Chase Ink Cash Complete Guide

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Chase Ink Business Cash

The Chase Ink Business Cash is one of my favorite cards. It has no annual fee, it offers awesome 5X category bonuses (and a couple decent 2X bonuses), and even though it is advertised as a cash back card it actually earns valuable Chase Ultimate Rewards points.  Surprisingly this no-fee card offers a few valuable perks as well: auto rental coverage, 1 year extended warranty, and 120 day purchase protection.

Unfortunately, this card does charge foreign transaction fees, so it is not a good choice for spend outside of the US.

Chase Ink Business Cash Application Tips

Should you apply?

Even though this is a business card, I think that this is one of the first cards almost all point collectors should get.  It offers a terrific combination of a great signup bonus, no annual fee, super-valuable points, and awesome 5X category bonuses.  If you are eligible (see next section), you should get this card.

Are you eligible?

To get this card you must have a business, and you must be under 5/24:

Applying for Business Credit Cards

Yes, you have a business: In order to sign up for a business credit card, you must have a business. That said, it's common for people to have businesses without realizing it. If you sell items at a yard sale, or on eBay, for example, then you have a business. Similar examples include: consulting, writing (e.g. blog authorship, planning your first novel, etc.), handyman services, owning rental property, renting on airbnb, driving for Uber or Lyft, etc. In any of these cases, your business is considered a Sole Proprietorship unless you form a corporation of some sort.

When you apply for a business credit card as a sole proprietor, you can use your own name as your business name, use your own address and phone as the business' address and phone, and your social security number as the business' Tax ID / EIN. Alternatively, you can get a proper Tax ID / EIN from the IRS for free, in about a minute, through this website.

Is it OK to use business cards for personal expenses? Anecdotally, almost everyone I know uses business cards for personal expenses. That said, the terms in most business card applications state that you should use the card only for business use. Also, some consumer credit card protections do not apply to business cards. My advice: don't use the card for personal expenses if you're not comfortable doing so.
Chase's 5/24 Rule: With most Chase credit cards, Chase will not approve your application if you have opened 5 or more cards with any bank in the past 24 months.

To determine your 5/24 status, see: 3 Easy Ways to Count Your 5/24 Status. The easiest option is to track all of your cards for free with Travel Freely.

How to apply

You can find the current best signup offer and application link here: Chase Ink Business Cash.

The first part of the application asks for personal info. Fill this out the same way you would fill out a consumer credit card application with your own name and home address, your income (not just your business income), etc.  For the question about your business title, answer "owner."  Next up is the business info section.  If you already have a well established business, then the answers should be straightforward. If you are just getting started with your business, below are examples of how to fill this out. These answers assume that you do not have any employees and you operate as a sole proprietorship (which is the most basic form of a business). Use your judgment to answer differently if the examples given don’t match your circumstances: Here are example answers for the business part of the application:
  • Legal business structure: Sole Proprietor
  • Business legal name: If you don’t already have a business name, I recommend using your own name as the business name.
  • Desired business name on card: Again, this can be your own name if you don’t have a business name to use.
  • Does your business use another name? No
  • Tax ID type: EIN (you can get an EIN quickly and for free from the IRS here) If you'd prefer to use your social security number as your tax ID, select SSN rather than EIN.
  • Is your business's physical address the same as your personal address? Yes
  • Number of employees: 0 (the instructions say to enter the number of employees you have, not including yourself)
  • Business phone number: Your phone number
  • Business established date: When did your business start? If you've been doing your business for years (selling stuff at yard sales, for example), it's fine to estimate the starting date.
  • Annual business revenue: $0 (or project an amount based on expected revenue)
  • Business category, Business type, Business sub-type: Pick whichever categories are closest to your business. For example, an aspiring author, artist, or musician might choose: "Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation" and "Independent Artists, Writers, Performers."
  • Estimated monthly spend: $3,000 (Use your judgement here. A higher number might lead to a larger credit line, but if it's too high it might negatively affect approval).
Keep records of your answers In some cases Chase will ask to speak with you before approving your application. In those cases, they are likely to ask some of the same questions (annual business revenue, number of years in business, total gross income, etc.). Ideally you'll answer the same as you did on the application. Check Application Status After submitting your application, you can check status by calling the automated status line: (888) 338-2586

Reconsideration

If your application is denied, I recommend calling for reconsideration (1-888-270-2127).  It’s surprising how often denials can be changed to approvals just by asking.

Chase Ink Business Cash Perks

Auto Rental Coverage

Chase offers primary auto rental CDW (collision damage waiver) when renting for business purposes. Here’s the description directly from Chase:

Decline the rental company’s collision insurance and charge the entire rental cost to your card. Coverage is primary when renting for business purposes and provides reimbursement up to the actual cash value of the vehicle for theft and collision damage for most cars in the U.S. and abroad.

