your plans.

What to Know About the Card:

  • The Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card offers a generous signup bonus and 1.5% cash back on all eligible purchases. It’s an excellent option for small business owners who need a simple, inexpensive credit card.
  • It charges no annual fee and lets you authorize employee cards at no additional cost.
  • Startups may especially appreciate the card for its introductory 0% Intro APR on Purchases 12 months.
  • Benefits include purchase protection, extended warranty protection, auto rental collision damage waiver, zero liability protection, and emergency assistance services for travelers. In addition, you can simplify your accounting tasks by integrating your card account with your bookkeeping software.

How to Qualify & Apply

You can apply directly on Chase’s website through the links to “Apply Now” below:

Disclosure: When you apply through links on our site, we often earn referral fees from partners. For more information, see our ad disclosure and review policy.

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0% BALANCE TRANSFER RATING

★★★★★
4.5

OVERALL RATING

  • Earn $750 bonus cash back after you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase made for your business
  • No Annual Fee
  • Redeem rewards for cash back, gift cards, travel and more through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Earn rewards faster with employee cards at no additional cost. Set individual spending limits for greater control.
  • Round-the-clock monitoring for unusual credit card purchases
  • With Zero Liability you won't be held responsible for unauthorized charges made with your card or account information.
  • 0% introductory APR for 12 months on purchases
  • Member FDIC
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR on Purchases 12 months
N/A 12 months
18.49% - 24.49% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

You must be 18 years old and a US resident to qualify and apply for the card. It requires the applicant to be personally liable for all balances if the company cannot meet its obligations.

You must have good credit — a FICO Score of 670+ — and sufficient income to pay the card’s monthly minimum payments.  You can apply for the card online by providing the following information:

    • Your company officer title

    • Legal business structure and company name

    • Annual business revenue and estimated monthly spend

    • Business category, type, subtype, and NAICS code

    • Your name and address

    • Date of birth

    • Mother’s maiden name

    • Tax ID type and number

    • Phone number

    • Your total gross annual income

You must agree to use the card only for business purposes and not personal, family, or household purposes. You also must state that you will be personally liable for the card, are an authorizing officer of the business, and will inform Chase if your employment status changes.

You can specify authorized users when you apply for the card or at a later time. Chase lets you set spending limits on each authorized user. You personally reap the rewards that your authorized employees earn.

Chase’s 5/24 Rule applies to this card, which limits you to five new credit accounts from any issuer within the past 24 months.

Benefits & Drawbacks

The card provides numerous attractive benefits without charging an annual fee. Here we break down the benefits and drawbacks you should consider before deciding whether this is the right choice for you and your business:

Benefits:

    • Unlimited Cash Back: You earn unlimited, flat-rate cash back on every eligible purchase.

    • No Category Restrictions: The same rate applies to all purchases, so you don’t need to track specific categories.

    • Attractive Bonus Offer: You can earn a significant bonus after meeting the initial spending requirements.

    • 0% Intro APR: 0% Intro APR on Purchases 12 months

    • No Annual Fee

    • Free Employee Cards: You can authorize employee cards and set spending limits at no extra cost.

    • Purchase Protection: The card covers new purchases against damage or theft.

    • Extended Warranty Protection: You get up to a year of additional warranty protection on eligible items.

    • Flexible Redemption Options: You can redeem cash back in several ways, including statement credits and direct deposits.

    • Travel and Emergency Assistance: Assistance services are available when you travel.

    • Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver: The card provides coverage for theft and collision for most rentals in the US and abroad.

    • Zero Liability Protection: You are not responsible for unauthorized charges on your card.

Drawbacks:

    • Cash Back Rate Limitation: The cash back reward rate may be lower than the rates in specific categories from other cards.

    • Foreign Transaction Fees: The card charges a fee for purchases made outside the US.

    • Limited Advanced Features: The card lacks some premium features, such as airport lounge access and advanced travel perks.

    • Minimum Redemption Amount: The card may require a minimum amount of cash back before you can redeem your rewards.

    • Limited Insurance Protections: Compared to some other business cards, the card offers less comprehensive travel insurance options.

    • Balance Transfers Costs: The card doesn’t offer an introductory 0% APR on balance transfers and imposes transaction fees, which may be an issue if you’re looking to consolidate debt.

To be fair, some of the card’s drawbacks stem from its lack of an annual fee. For example, cards with more comprehensive travel benefits often charge two- or three-figure yearly fees.

Other Business Cards to Consider

The following business cards from Capital One, Chase, and Amex may make better sense for your business, depending on what you’re after, and offer formidable competition to the Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card. You should compare their benefits to see if one of them best fits your needs.

