How To Pick Which Chase Ink Business Card To Apply For?

by Shelli Stein

Chase’s lineup of Chase Ink business cards are a smart choice for small business owners or sole proprietors. That’s especially true with large signup bonuses, existing card benefits, and potentially lucrative Ultimate Rewards points. However, what are the differences between the three Chase Ink business cards and which is the best one for you?

My recent experience with Chase almost canceling my card had me rethinking my business card strategy.  My cousin, who has fine tuned her amazing ability to shop and get the best deals, is turning her super power into a business. She now needs a business credit card, so she asked me which card to get.

Variety is the spice of life, but deciding which Chase business credit card to add to your spice rack to match both your business spending and what you want to earn can be tricky.

Choosing A Chase Ink Business Card: Ask Yourself These Four Questions

There are 3 Chase Ink cards – Preferred, Cash, and Unlimited. Here are the 4 questions to ask yourself. Then the choice becomes obvious.

  1. Do you want points that transfer to airlines and hotels or a simple cash back rewards system?
  2. Are you willing to pay an annual fee or not?
  3. Which sign-up bonus do you want to earn: $500 with Cash or Unlimited, or 80,000 Ultimate Rewards points ($1,000 toward travel) with the Preferred?
  4. How useful will you find the bonus categories for the spending you’ll actually put on the card?

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Earning Ultimate Rewards Points 

These Chase cards earn Chase Ultimate Reward points. Chase Ultimate Reward points are one of my top choices when it comes to earning points. They have many transfer partners, which makes Ultimate Reward points a super flexible currency. However, only one of these business cards provides direct travel partner access. For that privilege, there’s a small annual fee.

Sorting through Chase’s business card offerings means paying attention to how you’ll earn those Ultimate Reward Points because each card awards bonus points for your spend in specific categories.

Remember my cousin who needed advice? Her eyes glazed over after I went through this with her, but let’s go through card-by-card and see which one makes sense for you.

The Three Best Chase Business Credit Cards

Best for Travel Rewards: Ink Business Preferred Credit Card
Best for Cash Back: Ink Business Cash Credit Card
Best for Simplicity: Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card

Here’s what you need to know about each card’s welcome bonus, benefits, and perks so you can make the best choice.

Best For Travel Rewards: Chase Ink Business Preferred


  • Earn 100,000 bonus points when you spend $8,000 in the first three months. Depending on how you value Ultimate Reward points, that could be up to  $1,700 towards travel.
  • *Transfer points to hotel and airline partners
  • Earn 3 points per $1 in select business categories of travel, internet, cable, phone, shipping, and advertising
  • Annual Fee: $95

This card is an amazing choice for those who travel frequently and have spend in the bonus categories of travel, internet, cable, phone, shipping, and advertising.

*This is also the only Ink card whose points transfer directly to travel partners at a 1:1 ratio.

Most often I transfer my Ultimate Reward points earned on this card to Hyatt, British Airways, and Southwest Airlines. Both Hyatt and Southwest have no blackout dates when transferring points. In other words, if a seat on a Southwest flight or a room in a Hyatt property is available for cash, it’s available on points. Ultimate Reward points transfer instantly for these two programs too.

Park Hyatt Saigon Executive Suite

The Park Hyatt Saigon is an amazing hotel to use your Ultimate Rewards-turned-Hyatt points!

Best For Cash Back: Chase Ink Business Cash


  • Earn $500 bonus cash back when you spend $3,000 in the first three months
  • Earn 5% cash back in select business categories of cable, internet, phone service, and at office supply stores.
  • Earn 2% cash back on the first $25,000 (combined) spent at gas stations and restaurants each year.
  • 0% introductory APR for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers.
  • Annual Fee: $0

This card is an awesome choice for people who:

  • Spend heavily on office supplies and on internet, cable, and phone services.
  • Have large purchases to repay over time and don’t want to pay interest.
  • Want the simplicity of cash back.

If you have another premium Chase card product like the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you can combine your Ultimate Reward points to transfer to hotel and airline partners similar to the Ink Business Preferred. As a stand alone card however, the Chase Ink Business cash only earns direct cash back.

Hyatt Regency Kyoto

Delicious Japanese breakfast at the Hyatt Regency Kyoto

One benefit that is unique to this card is that spending in the bonus categories of dining and gas earns you 2% cash back.

Best For Simplicity: Chase Ink Business Unlimited


  • $750 bonus cash back after spending $6,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back rewards on every purchase made for your business.
  • 0% intro APR for 12 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers.
  • Annual Fee: $0

This card is a great choice for business people who prefer cash back versus travel rewards or have a large purchase to repay over time that can be transferred and paid off during the 12-month 0% APR period.

Because this card earns 1.5x Chase Ultimate Rewards points on all purchases, it’s as simple as simple gets. With no bonus categories to think about, you still benefit on spending. For sure there are 2% cash back cards, but many of them are personal rather than business credit cards, and they often come with an annual fee.

Do I Qualify For A Chase Business Credit Card? 

According to the IRS, the definition of a business is “an activity carried on with the reasonable expectation of earning a profit.” Therefore, you may still be approved for a business credit card regardless of the size of a business or how new the business is. You still use your personal credit history when you apply for a business credit card because you’ll be personally responsible for any charges on the card.

Do I Need A Chase Business Credit Card?

There are various reasons to hold a business credit card such as keeping personal and business expenses separate, having employee credit cards to keep track of employee expenses, and the rewards you’ll gain from your business spending either in the form of cash-back or free travel.

United Polaris is United's new take on the International Business Class. Source: United

Transfer UR points to United to fly Polaris business

After submitting an application for a business credit card, you may get a decision right away but you may not. Sometimes an application needs to be reviewed. If you are denied a business card, it never hurts to call the credit card issuer’s reconsideration line. You may be able to provide them with more information or even move some credit around from one card to another, thereby turning a denial into an approval.

Always remember that once you are approved and issued a business credit card, you must complete the spending requirement by a certain date to receive the welcome bonus. It’s good to make note of this date as well as confirm your offer.

Keep in mind that if you are approved for a Chase business card, it will not add to your 5/24 standing. Chase’s 5/24 rule means you cannot have opened five or more personal credit cards across all banks in the last 24 months. However, you must be below 5/24 in order to get approved for a Chase business card.

Final Thoughts

Chase offers a great portfolio of business credit cards. Depending on your preferences for spending and how you’ll use your Ultimate Reward points, one of these Chase business cards will rise to the top of your list.

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The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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Will Shrop April 9, 2019 - 1:55 pm

Get all 3.
Ink Preferred just for the bonus. Cancel after a year.
Ink Cash and Ink Unlimited are keeper cards. The Ink Unlimited is definitely better than the Freedom Unlimited with it’s new 3% sign up bonus.

Shelli April 9, 2019 - 1:57 pm

Can’t argue with your logic, Will. Thanks for reading!


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