Purchase Protection

Extended Warranty: “Extends the time period of U.S. manufacturer’s warranty by an additional year, on eligible warranties of three years or less.”

Damage and Theft Protection: “Covers your new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account.”

Chase Ink Business Cash Earn Points

Signup Bonus

The signup bonus for this card is advertised as cash back, but the rewards are actually delivered as Ultimate Rewards points.  Here’s the current signup offer:

Card Offer
75K after $6K spend in 3 months
No Annual Fee
Alternate Offer: If you have a household member with an Ink card, you may prefer the referral offer whereby the referrer can earn 40,000 points and the new account holder can earn 75,000 points after $6,000 in purchases in the first 3 months since it will yield more total points.
Information about this card has been collected independently by Frequent Miler. The issuer did not provide the details, nor is it responsible for their accuracy.
Recent better offer: 90K after $6K spend in 6 monthd (expired 1/17/24

Refer Friends

Referring friends is often a good way to earn extra points with Chase products, but referral offers come and go over time.  When referral offers are available, Chase sends emails to eligible cardholders with the offer details.  Cardholders can also look for Chase friend referral offers here.

Bonus Spend

Card Info Name and Earning Rate (no offer)
Earning rate: 5X office supplies ✦ 5X cellular/landline/cable (on up to $25,000 in total purchases in 5x categories annually) ✦ 2X on the first $25K in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each cardmember year ✦ 5X Lyft through March 2025
Base: 1X (1.5%)
Dine: 2X (3%)
Gas: 2X (3%)
Phone: 5X (7.5%)
Office: 5X (7.5%)
Other: 5X (7.5%)

This is where the action is…  The Ink Cash card offers 5X on cell phone, cable, select streaming services, and internet on up to $25,000 in total purchases per account anniversary year.

Automated 5X

I recommend setting up autopay with your cell phone, cable, streaming services, and internet provider to charge to your Ink Business Cash card.  This way you’ll automatically earn 5X on all of these bills.  I suspect that many households pay $400 or more monthly on these services.  $400/month in bills at 5X translates into 24,000 points per year.

a group of cards with cartoon characters
Shown here are a selection of gift cards available online via Staples.com

Merchant gift cards.  If you plan to buy things anyway from a nationwide business, it could be worth buying gift cards for that business first.  By paying for those gift cards with your Ink Cash card at an office supply store (or at staples.com), you’ll earn 5X Ultimate Rewards points.  In most cases that will be significantly more than you would have earned if you paid directly.

Bank gift cards (Visa, Mastercard, Amex).  Many office supply stores sell Visa, Mastercard, and Amex gift cards in-store.  So, theoretically, you can buy these gift cards at office supply stores and then use them for your everyday purchases as a way to earn 5X everywhere.  The problem is that the gift card fee greatly reduces the benefit of earning 5X on the purchase.  Fortunately, OfficeMax, Office Depot, and Staples frequently offer discounts or rebates on the purchase of these cards.  For the latest deals, check our page: Current Visa and Mastercard Gift Card Deals.

Staples.com also usually sells Visa gift cards online.  Unfortunately, at the time of this writing they’ve been out of stock online for the past week or so.  In the past, the best option (other than during special deals) is the $300 Visa gift card for $308.95.  By paying with your Ink Cash card, you’ll earn more than enough points to make up for that fee (309 x 5 = 1545 points which are worth at least $15.45).

Gift cards with PINs.  Visa and Mastercard gift cards bought at office supply stores are debit PIN enabled.  This is important because it is sometimes possible to buy things or pay bills with a debit card but not with a credit card.

2X Too

Don’t forget that the Ink Cash card also earns 2X at gas stations and restaurants.  Unless you have a card that offers better rewards in those places, the Ink Cash is a good choice.

Chase Ink Business Cash Redeem Points

Cash Back

Cardholders can redeem points for 1 cent each either as statement credits or as cash back. Cash back can be taken as a statement credit or via check or ACH transfer.

Travel

If you or another household member has a premium or ultra-premium Ultimate Rewards card, it is easy to get better than 1 cent per point value when redeeming points for travel.  The trick is to move the points from your no-fee Ultimate Rewards card to the premium card before using points to buy travel.  Chase allows you to freely move points to another card you own or to a card owned by a household member or business partner.  They call this "combining points" (see: Combine Points Across Cards in our Ultimate Rewards guide).

Redeem points for travel: 1.5 cents per point

This option requires that someone in your household has the ultra-premium Chase Sapphire Reserve card.  First move (combine) points from your no-fee card to the Sapphire Reserve account. Next, log into Chase under the Sapphire Reserve account, and go to the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal to book your travel.  A $500 flight would usually cost 50,000 points if you used points attached to the no-fee card, but with the Chase Sapphire Reserve it would cost only 33,333 points.

