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Compare Our Top-Rated Business Credit Cards in the UK

Updated: 24th November 2021

It’s easy enough to say that a ‘business credit card’ is a credit card… for businesses. But it’s important to understand the differences between a company credit card and one designed for individuals, because a business card offers practical benefits that appeal to – and in many cases are extremely helpful to – business owners.

With a wide variety of business credit cards and charge cards available in the UK, it can be challenging to find the best card for you and your business. We’ve done the work and compared the top-rated business credit cards on the market to help you make the best decision possible.

On this page you’ll find our top-rated picks for business credit cards as well as more information about evaluating and choosing a corporate card for your business.

Here are The Motley Fool's top-rated business credit cards in the UK

Credit card offers from our affiliate partners appear first and are ordered from highest rating to lowest, followed by other top-rated offers. You can read more about our ratings and page sort here. Offers from affiliate partners are marked with a *.

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Great for: Collecting Avios and On Business Points
5 stars question mark
British Airways American Express Accelerating Business credit card
Apply Now!

On American Express's Secure Website

* Affiliate partner

This card offers reward points – and lots of them! With it, you gain access to the On Business Points reward scheme and the Avios rewards scheme. The card allows you to earn points at an accelerated rate: 2 On Business Points for every eligible £1 spent with British Airways and 1.5 Avios for every eligible £1 of everyday spending. On top of that, American Express is offering new cardholders a welcome bonus of 30,000 Avios Points when they spend £5,000 in the first three months of card membership (subject to approval, T&Cs apply). Plus, this card’s tiered Avios annual bonus means you can also earn up to 30,000 additional Avios Points every calendar year! Do note that these benefits don’t come for free. The card carries an annual fee of £250.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • New cardholders can earn 30,000 bonus Avios Points when they spend £5,000 in the first 3 months (subject to approval, T&Cs apply)
  • Tiered Avios annual bonus: earn up to 30,000 bonus Avios Points each year. For every £20,000 spent on the card, receive 10,000 bonus Avios, up to 3 times each calendar year
  • 2 On Business Points for every £1 of eligible spend with British Airways
  • 1.5 Avios for every £1 of eligible everyday spending
  • No cap on points earned
  • Travel accident and travel inconvenience insurance (subject to enrolment)
  • Refund and purchase protection

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative APR 96.7% APR variable
Annual fee £250
Credit Limit Assumed credit limit of £1,200
Purchase Rate 22.2% variable for purchases

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

what we like

  • New cardholders can earn 30,000 bonus Avios Points when they spend £5,000 in the first 3 months (subject to approval, T&Cs apply)
  • Tiered Avios annual bonus: earn up to 30,000 bonus Avios Points each calendar year. T&Cs apply
  • 2 On Business Points for every £1 of eligible spend with British Airways and 1.5 Avios for every £1 of eligible everyday spending
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £250
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    96.7%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    New cardholders can earn 30,000 bonus Avios Points when they spend £5,000 in the first 3 months (subject to approval, T&Cs apply)

KEY SCORES:

  • 5/5 Perks
  • 1/5Fees
  • 2.5/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • New cardholders can earn 30,000 bonus Avios Points when they spend £5,000 in the first 3 months (subject to approval, T&Cs apply)
  • Tiered Avios annual bonus: earn up to 30,000 bonus Avios Points each year. For every £20,000 spent on the card, receive 10,000 bonus Avios, up to 3 times each calendar year
  • 2 On Business Points for every £1 of eligible spend with British Airways
  • 1.5 Avios for every £1 of eligible everyday spending
  • No cap on points earned
  • Travel accident and travel inconvenience insurance (subject to enrolment)
  • Refund and purchase protection

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative APR 96.7% APR variable
Annual fee £250
Credit Limit Assumed credit limit of £1,200
Purchase Rate 22.2% variable for purchases

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

Top Product
Great for: Rewards on business spend
5 stars question mark
Capital on Tap Business Rewards Credit Card
Apply Now!

