Updated Mar 11, 2021 | Published Oct 02, 2020 • 14 min read
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The Chase Ink Business Preferred can help the occasionally traveling business owner, especially if you spend less than $150,000 annually on business expenses. While the benefits are standard, the Chase Ultimate Rewards program is where this card shines with flexible redemption options.
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The information related to American Express® Business Gold Card, Capital One Spark Cash for Business, and Delta SkyMiles® Gold Business American Express Card have been collected by Credit Card Insider and have not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of these products.
The Ink Business Preferred is designed for small business owners who travel, probably at least a few times per year.
It has a $95 annual fee, so you’ll want to use it enough each year to make that fee worth it. This card might be right for you if you spend a lot in the bonus reward categories, because you’ll earn 3X points per dollar on the first $150,000 of spending for:
Internet, cable, and phone services
Advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines
You’ll also earn 5X Ultimate Rewards points per dollar on Lyft rides.
Chase will give you 1.25 cents per point for travel redemptions through the Ultimate Rewards program; at that rate you’d earn a 3.75% cash back equivalent in the 3X categories. Or you can transfer your points to a travel partner, where you could get 6% cash back or more.
There’s also a nice signup bonus of 100,000 bonus points for spending $15,000 in the first 3 months after account opening, worth over $1,000 when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars per year on business trips to use this card. But you will need to redeem your points for travel expenses if you want to get the best value for them.
If you don’t travel very often or you’re looking for different reward categories, check out the Ink Business Cash® Credit Card (Review). It has no annual fee, and offers 5% back for office supplies and internet, cable, and phone services.
But now, back to the Ink Business Preferred.
Insider Advice: Getting the Most Out of Your Card
Make sure your spending habits fit the card: Choose this card if your business spends money on travel, shipping, internet/cable/phone services, and/or advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines. Otherwise, a different card may earn you more rewards value.
Keep an eye on how much you’re spending: You’ll earn 3X points on those purchases for the first $150,000 in combined spending each year. After reaching that point, consider using a different business card to continue earning rewards.
Reach the signup bonus: Get the signup offer of 100,000 bonus points for spending $15,000 in the first 3 months after account opening.
Get the most out of your points: Transfer your points to a travel partner when you can get a good deal for them. Otherwise use them through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Points won’t expire, so you can hold on to them til you find a good deal.
Use it when you travel: Use this card when traveling abroad because there are no foreign transaction fees. And as a Visa, it will be accepted just about everywhere that takes credit cards.
Take advantage of the employee cards: Distribute up to 70 employee cards to your employees, and earn rewards when they spend with the cards. You may be able to get more if necessary.
Depending on how you earn and redeem your points, when spending in the 3X categories you can get the equivalent of up to 3.75% cash back by redeeming through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Or you can potentially get 6% cash back or more through a good point transfer.
5X Ultimate Rewards points per dollar on Lyft rides (through March 2022)
3X Ultimate Rewards points per dollar on the first $150,000 spent per year in combined purchases on:
Internet, cable, and phone services
Advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines
1X Ultimate Rewards point per dollar on all other purchases
Introductory Bonus Offer
100,000 bonus points for spending $15,000 in the first 3 months after account opening
You can redeem your points in a few different ways. The most valuable normal method is to redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards, but you might be able to get more value through a point transfer.
The redemption options are:
Travel expenses: Redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards for a 25% point bonus.
Point transfer: Transfer your points to a variety of partner loyalty programs at a 1:1 rate.
Cash back: Get a statement credit applied toward your account, or deposited into a U.S. checking or savings account.
Gift cards: Available for a selection of retailers, like The Home Depot, Staples, or iTunes.
Shop with Points at Amazon.com: Use your points to pay for some or all of your purchases at Amazon.com.
The best redemption options are for travel expenses through Chase Ultimate Rewards, or for point transfers. Those travel expenses will always provide a value of 1.25 cents per point.
You may be able to get more than that with point transfers, but that will depend on the particular way you use them. In some cases you could get more, in some cases you could get less.
The other methods will provide less value. The cash back option will provide 1 cent per point, while gift cards may provide less than that.
