Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card review: Best for unlimited 1.5% cash back on business purchases?
The Bankrate promise
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.
The Ink Business Unlimited credit card is a great option for entrepreneurs who don’t want to deal with complicated bonus categories and the intro APR offer makes it an ideal choice if you need to pay off new purchases over time. However, if you want to maximize high rewards earnings and you spend frequently in common business categories, you may be better off with a different business card.
Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card Overview
The Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card, a Chase card, holds its own in the issuer’s lineup of business credit cards. It has helpful benefits, a top-tier welcome bonus, unlimited flat-rate rewards, terrific redemption flexibility and more, all for no annual fee.
That said, it may not be the most rewarding option for your business if its focused spending is in key, regular categories. In fact, even a card with a higher base rewards rate could prove far more valuable — even if it requires an annual fee.
What are the pros and cons?
This card does not charge an annual fee, making it a solid choice for low-budget businesses
Currently offering its all-time-highest sign-up bonus, giving new cardholders a top-tier first-year boost
Offers a 12-month intro APR on new purchases, then a low 17.49 percent to 23.49 percent variable APR
Earns unlimited rewards without expiration or categories to keep track of
Flat-rate cash back rewards rate may be beaten by business cards with bonus categories, depending on your spending
Does not offer an intro APR on balance transfers
Welcome offer spending requirement may be tough to reach for some businesses
A deeper look into the current card offer
- Rewards rate: 1.5 percent cash back on all purchases
- Welcome offer: $900 cash back when you spend $6,000 within three months of opening your account.
- Annual fee: $0
- Purchase intro APR: 0 percent on purchases for 12 months
- Balance transfer intro APR: N/A
- Regular APR: 17.49 percent to 23.49 percent variable
Current sign-up bonus
The Ink Business Unlimited card’s latest sign-up bonus gives you a chance to earn $900 in cash back by spending $6,000 on purchases within your first three months. That’s a $150 boost to the card’s previous offer, with a $1,500 lower spending requirement. For a business card with no annual fee, this is an amazing welcome bonus. It’s also the card’s best-ever bonus and one of the highest bonuses available on any business cash back card in the Bankrate credit card database. Although the spending requirement may be higher than similar cards, requiring at least $2,000 per month for your first three months, the payday is bigger to match.
Instead of direct cash back, the Ink Business Unlimited earns Ultimate Rewards points that you can redeem for cash at a 1:1 value. That means that while the card can function perfectly as a cash back card, it also offers impressive flexibility if you’d rather redeem your rewards for travel, gift cards and more. Plus, you can get even more value out of your rewards if you pair this card with a premium Chase Ultimate Rewards card (like the Chase Sapphire Reserve) or a Chase business travel card.
How you earn
Whenever you use your card to make a qualifying purchase, you will earn flat-rate cash back at 1.5 percent. So, if you spend $12,000 in your first year, you will get a total of 18,000 points, worth up to $180.
Since you earn cash back at the same rate on nearly every purchase, this card is ideal for small-business owners who put simplicity and ease of use at the top of their list of credit card requirements. You can simply use the card for all of your business spending and slowly but surely build up a sizable chunk of rewards. To get a sense of just how valuable this no-annual-fee card could be, let’s say your business spends about $4,000 per month. If you were to use the Ink Business Unlimited cash for all of that spending, you would end the year with $720 in cash back. That’s nothing to snub your nose at for simply using the card for purchases you would have made regardless.
To get a sense of just how valuable this no-annual-fee card could be, let’s say your business spends about $4,000 per month. If you were to use the Ink Business Unlimited cash for all of that spending, you would end the year with $720 in cash back. That’s nothing to snub your nose at for simply using the card for purchases you would have made regardless.
The card also makes sense as a supplementary option if you already have a business credit card that earns rewards in specific spending categories relevant to your business like dining, gas or office supplies. You can use a tiered-bonus cash back card to maximize rewards in specific high-spend categories and then use a flat-rate card like the Ink Business Unlimited to earn a little extra on all purchases that fall outside those categories.
How you redeem
Since you technically earn Ultimate Rewards with this card, you have a nice mix of redemptions to choose from in addition to cash back. Options include 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.
If you do opt for cash back, you can claim your rewards as a statement credit or have cash back directly deposited into your qualifying U.S. checking or savings account. There’s also no minimum point threshold you need to reach before you can redeem your rewards — you can cash them out in any amount, at any time.
Other cardholder perks
Ink Business Unlimited cardholders enjoy a lineup of benefits that can help make your business run more smoothly — from travel and purchase protections to employee cards.
Free employee cards
A helpful benefit for business owners with multiple employees, free employee cards empower employees to make their own business purchases. You can set spending limits on each card so employees can only spend as much as you allow them to. Plus, you’ll earn rewards for their purchases in the process.
Chase will send you personalized account alerts. For example, you could program an alert that sends you a text when an employee hits their spending limit.
