Editorial Review

Chase Ink Business Unlimited Review: When Simplicity Is Key

This card earns a flat 1.5% back on everything, with no categories to keep track of and an unusually generous sign-up bonus for its class.

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Our Take

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

The Bottom Line: This card is ideal for small-business owners seeking streamlined rewards. But other cards, even other Chase cards, can offer more value if you're OK with monitoring bonus categories.

Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card

Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card

on Chase's website

Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card

Annual Fee
$0
Regular APR
15.49% - 21.49% Variable APR
Intro APR
0% on Purchases for 12 months

Quick Facts

Annual Fee
$0
Regular APR
15.49% - 21.49% Variable APR
Intro APR
0% on Purchases for 12 months

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • High rewards rate
  • No annual fee
  • Intro APR period on Purchases
Cons
  • Has foreign transaction fee

recommended credit score

Alternate Pick: Travel rewards

Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business

A no-fee card for those who prefer miles

Get an unlimited 1.5 miles per dollar on all purchases. Miles can be redeemed for credit against any travel purchase. Plus, a one-time bonus of 20,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening. The annual fee is $0.

Read our review

Full Review

For entrepreneurs who would rather worry about their business than their credit card rewards program, the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card from Chase keeps it simple.

The card has an annual fee of $0 and offers an unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases. And a hefty sign-up bonus doesn’t hurt: Earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

But business owners willing to put some effort into learning a rewards program might find greater rewards value elsewhere, even within Chase’s own lineup of small-business credit cards.

Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card: Basics and benefits

Card type: Small business.

Notable sign-up bonus

Earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's a big cash bonus for a card with an annual fee of $0.

Easy-to-understand rewards

No spending categories to remember, just a flat rate of 1.5 points per dollar spent. Rewards come in the form of Chase Ultimate Rewards® points, worth 1 cent each when redeemed as cash back. You can get that cash back in the form of a statement credit or a direct deposit into most U.S. checking and savings accounts. Points can also be redeemed for:

  • Gift cards (1 cent per point).

  • Travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards®  (1 cent per point).

  • Amazon purchases (0.8 cents per point).

It’s also possible to move your rewards to other Chase accounts that earn Chase Ultimate Rewards® points, potentially getting more value for travel. More on that next.

ability to pair with higher-tier Chase cards for travel rewards

Typically, Chase Ultimate Rewards® points are worth around 1 cent each. But three different Chase cards — the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card, along with consumer cards Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve® — offer boosts to that point value if you use your points to book travel through Chase. With the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card and the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, points are worth 1.25 cents each when redeemed for travel this way. With the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, they're worth 1.5 cents each when redeemed this way.

The Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card isn't eligible for these more-valuable travel redemptions — but if you also have any of those other three special cards, you can transfer points to that card from your Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card. If you do this, and then redeem for travel, your effective rewards rate gets even better.

Points on those three special cards can also be transferred at a 1:1 ratio to other loyalty programs, such as United Airlines, British Airways or Marriott. Potentially, that could net you an even higher effective rewards rate.

An introductory 0% APR period

The APR on this card is 0% on Purchases for 12 months, and then the ongoing APR of 15.49% - 21.49% Variable APR. This makes it a good option for an entrepreneur wanting to start or grow a business by making purchases without the cash on hand. But a balance-transfer fee of 5% makes it a poor choice for transferring debt from another card.

Drawbacks and potential alternatives

Mediocre flat rewards rate

A cash-back rewards rate of 1.5% on everything is simple, but not especially lucrative, even among flat-rate cards. The Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business, for example, has a flat rewards rate of 2%, although it does come with an annual fee of $0 for the first year, then $95.

No spending categories

If you have higher spending in certain categories, such as travel or office supplies, you might be better off with a card that offers a higher rewards rate on those spending categories. For example, elsewhere in the Chase lineup is the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card, which offers 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on Internet, cable and phone services each year. Plus, it earns 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants annually, in addition to an unlimited 1% cash back on all other card purchases. It is comparable because it not only comes from Chase but also has an annual fee of $0.

Foreign transaction fees

If you're traveling internationally, the 3% foreign transaction fees on the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card will hurt.

Should I get the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card?

The simplicity of the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card could be a fit for entrepreneurs who don’t want to deal with cumbersome bonus category terms. And its generous sign-up bonus and introductory 0% APR period are a boon for those planning to make a major purchase and pay it down over time. But if you’re looking for lucrative rewards, you can do better, maybe even in Chase’s own lineup of small-business credit cards.