September 22, 2021

Best airline credit card 2021: Top 6 business options


Looking for a credit card for your business? Today, there is no shortage of rewards credit cards on the market that allow you to earn points through your regular spending. And for business owners or employees who travel often, a business airline credit card is an excellent way to earn points from travel you’re already doing.

But how do you decide which airline credit card is right for your business? There are plenty of options to choose from, and they’re sure to be a perfect card for your business. Keep reading to learn the best airline credit cards for businesses and how to decide which is right for you.

Here are our top picks for the best airline credit card for 2021:

CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard

Best for American Airlines travelers

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American Airlines

The CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select credit card is perfect for American Airlines travelers. You can earn 65 000 bonus miles if you spend $4000 in the first four months of opening your account when you sign up. 

Some of the card’s mileage benefits include:

  • 2X miles for spending on cable and satellite providers
  • 2X miles for spending on eligible American Airlines purchases 
  • 2X miles for spending at gas stations
  • 2X miles for spending on telecommunications
  • 2X miles for spending on car rentals
  • 1X miles for all other purchases

Additional travel benefits include a free checked bag, preferred boarding on American Airlines flights, savings on inflight Wi-Fi, savings on inflight food and beverage purchases, American Airlines Companion Certificate for domestic travel after $30 000 in purchases, and no foreign transaction fees.

The card has an annual fee of $99, which is waived for the first 12 months. It also has a variable interest rate ranging from 15.99% to 24.99% based on creditworthiness.


Pros:

  • High signup bonus in addition to regular travel rewards
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Other travel perks like free checked bags and a companion certificate

Cons:

  • Bonus miles aren’t available for account holders who have received a CitiBusiness / AAdvantage bonus in the past 48 months
  • It doesn’t include some common travel perks like TSA Precheck or lounge access
  • Requires an excellent credit score to qualify

United Business Mileage Plus

Best for United travelers

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United

The United Business MileagePlus card is perfect for businesses who prefer flying United. When you sign up, you can earn up to 150,000 bonus miles — 75 000 when you spend $5000 in the first three months, and the other 75 000 when you spend $20 000 in your first six months.

There are plenty of ways to earn miles with the United card, including:

  • 2X miles for purchases from United, including tickets, inflight food and beverage, Wi-Fi, and more
  • 2X miles for spending on dining and food delivery services
  • 2X miles for spending at gas stations, office supply stores, and local transit and commuting
  • 1X miles for all other purchases

The card comes with plenty of other travel benefits, including a free checked bag, United travel credits, priority boarding, United Club passes, no foreign transaction fees, and more.

This card comes with an annual fee of $99 per year and a variable interest rate ranging from 16.49% to 23.49%, depending on your creditworthiness.


Pros:

  • Large signup bonus
  • Extra travel perks like lounge access and free checked bags
  • Add employee cards at no extra cost

Cons:

  • Lower miles rewards than many competitors on airline spending
  • Signup bonus must be earned in two separate parts
  • Starting  APR is higher than some competitors

American Express disclaimer

Delta SkyMiles Platinum Business Card

Best for Delta travelers

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Delta

The Delta SkyMiles Platinum Business American Express Card is designed for businesses who fly with Delta and want to enjoy some extra travel perks. The card allows you to earn 60 000 bonus miles, 5000 Medallion qualification miles, and a $100 statement credit when you spend $3000 on your first three months.

The card comes with plenty of ways to earn miles, including:

  • 3X miles for purchases made directly with Delta or hotels
  • 1.5X miles for purchases of $5000 or more
  • 1X mile for all other purchases

Other travel benefits the card provides include priority boarding, a free checked bag, a companion certificate, in-flight savings, no foreign transaction fees, Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, trip delay insurance, and more.

The card has an annual fee of $250. It has a variable interest rate ranging from 15.74% to 24.74%, depending on your creditworthiness.


Pros:

  • Travel perks like free checked bags, priority boarding, and more
  • Companion certificate included
  • High rewards rate for Delta and hotel spending

Cons:

  • High annual fee
  • Most spending categories only earn 1X miles
  • No complimentary lounge access

Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit Card

Best for Southwest travelers

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Southwest

The Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit Card is one of two business cards available through Southwest. You can earn a sign-on bonus of 80 000 points when you spend $5000 in your first three months when you sign up. Not only that, but you also earn 9000 points each year on your card anniversary. The points you earn can help you qualify for the Companion Pass, which allows a companion to fly free with you for one year.

