What do you need to get approved for a business credit card?
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Editor’s note: This story has been updated with new information.
If you operate a business — whether small or large, established or just starting up — you may be considering a business credit card.
There are a range of benefits to these cards for businesses, including:
- Cashflow solutions with interest-free terms of up to 54 days;
- The ability to earn reward points on everyday business spend, which can help to offset travel costs as well as rewarding both business owners and employees; and
- Travel benefits like insurance, lounge access and purchase protection.
Each card has slightly different eligibility requirements, but here are some common requirements you may have to satisfy before applying. All business cards (credit and charge) in the U.K. require:
- The applicant be over 18 years of age and be a resident of the U.K.; and
- Registration of the business in the U.K. (i.e. with Companies House).
Many business card issuers will also require:
- A minimum period the business has been operating, such as 12 months; and
- A business bank account in the name of the business. If the card you are applying for is issued by a U.K. bank, they may require the account be with the same bank with which you are applying for the card.
You may also need a minimum monthly turnover, which you can demonstrate by providing accounting statements or bank statements on request from the card issuer as it processes your application. Note that turnover is different to profitability.
The issuer may also ask if you have business cards with other card issuers and may restrict your credit if it determines you have too much with another credit provider, especially considering the financial health of your business, in the same way it might for a personal card.
Where a card issuer has different business card products for different types of businesses, it may insist you can only be approved for the card it markets towards your business type — such as a start-up business card if your business falls within its definition of start-up.
Although this information may not be required for the online application process, be ready for questions the card issuer may come back with — especially for premium card products.
For example, your accountant or financial controller’s details, ID and some financial statements.
Ultimately, if you’re a small business owner, getting a card for your business purchases could be a great decision. If you can take advantage of the rewards and perks the card would offer, it could be another way for your to maximise your travel earnings, moving you well on your way to free travel.
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