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.7

OVERALL RATING

  • Earn a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles – equal to $500 in travel – once you spend $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles per dollar on every purchase, everywhere, no limits or category restrictions, and miles won't expire for the life of the account
  • Unlimited 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • Transfer your miles to 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Redeem your miles instantly for any travel-related purchases, from flights and hotels to ride-sharing services
  • Skip the lines with up to a $100 statement credit on TSA PreCheck® or Global Entry
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year; $95 after that
  • Free employee cards which also earn unlimited 2X miles from their purchases
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
26.24% (Variable)
$0 intro for first year; $95 after that
Excellent, Good

The Capital One Spark Miles for Business is a simple, straightforward travel rewards credit card offering unlimited flat rewards on all purchases. You can redeem miles for a statement credit to cover any qualifying travel purchases.

Blue Business Cash™ Card Review

at the issuer'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.7

OVERALL RATING

4.7/5.0
  • Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your Card in your first 3 months.
  • Earn 2% cash back on all eligible purchases on up to $50,000 per calendar year, then 1%. Cash back earned is automatically credited to your statement.
  • Buy above your credit limit with Expanded Buying Power. Make business purchases over your credit limit with no penalty or enrollments, and still earn cash back on those purchases. Terms apply.
  • 0% introductory APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable APR applies
  • Get an application decision in as little as 30 seconds
  • $0 Annual Fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 12 months
N/A
18.49% - 26.49% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

The Blue Business Cash™ Card offers interest-free financing on new purchases for a limited time, just like other business credit cards in this review. This American Express card delivers cash back rewards that automatically credit your card statement, so you needn’t worry about complicated redemption programs.

Amazon Business Prime Card Review

at the issuer'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.7

OVERALL RATING

4.7/5.0
  • Welcome Offer: Receive a $125 Amazon.com gift card upon approval
  • 5% Back or 90 Days Terms on U.S. purchases at Amazon Business, AWS, Amazon.com, and Whole Foods Market with an eligible Prime membership on the first $120,000 in purchases each calendar year, 1% Back thereafter
  • 2% Back on U.S. purchases at restaurants, gas stations, and wireless phone services purchased directly from service providers
  • 1% Back on all other eligible purchases
  • Expense management tools to help you track and organize expenses
  • $0 Annual Fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
19.49% - 27.49% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

The Amazon Business Prime Card offers new cardholders a gift card just for signing up. It provides a high bonus cash back rate on business purchases from Amazon and Whole Foods Market. This no-annual-fee card from American Express offers expense reports that can help you manage your business spending.

Real Cardholder Reviews

The online reviews from holders of the Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card are predominantly positive, as is this one from CardsWithBenefits:

“Chase and most other banks do a hard pull for each application. However, if you want the Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card, get it. The importance of hard pulls is seriously overestimated. Most would recommend getting the card after you earn the [Chase Sapphire Preferred Card] welcome bonus.”

This lukewarm comment is from Sage512:

Been only looking at Chase Ink cards, so going to start with the Unlimited. I filled out the application and then received a 7-10-day message, but then I got an approval email about 10 minutes later! I waited for snail mail [and got a] spending limit of $4K, which is more than what I was expecting, honestly. Chase has never been super friendly with me, but always delivered when I asked mostly.”

We found few outright customer complaints about the card, which isn’t too surprising. Chase Bank offers some of the industry’s best credit cards for consumers and businesses.

FAQs: What Kind of Business is the Best Fit for this Card?

This card should attract several types of businesses, including the following:

    • Small-to-medium-sized businesses (SMBs): If your company has varied general business expenses, it can benefit from a signup bonus and a simple, straightforward rewards program without the hassle of tracking spending categories.

    • Startups and new businesses: Your new company may not yet have a precise spending plan and can benefit from the card’s versatile, flat rewards rate with no annual fee.

    • Businesses with regular, diverse spending: The card is a good fit if your business spending doesn’t consistently fall into certain cash back categories, such as travel, dining, or specific office supply stores.

    • Businesses seeking easy reward redemption: You may prefer uncomplicated cash back redemption options, including statement credits and direct deposits, without minimum redemption requirements.

    • Companies with frequent, low-cost purchases: The card is ideal if your business makes numerous small purchases, thus benefiting from the flat cash back rate.

    • Businesses with the need for employee cards: This card offers free employee cards and lets you set individual spending limits.

We believe most SMBs looking to rein in costs will benefit from owning the Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card.

What is the Credit Limit?

