Hey there, you’re reading an outdated post! The updated series from March 2013 can be found here.
This is the twenty-eighth post in a monthlong series. Each post will take about two minutes to read and may include an action item that takes the reader another two minutes to complete. I am writing this for an audience of people who know nothing about frequent flier miles, and my goal is that by the end, you know enough to fly for free anywhere you want to go.
Applying for business credit cards is a great way to double your credit card applications, and you probably have a business.
If you have an IRS-issued EIN (Employer Identification Number), you are ahead of the game, and the magical world of business credit cards is open to you.
If you don’t have an EIN, don’t worry, you can still get a business card from most major issuers except Citi. Simply put your Social Security Number in place of the EIN on the application. There’s nothing wrong with it since many small businesses are sole proprietorships with no EIN.
The main question is do you do anything that can legitimately be described as a business or that you’re planning on turning into a business. It can be as simple as being an ebay seller or running a blog that may add advertisements in the future.
If you can answer yes, apply for the cards with a clear conscience. If you ever need to speak to a representative for approval, answer his questions truthfully that your business is small and new, but you want a card to keep its finances separate. Of course, with the card you can charge any expenses, not just business expense, to clear its minimum spending requirement to unlock its sign up bonus.
If you apply for a business card, there are a few things you should know. First, there is a personal credit pull on your credit report. But after the pull, the card does not sit on your credit report, but on a separate one for the business. Second, many consumer protections like purchase protection and and rental insurance don’t exist with business cards. Third, many business cards are charge cards that need to be paid in full each month (which isn’t a problem because you should be paying all your rewards cards in full each month.)
If none of that has scared you off, you can now roughly double the possible credit cards you can apply for because many personal cards have an equivalent or comparable business card. With all the extra miles, I’ll see you at the front of the plane next month.