Although it’s often tempting for business owners to use their personal credit cards for company expenses, especially in the early days of starting a new business, it’s a bad habit to get into. Not only can it impact your own creditworthiness, but you’ll also be missing out on the range of benefits that business credit cards come with, including cash back, rewards, travel protections, and, in some cases, very handy expense management tools. If you’re ready to make the leap into the world of business cards, these are the 20 best business credit cards of 2021 to consider.
20. Brex Card
The chief attraction of the Brex Card is that unlike most cards designed for entrepreneurs, you won’t have to put up a personal guarantee. Instead, Brex will evaluate your creditworthiness by looking at the company’s financial standing. While that comes with its benefits, it’s worth noting that you’ll need to have at least $100,000 in your bank account to apply.
19. Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Card
As The Points Guy writes, the Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Card is perfect for business travelers and loyal Southwest flyers interested in getting A-List status or earning a Companion Pass. Perks include 4 upgraded boardings per year, inflight WiFi credits, Global Entry or TSA Pre Fee Credit, free employee cards, and a points scheme that rewards you with 3 points per $1 spent on Southwest Airlines purchases, 2 points per $1 spent on advertising, internet, cable, and phone services, and 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. The flipside is a $199 annual fee – if you’re loyal to Southwest, it’s worth it. If you’re not, there are better options.
18. Wyndham Rewards Earner Business Card
If you rack up a lot of expenses at gas stations, the Wyndham Rewards Earner Business Card points program will soon start to show its worth. Every dollar you earn on gas at a Wyndham gas station will earn you 8 points – more than any other card on the market. You’ll also earn 5 points per dollar spent on advertising and utilities, 8 points per dollar spent on Hotels By Wyndham, and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases. On top of that, you’ll earn 60,000 bonus points if you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening and an additional 30,000 bonus points if you spend $2,000 in the first 6 months. Other perks include Wyndham Rewards Diamond membership, cell phone insurance for the next calendar month when you use your card to pay your wireless bill, and 5,000 bonus points each anniversary year.
17. Delta SkyMiles Platinum Business American Express Card
If you’re a frequent flier with Delta, the Delta SkyMiles Platinum Business American Express Card makes an excellent option. Cardholders stand to benefit from a range of perks, including free checked bags for you and up to 8 companions traveling on the same reservation, priority boarding, discounts for in-flight purchases of food and drink, and points or miles toward elite status. Expect to pay $250 per year for the privilege of membership.
16. Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card
Named as the best hotel business card on the market by Investopedia, the Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card comes with some seriously attractive perks, including a very generous 75,000 point welcome bonus if you make $3,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months after account opening, together with up to $150 back in statement credits on eligible purchases. Ongoing perks include complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite status, a bonus night on card anniversary, and a rewards program that offers 6x points for purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program, 4x points for purchases at restaurants and gas stations, and 2x points on all other eligible purchases.
15. CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard
If you’re a frequent flier with American Airlines, the CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard offers some very appealing features, including your first checked bag free on domestic flights, preferred boarding, and substantial discounts on in-flight food and beverages. If you spend at least $30,000 per year on the card, you’ll also qualify for a Companion Certificate. It has an annual fee of $95, but it’s waived for the first year.
14. The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card
As Forbes notes, for a very modest $95 annual fee, the Hilton Honors American Express Business Card delivers remarkable value to Hilton customers. In addition to earning Complimentary Hilton Honors Gold status, you’ll also earn 10 Priority Pass visits – considering they’re worth $299 annually, that’s the annual fee taken care of right there. Other benefits include a generous welcome bonus of 130,000 points and no foreign transaction fees.
13. Citi Costco Anywhere Visa Business Card
As The Motley Fool notes, if you’re a business owner who shops at Costco, you could earn some steep savings with the Costco Anywhere Visa Business Card by Citi. Along with 2% cash back on all Costco purchases, you’ll also qualify for 4% cash back on gas (up to an annual spending cap of $7000), 3% cash back on restaurants and eligible travel, and 1% cash back on everything else. Providing you’re a Costco member already, there’s no annual fee, so you’ll get to keep all that cash for yourself.
12. Amazon Business Prime American Express Card
If you use Amazon for cloud hosting or purchases, the Amazon Business Prime American Express Card offers some very attractive membership benefits. Depending on your preference, you can either elect to earn 5% on all purchases made through Amazon Business, AWS, Amazon.com, and Whole Foods Market or 90 days of no interest on your purchases. As a welcome gift, you’ll receive a $125 Amazon.com gift card. There’s no annual fee, and cardholders will also earn 2% on all dining, gas, and wireless phone service purchases.
11. American Express Plum Card
Named as one of NerdWallet’s top picks in the business card category, the American Express Plum Card comes with a hefty annual fee of $250, but enough benefits to compensate. Cardholders can expect a 1.5% discount if they pay early, a 60 day no-interest period on all purchases when you pay the minimum due by the payment date, and no foreign transaction fees. As an added perk, the annual fee is waived for the first year.
10. Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit Card
If you’ve been turned down by other providers because of bad credit, the Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit Card is worth considering. There aren’t many benefits (other than no foreign transaction fee, free employee cards, and a flexible rewards scheme that lets you choose between either cash back or points), but its unique setup allows small businesses with poor credit to access a credit line of up to $25,000, depending on the security deposit amount.
9. United Business Card
The United Business Card offers a handful of very decent benefits to business travelers, including free checked bags, two complimentary airport lounge passes per year, and priority boarding. The reward scheme lets you earn 2 miles for every dollar you spend on United purchases, as well as at gas stations, eligible local transit, restaurants, and office supply stores, and 1 mile per dollar on all other purchases. You’ll also be eligible for 5,000 bonus miles every year that you renew the card. The annual fee of $99 is waived for the first year, meaning you get to reap the rewards at no cost.
8. Ink Business Cash Credit Card
If the bulk of your expenditure goes on office supplies and utilities, the 5% cash back you earn on supplies, internet, cable, and phone service purchases with the Ink Business Cash Credit Card is unlikely to go amiss. As an added incentive, you’ll receive $750 in cash back providing you spend at least $7500 within the first 90 days of account opening. As there’s no annual fee, none of the cash you earn will be eaten up by Ink.
7. American Express Business Gold Card
If you’re looking for a rewards program that lets you earn on your biggest purchases, the American Express Business Gold could be your ideal solution. Rather than basing its points scheme on predefined categories, it offers 4 points for every dollar you spend on your two highest spending categories. All other purchases earn 1 point. The points can either be transferred to any of Amex’s airline or hotel partners or redeemed through American Express Travel – if you choose the latter, you’ll receive 25% of your points back. In addition to the ongoing points scheme, you’ll also earn 70,000 bonus points if you spend $10,000 on eligible purchases within the first three months of account opening. The card does come with a hefty annual fee of $295, but considering the perks, it’s still a solid option.
6. Capital One Spark Miles for Business Card
As CNBC notes, for businesses with less than stellar credit that are looking for a card for everyday business expenses, the Capital One Spark Miles for Business is a very decent choice. You’ll earn 5 miles for every dollar you spend on hotels and rental cars booked via Capital One travel and 2 miles for every dollar you spend on all other purchases. The points can either be redeemed against travel at a rate of 1 cent per mile or transferred to one of Capital One’s business partners. Additional perks include no foreign transaction fees and a reasonable annual fee of $95, which is waived for the first year.
5. Wells Fargo Business Platinum Credit Card
With a flexible rewards program that lets you choose between either points or cash back, no foreign transaction fees, and a very generous $500 welcome cash back bonus when you enroll in the Business Card Rewards Program and spend at least $5,000 in the first 90 days after account opening, the Wells Fargo Business Platinum Credit Card makes a great option for businesses looking for a no annual fee card for everyday business expenses.
4. Divvy Business Card
The Divvy Business Card is a new type of credit card. As well as offering the same range of standard services you’d expect from a conventional card, it also offers credit and expense management tools at no extra charge. The points scheme is generous, and businesses that pay off their bills more frequently will be rewarded. Best of all, there’s no annual fee.
3. Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card
If you’re looking for a good all-rounder with no annual fee, the Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card makes a solid option. Instead of a complicated rewards program, you’ll earn a flat 1.5% cash back on every purchase you make. There’s also a very generous $750 bonus cash back offer for new cardholders. For the first 12 months after opening the account, you’ll benefit from a 0% introductory APR on purchases, rising to 13.24%-19.24% variable APR thereafter. Additional perks include primary car rental insurance when renting for business trips and purchase protection against damage or theft.
2. American Express Blue Business Plus Card
Ranked by CNN as the best overall business card on the market, the Blue Business Plus from American Express is ideal for small businesses with annual expenses of up to $50,000 who want to pay off large purchases with no interest. Along with an appealing introductory 0% APR on purchases for the first 12 months, the card also comes with a reward program that offers 2 points for every dollar you spend on purchases up to $50,000 per calendar year, then 1 point per dollar thereafter. The points can either be redeemed for travel purchases through Amex Travel at a rate of up to 1 cent per point, or transferred to one of Amex’s hotel and airline partners.
1. American Express Business Platinum Card
The Business Platinum Card from American Express has some of the best travel perks on the market. The rewards scheme is straightforward enough: you’ll earn 5 points for every dollar you spend on flights and prepaid hotels booked on Amex Travel and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases. Points can then be redeemed at a rate of up to 1 cent per point through Amex Travel. As to the rest of the perks on offer, cardholders can expect up to $100 back as a statement credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, complimentary access to American Express Centurion Lounges, access to American Express Fine Hotels & Resort, elite privileges with various hotels and car rental companies, travel cancellation and trip delay protection, extended warranty and purchase protection, and more besides. None of this comes for free (the annual fee is one of the highest on the market at $595), but for frequent flyers looking for luxury perks and travel protections, the benefits outweigh the cost.