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The Union Bank Business Rewards Visa® Credit Card is a small business credit card with no annual fee and a generous rewards program. Though it hasn’t yet made our list of the best small business credit cards, it’s a worthy contender for independent professionals and small business owners who dine out with clients, drive regularly, and spend often on business expenses.
And while Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card isn’t a contender for our best cash back credit cards or best travel rewards credit cards lists, it does have a generous rewards program that can pad your bank account and get you closer to your favorite travel destinations. It earns 5 points per $1 spent on business expenses, up to the first $25,000 in combined category spending. This broad-sounding category includes telecommunications, utilities, computer repair, advertising, and office supplies.
Union Bank Business Rewards Visa also provides an above-average rate of return on gas station and restaurant spending, along with a mediocre (but unlimited) return on everyday spending. Sweetening the deal is a solid sign-up bonus.
If you’re looking for a business funding option that provides a small but meaningful return on spending, this card is worth a closer look. Here’s what you need to know about its advantages, drawbacks, and overall suitability.
When you spend at least $5,000 within the first 3 months, you get 10,000 bonus points. That’s worth $100 when redeemed for a statement credit against your account balance.
Earning Rewards Points
Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card earns 5 points per $1 spent on the first $25,000 in combined annual business expense spending. Union Bank defines “business expenses” as telecommunications, utilities (including cable, electricity, Internet, and the like), office supplies and stationery, computer maintenance and repair, and advertising services.
This card earns 2 points per $1 spent on the first $25,000 in combined annual gas station and restaurant spending, making this card a great way to save money at restaurants. All other purchases – including business expense, gas station, and restaurant purchases above the annual category caps – earn unlimited 1 point per $1 spent.
Redeeming Rewards Points
You can redeem your accumulated points statement credits against your Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card balance, at a per-point value of $0.01. You can also redeem for travel purchases, general merchandise, special experiences, and gift cards offered by dozens of participating restaurants and retailers.
Although there is no stated redemption minimum or maximum for any redemption type, Union Bank explicitly reserves the right to impose minimums or maximums in the future. No matter how you choose to redeem, using your points wisely can be a great way to reduce your business expenses and save money on a tight budget.
Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card has a 6-month, 0% APR introductory promotion on purchases. However, there is no comparable promotion for balance transfers.
Once the introductory period ends, this card’s purchase APR rises to range between 13.49% to 22.49%, depending on prevailing interest rates at the time of the transition and your personal creditworthiness. The balance transfer APR falls within the same range from the first day your account is open. Going forward, both rates are subject to change with prevailing interest rates.
The cash advance APR is set at 26.49% when you open your account, but can vary after that with prevailing rates. The penalty APR is set at 29.99%. If you’re worried about high interest rates, check out our roundup of the best low-APR credit cards for better deals.
The Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card has no annual fee. Foreign transactions cost 3% of the transaction amount. Balance transfers cost the greater of $10 or 5% of the transfer amount. Cash advances cost the greater of $15 or 5% from the day you open your account. Late payments cost up to $39, while returned payments cost $35.
The Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card cardholders enjoy complimentary access to Visa SavingsEdge, a business-only savings program that entitles you to instant discounts at a slew of popular merchants. Travel and food merchants are heavily represented here. Participating vendors include Panera Bread (2% discount), National (4%), and La Quinta Inn & Suites (5%). These partnerships are subject to change, so check with Union Bank and Visa for a complete, up-to-date list.
Visa-Backed Cardholder Benefits
Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card has a nice lineup of Visa-backed benefits. These include emergency lost card replacement and cash disbursement, a dedicated hotline for card-related questions (Card Inquiry Service), and complimentary damage insurance on rental cars paid in full with the card.
Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card is designed for business owners with good to excellent credit. If you have any serious credit issues in your recent past, such as business or personal bankruptcy, your application is unlikely to be approved.
- No Annual Fee. Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card has no annual fee. As long as you pay your balance in full each month, it costs you nothing to keep this card in your wallet. That’s great news for business owners who expect to use this card as a secondary or tertiary spending aid – for instance, as their exclusive gas or dining-out credit card.
- Broad 5x Category (Up to 5% Return on Spending). This card’s 5x category is unusually broad. “Business expenses” include telecommunications, utilities, office supplies, advertising, and computer maintenance and repair – basically, many of the things that business owners can’t do without. With 5% cash back on the first $25,000 in combined annual category spending here, you’re guaranteed $1,250 cash back (via statement credit) if you can commit to hitting the annual 5x spending cap.
