Chase Ink Business Unlimited review: No annual fee and a $500 bonus

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The Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card is a no-annual-fee credit card that earns 1.5% cash back on every pur

chase. And it comes with a $500 cash bonus you can earn after meeting the card’s spending requirements. You can apply for this business cash back credit card whether your small business is your main job, side hustle or new business.

Let’s take a deeper look at the card’s benefits to figure out if it’s the best business credit card for your situation.

The Ink Business Unlimited is perfect for business expenses that fall outside of other cards’ bonus categories. (Photo by mavo/Shutterstock.com.)

Chase Ink Business Unlimited review

Current bonus

With the Ink Business Unlimited card has a $500 cash bonus while you’ll earn after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening.

Benefits and perks

Earning cash back with this credit card is easy, you’ll get 1.5% back on every purchase with no limit to how much you can earn. But the Chase Ink Business Unlimited also comes with valuable perks that offer purchase and travel protections when you use the card.

Extended Warranty

When you use the Chase Ink Business Unlimited to purchase an item, the card will extend the time period of a U.S. manufacturer’s warranty by an additional year, on eligible warranties of three years or less. So you won’t have to pay extra for additional coverage on eligible big ticket items.

Purchase Protection

Accidents happen and the Chase Ink Business Unlimited offers protection against damage or theft for up to 120 days on new purchases up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account.

Rental Car Insurance

When you decline the rental agency’s collision insurance and charge the entire rental to your Chase Ink Business Unlimited card, you’ll get primary rental insurance when renting for business purposes. You may think this is standard with most travel credit cards, but it’s not. If you read the fine print, you’ll find that most credit card car rental insurance coverage is secondary, which means it only kicks in after your other insurances. This covers damage due to theft or collision to the vehicle, but not damage to other vehicles or injuries.

If you rent vehicles for business often, this can be a tremendous money saver and give you peace of mind.

Complimentary employee cards

You can add employee cards to your Chase Ink Business Unlimited account for free. You’ll be able to set individual employee spending limits, plus you’ll earn rewards from their purchases.

How to redeem the rewards

The cash back you earn can be redeemed for a handful of different rewards. First, you earn cash back in the form of Ultimate Rewards points, which are worth one cent each toward a variety of redemptions. You can redeem your points for cash back (as statement credits), gift cards or you can even use the points to book travel through the Chase travel portal. The Chase travel portal is powered by Expedia, so the booking process is straight forward.

But, with this card it is possible to switch from cash back and greatly expand the options you have for redeeming your points, which we’ll show you in the “Insider tip” section.

Who is the Ink Business Unlimited card for?

The Chase Ink Business Unlimited is a Chase credit card and a business credit card, which means you’ll be subject to two main restrictions:

But, meeting these requirements isn’t as hard as it may seem. You don’t necessarily need to have an officially registered business to apply, you could qualify as a freelancer or independent contractor. That means dog walking, driving for Uber and selling on eBay could all count. And if you’re a sole proprietor you can use your Social Security number as your business tax ID and your name as your business name. For more help with the application read our guide to completing a Chase business credit card application.

The Chase 5/24 rule restricts you from being approved for a new Chase card if you’ve opened five or more credit cards from any bank within the past 24 months. However, business credit cards issued by American Express, Bank of America, Chase, Citi, Wells Fargo  and Barclays (usually) do not count toward your five credit card total because they won’t show up on your personal credit report. So opening any Chase Ink Business card (Ink Business Preferred Credit CardInk Business Cash℠ Credit Card or Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card) won’t add to your 5/24 count.

Insider tip — Pairing the Ink Business Unlimited with other cards

The Chase Ink Business Unlimited earns 1.5% cash back on every purchase and these cash back rewards are earned in the form of Chase Ultimate Rewards points. What that means is you can pair this card with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve® or Chase Ink Business Preferred and you’ll increase the value of your points because you can pool your Chase points together.

This makes the points you earn with the Ink Business Unlimited more valuable in two ways. First, your points will be more valuable if you use them to book travel through the Chase travel portal. With the Ink Business Preferred and the Sapphire Preferred you’ll get a 25% bonus, so your Chase points are worth 1.25 cents, instead of one cent each. And with the Sapphire Reserve your rate jumps up by 50% to 1.5 cents per point on Chase travel portal bookings.

Not only that, but when you pool your points onto these annual-fee cards you can also transfer them to Chase’s 13 airline and hotel travel partners. Being able to transfer your points gives you more flexibility in booking travel and you can get much more bang for your buck this way.

One of the best ways to use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points is to use them to book expensive business or first-class flights. For example, you could transfer 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points to United Airlines at a 1:1 ratio. That can be enough United Airlines miles to book a round-trip business-class flight from New York to San Diego, which can cost $1,000+. In that case, you’re getting a value of two cents per point.

And that’s not your only option if you’re trying to redeem Chase points for more than 1.5 cents each. With the Ink Business Unlimited’s bonus you could book two round-trip coach flights to Hawaii, which could easily cost $800+. Or you could stay at expensive Hyatt hotels during peak season. So you’ll have no shortage of high-value redemption options.

But again, those are your options only if you have also have an annual-fee card like the Sapphire Preferred,  Sapphire Reserve, or Ink Business Preferred. Without one of those, the bonus is worth $500 in cash back — still a good deal.

Alternatives to the Chase Ink Business Unlimited

If your business spends a lot in specific categories, check out the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card. The bonus is the same as the Ink Business Unlimited, but you’ll earn 5% cash back on up to $25,000 in combined purchases each account anniversary year at office supply stores and on internet, phone and cable purchases, then 1% back. And on the first $25,000 in combined purchases each account anniversary year at gas stations and restaurants you’ll earn 2% cash back, then 1% back. All other purchases earn 1% cash back. For more details read our Ink Business Cash credit card review.

Or you could apply for the Ink Business Preferred, which currently has a bonus of 100,000 Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $15,000 in the first three months from opening the account. This is the biggest bonus of any Chase credit card that earn Ultimate Rewards points and is easily worth twice as much as the bonus you’d get with the other Chase Ink cards, so it’s worth it even though it does have a $95 annual fee.

Bottom line

Cash-back cards are worth it for many because of the simplicity of earning cash. And the Chase Ink Business Unlimited card is a great option if your business expenses don’t fall into the spending bonus categories other cards have, because it earns 1.5% cash back on all purchases with no limit to the amount of rewards you can earn.

And it currently earns a $500 bonus (50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points) after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening and that bonus can be worth much more in travel if you have an annual-fee Chase Ultimate Rewards card, because then you’ll be able to transfer the points you earn to Chase’s travel partners.

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Jason Stauffer is a contributor to Million Mile Secrets, he covers topics on points and miles, credit cards, airlines, hotels, and general travel.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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