Back in the day you’d only earn one point per dollar spent on credit cards. Then we saw some cards introduce up to 1.5x points per dollar spent. Then in 2017 a card was introduced that offers a full 2x transferable points per dollar spent all with no annual fee, which was otherwise unheard of.
In this post, I wanted to take a closer look at that card, as this is one that virtually everyone who is eligible should have, in my opinion. If you don’t have this card, can you even in good conscience call yourself a points enthusiast?! 😉
Amex Blue Business Plus Card Basics For February 2021
The Blue Business Plus Credit Card from American Express is almost too good to be true, given that the card has no annual fee, offers up to 2x transferable points per dollar spent, and gives you access to some other useful perks as well.
There aren’t many credit cards that I say just about everyone should have, though this is one of them. So, what makes the Amex Blue Business Plus so rewarding?
Earn 2x Membership Rewards Points
The Blue Business Plus Credit Card earns 2x Membership Rewards points on everyday business purchases, and that applies to the first $50,000 spent per calendar year. You earn 1x points per dollar thereafter.
Membership Rewards points are one of the major transferable points currencies, and personally I value Membership Rewards points at 1.7 cents each. To me, that’s the equivalent of a 3.4% return on everyday business spending, which is unrivaled.
I should also mention that this card earns Membership Rewards points that can be transferred to Amex airline and hotel partners. There aren’t many no annual fee cards that are enrolled in the “full” Membership Rewards program, so that in and of itself is a reason to keep this card.
Redeem Membership Rewards points for travel in Etihad first class
No Annual fee
The Blue Business Plus Card has no annual fee (Rates & Fees), so this is a card that you can keep long term to maximize your rewards. You can also add authorized users to your account at no extra cost.
0% Intro APR
The Blue Business Plus offers a 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening. After that, your APR will be a variable rate (currently in the range of 13.24% - 19.24%), so if you do take advantage of this, make sure you can pay back the full amount within that period (Rates & Fees).
Spend Above Your Credit Limit
One thing that makes Amex business cards unique is that even though your business credit card has a limit, you can generally spend above that limit.
The extent to which Amex will let you spend above that limit varies based on quite a few factors, though it is something to be aware of, and something I’ve benefited from in the past when I had big purchases to make on cards with fairly low credit limits.
Spend above your credit limit with the Blue Business Plus
Save Money With Amex Offers Program
The Amex Offers program is a way that you can save money and/or earn bonus points for purchases with a variety of retailers. This program saves me hundreds of dollars per year, and it’s also a reason to have as many Amex cards as possible. That’s especially true if you can get no annual fee cards, which really cost you nothing to hold onto.
2.7% Foreign Transaction Fees
I wouldn’t recommend using the Blue Business Plus for purchases outside the US, as the card does carry foreign transaction fees of 2.7% (Rates & Fees), which will eat up most of the value of your rewards.
Getting Approved For The Blue Business Plus
For those with excellent credit, I find Amex business cards to be incredibly easy to be approved for. Anecdotally most people I’ve heard from have reported instant approvals on this card, so it really shouldn’t be very tough to be approved for, even if you haven’t gotten many business cards in the past.
Just make sure you know that:
- You can be approved for at most two Amex cards in a 90 day period
- There’s a limit of how many American Express credit cards you can have at any point; historically it has been five, but right now the limit seems to be four
Is The Blue Business Plus Worth It?
If you’re into collecting points then the Blue Business Plus Card is an absolute must. Earning 2x Membership Rewards points, which I value at a ~3.4% return, is unrivaled. Best of all, you’re getting all of this with a no annual fee card that earns points that can be transferred to airline and hotel programs.
Just keep in mind the $50,000 limit every calendar year for earning the 2x points.
Let’s take a look at some of the other cards that are worth considering, either in place of the Blue Business Plus, if you’re looking for a cash back card, or if you’re looking for a card to use beyond your first $50,000 of spending per calendar year.
Comparison: Blue Business Plus Vs. Blue Business Cash
Most aspects of the cards are the same, with the major distinction being that the Blue Business Cash earns 2% cash back on the first $50,000 spent annually, while the Blue Business Plus earns 2x Membership Rewards points on the first $50,000 spent annually.
While 2% cash back is a solid return for a no annual fee business card, personally I have a strong preference for earning 2x Membership Rewards points rather than 2% cash back.
I prefer to earn travel rewards for the future with my credit card spending
Best Business Credit Card Beyond $50K Of Spending
The Blue Business Plus offers an incredible 2x points on the first $50,000 spent every calendar year, so what are the best cards for everyday spending beyond that?
Those points can be transferred to Ultimate Rewards partners if you have the card in conjunction with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (review), Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card (review), or Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card (review).
Best Blue Business Plus Credit Card Complement
If you want to earn as many Membership Rewards points as possible, the American Express® Business Gold Card (review) is worth considering.
The Business Gold Card offers 4x Membership Rewards points on the two select categories where your business spent the most each month. The 4x points apply to the first $150,000 in combined purchases from these categories each calendar year.
The bonus categories are as follows:
- Airfare purchased directly from airlines
- U.S. purchases for advertising in select media
- U.S. purchases at gas stations
- U.S. purchases at restaurants
- U.S. purchases for shipping
- U.S. computer hardware, software, and cloud computing purchases made directly from select providers
Earn 4x points on shipping with the Amex Business Gold
Best Comparable Personal Credit Card
There’s only one personal card that’s at all comparable to the Blue Business Plus, and that’s the Citi® Double Cash Card (review). The card also has no annual fee, and offers 1% cash back when you make a purchase, and an additional 1% cash back when you pay for that purchase.
If you have the card in conjunction with a card earning Citi ThankYou points, like the Citi Premier® Card (review), then rewards can be converted into ThankYou points at a ratio of one cent per point. That makes this card incredible versatile, as you can redeem rewards efficiently as cash back or towards travel.
Amex Blue Business Plus Summary
The Blue Business Plus Card is one of the most incredible cards out there. It offers 2x Membership Rewards points on the first $50,000 spent every calendar year.
This is a card that anyone who is eligible should get, assuming you’re into collecting points.
The following links will direct you to the rates and fees for mentioned American Express Cards. These include: The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express (Rates & Fees).