If approved for an account, your credit line will be at least $3,000. Chase may request additional information for a credit line above $25,000. Forums indicate that credit limits of $70,000 or more are possible.

Customer comments suggest that Chase has a soft rule regarding its income requirement. The rule is that your total credit limit across all Chase cards can be no higher than 50% of your income. Chase does not explicitly state this rule anywhere.

How Do I Redeem My Rewards?

Although the bank advertises the rewards as cash back, it actually denominates your rewards as Chase Ultimate Rewards points. Chase provides several ways to redeem your Ink card rewards. That’s a good thing because you can utilize your rewards to suit your requirements. Here are your options:

1) Cash Back

Receiving cash back for your points makes sense when you don’t have many travel expenses. To redeem for cash, log on to your Chase account online or through the Chase app. Navigate to the rewards section and review your available balance.

You redeem cash back at the rate of $1.00 per 100 points (one cent per point). For example, if you have 20,000 points, you can redeem them for $200 in cash.

You can choose the amount to redeem and how you want to receive it (i.e., as a statement credit or direct deposit). Deposits to your Chase bank account are immediate, but it may take up to three business days to receive a statement credit. You can deposit cash directly into most US checking and savings accounts.

2) Gift Cards

You can redeem your rewards for gift cards from numerous retailers, restaurants, and other businesses. This can be a suitable option if you plan to give gifts to employees or clients.

3) Travel

You can use your points to book business travel, including flights, hotels, and car rentals, through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal. Your points are worth 25% more when you redeem this way. For example, 20,000 points are worth $250 toward travel.

You may use your credit card, your points, or both when you book your trip online. The card entitles you to benefits such as car rental collision insurance and trip delay insurance when you use your points to book travel, even if you don’t bill anything to your card.

You can redeem points for airline tickets, hotel accommodations, car rentals, and other business travel experiences. You can request travel cancellations and changes online. You may redeem, pay, or track your reservations through chasetravel.com or by calling the Chase Travel Service Center at (800) 935-9935.

4) Pay Yourself Back Program

You can select one or more recent eligible purchases and turn your available Ultimate Rewards points into a statement credit. Chase will list eligible purchases posted to your account within the past 90 days.

Categories in the Pay Yourself Back program may include gas stations, grocery stores, select charities, and annual membership fees. This option can offset specific business costs without converting points to cash first.

5) Amazon and PayPal Shopping

When you shop at Amazon.com or with merchants through PayPal, you’ll have the option to pay for the merchandise using your Chase Ultimate Rewards points on the checkout screen.

In addition, you can use your points to pay for your monthly or annual Amazon Prime subscription. There are some restrictions to this option, so be sure to read the terms and conditions of your Ink card.

6) Transfer to Other Chase Cards

If you have other Chase cards that earn Ultimate Rewards points, you can transfer your Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card points to those cards. Doing so may increase the value of your points when you redeem them for travel through Chase.

7) Transfer to Other Loyalty Programs

Chase partners with several travel brands that you can transfer your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to, which may increase their value. Points can be transferred in 1,000-point increments, and all transfers are final.

Should I Pair the Card with a Business Travel Card?

There are several strategic reasons to pair the Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card with a business travel card, especially an Ink card. One important reason is to own cards with complementary rewards.

A travel card provides its highest bonus rewards on travel-related expenses. In contrast, this card offers a flat cash back rate on all purchases. Owning both card types lets you maximize your overall rewards.

steps to maximize credit card rewards

Another reason to own both cards is to diversify your benefits. The Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card has a limited number of travel perks. By adding a travel card, you can gain benefits such as airport lounge access, no foreign transaction fees, and free baggage check.

You can get more value from your rewards by pairing it with another Ink card. For example, suppose you own the Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card and the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card. If you have 100,000 points on your Ink card and transfer them to the Preferred card, they will be worth 1.25X as much when you redeem them for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.

Finally, owning multiple business cards can help you build your company’s credit portfolio. Bear in mind that travel cards usually carry an annual fee. Also, applying for a second card may impact your credit score.

What Other Ink Business Cards Does Chase Issue?