Redeem points for travel: 1.25 cents per point

This option requires that someone in your household has a premium Ultimate Rewards card: Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Ink Business Preferred.  First move (combine) points from your no-fee card to one of these premium cards. Next, log into Chase under the account that now has the points, and go to the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal to book your travel.  A $500 flight would usually cost 50,000 points if you used points attached to a no-fee Ultimate Rewards card, but with the Chase Sapphire Preferred it would cost only 40,000 points.

Details about booking travel through Chase

You can use the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal to book airfare, hotels, cruises, activities, and car rentals. Airfare purchased through the portal still earns airline miles and elite qualifying miles.  Hotels booked this way do not earn hotel rewards.  Worse, hotels booked through the portal often won't offer you elite benefits even if you have status.

Travel protections apply

When you pay with points for travel, Chase's automatic travel protections do apply.  So, you can be covered for things like car rentals, trip delays, trip cancellation & interruption, lost luggage, etc.  The coverage you receive will be based on which card's rewards were used to book the trip. For example, if you have both a Chase Sapphire Preferred and a Sapphire Reserve, you would want to move your Ultimate Rewards points from the Preferred to the Reserve and then use the Reserve points to book your trip. You will get both better value (1.5 cents per point) and better travel protections.  See: Sapphire Reserve Travel Insurance.

Transfer points

The best use of Ultimate Rewards points, in my opinion, is to transfer points to airline and hotel partners in order to book high value awards.  Your best bet is usually to wait until you find a great flight or night award before transferring points. Points transfer at a ratio of 1:1 as shown in the list of transfer partners below. Keep in mind that while transfers are instantly posted to most loyalty programs, transfers to Singapore Krisflyer and Marriott Bonvoy are not instant.

Move points to premium or ultra-premium card first

You cannot transfer points directly from a no-fee Chase Ultimate Rewards card to airline and hotel partners, but you can move points first to a premium card (Sapphire Preferred or Ink Business Preferred, for example) or ultra-premium card (Sapphire Reserve) and then transfer the points to airline or hotel partners.  Points can be transferred to the loyalty accounts of the primary cardholder or any authorized user on the account. Points can also be transferred to the loyalty account of a joint business owner, but they do need to be an authorized user on the associated business account.

Transfer Partners

Rewards ProgramBest Uses
Aer Lingus AviosFuel surcharges are sometimes lower when booking with Aer Lingus (Avios.com) rather than British Airways, Qatar, or Iberia. It's possible to move points (Avios) between Iberia, British Airways, Aer Lingus, and Qatar.  See also: Avios Sweet Spots for Award Tickets.
Air Canada AeroplanRedeem for Star Alliance flights and/or flights with Air Canada partners (such as Etihad). No fuel surcharges; $39 CAD award booking fee; 5,000 points to add stopover on one-way award. See: Air Canada Aeroplan: Everything you need to know.
Air France KLM Flying BlueMonthly Air France Promo Awards often represent very good value. Air France miles can be used to book Sky Team awards, including Delta awards. Air France often offers very good business class award pricing between the US and Europe & Israel.
British Airways AviosWhile flights on British Airways itself often incur outrageously high fuel surcharges, many BA partners charge low or no fuel surcharges. Excellent value can be had in redeeming BA points for short distance flights. It's possible to move points (Avios) between Iberia, British Airways, Aer Lingus, and Qatar. See also: Avios Sweet Spots for Award Tickets.
Emirates SkywardsThe best use of Emirates miles has been to fly Emirates itself. Unfortunately fuel surcharges can be steep. See: Emirates Sweet Spot Awards - First class from 30K miles round trip.
HyattUse for Hyatt free nights, free suite nights, lounge upgrades, or suite upgrades. Hyatt points are often worth at least 2 cents each, but they’re sometimes worth far more. Bonus: award nights are not subject to resort fees.
Iberia AviosOn their own flights, Iberia offers low award prices and a very reasonable 25 Euro cancellation fee. Partner awards can offer good value under some circumstances as well, but these are usually nonrefundable. Fuel surcharges are sometimes lower when booking with Iberia rather than British Airways, Aer Lingus, or Qatar. It's possible to move points (Avios) between Iberia, British Airways, Aer Lingus, and Qatar. See also: Avios Sweet Spots for Award Tickets.
IHGIHG dynamically prices their awards and sometimes offer very good value. IHG Premier and IHG Premier Business cards offer the fourth night free on award stays.
JetBlueJetBlue points offer the most value when cheap ticket prices are available and when award taxes are high relative to the overall cost of the ticket (more details can be found here). The JetBlue Plus Card and the JetBlue Business Card offer a 10% rebate on awards, so you can get more value by holding one of these cards.
Marriott Bonvoy5th Night Free awards. Opportunities to get outsized value exist but can be hard to find.
Qatar Privilege Club AviosQatar has reasonable award prices for flying Qatar itself. Points are now transferable 1 to 1 to British Airways (and from there to Aer Lingus or Iberia). It is now also possible to book JetBlue flights with Qatar Avios.
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyerUse to book Singapore Airlines First Class awards (generally reserved for their own members), Alaska Airlines economy awards, or for Star Alliance awards (including United Airlines).
Southwest Rapid RewardsAward flights are fully refundable. Point values vary due to certain taxes not being charged on awards, but tend to average around 1.5 cents per point.
United MileagePlusUnited offers free award changes and free cancelations. Like Avianca and Aeroplan, United never charges fuel surcharges for awards. Unfortunately, United charges many more miles for international first class awards. Good uses of miles include United's Excursionist Perk awards and (sometimes) dynamically priced United economy awards.
Virgin Atlantic Flying ClubVirgin Atlantic offers a few great sweet spot awards including US to Europe on Delta One business class for 50K points one-way. See: Best uses for Virgin Atlantic points (Sweet Spot Spotlight).