On Capital On Tap's Secure Website

* Affiliate partner

What makes Capital on Tap business credit cards stand out is their facility to transfer cash fee free directly to your high street bank account. And with the Business Rewards card, not only can limited companies benefit from this easy source of short-term funding, but you can also earn yourself rewards. The card offers 1% cashback or 1 Avios point for every £1 spent, and you stand to receive 10,000 bonus points if you spend £5,000 in the first three months. However, it’s important to be aware that the card comes with an annual fee of £99.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 1% cashback or 1 Avios point for every £1 of card spend
  • Welcome award of 10,000 bonus points or 10,000 Avios when you spend £5,000 in the first 3 months
  • Ability to make fee-free cash transfers to your bank account
  • No foreign exchange or ATM withdrawals fees
  • Up to 20 free supplementary cards
  • Available to limited companies

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 22.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 22.9% p.a. (variable)
Assumed credit limit £1,200
Annual fee £99

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

what we like

  • 1% cashback or 1 Avios point for every £1 of card spend
  • Welcome award of 10,000 bonus points or 10,000 Avios when you spend £5,000 in the first 3 months
  • No foreign exchange or ATM withdrawals fees
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £99
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    22.9%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    10,000 bonus points or 10,000 Avios when you spend £5,000 in the first 3 months

KEY SCORES:

  • 5/5 Perks
  • 2/5Fees
  • 4/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 1% cashback or 1 Avios point for every £1 of card spend
  • Welcome award of 10,000 bonus points or 10,000 Avios when you spend £5,000 in the first 3 months
  • Ability to make fee-free cash transfers to your bank account
  • No foreign exchange or ATM withdrawals fees
  • Up to 20 free supplementary cards
  • Available to limited companies

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 22.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 22.9% p.a. (variable)
Assumed credit limit £1,200
Annual fee £99

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

Great for: Premium charge-card experience
4.5 stars question mark
American Express Platinum Business credit card
Apply Now!

On American Express's Secure Website

* Affiliate partner

This card is the jewel in American Express’s Business Charge Card crown. As expected, it has benefits such as its Membership Rewards programme and purchase protection, but it also has a plethora of more exclusive perks such as airport lounge access, hotel upgrades and a dedicated concierge service. Just make sure you can afford the price tag attached, an annual fee of £595.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 1 Membership Rewards point per £1 spent
  • New Cardmember offer: 40,000 bonus Membership Rewards points after spending £6,000 in first 3 months. 
  • Access to 1,200+ airport lounges
  • Access to Platinum Business Service and dedicated concierge and travel team
  • Up to 99 supplementary cards for employees
  • 1 additional Membership Rewards Point per £1 spent through American Express Travel for flights, hotels and car hires
  • Travel Accident and Travel Inconvenience insurance
  • Purchase protection for up to £2,500 on items purchased on card and stolen or damaged within 90 days, plus refund protection up to £300

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Not applicable. This is a charge card, so there’s no credit offered.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

what we like

  • 1 Membership Rewards point per £1 spent
  • 40,000 bonus Membership Rewards points after spending £6,000 in first 3 months
  • Access to 1,000+ airport lounges
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £595
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    N/A
  • INTRO OFFER:

    40,000 bonus Membership Rewards points (after spending £6,000 in first three months)

KEY SCORES:

  • 5/5 Perks
  • 1/5Fees
  • N/AAPR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 1 Membership Rewards point per £1 spent
  • New Cardmember offer: 40,000 bonus Membership Rewards points after spending £6,000 in first 3 months. 
  • Access to 1,200+ airport lounges
  • Access to Platinum Business Service and dedicated concierge and travel team
  • Up to 99 supplementary cards for employees
  • 1 additional Membership Rewards Point per £1 spent through American Express Travel for flights, hotels and car hires
  • Travel Accident and Travel Inconvenience insurance
  • Purchase protection for up to £2,500 on items purchased on card and stolen or damaged within 90 days, plus refund protection up to £300

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Not applicable. This is a charge card, so there’s no credit offered.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

Great for: those who travel for business
4.5 stars question mark
Barclaycard Business
Apply Now!

On Barclaycard's Secure Website

* Affiliate partner

The combination of travel benefits and business perks makes the Barclaycard Premium Plus Business Credit Card a tough business card to beat. But it comes at a price.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Enhanced travel insurance
  • Cashback on travel and trade. T&Cs apply.
  • Discounted rate on foreign exchange fees

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 49.4% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 14.9% p.a. (variable)
Assumed credit limit £1,200
Annual fee £150

The approval of your application depends on financial circumstances and borrowing history, so do the terms you may be offered. T&Cs apply.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

what we like

  • Enhanced travel insurance
  • Cashback on travel and trade
  • Discounted rate on foreign exchange fees
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £150
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    49.4%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    Introductory 0% on purchases for 6 months from account opening (subject to application & financial circumstances)

KEY SCORES:

  • 5/5 Perks
  • 4/5Fees
  • 3.5/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Enhanced travel insurance
  • Cashback on travel and trade. T&Cs apply.
  • Discounted rate on foreign exchange fees

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 49.4% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 14.9% p.a. (variable)
Assumed credit limit £1,200
Annual fee £150

The approval of your application depends on financial circumstances and borrowing history, so do the terms you may be offered. T&Cs apply.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

Great for: online account management and Business Rewards.
4.5 stars question mark
Barclaycard Business Card
Apply Now!

