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Most of the time, your business credit card perks are pretty easy to discover. With a cash back business credit card, the main benefit is in the name itself—either extra money at the end of each year or a statement credit, depending on your terms. And if you’re using a travel business credit card, you might be able to fly around the world and back again if you rack up enough miles. But, in some cases, your business credit card perks provide a lot more upside than you’re even aware of.
Hidden in the fine print of your business credit card’s terms are a ton of perks we’ll bet you’re not using. These credit card perks actually make your life as a small business owner—and a business credit card holder—a whole lot easier.
Depending on the card you use, you might be able to open doors other people can’t, get reimbursements or insurances you didn’t know about, or even jump the lines on coveted sales. That’s not even everything.
Of course, every business credit card comes with different perks, both the obvious and the not-so-obvious. But we guarantee that there’s something special included on your card that you’re not yet using—you just have to know to look for it.
Across the board, you’ll need to investigate the details of what your particular business credit card offers. Along with the types of benefits you can receive, it’s important for you to get familiar with the terms, conditions, and exclusions that apply, too. But, generally, you can expect your business credit card’s hidden perks to mitigate travel snags, save you from car-rental dilemmas, ease restrictions on products purchased with your card, and/or grant you access to special experiences.
You don’t need to specifically carry a business travel credit card to access travel benefits. Lots of business credit cards, even cash back cards, offer plans that’ll make traveling both more convenient and safer. Most of the time, those perks will cover the following areas:
Nothing ruins an important business trip quite like getting to your destination and not finding your luggage on the carousel. But if you’re carrying the right business credit card, you might not have to worry about that headache. Certain cards will cover expenses for lost, stolen, or damaged luggage, as long as you purchased your ticket on that card, and the luggage suits the card’s eligibility requirements.
The card carrier can’t always guarantee that they’ll find your lost luggage or repair the damage, but they can furnish up to a certain amount of money so you can replace those lost items once you’re at your destination.
Other card companies offer 24/7 concierge services that can walk you through the baggage carrier’s lost-luggage or lost-ticket services. But they might not cover any costs incurred in shipping luggage or replacing tickets, so, again, you’ll need to check out your card’s benefits guide to know exactly how much this service will (or won’t) cost you.
In the unlikely event that you encounter an accident while traveling, calling your credit card carrier might be not your first instinct—but it could actually be the right one. Your business credit card might give you access to a 24/7, toll-free number that’ll hook you up to a professional administrator. That admin will then connect you with whatever local emergency service you need, like English-speaking doctors and legal assistance; emergency prescription fulfillment or replacement; and translation services. They might also be able to record and relay messages to your family or business associates.
Plans shift, accidents arise, storms hit, jury duty beckons. And then trips get postponed—or cancelled entirely. Turns out, your card carrier gets it! The Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card, for instance, can reimburse up to several thousand dollars per eligible trip if the traveler paid for those expenses on their Chase card. The card issuer will only cover certain reasons for trip cancellation or postponement, such as severe weather or sudden illness, so you always need to consult your card’s plan to know exactly which terms and conditions apply.
With the right business credit card perks, you might not need a first- or business-class ticket to access exclusive airport lounges. If you’re carrying an American Express Business Platinum Card, for example, you can just flash your credit card, a valid ID, and a same-day ticket from any airline, and you’ll get complimentary, unlimited access to over a thousand lounges in more than 500 airports around the world. Your partner and two children under 21, or two guests, can come in with you, too.
With this card in particular, you’ll get access to lots of other, unique travel perks, like access to free WiFi while traveling and a fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck—so you can breeze right through security, guiltlessly hang out online, and enjoy the quiet (and premium snacks) in the airport’s lounge.
→Too Long; Didn’t Read (TL;DR): Your credit card might be able to reimburse you for lost, damaged, or stolen baggage or tickets, cover you for cancelled trips, offer travel accident insurance or assistance, and get you into first-class airport lounges.
Just as your credit card can unexpectedly help you navigate travel dilemmas, it can also be a major asset if you run into car troubles. Whether you’ve dinged your rental car or you’re stalled in your own driveway, your credit card issuer might offer the fix you need.
Traveling can be really stressful. And figuring out how to operate a new car, on roads whose signs are written in a language you can’t read, only adds to the pressure. But knowing that your credit card perks cover accidental damage might make driving that car—maybe even on the opposite side of the road!—a tiny bit easier.
Most major cards, including American Express, Visa, Discover, and Mastercard, offer cardholders some form of insurance on collisions or theft of rental cars. The level of coverage varies according to the issuer, and certain conditions always apply, too. Some credit cards, for instance, won’t cover expensive or exotic cars, or cars rented in certain countries.
Also keep in mind that many credit card companies offer secondary auto insurance, rather than primary auto insurance. That means that your personal auto insurance pays your claim first, but the card might take care of extra expenses that the primary insurance doesn’t cover, like towing charges.
All of which is to say that if you’re curious about taking advantage of your card’s auto insurance, call the number on the back of your card to make absolutely sure that your trip and car will be eligible.
