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We love small-business credit cards at Million Mile Secrets. They offer great perks that some personal cards don’t, they can help organize your business expenses and they let you tap into some great earning structures.
Some come with large welcome offers — like the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®. With it you can earn 70,000 American Airlines miles after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first four months of account opening.
Let’s walk through the steps of the Citi business card application.
Why consider small-business cards?
Here’s the million-dollar secret about opening small-business cards: Most do not appear on your personal credit report. This means that opening a Citi small-business card won’t hurt your chances of being approved for Chase credit cards later on. If you’ve opened five or more credit cards from any bank in the past 24 months (excluding certain small-business cards), Chase won’t approve you for some of their best cards.
Citi has some application and welcome bonus rules of their own. Read up on Citi application rules to learn more. For example, the CitiBusiness AAdvantage Platinum Select® card application states:
“American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles are not available if you have received a new account bonus for a CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® account in the past 48 months.”
Business credit cards are an easy way to get extra miles and points if you’re self-employed or simply have a side hustle. Lots of folks may qualify for small-business cards without realizing it. For example, if you’re a freelance writer, a tutor or a seller on eBay or Etsy, you could be eligible for a small-business card.
Business credit cards do not come with all the consumer protections of a personal credit card, but a lot of business cards come with perks that many personal cards don’t. For example, you can earn more points per dollar when spending on wireless and cable bills using the Citi American Airlines Platinum Select small-business card than using the equivalent personal card. You can learn more by reading our CitiBusiness AAdvantage review.
How to fill out a Citi business card application
Citi business applications are straightforward and easy to complete. You’ll have no problem applying for a Citi business card for your sole proprietorship using these steps:
Step 1. Things to remember
Citi has some specific language in their application, here’s a quick reference for you:
- Authorized officer: This is you (the owner) for a sole proprietorship. Authorized officers are folks who can act on the business’ behalf.
- Beneficial owner: This is you for a sole proprietorship. Beneficial owners are folks who own at least 25% of the business.
Step 2. Enter your business information
Here’s how to fill out the form for a business for a sole proprietor:
Legal name of business: If you’re a sole proprietor, you can enter your full name as your legal business name.
Doing business as (DBA) name (optional): This is the name of your business that you want printed on the credit card. This can also be your name.
Physical business address and contact information: This is your home address if you run the business from your home. The business phone number is your personal or business number as appropriate.
Annual business revenue: Enter the total amount you receive annually for selling your products. If you haven’t yet earned anything, don’t fib. Entering $0 is perfectly acceptable.
It is very important to fill out credit card applications truthfully. It’s much better to say that you have no annual income than to enter a fictitious amount. In the past, MMS team members have entered revenue of less than $100 and were still approved for a small-business card.
Legal structure of business: Sole proprietor (if the business is run by one person).
Organization Type: Sole proprietorship will usually be “other business type.”
Tax ID number: If you’re a sole proprietor, enter your Social Security number (SSN). The format of the text box in the application is for 9-, 10- or 12-digit tax IDs.
Line of business: The kind of work you perform.
Number of employees: You have at least one employee (yourself) if you are a sole proprietor. So choose “1-5” if it’s just you.
Years in business: This doesn’t mean the amount of time you’ve been making a profit. For example, if you have been planning on selling homemade cookies for the last two years and have been buying ingredients to test different recipes, you can enter “2.”
Country of business formation: Likely the USA, this is the country in which your business was created or founded.
Step 3. Authorized officer information
If this is a sole proprietorship, you are the authorized officer and beneficial owner. Input everything you’d need to enter on a personal credit card application.
Step 4. Financial information and AAdvantage membership
Another easy piece of the application: Enter a security word and hint for account access then input your annual income. Your “Total Annual Income” includes any money you earn outside of he business as well, so if your business is only a part-time gig, this number will be higher than your “Annual Business Revenue.”
Then enter your AAdvantage membership number so they can tie your Citi business account to your American Airlines account. If you don’t include an AAdvantage number, an AAdvantage account will be created for you. Finally, enter your percentage of ownership, which is 100% if you’re a sole proprietorship.
Click the “Agree & Submit” button — after checking the terms and conditions box — to submit your application.
Getting a small-business card is a terrific way to keep your personal and small-business expenses separate.
Step 5. Wait for approval
You may or may not be automatically approved when you submit your application. If you’re not denied but also not automatically approved, it’s usually good to wait for an official decision or more information from Citi before reaching out to customer service. However, it can’t hurt to reach out if you’re hankering for a decision.
If you’re denied, you can call Citi business customer service and discuss reconsideration. Sometimes, clarifying your situation with a representative can help get you approved.
Some Citi representatives are more willing to help than others. So, if the representative is unwilling to help or appears to be a stickler, politely hang up (dinner is ready!) and call back later.
The Citi business card application process is quick and easy, so when you’re looking to apply for the Citi American Airlines Platinum Select small-business card, it doesn’t have to be a chore.
Most folks qualify for a small-business credit card. It’s easier than you think and let’s you tap into a whole new world of miles and points. I’ve been approved for many business cards by being honest about the revenue I’ve earned in my freelancing and reselling business.
Let us know if you have any Citi business card application tips below.
Featured image by jannoon028/Shutterstock.