Ranking Amex Small Business Card Sign-Up Bonuses

In the interest of full disclosure, One Mile At A Time earns a referral bonus for anyone that’s approved through some of the below links. These are the best publicly available offers that we have found for each card. Please check out our advertiser policy for further details about the partners we work with. Thanks for your support!

Update: This offer for SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express OPEN is expired. Learn more about the best available offer here.

Update: This offer for The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN is expired. Learn more about the best available offer here.

Update: These offers for the Delta SkyMiles® Credit Cards are expired. Learn more about the current offer here.


At the moment we’re seeing increased sign-up bonuses on several American Express small business credit cards. I don’t remember the last time we’ve seen so many publicly available limited time offers through Amex, so this is fantastic for anyone looking to pick up an Amex small business card.

Basics of applying for Amex small business cards

On the most basic level there are a few things to be aware of if applying for Amex small business cards:

  • Amex typically lets you have four charge cards and four credit cards at any given point
  • You can apply for two cards in a day, though your application for one card may be delayed by a few days; it won’t be denied automatically and they won’t pull your credit again, so if you are eying two cards, you may as well apply for both of them in one day (I’d recommend first applying for one and hoping to get it approved, and then afterwards applying for another)
  • Amex is quite generous with approving those with small businesses that are just starting out; you have a good shot of being approved as a sole proprietorship with limited business income (see my previous post for more details on how that works)
  • Not only are approvals common for many small businesses, but anecdotally a lot of people report instant approvals on these small business cards

amex-business-plat-approved

Which Amex small business offer is best?

With so many offers at once, here’s my ranking of how good the various card offers are, starting with the best:

1. The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN

Sign-up bonus: Earn up to 100,000 Membership Rewards points — earn 50,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $5,000, and an extra 50,000 points after spending an additional $10,000 all on qualifying purchases within the first three months

Annual fee: $450

Why you should consider applying: While the minimum spend requirement is big, a sign-up bonus of up to 100,000 points is huge. Taking advantage of this offer could even make sense if you only plan on spending the $5,000 within three months to earn 50,000 Membership Rewards points.

This card comes with so many great perks, including a $200 annual airline fee credit (before you pay your second year’s annual fee you can receive two of those), access to Boingo hotspots10 Gogo passesaccess to American Express Fine Hotels & Resortsaccess to Delta SkyClubs, a Priority Pass Select membership, access to Amex Centurion Lounge, a Global Entry fee credit, and Gold elite status in both Hilton HHonors and Starwood Preferred Guest/Marriott.

However, the cherry on top is that having this card will increase the value of all your Membership Rewards points, as you’ll be able to get up to 1.54 cents each when redeeming them towards the cost of an airline ticket. This is a great new benefit, and how I plan on using most of my Amex points going forward.

2. The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN 

Sign-up bonus: Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $5,000 on qualifying purchases within the first three months

Annual fee: $175 (waived the first year)

Why you should consider applying: This is one of the best small business cards out there in terms of the bonus points it offers, given that you earn bonus points in the following five categories:

  • Airfare purchased directly from airlines
  • U.S. purchases for advertising in select media
  • U.S. purchases at gas stations
  • U.S. purchases for shipping
  • U.S. computer hardware, software, and cloud computing purchases made directly from select providers

You can pick in which category you want to earn 3x points, and then in the other four categories you earn 2x points.

On top of that, this is a fantastic sign-up bonus for a card that doesn’t have an annual fee the first year. I value the 50,000 Membership Rewards point sign-up bonus on this card at ~$850.

3. The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card From American Express 

Sign-up bonus: Earn 70,000 Delta SkyMiles after spending $5,000 on qualifying purchases within the first three months; earn 10,000 Medallion Qualifying Miles; earn a $100 statement credit after you make a Delta purchases within the first three months

Annual fee: $195

Why you should consider applying: This is the biggest sign-up bonus we’ve ever seen on this card. Earning 70,000 miles plus a $100 statement credit after making a Delta purchase (that can include the purchase of a Delta gift card) is a phenomenal deal. There are lots of great ways to use Delta SkyMiles for redemptions in business class on partner airlines.

Given that many people haven’t had this card before, I think it’s worthy of consideration.

4. Gold Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express

Sign-up bonus: Earn 50,000 Delta SkyMiles after spending $2,000 on qualifying purchases within the first three months; earn a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchases within the first three months

Annual fee: $95 (waived the first year)

Why you should consider applying: This is a very nice sign-up bonus on a card that doesn’t have an annual fee the first year. The 50,000 miles will go a long way towards an international business class redemption. On top of that, you even get a $50 statement credit if you make a Delta purchase for at least that amount in the first three months.

5. The SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

Sign-up bonus: Earn up to $500 cash back as statement credits — earn a $250 statement credit after spending $2,000 in the first six months, and an additional $250 statement credit after spending an additional $10,000 within the first year

Annual fee: no annual fee

Why you should consider applying: This is one of the better cash back small business credit cards, as it offers 5% cash back at U.S. office supply stores and on wireless telephone services, 3% cashback in a category of your choice (you can pick from eight), and 1% cashback on everything else.

The sign-up bonus on this card is double as much as usual, assuming you can spend $15,000 on the card within the first year. However, if you’re able to spend $15,000 within three months I’d certainly recommend getting Amex Business Platinum Card instead.

Bottom line

There are lots of great Amex small business credit card sign-up bonuses to choose from right now, and you really can’t go wrong regardless of which card you choose. However, in general I think the most compelling offers are:

  • The Amex Business Platinum Card, given the sign-up bonus of up to 100,000 points, perks that more than offset the annual fee, and most importantly the new benefit that can greatly increase the value of all your Amex points
  • The Amex Delta Platinum Card, given the highest ever 70,000 mile sign-up bonus plus $100 statement credit after making a Delta purchase, which is more than enough for many international business class redemptions

Have you picked up an Amex small business card lately, and if so, which one?


Non-Affiliate Product Disclaimer: The information for the Platinum Delta Skymiles Business and Gold Delta Skymiles has been collected independently by One Mile At A Time. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

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Comments

  1. FAIR WARNING
    Amex will approve you, charge you $450, give you the bonus (100,000 in my case for the Platinum Card) and take it all away if you had a card in that category in the past (6 years ago in my case). And good luck trying to get back the 450.
    AMERICAN EXPRESS = FRAUDS

  2. Lucky… confirming what I *think* you’ve said before… none of these cards count against the Chase 5/24 rule, correct? Thanks.

  3. @otherwise happy guy…
    Don’t they disclose that? Actually, if you have had the same card (not sure what you mean by “… a card in that category”)? Cheers.

  4. I have seen sites/blogs that say the Amex business cards are counted in the Chase 5/24 rule and others that say Amex business cards aren’t counted in the Chase 5/24 rule. Can you clarify?

  5. @Otherwise happy guy LOL that’s why you should have cancelled Aug 30th like I did. They clawed back my 100k, I clawed them back my $375 and got a $125 Amazon gift card as bonus 🙂

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