Does your business take you on the road? Gain peace of mind with 24/7 pay-per-use roadside emergency service, primary rental car insurance that reimburses you for up to the cost of the vehicle for theft or collision (if you decline the rental company’s insurance) plus travel and emergency assistance if you run into a problem while traveling.
The Ink Business Unlimited can also help you confidently shop for your business. It offers purchase protection for 120 days, up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account if your item gets damaged or stolen. Additionally, get extended warranty protection that can extend eligible U.S. manufacturer warranties of three years or less by one additional year.
How much are rewards worth?
Most Ink Business Unlimited reward options carry a 1:1 value, meaning your points will be worth 1 cent apiece. Cash back, gift cards and travel through Chase should get you a 1 cent value, but you may lose a bit of value when using your points through shopping portals. For example, your points are only worth 0.8 cents apiece through Amazon’s Shop with Points program, so you’ll be better off redeeming for the more flexible cash back option with more value.
One of the key perks of the Ink Business Unlimited as an Ultimate Rewards card is that if you pair it with a premium Ultimate Rewards card like the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card, you can pool all of your rewards into a single account and enjoy a higher point value. Or, if you have a premium personal travel card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or the Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card, you can boost the value of your points by up to 25 or 50 percent (respectively) when you redeem for travel with Chase’s portal. This makes the Ink Business Unlimited a great starter business card if you want to stick with simple cash back and avoid an annual fee for now but may want to pursue more lucrative travel rewards down the line.
Rates and fees
One of the best features of the Chase Ink Business Unlimited card is that it has no annual fee that would eat into your cash back earnings.
If your business is a startup and you carry a balance occasionally, the regular APR on purchases and balance transfers of 17.49 percent to 23.49 percent (variable) is, on the low end, well below the current average interest rate. Even better, businesses with big purchases coming up could save even more with the 12-month 0 percent intro APR on purchases before returning to the regular variable APR.
Additional fees to be aware of include a 3 percent fee on all foreign transactions if you use your card abroad, and a 5 percent or $5 fee for balance transfers (whichever is greater).
How the Ink Business Unlimited compares to other business cash back cards
Out of the catalog of Chase business credit cards, the Ink Business Unlimited is one of the best cards for startups and small businesses. It can cover virtually any expense, so its boosted base cash back rate with no spending limit means you could still use it as an everyday card once your business expenses have upgraded.
Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
Ink Business Unlimited vs. Ink Business Cash
If you want a no-annual-fee business cash back card, but spend heavily on office supplies, internet and phone services and at gas stations and restaurants, you may want to consider the Ink Business Cash® Credit Card. This tiered rewards card is more focused on spending categories, so you’ll want to make sure that your spending aligns with the categories it earns its highest rates in.
It offers the same APR and $900 welcome offer as the Ink Business Unlimited (when you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first three months) but its higher rewards rate in key categories could position it to earn more than a flat-rate card if your spending is weighed toward those categories. It also doesn’t require a rewards portal for higher rewards redemption like travel cards. With so many similarities outside of the rewards rates, this card is worth considering for any Ink Business Unlimited cardholder.
Ink Business Unlimited vs. Capital One Spark Cash Select
The Capital One Spark Cash Select is a solid alternative to the Ink Business Unlimited if you’re looking for a comparable rewards rate and a sign-up bonus that features a lower spending requirement. Cardholders can earn $500 by spending $4,500 in the first three months of opening their account, and as with the Ink Business Unlimited, your rewards never expire.
Unfortunately, the card doesn’t have an intro APR period and doesn’t include the opportunity to pool points across cards and redeem for travel at a higher point value as you can by pairing the Ink Business Unlimited with a premium Ultimate Rewards card.
Best cards to pair with this card
The best card to pair with the Ink Business Unlimited depends on your business spending since maximizing your flat-rate cash back card relies on pairing it with a bonus category card.
However, coupling your Business Unlimited with the Ink Business Preferred card opens the door to travel redemption opportunities that can increase your points’ value. Pooling your points with the Business Preferred or Sapphire Preferred means your points will get a 25 percent boost to 1.25 cents each toward travel through Chase, and finding the right Chase transfer partner could bump them up even further, according to Bankrate’s latest valuation.
Bankrate’s take — Is the Ink Business Unlimited worth it?
The Chase Ink Business Unlimited credit card is an all-around good card for business owners. It offers decent rewards, benefits and first-year offers, especially for a card with no annual fee.
However, if you want to earn more back on your purchases, you may be able to get a higher rewards rate with another card. The best business rewards card will depend on how much you plan to spend, where you shop most frequently and if you spend more in certain categories than others.
Frequently Asked Questions
* See the online application for details about terms and conditions for these offers. Every reasonable effort has been made to maintain accurate information. However all credit card information is presented without warranty. After you click on the offer you desire you will be directed to the credit card issuer's web site where you can review the terms and conditions for your selected offer.
Editorial Disclosure: Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including card rates and fees, is accurate as of the publish date. All products or services are presented without warranty. Check the bank’s website for the most current information.