Skip to Main Content

The Ink Business Cash Credit Card vs. The Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card

business owner in hardware store
Randy Plett/Getty Images
Bankrate Logo

Why you can trust Bankrate

At Bankrate we strive to help you make smarter financial decisions. While we adhere to strict , this post may contain references to products from our partners. Here's an explanation for . The content on this page is accurate as of the posting date; however, some of the offers mentioned may have expired. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.

Chase is known for its wide variety of business credit cards. Many of which are designed especially for solopreneurs and small businesses owners.

If you are searching for a rewards business card from this issuer specifically, the Chase Ink Business Cash® Credit Card and the Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card are good options to consider. Both have very similar features, but some slight differences might make one better for you than the other.

In a nutshell, the Ink Business Cash card offers a higher rate of rewards for select business categories. In contrast, the Ink Business Unlimited offers a flat rate of rewards (in the form of Ultimate Rewards points) on all business spending. Here’s what else you should know about the differences between these cards.

Main details

Ink Business Cash Credit Card Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card
Welcome bonus $750 cash back when you spend $7,500 within 3 months of opening your account $750 cash back when you spend $7,500 within 3 months of opening your account
Rewards rate
  • 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
  • 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year
  • 1% back on all other purchases
  • 1.5% cash back on all purchases
Intro APR 0% intro APR for 12 months; 13.49% to 19.49% variable thereafter 0% on purchases for 12 months; 13.49% to 19.49% variable thereafter
Annual fee $0 $0

Ink Business Cash Card vs. Ink Business Unlimited highlights

Welcome bonus winner: Both

Both the Ink Business Cash Card and the Business Unlimited offer a $750 welcome bonus that requires you to spend $7,500 within the first three months of opening your account. This means that you’d have to spend at least $2,500 per month for three months to qualify for the welcome bonus with either card. This is a very reasonable spending requirement, which even smaller businesses should be able to meet.

Rewards rate winner: Ink Business Cash Card

With the Ink Business Cash card, you’ll earn more in the bonus categories that include office supply stores, internet, cable and phone services (5 percent) and restaurant and gas station spending (2 percent). Spending outside of these categories will earn 1 percent cash back. For the 5 percent and 2 percent categories, your cash back is capped at $25,000 in each category, which limits how much cash back you can actually earn each year. Once you hit that limit, you’ll only earn 1 percent back for spending in those bonus categories.

The Ink Business Unlimited does have a lower rewards rate at 1.5 percent, but it applies to all spending categories. You may earn fewer rewards with this structure, but you don’t have to track categories or worry about a spending cap that drops your earnings to 1 percent back on your spending.

Annual fee winner: Both

Both cards are no-annual-fee business cards. You don’t have to worry about justifying the cost of carrying these rewards cards from year to year.

Foreign transaction fee winner: Neither

Both cards charge a 3 percent foreign transaction fee. But there’s still a way these cards can support your business travel needs.

Consider pairing either one of these cards with the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card. With this card, you’ll skip out on the foreign transaction fee, earn more rewards in different bonus categories and have the ability to combine all of your cards’ rewards. Once you move points from your Business Cash or Business Unlimited card to your Business Preferred card, they can be worth 1.25 cents apiece toward Chase travel or up to 2 cents each, depending on the transfer partner.

Which card earns the most?

Ink Business Cash Card vs. Ink Business Unlimited spending example

Annual Spend Ink Business Cash Card (Cash back) Ink Business Unlimited (points)
Office supply $6,000 $300 90
Internet $2,400 $120 36
Cable $1,500 $75 23
Phone $3,000 $150 45
Gas $4,800 $96 72
Restaurants $9,600 $192 144
Total $27,300 $933 410 points (worth $410)

In this example, we can see that you stand to earn more than double the rewards with the Ink Business Cash Card—with a caveat. In order to get the most from this card, you’ve got to have enough spending in the bonus categories. If you don’t spend as much, like the example here, you could end up only slightly better off or even the same as you would with the Ink Business Unlimited Card in terms of rewards. Choosing the best card will come down to how your business spends.

Why should you get the Ink Business Cash Card?

If you are considering this card instead of the Ink Business Unlimited, it would be because your business spends in the bonus categories of office supply store spending, internet, cable and phone services along with gas and restaurant spending. This card would be even better for you if you can reach the $25,000 annual limit for both the 5 percent and 2 percent bonus categories.

You’d also get this card if you are not particularly interested in accruing rewards toward your business travel needs, the main reason why many business owners use Chase cards. Although you can redeem your rewards for travel, you can’t get the boosted 1.25- or 1.5-cent-per-point value for your rewards like you might with other Chase cards.

Additional benefits

Here are some additional benefits the Ink Business Cash card offers:

  • 12-month 0 percent APR offer; 13.49 percent to 19.49 percent variable thereafter
  • Free employee cards
  • Primary rental car insurance
  • Travel and emergency assistance to assist with issues while traveling
  • Purchase protection for 120 days, up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account for items that are damaged or stolen
  • Extended warranty protection that can extend eligible U.S. manufacturer warranties of three years or less by one additional year

Redemption options

You can receive rewards as cash or redeem them as gift cards, travel rewards or else pay with points for select products or services. You can also combine points with another Chase credit card that earns Ultimate Rewards to redeem your rewards for Chase’s transfer partners.

Recommended credit score

You’ll need good to excellent (670 to 850) credit to qualify for this card.

Why should you get Ink Business Unlimited?

The Ink Business Unlimited card is for businesses that want a no-frills, no-fuss way to earn flat-rate rewards on all your business spending. You’d also use this card if you want unlimited rewards in the form of Ultimate Rewards points, which you can use for many things, including travel and cash back.

Additional benefits

The Ink Business Unlimited benefits are almost identical to Ink Business Card’s benefits:

  • 12-month 0 percent APR offer; 13.49 percent to 19.49 percent variable thereafter
  • Free employee cards
  • 24/7 pay-per-use roadside emergency service
  • Primary rental car insurance
  • Travel and emergency assistance to assist with issues while traveling
  • Purchase protection for 120 days, up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account for items that are damaged or stolen
  • Extended warranty protection that can extend eligible U.S. manufacturer warranties of three years or less by one additional year

Redemption options

The Ink Business Unlimited card has pretty flexible redemption options. You earn Ultimate Rewards points with this card which you can redeem for cash back, including travel, gift cards and purchases through the Apple Ultimate Rewards Store, Shop Through Chase and select online merchants (like Amazon.com and PayPal) using Shop with Points.

Your cash back can be redeemed at 1 cent per point for a statement credit or be directly deposited into your qualifying U.S. checking or savings account. Also, you can cash out points in any amount at any time.

Recommended credit score

You’ll need good to excellent (670 to 850) credit to qualify for this card.

The bottom line

Both cards offer the opportunity to earn a respectable rate of rewards on their business spending. The Ink Business Cash card offers a higher rate of cash back on bonus categories capped at $50,000 in combined spending. The Ink Business Unlimited offers a flat rate of 1.5 percent back in the form of fairly flexible Ultimate Rewards points.

So essentially, you’d take a look at your business’ spending and choose the Ink Business card that matches best. With no annual fee, you may even consider getting both and pairing them strategically for better earning and redeeming opportunities.

Written by
Aja McClanahan
Personal Finance Writer
Aja McClanahan is an author, blogger and speaker on personal finance and entrepreneurship. Aja is the author of "How a Mother Should Talk About Money with Her Daughter."
Edited by
Senior Editor, Credit Card Product News
Reviewed by
Associate Editor