On Barclaycard's Secure Website

* Affiliate partner

This card allows you to control your purchases and employee benefits while offering you protection on purchases and cardholder misuse insurance. Meanwhile, the card enables you to keep a handle of your spending with online servicing and its MyControls portal. Here, you can manage your employees cards and control your business expenses. It carries no annual fee and you can earn 1% cashback on eligible business spend. This is in addition to access to the Barclaycard Business Rewards scheme, which includes rewards from leading brands such as Amazon Business and Avis. T&Cs apply. 

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 1% cashback on eligible business spend. T&Cs apply
  • Up to 56 days interest-free credit on purchases when paid in full & on time
  • Comes with insurance benefits

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 21.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 21.9% p.a. (variable)
Assumed credit limit £1,200
Annual fee £0

The approval of your application depends on financial circumstances and borrowing history, so do the terms you may be offered. T&Cs apply.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

what we like

  • Ability to control purchases and employee benefits
  • No annual fee
  • Access to the Barclaycard Business Rewards Scheme
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    N/A
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    21.9%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    N/A

KEY SCORES:

  • 4/5 Perks
  • 5/5Fees
  • 4/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 1% cashback on eligible business spend. T&Cs apply
  • Up to 56 days interest-free credit on purchases when paid in full & on time
  • Comes with insurance benefits

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 21.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 21.9% p.a. (variable)
Assumed credit limit £1,200
Annual fee £0

The approval of your application depends on financial circumstances and borrowing history, so do the terms you may be offered. T&Cs apply.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

Great for: No-hassle business card
4.5 stars question mark
Apply Now!

On Capital On Tap's Secure Website

* Affiliate partner

The Capital On Tap Business Credit Card comes with a key advantage that you’ll have trouble finding elsewhere: the ability to transfer cash fee free directly to your high street bank account. This could provide an easy source of short-term funds for small businesses. There’s no annual fee on the card nor are there fees on foreign transactions or foreign ATM withdrawals. Plus, you can earn yourself uncapped 1% cashback which can be redeemed against your balance or paid straight into your business bank account. 

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Option to transfer funds fee free to your bank account
  • No annual fee
  • No non-sterling transaction fees
  • Access up to £100,000 in credit
  • 1% cashback for every £1 of card spend

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 29.9% APR (variable)

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

what we like

  • Option to transfer funds fee free to your bank account
  • No annual fee
  • No non-sterling transaction fees
  • 1% cashback for every £1 of card spend
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £0
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    29.9%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    N/A

KEY SCORES:

  • 4/5 Perks
  • 5/5Fees
  • 4/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Option to transfer funds fee free to your bank account
  • No annual fee
  • No non-sterling transaction fees
  • Access up to £100,000 in credit
  • 1% cashback for every £1 of card spend

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 29.9% APR (variable)

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

Great for: Prepaid cards to manage employee spending
4.5 stars question mark
Apply Now!

On Soldo's Secure Website

* Affiliate partner

Where Soldo’s prepaid business card differs from most other corporate credit cards is that it’s impossible for employees to run up debt, due to the predefined budget limits as well as not having access to the company account. All card activity can be tracked via Soldo’s apps and online administration console, while it all integrates with whichever accounting platforms the Finance department already uses. SMEs can get started with Soldo’s Pro account, which charges £5 per card issued each month, while an expanded Premium service has the monthly rate of £9 for each card.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • No credit history needed, ideal for start-ups
  • Manage cards via online payment console
  • Instant free transfers to employee cards

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Not applicable. This is not a credit product.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

what we like

  • No credit history needed, ideal for start-ups
  • Manage cards via online payment console
  • Instant free transfers to employee cards
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £60
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    N/A
  • INTRO OFFER:

    N/A

KEY SCORES:

  • 5/5 Perks
  • 4/5Fees
  • N/AAPR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • No credit history needed, ideal for start-ups
  • Manage cards via online payment console
  • Instant free transfers to employee cards

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Not applicable. This is not a credit product.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

Great for: Earning rewards while charging business expenses
4 stars question mark
Apply Now!