Other ways to redeem points

Through the Ultimate Rewards portal you can redeem points for cash back, gift cards, merchandise, or experiences.  With this approach you'll usually get 1 cent per point value.  One exception is that Chase occasionally offers gift cards at a discount so you may be able to get better than 1 cent per point value during a gift card sale.
You can also use points to pay some merchants directly (Amazon.com, for example or via Chase Pay).  Don't do this.  These options offer very poor value. Further, they may compromise the security of your account (i.e. if someone hacks into your Amazon account, they might spend your Ultimate Rewards points - causing you a headache in getting your points reinstated).

Chase Ink Business Cash Manage Points

Combine Points Across Cards

If you are the primary account holder with multiple cards, you can freely combine Ultimate Rewards back and forth between your accounts.  Your points can then be redeemed according to the card to which you move them.  For example, if you have the no-fee Ink Business Cash card and the ultra-premium Sapphire Reserve card, you can earn 5X points per dollar on office supply purchases (or on gift cards purchased at office supply stores) with the Ink Card and then move those points to your Sapphire Reserve account to redeem them for 1.5 cents per point towards travel.
If you intend to cancel a Chase Ultimate Rewards card, you should first combine your points with a card you intend to keep active. Once you cancel, you will forfeit any unused points in that account (See: My 90,000 Ultimate Rewards Points mistake). A product change should not affect your balance, but some people prefer moving points before a product change as well just to be safe.

Share Points Across Cardholders

Chase allows customers to transfer Ultimate Rewards points to any other account in that customer's name or to one additional household member or joint business owner (for free).  You do need to call Chase the first time you transfer points to a different person's account, but once that's been done once, you can transfer more points online in the future.
share Chase Ultimate Rewards with friends Why this is valuable:
  • You earn points with the card offering the best return on purchases and then use points with the card offering the best redemption rate.
  • Only one member of your household needs to maintain a premium card for transferring to partners or booking travel (though note that the primary cardholder can only transfer points to partner loyalty programs in the name of the primary cardholder or authorized users).

How to Keep Points Alive

Thankfully, it is very easy to keep Chase Ultimate Rewards points alive: simply keep the points in an open Ultimate Rewards account and they will not expire. Note that if you close an Ultimate Rewards card, you will lose any points associated with that card. You should first combine points to move points away from the card you intend to close and to another card that will remain open as per the sharing section above before canceling. See: My 90,000 point Ultimate Rewards mistake. See also: A checklist for cancelling credit cards.

Chase Ink Business Cash Summary Information

Card Offer and Details
75K after $6K spend in 3 months
No Annual Fee
Alternate Offer: If you have a household member with an Ink card, you may prefer the referral offer whereby the referrer can earn 40,000 points and the new account holder can earn 75,000 points after $6,000 in purchases in the first 3 months since it will yield more total points.
Information about this card has been collected independently by Frequent Miler. The issuer did not provide the details, nor is it responsible for their accuracy.
Recent better offer: 90K after $6K spend in 6 monthd (expired 1/17/24
FM Mini Review: This one should be in everyone's wallet. Incredible signup bonus for a no-fee card. Great card for 5X categories. Excellent companion card to Sapphire Reserve, Sapphire Preferred, or Ink Business Preferred. Click here for our complete card review
Earning rate: 5X office supplies ✦ 5X cellular/landline/cable (on up to $25,000 in total purchases in 5x categories annually) ✦ 2X on the first $25K in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each cardmember year ✦ 5X Lyft through March 2025
Base: 1X (1.5%)
Dine: 2X (3%)
Gas: 2X (3%)
Phone: 5X (7.5%)
Office: 5X (7.5%)
Other: 5X (7.5%)
Card Info: Visa Signature Business issued by Chase. This card imposes foreign transaction fees.
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