How to Get a Business Credit Card Without a Social Security Number

You’ll need to provide alternate identifying info like an EIN or ITIN instead, and your options will be limited.
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In general, you need a Social Security number to apply for a business credit card. Approval is largely based on your credit history, so card issuers will use your SSN to look at your personal credit score.

If you don’t have an SSN — or don’t want to use yours — you may still have a couple of options to get a business credit card:

  • For foreign nationals living in the U.S.: Some business credit card issuers will allow you to apply with your individual taxpayer identification number.

  • For incorporated businesses with strong financials: Certain corporate cards require only an employer identification number to qualify. 

Otherwise, you’ll have to provide your Social Security number to get a business credit card. If you’re worried about your personal qualifications, you may want to focus on cards that only do soft credit pulls or secured credit cards that can help build your credit.

Here are some options to consider, as well as more information about how to get a business credit card without an SSN.

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Business credit cards that don’t require an SSN

Cards you can apply for with an ITIN

An individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) is available to non-U.S. citizens.

The American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card

Best for: Flat-rate cash back

NerdWallet rating: 4.7

The American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card’s cash back offer has two parts: Earn 2% cash back on all eligible purchases on up to $50,000 per calendar year, then 1%. Cash back earned is automatically credited to your statement. Terms Apply. (See rates and fees). Rewards are automatically credited to your statement each month. For entrepreneurs with less than $50,000 per year in business expenses, this card is a no-brainer for flat-rate cash back, especially since it has a $0 annual fee. The application accepts an SSN or ITIN. Learn more and apply.

Ink Business Cash® Credit Card:

Best for: Cash back in bonus categories

NerdWallet rating: 4.8

The Ink Business Cash® Credit Card is a great choice for business owners whose spending includes traditional office purchases. Its rewards: Earn 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, Earn 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year, Earn 1% cash back on all other card purchases with no limit to the amount you can earn. It also comes with a bonus offer: Earn $350 when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first three months and an additional $400 when you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first six months after account opening. The application accepts an SSN or ITIN. Learn more and apply.

Capital One Spark Miles for Business

Best for: Business travel credit card

NerdWallet rating: 4.5

The Capital One Spark Miles for Business offers solid travel rewards: Earn unlimited 2X miles per dollar on every purchase, everywhere, no limits or category restrictions, and miles won't expire for the life of the account. Unlimited 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. Miles can be redeemed at a value of 1 cent apiece for any travel purchase, without the blackout dates and other restrictions of branded hotel and airline cards. The card charges an annual fee of $95, but offers a great sign-up bonus: Earn a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles – equal to $500 in travel – once you spend $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. (See rates and fees.) The application accepts an SSN or ITIN. Learn more and apply.

Cards you can apply for with an EIN

These corporate credit cards may still ask for some form of personal identification.

Ramp Card

Best for: Corporate card with no personal credit check

NerdWallet rating: 3.6

The Ramp Card does not require a credit check or personal guarantee. But you’ll have to provide your EIN and, if you don’t have an SSN, a copy of your passport. You’ll also need strong revenue and a fairly large bank balance (at least $75,000) to qualify. Ramp is a charge card, which means you’ll have to pay off your balance in full every month. Learn more and apply.

Brex Card

Best for: Corporate card for startups with professional investment

NerdWallet rating: 2.9

The Brex Card is a corporate card that doesn’t require applicants to provide their Social Security number or a personal guarantee. Instead, your business’s cash flow and spending patterns help dictate your creditworthiness. But you'll need a minimum bank balance of $50,000 and funding from professional investors to qualify; if you don't have investor backing, you'll need a bank balance of $1 million. Learn more and apply.

Brex
Brex

Brex Card

NerdWallet Rating 
2.9
Annual Fee 

$0

Business credit cards that serve borrowers with limited credit history

Cards for borrowers with fair or bad credit

These cards require your SSN, but they may be easier to qualify for if your personal credit is lacking.

Bank of America® Business Advantage Unlimited Cash Rewards Mastercard® Secured credit card

Best for: Secured card to build business credit

This card has not been rated by NerdWallet.

The Bank of America® Business Advantage Unlimited Cash Rewards Mastercard® Secured credit card earns 1.5% cash back on all purchases, with no cap or expiration date on the rewards you earn. The card has a minimum security deposit of $1,000, which is equal to your credit limit and subject to credit approval. Bank of America® will periodically review your secured card and may upgrade you to an unsecured card if and when you qualify. This card has no annual fee.