On American Express's Secure Website

* Affiliate partner

The American Express Gold Business Charge Card offers a fuller package than the basic charge card, with a payment period of up to 54 days on purchases, the Membership Rewards programme, travel insurance, purchase protection, and refund protection. However, you do have to pay for these benefits in the form of a £175 annual fee and a 2.99% non-sterling transaction fee if you use it abroad.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Earn 1 Amex Membership Rewards point per £1 spent
  • New Cardmember offer: 20,000 rewards points bonus (after spending £3,000 in first 3 months)
  • Earn 10,000 extra Membership Rewards points when you spend £20,000 per quarter
  • Access over £500 of the best discounts on business essentials and £100 statement credit at Dell Technologies
  • No annual fee for the first year
  • Up to 99 supplementary cards for employees
  • 1 additional Membership Rewards Point per £1 spent through American Express Travel for flights, hotels and car hires
  • Travel Accident and Travel Inconvenience insurance
  • Purchase protection for up to £2,500 on items purchased on card and stolen or damaged within 90 days

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Not applicable. This is a charge card, so there’s no credit offered.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

what we like

  • Earn 1 Amex Membership Rewards point per £1 spent
  • 20,000 rewards points bonus (after spending £3,000 in first 3 months)
  • No annual fee for the first year
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £175
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    N/A
  • INTRO OFFER:

    20,000 rewards points bonus (after spending £3,000 in first 3 months)
    £0 Annual Fee in First Year

KEY SCORES:

  • 3/5 Perks
  • 1/5Fees
  • N/AAPR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Earn 1 Amex Membership Rewards point per £1 spent
  • New Cardmember offer: 20,000 rewards points bonus (after spending £3,000 in first 3 months)
  • Earn 10,000 extra Membership Rewards points when you spend £20,000 per quarter
  • Access over £500 of the best discounts on business essentials and £100 statement credit at Dell Technologies
  • No annual fee for the first year
  • Up to 99 supplementary cards for employees
  • 1 additional Membership Rewards Point per £1 spent through American Express Travel for flights, hotels and car hires
  • Travel Accident and Travel Inconvenience insurance
  • Purchase protection for up to £2,500 on items purchased on card and stolen or damaged within 90 days

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Not applicable. This is a charge card, so there’s no credit offered.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

Great for: controlling business spending, purchase protection and cardholder misuse insurance.
4 stars question mark
Barclaycard Business Card
Apply Now!

On Barclaycard's Secure Website

* Affiliate partner

This is a card that can help businesses stay on top of their expenses and manage employee cards through its easy to use online account management and control portals. You’ll also benefit from a wealth of perks that come with this card including purchase protection and enhanced cardholder misuse insurance, a low annual fee (with zero additional cardholder fees) not to mention access to discounts through the Barclaycard Business Rewards scheme. T&Cs apply.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Purchase protection
  • Up to 38 days to pay interest-free
  • Cardholder misuse insurance up to £1m per year for entire business (subject to application). T&Cs apply.

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 3.6% APR (variable)
Assumed credit limit £1,200
Annual fee £42

The approval of your application depends on financial circumstances and borrowing history, so do the terms you may be offered. T&Cs apply.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

 

what we like

  • Purchase protection
  • Up to 38 days to pay
  • Cardholder misuse insurance up to £1m per year for entire business (subject to application). T&Cs apply
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £42
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    3.6%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    N/A

KEY SCORES:

  • 3.5/5 Perks
  • 4.5/5Fees
  • 4.5/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Purchase protection
  • Up to 38 days to pay interest-free
  • Cardholder misuse insurance up to £1m per year for entire business (subject to application). T&Cs apply.

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 3.6% APR (variable)
Assumed credit limit £1,200
Annual fee £42

The approval of your application depends on financial circumstances and borrowing history, so do the terms you may be offered. T&Cs apply.

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

 

Great for: Amazon Prime Business Owners
4 stars question mark

Amazon and American Express partner up to provide a cash flow solution to Amazon Prime members. The Amazon Business Prime American Express® credit card offers flexible payment options over 90 days OR access to 2% Amazon Rewards.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • High cap limit
  • Rare business card benefits
  • Annual fee waiver

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative APR 32.% APR variable
Annual fee £50
Purchase Rate 21.9%  variable for purchases

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.

what we like

  • High cap limit
  • Rare business card benefits
  • Annual fee waiver
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £50
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    32.6%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    £50 Amazon gift card

KEY SCORES:

  • 4/5 Perks
  • 4/5Fees
  • 2.5/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • High cap limit
  • Rare business card benefits
  • Annual fee waiver

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative APR 32.% APR variable
Annual fee £50
Purchase Rate 21.9%  variable for purchases

* This is an offer from one of our affiliate partners. For more information on why and how we work with partners, click here.


