Applying for business credit and charge cards is a great way to earn more miles and points than you already do, but many people don’t apply for business cards because they incorrectly believe they don’t qualify.

Do you qualify for a business card?

Myth #1: A business must have employees.

Your business can be a sole proprietorship, meaning only you work on the business. That’s how MileValue started, just me, and I have received several business cards for MileValue.

Myth #2: A business must be profitable.

Businesses are set up to earn profit, but they aren’t profitable all the time. One time when almost no business is profitable is when it is just starting. That’s a time when you have to put money into the business before you can start making money from it.

A new business–even if it’s not making money yet–is still a business, and you can still get a business card.

Examples of Businesses You May Currently Be Running

Most people reading this site probably make most of their income from a job working for someone else, so they may not consider their side money-making activities as a business. But those side activities could very well be businesses. Activities like:

  • Seller on eBay
  • Seller on Amazon
  • Seller on Etsy
  • Seller at consignment shops
  • Seller at yard sales
  • Seller of baked goods
  • Seller of souvenirs from your trips abroad
  • Blogger
  • Seller and collector of coins, stamps, or coins

(Hat tip to Daraius for some of these)

If you are currently involved in one of these activities or something similar, you may find a business card helpful for running your nascent business. After all, business cards are a convenient way to track all the expenses of the business in one place, making it easy to compare that to your revenues to see whether the business is profitable.

Getting a Business Card is as easy as 1-2-3.

  1. Select the right business card for you.
  2. Apply for the business card online.
  3. Call Chase to answer a few questions.

1. Select the right business card for you.

The big things to consider are an appealing sign up bonus, good ongoing rewards for spending (think: category bonuses), and the ease of using the rewards.

2. Apply for the business card.

Fill out the form about your business truthfully.

3. Call the issuing bank to answer a few questions.

As soon as I fill out the application, I call the banks’ business reconsideration lines. My business applications never seem to get approved instantly online, but a five-minute call, and I’m in business.

When the agent answers, I say, “Hi! I just applied for the [card.] I wanted to call and see if you needed any more information.”

At this point, the agent will find the application and ask you a few questions about your business relating to what it is; how long you’ve run it; and what its revenues, profits, and costs are. Answer these questions truthfully and politely, and you should have a decision within a few minutes.

If the rep asks why you want the card, you should answer honestly about your reasons, which probably have to do with tracking expenses and earning rewards for business activities.

If you have a relationship with the bank, you may want to highlight it on the call. Having a checking account or mortgage with the bank may make them more likely to approve you since they want to continue their relationship with you.

If you don’t think the call is going well, Daraius recommends politely hanging up and calling back. I’ve never had to do that, but it does bring up the point that nothing limits you to one call to the reconsideration line.

Here are the numbers I use:

  • American Express: 877-399-3083 (8am-midnight, M-F; 10:30-6:30, weekend)
  • Chase: 800-453-9719 (1pm-10pm, M-F)
  • Citi: 800-763-9795 (7am-midnight, every day)
  • Barclay’s: 866-408-4064 (8am-5pm, M-F)
  • Bank of America:  866-695-6598 (8am-midnight, every day)
  • US Bank: 800-947-1444 (8am-8pm, M-F; 9am-6pm, Saturday; closed Sunday)


Many people have a small business even if it’s not their sole source of income. If you’d like a credit card to help manage that business and earn more miles and points, you may want to apply for  business cards.

Applying for a business card is a simple, three-step process. Pick the right card, apply for that card online, and call the bank to seal the deal.