Business credit cards can be great for their rewards and introductory 0% APR promotions, but some of their most valuable features often go unnoticed. Depending on the card, though, you could have the potential for significant value at your fingertips.
Here are seven business credit card perks that you may have on your card and can help you get more value than you’re already gaining by using it regularly.
1. Rental car insurance
Most credit cards offer rental car insurance. But depending on the card you have, your coverage could be more valuable than what’s typical.
The , for instance, offers primary rental car insurance. This means that if you have a commercial auto insurance policy for your business that covers rental cars, you don’t have to tap that insurer first. On the flip side, most cards require you to file a claim with your primary insurance company first, then they cover what’s left over.
American Express offers secondary coverage on their credit cards, plus premium car rental protection that you can purchase at a much lower cost than what you’d pay for coverage through the car rental company.
Keep in mind, though, that business credit card rental car insurance often only covers you if you’re using the car for business purposes. So a card that offers primary coverage may switch to secondary if you rent a car for a personal vacation.
2. Purchase protection
Many business credit cards offer purchase protection, which provides coverage for items you buy with your card and are damaged or stolen within a few months of the purchase date. While the chances that you’ll ever need to take advantage of this benefit are slim, it can be a valuable perk when the need does arise.
The protection typically comes with some limitations, though, such as how much you can receive from a single claim, as well as how much you can get each year in total. As such, it’s a good idea to know the terms of what your card offers, so you’re prepared when you need it.
3. Extended warranty protection
As with purchase protection, extended warranty coverage applies to purchases you’ve made with your business credit card. On cards that offer it, you’ll get a year — or sometimes more — added to a warranty of three years or less.
So if you buy some office furniture with a two-year warranty and something breaks six months after that warranty expires, you can submit a claim to your credit card’s benefits administrator.
Again, there are some limitations as far as what items and claims are covered, so knowing your coverage is important.
4. Cell phone protection
This perk is becoming more and more popular among credit cards, so it’s possible that a card you already own has it. With the Ink Business PreferredSM Credit Card, for example, you’ll get up to $600 per claim in protection against covered theft or damage for you and all your employees listed on your monthly cell phone bill. There’s a maximum of three claims in a 12-month period and a $100 deductible per claim.
All you have to do to take advantage of this perk is to pay your cell phone bill with the card that offers the benefit.
5. Trip protections
Travel rewards business credit cards often carry various trip protections to make your life easier when you travel. With the , for example, you’ll get $1 million in travel accident insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, trip cancellation protection, and trip delay reimbursement.
Other cards may also offer trip interruption insurance, travel and emergency assistance services, and more.
If you regularly travel for business, knowing which trip protections your card offers help you sleep better at night knowing that you’re covered when you need it.
6. Accounting tools
Many business credit cards make it easy to view quarterly and annual expenses, but some cards go above and beyond that bare minimum.
American Express business credit cards, for instance, have a feature called Spend Manager. With this tool, you can add receipts and notes to your transactions in your online account, making it easier for your accounting and tax filing. You can also connect your account to QuickBooks and label and transfer transaction data directly to your accounting software.
While these perks may not save you a lot of money directly, they can save you a lot of time, giving you more of it to focus on what’s most important: making money.
7. Free employee cards
If you’re spending a lot of time reviewing and approving expenses reimbursement requests, your credit card may offer a solution. Most business credit cards allow you to add employee cards for free, streamlining the expense process.
If that sounds scary to you, some cards allow you to set spending limits, get alerts on certain purchases and receive a spending summary to ensure everything is running smoothly.
That said, keep in mind that there may be some employees you don’t feel comfortable giving a card to, and that’s fine.
8. Referral bonuses
If you love your credit card, you may instinctively want to share your experience with friends and family members who are also fellow business owners. The good news is that, depending on your card, you may be able to get a kickback in the form of cash back, points, or miles if someone you refer applies and gets approved.
To get credit for the referral, you typically need to have another business owner apply through your referral link, which you can get from your online account. Note, however, that not all business credit cards have a referral program. If yours does, though, take advantage of it to accelerate your rewards earning.
The bottom line
Many business credit cards are good for a lot more than just a way to cover your operating expenses or earn rewards. As you compare credit cards for your business, it’s important to view them holistically rather than focusing on just one or two features.
As you consider a card’s perks along with its rewards program, it’ll give you a better idea of just how much value you can squeeze out of the card. As such, focus on perks that you’ll feasibly be able to use and can help your business.
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