The Shop with Points option may seem convenient and tempting, but if you pay with points you won’t earn any rewards on your purchase. Instead you could pay as normal with this card, earning 1X point per dollar, or with a different card that will provide more cash back, like the 14.24% to 22.24% Variable.
So we recommend going with the first two methods listed above every time. Your points won’t expire for the lifetime of your account, as long as it remains in good standing, so you can hold on to them until you can use them in a valuable way.
It may be easiest for small business owners to redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. 50,000 points will be worth $625, for example.
Or you can transfer your points to a frequent traveler program. We’ll discuss that next, and go through a point transfer example.
Point Transfer Examples
You can transfer your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to quite a few airline and hotel travel partners. Every transfer is at a 1:1 rate, so every point you transfer will get you one partner mile or point. This is a relatively good deal, because other credit cards don’t always guarantee a 1:1 transfer rate (we’re looking at you, American Express® Business Gold Card (Review)).
The participating travel partners are:
Airline Travel Partners
Aer Lingus AerClub
British Airways Executive Club
Flying Blue AIR FRANCE KLM
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
Hotel Travel Partners
IHG Rewards Club
World of Hyatt
Since you can get a value of 1.25 cents per point through Chase Ultimate Rewards, it only makes sense to do a point transfer if you can get a better value than that by transferring.
We’ll go over an example below to show how you can get a great value with a point transfer. But take note that not all transfers will be this good, and the value you get will depend on the particular airline or hotel, time of year, and other factors.
Good Point Transfer Example
Here’s an example showing a way to get a good value for your points. In this case we’ll do a transfer to United MileagePlus miles, so we can book a flight for an upcoming business trip.
United has Saver Award routes, which are discounted routes that let you get more for your points. We’ll use a Saver Award route for this example, for a one-way, economy-class ticket from Houston, Texas, to Colorado Springs, Colorado. We’ll travel on Wednesday, March 28th.
This flight would normally cost $501. Or, you could get it for 25,000 miles, plus a fee of $80.60.
So how much would you need to spend with the Ink Business Preferred to earn this flight?
Let’s say you spend in the bonus categories to earn points at the best rate, 3X points per dollar. You’ll need to spend $8,334 at that rate to earn the 25,000 points.
Then you can transfer those points to United to turn them into MileagePlus miles. And finally you can book your flight, paying the extra fee.
In this particular case you spend a total of $8,414.60 to get a flight valued at $501. That means you get a cash back equivalent of about 6%. That’s a pretty good deal, better than the 3.75% you can get through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
In this case your points are worth about 2 cents each. You also had to pay that fee, but that’s normal and this was still a pretty profitable point transfer.
We used a Saver Award route to get a good deal, and chose economy class because cheaper bookings usually provide better redemption values. You can probably use a similar strategy when transferring your points, even if you’re not transferring to United.
Read moreBest Business Credit Cards for Travel
In many cases, terms and restrictions will apply to your card benefits. Check your Guide to Benefits to learn the exact details.
20,000 bonus points per referral: Invite other business owners to apply for this card, and you’ll get 20,000 bonus points for every successful application. You can earn a maximum of 100,000 bonus points per year in this way.
Free employee cards: You can get up to 70 employee cards, and set individual spending limits for them. You’ll earn points for all spending on employee cards.
Cell Phone Protection: When you pay your monthly cell phone bill with the card, this benefit provides coverage for theft of, damage to, or “involuntary and accidental parting” with your cell phone. It applies to you and your employees listed on your monthly bill.
Purchase Protection: Eligible purchases are covered for 120 days against damage, theft, or “involuntary and accidental parting with property.” Up to $10,000 per claim is available, and up to $50,000 per account.
Extended Warranty Protection: Eligible items with warranties of three years or less can have those warranties extended by an additional year. Up to a maximum of $10,000 is available per claim, and $50,000 per account.
Travel and Emergency Assistance Services: Call the number on the back of your card for emergency help of many kinds while traveling. Third-party fees will apply for any services obtained.
Trip Cancellation/Trip Interruption Insurance: This benefit provides reimbursement if your trip is cancelled or cut short because of an eligible reason. Up to $5,000 is available in reimbursement.
Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver: Your eligible rented vehicles are covered against theft and damage, as long as you decline the rental company’s own insurance. You must pay for the entire rental using the Ink Business Preferred. This coverage is primary when renting for business purposes.
Fraud Protection: Real-time fraud monitoring for unauthorized activity.
Zero Liability Protection: You won’t be held responsible for unauthorized activity on your account.
The Terms & Fees
Balance Transfer APR
Cash Advance APR
Foreign Transaction Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Cash Advance Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Either $15 or 5% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater.
Returned Payment Fee
Up to 29.99% Variable
The terms and fees are pretty simple and easy to understand.
There is no 0% introductory rate currently offered for this card. You’ll be charged interest at the rate above if you revolve a balance from month to month. But you can completely avoid interest on purchases if you pay off your balance in full each billing period.
The Bottom Line
The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card has an attractive rewards program for some small business owners. If you make business trips at least a few times per year and your business spends in the bonus categories, you can earn rewards and cut down on the cost of travel.
Consider the 3X bonus categories. Do you spend a lot in them, but less than $150,000? This is a pretty high reward spending limit, but it’s not as high as they come. If you spend much more than that, you should probably consider either using another card in addition to this one, or instead of this one.
If you can refer some friends you have the potential to get up to 100,000 extra points per year, which would be a pretty nice bonus. And the primary auto rental collision waiver could definitely come in handy on business trips. But overall, the rewards are the main selling point of this card.
The Chase Ultimate Rewards program offers a valuable way to redeem your points. But you can do even better than that if you take advantage of the 1:1 point transfer. Think about where you could use some airline miles or hotel points, and see if you could get a great deal.
This is a mid-range business credit card, and it has the potential to be fairly rewarding. There are other options too, however, some with lower annual fees and some with higher. They have different bonus reward categories too. Check out some of those alternatives below.
How Do I Apply for the Chase Ink Business Preferred?
You can follow the link below to apply now for the Ink Business Preferred card securely on Chase’s website.
In many cases applicants can get an instant response, but sometimes it might take longer. Chase may request more information to process the application.
What Credit Scores Do I Need to Qualify for the Chase Ink Business Preferred?
In order to be counted as having excellent credit, your credit scores would need to fall within the ranges of 800–850 for FICO and 750–850 for VantageScore.
However, credit card issuers will look at more than just your credit scores. They’ll consider your income and monthly mortgage or rent payments, among other things, when determining your creditworthiness. This means that even if you have lower scores than what’s recommended, you could still be approved.
But that means even if your scores are high enough, there’s a chance you’ll still be denied.
Qualifications and Requirements
Must be 18 to apply
Personal information: Name, date of birth, Social Security number, U.S. citizenship status, and potentially driver’s license number
Address and contact information: Home address, phone number, email address
Financial information: Total annual income, monthly mortgage or rent payment
Business information: Your business’ legal name and Tax ID number or EIN (Employer Identification Number), annual business revenue/sales, years in business, and the number of employees
What are the Ink Business Preferred’s bonus categories?
The bonus reward categories that come with your card include 5X points on Lyft rides (through March 2020), 3X points on travel, shipping, advertising, and internet, phone, and cable services. You’ll get 1X point for all other purchases.
Curious about how to use those points after you’ve earned them? Take a look at your redemption options.
What benefits come with the Ink Business Preferred?
Your card will come with a number of benefits, including some helpful shopping and travel protections like purchase protection and primary rental car insurance. You’ll also receive typical business benefits like the ability to request employee cards, and the opportunity to earn 20,000 bonus points for referring others.
What’s the credit limit for the Ink Business Preferred?
The Ink Business Preferred comes with a credit limit of at least $5,000.
Your credit limit is determined by a number of different factors, like your credit scores and credit history. And because of this it’ll vary, but you can request an increase if you feel your line is too short.
In this case, you’ll be limited to the first $25,000 you spend at the 5% and 2%rates (aside from Lyft purchases). This card also won’t earn bonus rewards on shipping or advertising, but it does get 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations.
The Preferred also offers cell phone protection, has a referral bonus perk, and no foreign transaction fee, whereas the Ink Cash has none of those features. But what it does have is a 0% introductory APR for purchases.
