While the welcome offers for the Ink Business Preferred and Ink Business Premier might look similar on the surface, they are actually quite different due to the difference in how you can redeem the rewards earned between the two cards.
With the Ink Business Preferred, you’ll earn 100,000 Ultimate Reward bonus points after spending $15,000 in the first three months. Points earned from the card are worth 1.25 cents apiece when redeemed through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal, or they can be transferred to any of Chase’s travel partners at a 1:1 ratio. This means the 100,000 points earned are worth a minimum of $1,250 toward travel, although you can potentially get much more value from them by transferring to the Ultimate Rewards program’s 11 airline and three hotel partners, including United, Southwest and World of Hyatt.
The Ink Business Premier is also offering 100,000 Ultimate Reward bonus points ($1,000 cash back) after you spend $10,000 in purchases within the same three-month time frame. This cash back is earned in the form of Ultimate Rewards points. But unlike those from the Ink Business Preferred, you cannot transfer these to the program’s airline and hotel partners. Nor can you transfer them to your Ultimate Rewards account linked to another card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card so that they become transferable (though you can transfer Ultimate Rewards points from your other card accounts into the one linked to your Ink Business Premier). Instead, these points are always worth just 1 cent apiece, whether you redeem them for cash back or for things like statement credits, gift cards and travel through the Chase portal. So this welcome offer is worth $1,000 no matter how you use it.
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Winner: When comparing the two cards side by side, the Ink Business Preferred card has the upper hand since its points are worth more when redeemed for travel. However, if you’re looking for a purely cash-back welcome offer, then the Ink Business Premier is a better option since the minimum spending requirement to earn the bonus is much less.
Bonus earning categories
The Ink Business Preferred offers more bonus categories than the Ink Business Premier, so that you’ll earn 3 points per dollar spent on the first $150,000 in combined purchases per account year in the following categories:
- Shipping purchases.
- Internet, cable and phone services.
- Advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines.
On all other purchases, or after you spend $150,000 combined in the above bonus categories, you’ll earn 1 point per dollar spent. Since Chase Ultimate Rewards are worth 2 cents per point, based on TPG’s valuation, this means you’re earning a 6% return on your category bonus purchases and a 2% return on all other purchases.
The Ink Business Premier offers both interesting bonus categories and strong everyday earning. With this card, you’ll accrue:
- 5% total cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
- 2.5% total cash back on every purchase of $5,000 or more.
- 2% cash back on every purchase.
To earn at least 2% cash back on every purchase you make is strong, but not unique. There are many other cash-back cards that also offer the same return, such as the Citi® Double Cash Card and Capital One Spark Cash Plus. But if you often make large purchases — those over $5,000 — then earning that extra half a percent in cash back can save you a lot of money in the end.
Winner: If you are looking to simplify your business expenses and to just have one card for everything, the Ink Business Premier is the winner. But that’s only if you are looking to earn cash back. If you prefer to earn travel rewards with your credit card purchases, then the Ink Business Preferred will give you more options.