No matter what industry your company is in, it’s pretty common to mix business with food. You might be taking clients out for meals, hosting employee events or just eating out frequently during your business travel. Yet each time you receive a check, it’s an opportunity to earn additional rewards from your business credit card.
Before You Apply
These offers may be tempting, but before you apply for any new credit card or financing offer, it’s always wise to know where your credit stands. Most business credit cards require a personal credit inquiry before you get approved. (You can check your personal and business credit scores for free at Nav.)
And now, here are five business cards that can give you back a little extra each time they’re used to pay for your dining expenses.
1. Chase Ink Business Cash
This card offers you 2% cash back on up to $25,000 spent each account year at restaurants and gas stations. You also get 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. New applicants currently receive $300 in bonus cash back after spending $3,000 on new purchases within three months of account opening.
Benefits include damage and theft protection and an extended warrantee policy. There’s no annual fee for this card, but there is a 3% foreign transaction fee.
2. Marriott Rewards Premier Business Credit Card
If you are a frequent hotel guest, then you probably eat out often during your travels. That’s probably why this card offers you double points at restaurants as well as on other frequent travel business expenses such as car rentals, office supplies, Internet, cable and phone service. You also earn five points per dollar spent at Marriott and Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) hotels and one point per dollar spent elsewhere.
Benefits include Gold Elite status when you spend $50,000 on purchases each account year. You also get a free night stay in a Category 1-5 hotel each year on your account anniversary. It also comes with trip cancellation and trip interruption insurance, baggage delay coverage and lost luggage reimbursement. There’s a $99 annual fee for this card, and no foreign transaction fees.
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3. United MileagePlus Explorer Business Card
Here’s another travel rewards card that offers a bonus for dining purchases. You earn double miles at restaurants as well as at gas stations, office supply stores and on tickets purchased from United. You also earn one mile per dollar spent elsewhere. New applicants receive 50,000 bonus miles after spending $3,000 on new purchases within three months of account opening. You also receive 10,000 bonus miles after you spend $25,000 on purchases on your card each calendar year. Benefits include priority boarding, a free checked bag and two United Club passes each year on your cardmember anniversary. There’s a $95 annual fee for this card that’s waived the first year, and no foreign transaction fees.
4. JetBlue Business Card From Barclaycard
Like the United Explorer Business card, the JetBlue Business card offers double rewards at restaurants. You also get double points at office supply stores, 6x points for JetBlue purchases, and one point per dollar spent elsewhere. New applicants also earn 30,000 Bonus Points after spending $1,000 on purchases within 90 days of account opening.
Benefits include a free checked bag, 10% of your points back every time you redeem, and a 50% discount on inflight purchases. You can also earn TrueBlue Mosaic status for one year after you spend $50,000 on purchases with your card. Barclaycard also allows business owners to set controls on employee cards for credit lines, purchase limits, and cash access. There’s a $99 annual fee for this card, and you get a 5,000 point bonus each year on your cardholder anniversary.
5. Business Advantage Cash Rewards MasterCard Credit Card From Bank of America
This card offers 1% cash back on most purchases, but 2% cash back at restaurants. You also get 3% cash back on purchases at gas stations and office supply stores, on up to $250,000 in gas station and office supply store purchases annually, and 1% after that. New applicants receive a $200 statement credit after spending $500 in new purchases within 60 days of account opening.
Cash back can be redeemed as a statement credit or a deposit in a Bank of America small business account, starting at $25. There’s no annual fee for this card.
One More Tip…
If you want to use a business credit card to build business credit, make sure it reports to the business credit reporting agencies — here’s a chart that outlines current issuer policies, though it’s always wise to ask the issuer before you apply. Building business credit can help you graduate to lower-interest lines of credit or loans down the road when you’re ready to grow.