So you’ll need to take a look at your expenses. If you tend to spend more in these categories, aren’t a frequent traveler, and want more options when it comes to what you can do with your points, this could certainly be the card for you.
You’ll earn 4X points in the two categories that your business spends the most in each month, out of six possibilities. This makes the Gold Card very flexible, and able to adapt to the changing needs of your business. The Amex Travel service is included as well, for 2X points. Some of the categories overlap with the Ink Business Preferred, but there are some different ones too.
For the most part, the extra benefits you get with these cards will be pretty comparable. They both offer basic shopping and travel protections. The Business Gold card, however, comes with the Amex Relationship Care service, a set of business-oriented features designed to help you manage your company, including expense management tools and specially-trained customer support reps.
It’s also worth noting that Amex isn’t accepted as widely around the world as Visa, making the Ink Business Preferred a better option for traveling outside the U.S.
4X Membership Rewards points per dollar in the two categories you spend the most in each month, up to $150,000 per year (then 1X):
Airfare purchased directly from airlines
U.S. purchases for advertising in select media
U.S. computer hardware, software, and cloud computing purchases made directly from select providers
U.S. purchases for shipping
U.S. purchases at gas stations
U.S. purchases at restaurants
2X Membership Rewards points per dollar on eligible travel expenses booked through Amex Travel
1X Membership Rewards point per dollar on all other purchases
Introductory Bonus Offer
70,000 bonus points for spending $10,000 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership
The Membership Rewards points you earn can be redeemed in different ways, including point transfers, which will provide different values. The normal methods will provide a maximum equivalent of 4% cash back, while point transfers may provide a value as high as 8% in some cases, or even more.
Membership Rewards points are often transferred at a 1:1 rate, but this is not always true. In some cases the rate may be more in your favor, and other times it may be less so. This is different than the Ink Business Preferred, which always offers a 1:1 rate.
25% airline bonus: Book eligible airfare with Membership Rewards points to get 25% of your points back.
The Hotel Collection: Cardholders can receive a credit for up to $100 per stay to cover eligible expenses at hotels when booking through this service.
Lowest Hotel Rates Guarantee: If you book an eligible prepaid hotel room through Amex Travel and then find the same room being advertised online for a lower price, you can be refunded for the difference.
Amex Offers: You’ll have access to discounts at a wide variety of merchants, and the selection changes now and then.
Entertainment Access: Also called Membership Experiences, this provides pre-sale tickets to a variety of sports, music, and cultural events, as well as access to certain exclusive experiences.
Employee cards: You can get up to 99 employee cards; the first employee card costs $50, and after that they’re free.
Purchase APR: 14.24% - 22.24% Variable
No foreign transaction fee
Annual fee: $295
The information related to American Express® Business Gold Card has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.
This credit card offers a simpler rewards experience than the Chase Ink Business Preferred. Instead of a variety of different categories, you’ll earn a flat 2% cash back on everything you purchase.
But why choose? If you had both, you could use the Chase card for the categories where you’ll earn 3X or 5X points. Then use the Spark Cash for every other purchase. If you hit the $150,000 reward spending limit, just switch to the Spark Cash for those purchases.
This card comes with some perks geared at making your flights with Delta more comfortable. You’ll get priority boarding (Zone 1 Priority Boarding) and first checked bags free for you and up to eight companions, plus a 20% discount on eligible in-flight purchases.
So if you’re in the market for a travel card and love flying with Delta, you may want to consider this or the other Delta cards.
First checked bag free: Book flights using the SkyMiles number associated with your credit card, and Delta will waive the price of your first checked bag (usually $25). This perk applies to up to eight other passengers on the same itinerary.
Main Cabin 1 priority boarding: Board earlier (along with up to eight passengers on your itinerary, once again) when you book airfare with your SkyMiles number.
20% back on in-flight purchases: Get a 20% discount, in the form of a statement credit, on in-flight Delta purchases like food, drinks, and headsets (excluding WiFi).
$100 Delta flight credit: After spending $10,000 in a calendar year with your Gold card, you’ll get a $100 credit good for Delta flight and vacation package reservations.
Annual fee: $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $99
The information related to Delta SkyMiles® Gold Business American Express Card has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.
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