 

What is a business credit card?

A business credit card can help you manage business cash flow, spread the cost of pricey items or keep an orderly record of your expenses. Top that off with the fact that some offer the opportunity to earn rewards or cashback on all of your business spending.

How do business credit cards work?

The basic functions of a business credit card are similar to personal credit. That is, you use the card to pay for purchases and then pay off all or part of your balance at the end of the month (and carry any remainder as debt). But the added benefits of business credit cards can make them a very useful tool for businesses of all types.

Who can get a credit card for business?

Business credit cards are available to sole traders, start-ups and those spending money or buying items for a larger company.

Benefits of business credit cards

If running a small business, it’s too easy to get your personal finances muddled up with your business ones. A dedicated business credit card can help you keep the two separate.

Business credit cards can also help you manage your cashflow better, especially if you have irregular income and expenses. If you’re waiting for a customer to pay a large bill, a credit card means you can still buy the stuff you need in the interim. If you work all for a larger firm, you can spend money on company business without dipping into your own pocket then tediously filling in an expenses form later.

So whether you are paying for equipment, travel, technology, office furniture or entertaining clients, you can cover it on your card. There are plenty more benefits too.

  • Multiple cards. Many business card providers will grant firms several credit cards in different names, so different staff can each have a card of their own. These can usually be linked to the same account, so there is only one monthly bill to pay. Staff can even have different credit limits.
  • Itemised statements. The monthly credit card statement will help you keep tabs on all your business expenses. Multiple cards will let employers see how much different staff are spending, and on what.
  • Easier accounting. Business cards can help you keep track of receipts and cut the time you spend completing spreadsheets, as you can use the monthly card statement as an expense monitoring tool.
  • Higher credit limits. How much you can borrow will depend on the size of your business and its turnover. This means you may get a higher credit limit than on your personal plastic.
  • Interest-free credit. Many cards offer an interest-free period on purchases for up to 56 days. And of course, you don’t have to worry about interest at all if you clear the entire balance in full every month.

What perks do you get with a business credit card?

Business credit cards also offer freebies and special deals. Though these perks are usually not as generous as those on personal credit cards.

Still, they’re worth looking out for. Some cards have zero overseas usage charges, enhanced travel insurance benefits or Avios air miles. All of these could tempt those who travel overseas regularly for business. One or two offer 1% cashback on spending. Or waive fees for transferring a balance from an existing card.

A word of warning though. Cards with extras often have higher APRs or high annual fees. So make sure they are worth the cost.

What does a business credit card cost?

Brits often don’t realise how lucky we are when it comes to personal credit cards, as most do not charge an annual fee. This is not the case with business credit cards. Many business cards charge from £30 to £199 a year, or more. Important to consider, particularly if you’re looking for credit cards for small businesses. 

Annual fees may be waived for an introductory period, such as three or 12 months, but always check the long-term cost. Note that in exchange for higher annual fees on a business card, you can sometimes score some pretty mouth-watering perks. However, make sure that the value of the benefits outweigh the annual cost before shelling out for it.

APRs are typically slightly higher for business cards too. This can mean ranging between 22% and 25%, while one or two charge up to 40%. However, we have found long-term APRs as low as 13% to 16%. A higher APR does not matter so much if you plan to clear your credit card on time and in full every month, and are confident you have the discipline to stick to that. However, your handy piece of business plastic could cost you dear if you don’t.

How to get a business credit card

Here’s what you’ll need to do in order to get a business credit card:

1. Find the best business credit card for you.

To get a business credit card in the UK, the first step is, of course, to find the card that’s right for you and your business. A page like this one can help you do that. 

2. Make sure you’re eligible for the card.

Once you believe you’ve found the best business credit card for you, you’ll want to make sure you meet the requirements for that card. You can use our Eligibility Checker to see if you qualify ahead of time.

You must typically be 18 years old or older with a UK-registered business. Sole traders, start-ups and larger businesses can all get cards, although they may be offered different deals. Your turnover might be the deciding factor here. With some deals you will also have to sign up to the provider’s current account to qualify, so check that also meets your needs.

The financial strength of your business and its credit profile will also determine which card you can get, and the APR you pay. Even if your business is accepted it may not qualify for the headline APR, as card providers are only obliged to give the advertised rate to 51% of applicants. You could pay more.

