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The Chase United Business card is out with a new offer this week. Last month, we saw an offer for more miles, but the new offer waives the annual fee in the first year and drops the spending requirement in half, which might make this more appealing depending on how you felt about the higher spend offer.
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Key Card Details
|Card Name w Details No Review (no offer)|
Chase added some new perks on this card when it launched to replace the United Mileage Plus Business Explorer card. Those perks include:
- 2x on local transit and commuting, including taxicabs, mass transit, tolls, and ride share services
- $100 annual United travel credit after 7 United flight purchases greater than $100
- 25% back on United in-flight purchases
- 5,000 bonus miles at anniversary when you have this card and also a personal Chase United credit card
Having any personal Chase United card, including the annual-fee-free Chase United Gateway card should be enough to trigger the 5,000 bonus miles at anniversary, which helps toward mitigating the annual fee on this card. The good news is that since this card is a new product, you will not be precluded from earning the bonus if you previously earned the bonus on the Business Explorer card.
United’s dynamic pricing model could actually help you stretch this offer pretty far if you’ve got cheap one-ways from your local airport. On the other hand, if you’re eligible for a Chase business card, I’d prioritize a fee-free Chase Ink Cash or Ink Unlimited card, both of which are currently offering 75K Ultimate Rewards points (which could be transferred to United or a more advantageous transfer partner if you have a premium Chase card). Unfortunately, United got rid of its award chart in November 2019, so it is harder to count on consistent value out of United miles than it once was.
That said, on this week’s podcast we noted how useful United miles can be for taking advantage of the Excursionist Perk. For more on that, see these posts:
- Maximizing (and understanding) United Excursionist Perks
- United Excursionist Perk Maps. Visualize regions to optimize awards.
- How Greg toured Madrid & Africa for 40K points and $400 (#40kfaraway)
Keep in mind that this card is subject to the Chase 5/24 rule, so you will not be eligible if you have opened 5 or more personal cards in the past 24 months. However, this card will not add to your 5/24 count.
|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.
|Chase 5/24 semantics ("Subject to" vs. "Count towards"): Most Chase cards are subject to the 5/24 rule. That means the rule is enforced in making approval decisions. In other words, you probably won't get approved if your credit report shows that you opened 5 or more cards in the past 24 months. Meanwhile, most business cards (such as those from Chase, Amex, Barclaycard, BOA, Citi, US Bank, and Wells Fargo) are not reported on your personal credit report. These cards do not count towards 5/24.
Example: Chase Ink Business Preferred is subject to 5/24, so you likely won't get approved if over 5/24. If you do get approved, it won't count towards 5/24 since it won't appear as an account on your credit report.
Furthermore, this is a business card. The good news is that many people have a business without realizing it.
|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.
Overall, this is a decent offer if you need United miles (and the card makes for a good pair with a no-fee United personal card since the annual bonus miles reduce your effective cost per year while giving you the full benefits like a free checked bag. I don’t know whether we’ll see the 100K offer return, so it may be worth holding off if you feel bullish on that coming back and you can meet the spending requirement