Chase offers three Ink business cards besides the Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card, each with different reward structures. Depending on how you use the card, one may be a better fit for your wallet:

Ink Business Premier® Credit Card Review

at the issuer'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

  • Earn $1,000 bonus cash back after you spend $10,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Earn unlimited 2.5% total cash back on purchases of $5,000 or more and unlimited 2% cash back on all other business purchases.
  • Travel Benefits: Unlimited 5% total cash back on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠, No Foreign Transaction Fees and Trip Cancellation/Trip Interruption Insurance.
  • The only business credit card with 2.5% cash back on every purchase of $5,000 or more.
  • Get the buying power you need to make large purchases, cover monthly expenses and help your business grow. While you must pay your Pay In Full balance each month, this card has built-in flexibility. The Flex for Business feature allows for qualifying purchases to be paid over time with interest.
  • Purchase with confidence with built-in protections like Fraud Protection, Zero Liability Protection, Purchase Protection, Cell Phone Protection, and Extended Warranty Protection.
  • There's no additional cost for employee cards. Monitor spend with digital tools like purchase alerts, set spending limits, reporting, and more.
  • Member FDIC
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
Flex for Business variable APR: 19.49% - 27.49%
$195
Good/Excellent

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.7

OVERALL RATING

  • Earn 100k bonus points after you spend $8,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 cash back or $1,250 toward travel when redeemed through Chase Travel℠
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year. Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases
  • Round-the-clock monitoring for unusual credit card purchases
  • With Zero Liability you won't be held responsible for unauthorized charges made with your card or account information.
  • Redeem points for cash back, gift cards, travel and more - your points don't expire as long as your account is open
  • Points are worth 25% more when you redeem for travel through Chase Travel℠
  • Purchase Protection covers your new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account.
  • Member FDIC
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
21.24%-26.24% Variable
$95
Good/Excellent

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.6

OVERALL RATING

  • Earn $350 when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first three months and an additional $400 when you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first six months after account opening
  • Earn 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
  • Earn 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year. Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • 10% Business Relationship Bonus If you have the Ink Business Cash card plus a Chase Business Checking account on your first card anniversary
  • With Zero Liability you won't be held responsible for unauthorized charges made with your card or account information.
  • No Annual Fee
  • Redeem rewards for cash back, gift cards, travel and more through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • 0% introductory APR for 12 months on purchases
  • Member FDIC
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR on Purchases 12 months
N/A
18.49% - 24.49% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

The latter two Ink cards charge annual fees but provide better rewards and benefits than the Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card. The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card is the best for travel. Chase also offers co-branded business cards for United Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Hyatt Hotels, IHG Hotels, and others.

How Does It Compare to the Ink Business Cash® Credit Card?

The two cards differ mainly in their reward structures. The Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card provides flat rewards, whereas rewards from the Ink cash card are tiered. The following chart compares the two cards:

FEATURE Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card Ink Business Cash® Credit Card
Annual Fee $0 $0
Introductory APR 0% Intro APR on Purchases 12 months 0% Intro APR on Purchases 12 months
Regular APR 18.49% - 24.49% Variable 18.49% - 24.49% Variable
Cash Back Rewards The same rate on all purchases Tiered rewards on select purchases
Sign-Up Bonus Yes Yes
Foreign Transaction Fees Yes Yes
Employee Cards Yes Yes
Redemption Options You can redeem your rewards for cash back, travel, gift cards, and more through Chase Ultimate Rewards You can redeem your rewards for cash back, travel, gift cards, and more through Chase Ultimate Rewards
Travel Benefits Auto rental collision damage waiver, travel & emergency assistance services, roadside dispatch Auto rental collision damage waiver, travel & emergency assistance services, roadside dispatch
Additional Perks Purchase protection, extended warranty, fraud protection Purchase protection, extended warranty, fraud protection
Credit Requirement Good to excellent credit Good to excellent credit
Ideal for Businesses Best for those with varied spending who prefer simplicity Best for those who spend heavily in the card’s bonus categories

The cards have no annual fee. By owning both cards, you can earn bonus miles on select spending and a higher standard rate on all other eligible purchases.

This Card May Be For You If…

The Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card offers you several compelling reasons to own it, including:

    • Unlimited cash back: The card offers a straightforward rewards scheme with a flat cash back rate on all eligible purchases

    • No annual fee: This card does not charge a yearly fee, which is a boon to companies trying to hold the line on expenses.

    • Generous signup bonus: You can earn a signup bonus by spending a set amount in the first three months after account opening.

It’s worth your thoughtful consideration if you own a small-to-medium-sized company, and the signup bonus and introductory APR on purchases make it especially helpful for business startups.

About the Author

Eric Bank
Eric Bank Finance Expert

Eric Bank is an M.B.A. who has covered financial and business topics since 1985, appearing regularly on Credible, eHow, WiseBread, The Nest, Zacks, Chron, BadCredit.org and dozens of other outlets. Eric specializes in taking complex subject matters and explaining them in simple terms for consumer audiences, particularly in the world of personal finance. Eric holds a Master's in Business Administration from New York University and a Master's in Finance from DePaul University.

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Eric Bank