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.

Gregory KarpNovember 19, 2020
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Our Take

4.6

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

on Chase's website

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

13.24% - 19.24% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% intro APR on Purchases for 12 months

Recommended Credit Score

Quick Facts

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • High rewards rate

  • No annual fee

  • Intro APR period on Purchases

Cons

  • Has foreign transaction fee

Compare to Other Cards

NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Annual Fee

$0

Annual Fee

$95

Annual Fee

$0 intro for the first year, then $95

Regular APR

13.24% - 19.24% Variable APR

Regular APR

15.99% - 22.99% Variable APR

Regular APR

13.99% - 23.99% Variable APR

Rates & Fees

Intro APR

0% intro APR on Purchases for 12 months

Intro APR

N/A

Intro APR

0% intro APR on Purchases for 12 months

Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score

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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 $750 bonus cash back after you spend $7,500 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 $750 bonus cash back after you spend $7,500 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% intro APR on Purchases for 12 months, and then the ongoing APR of 13.24% - 19.24% 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.

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.

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 on purchases 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.

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