There are also several other ways to earn points, including:

  • 3X points for spending on Southwest Airlines purchases
  • 2X points on social media and search engine advertising, internet, cable, and phone services
  • 1X points on all other spendings

Other travel perks included with the Southwest card include upgraded boarding, inflight Wi-Fi credits, Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, no foreign transaction fees, and more.

The Southwest card has an annual fee of $199. It has a variable interest rate ranging from 15.99% to 22.99% and a cash advance rate of 24.99%.


Pros:

  • Travel perks like TSA PreCheck and upgraded boarding
  • 9,000 points each year on cardmember anniversary
  • Ability to qualify for Southwest Companion Pass

Cons:

  • High annual fee
  • Low rewards on everyday spending
  • Not suitable for international travel

JetBlue Business Card

Best for JetBlue travelers

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jetblue

The JetBlue Business Card is offered by Barclays and allows you to earn miles for JetBlue travel. When you sign up, you can earn up to 60 000 — 50 000 when you spend $1000 in the first three months and another 10 000 when a purchase is made on an employee card in the first three months. Not only that, but you also earn 5000 bonus points each year on your account anniversary.

Other ways to earn points include:

  • 6X points on eligible JetBlue purchases
  • 2X points at restaurants and office supply stores
  • 1X points on all other purchases

Other travel benefits for the card include no foreign transaction fees, free checked bags for up to four people, and 50% off inflight food and drinks.

The JetBlue card has an annual fee of $99. The purchase and balance transfer APR ranges from 15.99% to 24.99%, depending on creditworthiness. The APR for cash advances is 25.42%.


Pros:

  • 5000 bonus points on your account anniversary each year
  • Signup bonus is easy to earn
  • High rewards for JetBlue purchases

Cons:

  • Few travel perks compared to other business airline cards
  • Low rewards points on most purchases
  • Redeemable for few international locations

Chase Ink Business Preferred Card

Best for overall travel

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Chase

The Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card isn’t associated with a specific airline, so it’s great for businesses that want travel perks with flexibility when it comes to the airline. The card has a generous signup bonus of 100 000 bonus points, which you earn when you spend $15 000 in the first three months. The bonus equates to $1000 cash or $1,50 travel rewards through Chase Ultimate Rewards.

There are a couple of ways to earn points, including:

  • 3X points on shipping
  • 3X points on social media and search engine advertising
  • 3X points on internet, cable, and phone services
  • 3X points on travel
  • 1X points on all other purchases

You can use your rewards for either cash back or 25% more for travel purchases through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Other travel perks include no foreign transaction fees, point transfer to Chase travel partners, travel insurance, and more.

The card has an annual fee of $95. It also has a variable interest rate ranging from 15.99% to 20.99%, depending on creditworthiness.


Pros:

  • Flexibility to use with any travel companies
  • Higher welcome bonus than many competitors
  • Rewards can be used for cashback in addition to travel

Cons:

  • High spending threshold to earn the signup bonus
  • Fewer travel-related perks than many business airline cards
  • 3X rewards on only the first $150 000 of spending

How did we choose these airline credit cards?

There are many business credit cards on the market, many of which offer excellent travel benefits. When crafting this list of the best business airline credit cards, we aimed to find a variety of cards so that no matter which major airline you fly, there’s a card for you.

Additionally, we looked for cards that had plenty of travel perks that businesses want without too many downsides. We paid attention to factors like signup bonuses, spending rewards, interest rates, annual fees, travel perks, and more.

Which is the right airline credit card for your business?

One of the biggest questions to ask yourself when looking for the right airline credit card for your business is: How do you normally travel? If you usually fly with a specific airline and want to maximize the benefits, then choose the card that corresponds to your airline of choice.

 If you travel often but want the flexibility to fly with any airline, then the Chase Ink Business Preferred card is probably right for you.

Are there alternatives worth considering?

There’s no shortage of rewards credit cards that businesses can choose from. Some are specifically designed for travel, while others can be used for anything, including travel. A few other cards to consider include:

What is the best airline credit card for businesses?

The best airline credit card for your business depends on your airline of choice. Since most of the cards are specific to a particular airline, you’ll have to fly with that airline to enjoy the benefits.

What are the benefits of a business airline credit card?

Airline credit cards allow you to earn miles that you can later redeem for flights. They also come with additional travel perks such as free checked bags, access to airport lounges, priority boarding, TSA PreCheck, and more.

What credit score do you need for an airline credit card?

Airline business credit cards typically require good or excellent credit scores. If your business doesn’t have sufficient credit, but you do, then you may be able to guarantee the card with your personal credit personally.



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