Flat tire? Dead battery? Locked out of your rental car because you lost your keys and you’re running dangerously late for an important client meeting and you’re not even sure how to get to their office? It happens to the best of us, and your credit card company probably has a service that can help you out.
You’ll probably find a number on the back of your credit card that’ll connect you to a roadside assistance hotline, so the representative on the other end can request the tow truck or locksmith nearest you. Be aware that you might be responsible for charges related to the car services that the hotline requests for you—but those charges will probably be worth the convenience when you’re stalled on the side of an unknown highway.
→TL;DR: Many credit cards offer some form of car rental coverage and roadside assistance. Be sure to check with your credit card company for their exact car insurance terms, since types of coverage vary.
No matter how savvy a shopper you are, you’re bound to experience buyer’s remorse at some point. And if you’re conscientious with your belongings, you’re also bound to accidentally damage or lose some purchases. But if you bought that item on the business credit card with retail perks, the card issuer just might save you from covering the costs for replacing, repairing, or returning it.
Some business credit cards can extend the warranties on products purchased with your business credit card. That’s great news for cardholders who buy expensive items like televisions, laptops, and cell phones, since those gadgets are often covered. And they’re often massively stress-inducing if they break down before their sell-by dates.
So before buying a costly item, you’ll probably want to use the business credit card that offers special retail policies. Eligibility requirements apply, so check your card issuer’s terms for exact information.
Your card might also cover recently purchased products that you’ve lost, stolen, or damaged—as long as you bought that item on that specific credit business card (as always). You’ll have to file a claim immediately after discovering that the item is missing or broken.
Some business credit cards provide perks for added coverage on specific items, too. The Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card, for one, can reimburse the cardholder up to $600 in cell phone protection for you and your employees, as long as that phone is listed on your monthly cell phone bill.
What’s worse than buyer’s remorse? When the store from which you purchased that regrettable item won’t take it back. But some credit card companies, like American Express and Mastercard, offer return protection programs, meaning that they’ll cover refunds on eligible items even when the original store won’t.
The card might also extend the return life of an item, so you’ll have a little longer to decide whether you really want that ergonomic keyboard/soda-making machine/monogrammed pillow for your office chair. Check up with your card’s return protection program to see which items, and on which terms, are applicable.
→TL;DR: Certain credit cards offer cardholders extended warranties on expensive purchases, and they’ll cover loss and damage expenses on eligible purchases and rejected returns.
Many of the biggest card issuers, such as American Express and Mastercard, offer cardholders early access to tickets for major entertainment and sports events. And, depending on the card and the event, cardholders might be invited to access VIP perks like complimentary food and beverages in lounges.
Plus, of course, some of the best seats in the house.
Not every credit card offers tickets on presale. And if they do, they likely won’t be available at venues across every city in the country. But the next time an in-demand performance or game comes to your hometown, it’s worth it to see if your business credit card can help you score tickets ahead of the crowds.
Other business credit cards might offer deals and discounts on tickets bought through certain vendors, and even access to special experiences like fine dining and recreational events. When you sign up for the Capital One Spark Cash Select for Business credit card, your card comes with Visa Business Benefits. Some of those special (and hidden) perks include movie ticket discounts at Fandango, complimentary wine tastings in Sonoma County, and retail discounts.
→TL;DR: Your card might offer you the chance to gain special access to major entertainment and sporting events before the general public.
Chances are that your business credit card is hiding a trove of perks and benefits you had no idea you could use. But these three business credit cards for sure come loaded with advantages—both transparent and hidden. And they’re ready for you to take advantage of them from the start.
Keep in mind that the following lists aren’t exhaustive of these cards’ benefits, and terms and conditions always apply. For the most up-to-date details on a card’s programs and eligibility requirements, it’s always best to go straight to the card benefits guide, or to contact your credit card issuer directly.
This card’s hidden benefits include:
Along with its hidden business credit card perks, the Chase Ink Business Preferred card is one of the best travel rewards business credit cards available.
This card’s hidden perks include:
On top of these hidden business credit card perks, you can also look forward to a nine-month 0% intro APR period, and no annual fee from the Capital One Spark Cash Select. (Remember that a variable APR sets in after the nine months are over, so check issuer terms.)
As the gold standard for business travel credit cards, the Amex Business Platinum’s hidden perks might not be so hidden to you if you’re a frequent traveler. And if you are, they’re invaluable—to the point where the cards $595 annual fee pays for itself.
There are so many reasons to use a business credit card: they’re easy to use and crucial for building credit, for a start. But then there are the perks. And there could be more of those business credit card perks than you thought.
Often, those secret advantages take the form of:
In particular, the Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card, the Capital One Spark Cash Select for Business Credit Card, and the American Express Business Platinum Credit Card offer a lot more benefits than may be immediately obvious.
Regardless of which business credit card you’re using, terms and conditions always apply for benefits and rewards programs. The only way to know for sure whether your credit card covers your particular situation (e.g., your broken phone, rented car, canceled business trip, or Broadway show ticket) is to read the card’s benefits guide, or—for those of you who aren’t so keen on reading the fine print—calling your card issuer directly.
But when you do find out how to use those business credit card perks, your life—or at least your anxieties around traveling and making large purchases—will be made a whole lot easier.