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The U.S. Bank Business Platinum Card is a perennial contender for placement on our list of the best business credit cards on the market today.
This card merges the best features of a low APR credit card with an excellent 0% APR introductory promotion that applies to purchases and balance transfers. If you’re a frugal business owner looking for help financing a large purchase or seeking to pay down existing high-interest credit card debt, this card is worth a closer look.
One thing this card isn’t good for: earning rewards. If your top priority is to earn a return on everyday spending, and not just avoid interest charges on balances carried from month to month, check out one of U.S. Bank’s rewards-bearing business credit cards.
Otherwise, read on to learn more about U.S. Bank Business Platinum Card’s features, upsides, downsides, and overall suitability.
The U.S. Bank Business Platinum Card has a 20-month, 0% APR introductory promotion on purchases and balance transfers. You can make qualifying purchases at any time, but qualifying balance transfers must be executed within the first 30 days. Following the end of the introductory period, the regular purchase and balance transfer APR applies to all balances.
Account Management and Expense Tracking Tools
This card comes with some useful account management expense tracking tools:
- Employee Card Controls. These controls let you manage employee card use You can limit card use by geographical area, merchant type (for instance, travel only), time and day of week, dollar amount, transaction type, and more.
- Choose Your Own Statement Due Date. You can choose the option that best fits your company’s cash flow from multiple statement due dates. You can change your selection at any time.
- Account Alerts. You can customize account alerts, such as an approaching statement due date or large purchase. This is especially useful for large accounts with multiple authorized users.
- Auto Pay and Accelerator. You can set up auto pay to avoid missed or late payments. The Accelerator feature allows you to increase your auto pay amount above the minimum and increase the frequency of your payments (weekly versus monthly) to pay off balances faster. This is useful for cardholders who take advantage of the 0% APR introductory financing offer.
- Expense Tracking and Categorization. You can separate business and personal expenses, assign tags to categorize expenses by spending bucket, and more.
Overdraft Protection for U.S. Bank Deposit Account Holders
If you have a U.S. Bank business deposit account, you have the option to opt into U.S. Bank’s overdraft protection program. When you’re enrolled in overdraft protection, transactions that would normally result in overdrafts and negative balances are instead completed as intended. Then, U.S. Bank draws on your Platinum card’s cash advance line to push your balance back into positive territory.
Depending on your deposit account, you can expect to pay at least $7.50 per day for this feature (though some high-end deposit accounts waive overdraft transfer fees). Transfers immediately begin to accrue interest at your credit card’s cash advance rate, so it’s in your best interest to pay them off as quickly as possible (over and above other types of balances). Also, remember that your cash advance line and spending limit are not identical – the former is likely to be much smaller than the latter.
The balance transfer fee is 3% of the amount of each transfer or $5, whichever is greater. Cash advances cost at least 3% of the amount of each transfer or $5, but vary depending on cash advance method. Foreign transactions cost 3% of the transaction amount.
This card requires excellent credit.
- No Annual Fee. The U.S. Bank Business Platinum Card has no annual fee. Since it doesn’t have a rewards program to lessen the blow, and the 0% APR promotion doesn’t last indefinitely, the lack of an annual fee is key to this card’s competitiveness.
- 20-Month, 0% APR Introductory Promotion on Purchases and Balance Transfers. This card’s 0% APR introductory promotion on purchases and balance transfers last 20 months from your account opening date (though balance transfers must be made within 30 days of account opening to qualify for the promotional rate). That’s more than enough time to finance a large up-front purchase or slim down an existing high-interest balance transferred from another credit card account.
- Overdraft Protection for U.S. Bank Deposit Account Holders. If you have a U.S. Bank business deposit account, the opt-in overdraft protection plan can spare you from needless embarrassment (and worse, in the event that an NSF transaction threatens a business relationship or deal).
- Ability to Choose Your Own Statement Due Date. This card lets you choose your own statement due date. If cash flow is a perennial issue for your business, this is an important element of flexibility – though it’s not a magic bullet by any means.
- No Rewards. The U.S. Bank Business Platinum Card has no rewards program. Don’t bother applying for this card unless you’re okay with not earning a return on spending beyond a break on interest for the first year. If a rewards program is important to you, check out entry-level rewards credit cards like the Blue Business Plus Credit Card from American Express.
- No Sign-Up Bonus. There’s no early spend bonus on this card. For an alternative that pays you back as soon as you start spending, look at Capital One Spark Cash Select for Business, a no-annual-fee cash back credit card.
- Charges Penalty Interest. This card charges penalty interest. That’s a drawback relative to U.S. Bank’s consumer credit cards, and a serious issue for cardholders blindsided by unexpected expenses or cash flow issues.
- Has a Foreign Transaction Fee. This card’s foreign transaction fee adds up to 3% to the cost of overseas swipes and dips. If you regularly leave the United States on business, consider a fee-free alternative, such as Chase Ink Business Preferred.
- Limited Value-Added Benefits. Though the U.S. Bank Business Platinum Card has some useful fringe benefits, its utility for travelers and shoppers is limited. There’s no rental car insurance, price protection, purchase assurance, extended warranties, or other complimentary benefits that can substantially reduce the cost of on-the-road mishaps and shopping mistakes (whether they’re your fault or not).
The U.S. Bank Business Platinum Card isn’t flashy or complicated. It’s designed for new cardholders who need to finance large purchases without paying sky-high interest rates or transfer existing credit card balances (probably with sky-high interest rates) from other accounts. It’s also useful as an entry-level business credit card for credit-building purposes, but that’s not the main attraction.