- 2x Category Includes Restaurants and Gas Stations (Up to 2% Return on Spending). Though it’s certainly not as generous as the 5x category, this card’s 2x category is pretty broad too: 2 points per $1 spent at gas stations and restaurants. If you hit the $25,000 combined annual spending cap in these categories, you’re guaranteed an additional $500 cash back. If you’re looking for an even better return specifically on gas spending, check out our roundup of the best gas credit cards on the market.
- Visa SavingsEdge Boosts Discount Potential. Visa SavingsEdge offers discounts up to 5% at dozens of participating merchants. Participation skews heavily toward travel and food merchants. You’ll find many recognizable fast casual chains, rental car companies, and hotels here. That’s great news for frequent travelers and folks who dine out often. With the right combination of spending, you can earn up to 7% back at participating restaurants.
- Plenty of Redemption Options. This card has a slew of redemption options, including cash back on statement credits, credits towards travel purchase, general merchandise, and gift cards. However you redeem, you’ll find something that catches your fancy.
- 6-Month 0% APR Promotion for Purchases. If you’re planning to finance a large purchase, this card is worth a closer look. The 6-month 0% APR purchase promotion is ideal for business owners who need to make large capital expenditures without incurring ruinous interest charges right out of the gate. It’s worth noting that business credit cards tend to be stingier with 0% APR promotions than personal credit cards, so this is a welcome perk.
- Visa-Backed Benefits. This card’s Visa-backed benefits are definitely worth calling out. The complimentary rental car damage coverage is particularly nice for business travelers who frequently rent cars, and the emergency lost card replacement feature is clutch for cardholders prone to misplacing important items when they’re out and about.
- Mediocre Baseline Rewards Rate. Outside of its favored 5x and 2x categories, Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card earns points at a poor rate: just 1 point per $1 spent. Depending on how you redeem, that’s effectively a 1% return on spending. If your company’s spending needs are highly variable, look for an alternative with a higher baseline earning rate. Capital One Spark Cash for Business offers unlimited 2% cash back on all spending. Capital One Spark Miles for Business offers unlimited 2 miles per $1 spent, which works out to 2% cash back when you redeem miles for travel purchases.
- $25,000 Annual Category Caps Problematic for Heavy Spenders. If you run a sole proprietorship or manage just a handful of employees, the $25,000 annual category caps in the 5x and 2x categories might not crimp your style. However, if your spending needs are greater, you’re likely to blow through those caps each year. Consider a more robust alternative like Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card, whose 3x category is good up to $150,000 in combined annual spending. (Though it does have a $95 annual fee.)
- No Monthly or Annual Point Bonuses. This card doesn’t offer a monthly or annual point bonus. That’s a drawback relative to direct competitors such as Flagstar Business Bonus Rewards PLUS Card, which automatically boosts monthly point earnings by 50%.
- Mediocre Sign-up Bonus. This card has a low sign-up bonus: just 10,000 points (worth $100 when redeemed for cash) on $5,000 in total spending over 3 months. Many business rewards credit cards do much better. For instance, Chase Ink Business Preferred‘s sign-up bonus is worth up to $1,000. That bonus also requires $5,000 in total spending over three months.
- 3% Foreign Transaction Fee. Union Bank Business Rewards Visa Credit Card’s 3% foreign transaction fee is a big drawback for frequent international travelers. Unless you head abroad to purchase office supplies and cover other basic business expenses, which isn’t likely, the best you can do is to offset this fee with heavy gas and restaurant spending. But, at a 2% rate of return, that’s still not enough. Capital One’s Spark cards, including Capital One Spark Classic for Business, don’t charge foreign transaction fees at all.
- Charges Penalty Interest. This card charges penalty interest at 29.99% APR. Over longer timeframes, this can add hundreds or even thousands to your credit card bill. If you’re at risk of missing your statement due dates due to liquidity issues or unexpected expenditures, look for an alternative card that doesn’t charge penalty interest.
Every business is different. Some companies run super lean – just the founders and a couple of employees in a home office, coworking space, or small suite. Other companies run heavier. They might have substantial troves of inventory, expensive production equipment, lots of full-time employees, leased or owned office space, and robust support operations that include accountants, lawyers, and other professionals.
If your business falls into the former category, the Union Bank Business Rewards Visa® Credit Card can handle your spending needs, especially if it’s only you and a few other employees. If you’re running a more intense operation, you might want to set your sights on a more powerful credit card – or look into opening multiple credit card accounts to spread your spending around.