BILL Divvy Corporate Card

Best for: Corporate card with a soft credit pull

NerdWallet rating: 2.7

The BILL Divvy Corporate Card does a soft credit pull at the time of your application. That means your credit score does matter — BILL says you’ll typically need a personal FICO score of 650 or higher, to qualify — but applying won’t have an impact on your score. You’ll also need to provide your SSN or, for citizens of other countries, passport number. BILL is a corporate card like Ramp, but it may be more accessible to more business owners: You’ll generally only need a bank balance of at least $20,000, far lower than Ramp’s minimum. Learn more and apply.

Capital on Tap Business Credit Card

Best for: Credit card for fair-credit borrowers

NerdWallet rating: 3.8

The Capital on Tap Business Credit Card is not available to sole proprietors, so it won’t be a fit for the majority of business owners. But Capital On Tap says applicants with a FICO score of 670 or higher have the best chance of approval, which includes some fair-credit borrowers. Applying doesn’t impact your credit score. But you’ll still have to provide a personal guarantee, your EIN and your SSN to apply. Learn more and apply.

Options from business software companies and fintechs

A service you already use may have pre-qualified you for a business credit card if you have steady revenue. You may have to provide your SSN for identity verification.

A growing number of business software and financial technology companies now offer business credit cards to entrepreneurs who use their products.

In general, not everyone can apply for these cards — you have to already use the service, and it generally has to invite you to apply for a credit card. Most don’t perform a hard credit check, but you may still need to provide your SSN for identity verification.

Companies offering credit card options include:

  • Stripe and Square. These payment processing companies both offer invite-only corporate cards to sellers on their platforms. They set credit limits using data about your company’s payment processing history. The Stripe Corporate Card doesn’t require a personal guarantee and Square Credit Card applications won’t impact your personal credit.

  • Bluevine. Users of Bluevine business checking accounts may receive an invitation to apply for the Bluevine Business Cashback Mastercard®. Applying for the card doesn’t impact your credit score. If you’re approved, the card pays 1.5% cash back on all spending. 

  • Shopify. This e-commerce platform offers a no-credit-check business card for eligible Shopify sellers. You’ll need to provide a Social Security number for verification when you apply for the card, however.

Why business credit card applications ask for your Social Security number

Business credit card issuers want to know that you can be counted on to repay your debts. For that reason, they look for applicants with good to excellent credit history — usually those with a FICO score of 690 or higher. There are some business credit cards for borrowers with fair credit, too.

Additionally, the majority of business credit cards require a personal guarantee. This is an agreement that you’ll be on the hook for your business’s debts if your business can’t pay them. This guarantee reduces the amount of risk a credit card issuer takes on.

Businesses do have their own credit scores, but those are more important for other types of financing. The longer you’ve been operating, the more likely it is that you’ll be able to access options like small-business loans or business lines of credit at competitive rates by relying on your business credit.

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NerdWallet rating 

4.8

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5.0

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NerdWallet rating 

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Annual fee 

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Annual fee 

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Recommended credit score 

690-850
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How to apply for a business credit card if you don’t have a Social Security number

1. Obtain or locate your ITIN

If you don't have a Social Security number, you may have an individual taxpayer identification number, or ITIN, instead. The IRS issues ITINs to non-U.S. citizens who need taxpayer identification but aren’t eligible for a Social Security number. You may be able to use your ITIN in place of an SSN on a business credit card application.

2. Get an employer identification number

Once you have an ITIN or SSN, get an employer identification number. An EIN is a tax ID number for your business, just as your ITIN or SSN is for your personal finances. You can apply for an EIN through the IRS’ website for free, even if you’re a sole proprietor without an established business entity. (You will have to provide your SSN or ITIN during the EIN application process, though.)

3. Look at your existing financial relationships

If you use business software programs like Stripe, Square or Shopify or have an online business bank account like Bluevine, check to see whether those companies offer business credit card options. Eligibility for these cards is usually determined by your spending or payment processing history, not your personal credit. But you will likely still need to provide your SSN or EIN so the company can verify your identity.

It’s also possible that your business bank has pre-qualified you for a credit card, in which case you may not have to go through the full credit card application process.

4. Consider a corporate card

are issued to incorporated companies, not to individuals personally. That means they don’t always ask for your SSN.

However, small and medium-sized businesses that don’t have ample cash on hand or high revenue are less likely to get approved for these cards. Plus, you’ll typically have to pay corporate cards off in full every month — you can’t carry a balance and pay it off over time.

One blue credit card on a flat surface with coins on both sides.
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