3. Apply for the card.

If you meet eligibility requirements, then it’s time to gather together details you’ll need to apply. Online applications are the order of the day, although some providers will also let you apply over the phone or by post. Assemble all relevant information beforehand, which might include your company name, contact details, income and turnover, when your business started, how many employees you have, and so on. If you plan to have additional cardholders, information about those cardholders may also speed things along.

Business credit card vs. business charge card?

Some might prefer to take out a business charge card instead. These have two major advantages over a business credit card. First, you can use them to make major purchases without worrying about exceeding your credit limit. Second, they typically offer more freebies.

The key difference is that you cannot actually borrow money on a charge card. Instead, you have to clear your entire balance every month. You will never see an APR quoted on a charge card, because there isn’t one. The provider does not make money from charging interest. Instead, it is more likely to impose a monthly or annual fee.

If you fail to clear your spending in full you will face an immediate penalty fee, plus a hefty APR until the entire debt is cleared. The provider may also cancel your card – and all of this will hit your credit rating. You typically need a squeaky clean credit record to qualify in the first place.

The real beauty of charge cards is that many often tempting rewards, such as travel cover, vouchers, motor breakdown, cashback, airport lounge access and concierge services. That makes charge cards well worth a look if they meet your businesses’ needs.

What don’t I get on a credit card for business?

Here’s a bit of bad news. Those juicy 0% introductory rates you find on balance transfers and purchases are rare on business credit cards in the UK.

One or two cards do charge zero interest on purchases for the first six months, while several offer 0% purchases at specified builders’ merchants, aimed at those in the trade. But if you fancy a corporate credit card charging zero interest on balance transfers or purchases for the first two or three years, you may be disappointed.

In addition, while personal credit cards give you protection under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974, for spending between £100 and £30,000. Sadly, this does not extend to company credit cards, although some cards may offer their own fraud protection scheme. Because of the lack of cover under Section 75, the latter is a more important benefit to look out for in business cards.

Is a business credit card right for you?

If you have a business, then there’s a good chance that a business credit card (or charge card) could be useful to you. Particularly if you’re a sole trader or smaller business, a business card can be a good way to separate your business and personal expenses. Consider it good financial hygiene.

In addition, spending on a business card can help you track and manage expenses for your business and even provide short-term revolving credit in cases where you have short-term gaps in inflows and outflows. Corporate credit cards also may have rewards attached, which is a nice bonus on spending that your business would have done anyway.

Do keep in mind that a business credit card is not a particularly good way to borrow for your business. If what you’re after is funding for your business, then you probably should be looking into loans rather than credit cards. Credit card borrowing costs are particularly high.


Frequently Asked Questions

Are business credit cards personally guaranteed?

Not necessarily. If your business credit, turnover and assets are strong enough, the bank may not require a personal guarantee. If the credit limit on the card is low, there may also be no personal-guarantee required.

However, in a lot of cases, banks will require that you sign a personal guarantee for your corporate credit card. In this case, you will be personally liable for the debt incurred on your credit card account.

Can a business credit card affect my personal credit?

In cases where you sign a personal guarantee for your business credit card, yes, your business card can affect your personal credit. If you miss payments or otherwise don't stay on track with your business card, that may drag down your personal credit score. Note that this isn't necessarily the case, it depends on how the card issuer reports these issues. Nevertheless, this is a good reason to be as smart with your company credit card as with your personal card. Don't spend above your (business's) means and do pay your bills on time.

Are business credit card fees tax deductible?

If your business card carries an annual fee -- as business cards often do -- that fee may indeed be tax deductible. Other fees, such as interest charged on outstanding balances, may also be deductible. We addressed this question more fully in this article about deducting business card fees. In short, these may be allowable expenses, but it's wise to check with your tax advisor if you're in doubt.

Can I use a business credit card abroad?

Most business credit cards can be used abroad, but it can be expensive. Check for travel fees like non-sterling transaction fees before you use it abroad. You can check out our top-rated travel credit cards for other options of cards that are best to travel with.

Are my business credit card purchases protected?

While personal credit cards give you protection under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974, this does not extend to company credit cards. However, some business credit cards may offer their own fraud protection scheme. Because of the lack of cover under Section 75, the latter is a more important benefit to prioritize in business cards.

Can more than one employee have their own business credit card?

Yes, you can get multiple cards for the same account, so several employees could have their own card.

What can I use a business credit card for?

Business credit cards are designed for purchases required to run a business. They can be used to purchase laptops, stationery, office furniture, and more.

Learn more

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