In’s and Out’s of the Chase Ink Credit Card Bonus

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Last week ago I did a quick post on the sign up bonus for the Chase Ink Plus and Chase Ink CashI wanted to give new readers the in’s and out’s of these credit cards and the overall Chase Ultimate Rewards program. If you are already well versed on these cards and this program, you can probably skip this post! However, if you are new to the points and miles games, this post along with my Chase Ultimate Reward series will probably come in pretty handy. So here we go…. 

The Chase Ink Plus has a 50,000 point offer after spending $5,000 within the first three months. The Chase Ink Cash currently has a sign up bonus of 20,000 points after spending $3,000 on the card within the first three months.

Both cards are part of the Chase Ultimate Rewards program, however, this program has two types of accounts: “Enhanced” accounts where points can be transferred directly to participating partner loyalty program and then “Limited” accounts that cannot and cash back is the best option. Between these two cards, the Chase Ink Plus (along with the Chase Ink Bold) allows the direct transfers while the Chase Ink Cash does not (along with the Chase Ink Classic). Note: You can no longer apply for the Chase Ink Bold and Chase Ink Classic cards. However, if you have an account in both, the points earned from the Ink Cash can be transferred directly to a Chase Ink Bold, Chase Ink Plus, or Chase Sapphire Preferred account and then transferred to a loyalty partner program. Also, you can transfer points freely between your and your partner/spouses account. Keep in mind that Chase has started to close accounts where points where transferred between accounts of other friends/family members. So in reality, there is very little reason to pay the annual fee on more than one Chase Ultimate Rewards card.

One thing to note is that these Chase Ink cards are business cards (not personal), but with all Chase applications you can use your Social Security number if you do not have an EIN (Employer Identification Number). Your business also does not need to be registered and you can apply as a sole proprietorship. For example, my husband and I recently got into real estate and we do not have an EIN set up for it yet. When I applied for the Chase Ink Plus this past fall I used my personal SS# on my application. If you do apply for one of the cards, there is a good chance you’ll need to call Chase’s Business reconsideration line just to answer some questions about your business. This is very common for business credit cards.

Best redemption for Chase Ultimate Reward points:

I personally love the Chase Ultimate Reward earning credit cards as transferring the points earned to Hyatt, United, and British Airways at a 1:1 ratio is HUGE! There are more partners, but I value those three the most (you can read more about the airline and hotel partners here).

Value of Chase Ultimate Reward points: 

I value Chase Ultimate Reward points that can be transferred directly to loyalty partners at 2 cents per dollar. So if a sign up offer is 50,000 points, for example, I’d value that at $1,000. Although some might find a better or worse value, it really depends on how you redeem your points. If you do not want to be bothered with transferring the points and want to just redeem for any travel through Chase’s travel portal, points in “Enhanced” accounts are worth a flat 1.25 cents a piece, so at the bear minimum you are getting $625 value for a 50,000 point offer. For the accounts where you cannot transfer the points directly (i.e., Chase Ink Cash), you can redeem at a flat 1 cent per point – so 20,000 points is worth $200 – unless you transfer those to another account and then they can be worth way more!

How many points do I earn per dollar when using these cards? (you can read a detailed comparison in this blog post)

  • Chase Ink Plus:
    • 5x points per $1 on business expenses up to a maximum of $50,000 spend (business expenses include: wireless communication services, cable and satellite television and radio services, office supply stores and wholesale distributors of office supplies)
    • 2x points per $1 at gas stations and restaurants up to a maximum of $50,000 spend
    • 1x points per $1 on all other purchases – no limit on points you can earn
  • Chase Ink Cash:
    • 5x points per $1 on business expenses up to a maximum of $25,000 spend (business expenses include: wireless communication services, cable and satellite television and radio services, office supply stores and wholesale distributors of office supplies)
    • 2x points per $1 at gas stations, hotels and motels up to a maximum of 25,000 bonus points/$25,000 spent
    • 1x points per $1 on all other purchases – no limit on points you can earn

So as you can see one of the biggest perks of these cards (although by no means the only reason for these cards) is the 5x points categories, specifically at office supply stores (i.e., Office Depot, Staples, etc.).

What are the differences between the four Chase Ink cards?

Chase Ink Plus credit card and Chase Ink Bold charge card are essentially 99.9% the same, but with one key difference – the Chase Ink Bold is a charge card where you must pay the balance in full each month, and the Chase Ink Plus is a credit card allowing you to pay the credit card over time (although there are high APR fees and I highly do not advise doing this!). Aside from that difference the cards are 100% the same with the exact sign up bonus, fees, and points earned on all spend. Remember though, the Chase Ink Bold is not longer available to new applicants, but I know many people still have this card readily available in their wallet.

Now, the Chase Ink Classic credit card and Chase Ink Cash credit card are also very similar in nature – both have no annual fee, a 3% foreign transaction fee, and do not allow you to transfer your points directly to loyalty partners. While both cards give you 2x points at gas stations, the Ink Classic also gives 2x points at hotels/motels while the Ink Cash gives 2x points at restaurants. As mentioned previously, unfortunately Chase isn’t taking any new applicants for the Ink Classic card.

If you are new to Chase Ultimate Reward points, check out this prior blog series to learn more:

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links for the Chase Ink Cash. I will only list the best credit card offers as my goal is for you to travel on a deal!

Comments

  1. Under the bulleted benefits for Chase Ink Cash, you note that it earns 2x UR points at hotels and motels, which I don’t believe is correct? Later in the post (in the comparison with the Ink Classic), you correctly note that the Ink Cash earns 2x UR points at gas stations and restaurants.

  2. I signed up for the Chase Ink Plus business card a little over a month ago and they have already posted the annual fee. Is this normal?

    • @Bryan – Yes this is normal since this card did not have the annual fee waived the first year (assuming you applied during the recent 60,000 point promotion)

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