8 Reasons To Apply For The Amex Blue Business Plus Card

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Update: The special welcome offer for the The Blue Business℠ Plus Credit Card from American Express has expired, but you can learn more about best available offers here.

A week ago today, American Express introduced The Blue BusinessSM Plus Credit Card. As soon as I saw the details of this card I was amazed by how generous the card is — it really seems too good to be true. I know lots of you have already applied for this card, while others have been on the fence and often take a bit more convincing.

So in this post I wanted to share eight reasons even very small business owners should pick up the Blue Business Plus Credit Card.

2x Membership Rewards points per dollar spent

The new Blue Business Plus Credit Card offers 2x Membership Rewards points on the first $50,000 spent on the card in each calendar year. The way I see it, that makes this card the single most lucrative one for everyday, non-bonused spend. I value Membership Rewards points at ~1.7 cents each, so this card offers the equivalent of a ~3.4% return on the first $50,000 spent annually.

This is even better for non-bonused spend than cards like the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, which I otherwise consider to be the most rewarding.

No annual fee

Not only does this card offer the most generous return on everyday spend, but it has no annual fee.

20,000 point sign-up bonus

The card is offering a sign-up bonus of 20,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $3,000 within three months. This offer is only available through American Express affiliates — if you go directly through Amex’s website, you’ll see that the card has no sign-up bonus. This might not sound like a huge sign-up bonus, but for a card with no annual fee that’s hugely lucrative for everyday spend, I highly doubt we’ll see a higher sign-up bonus anytime soon.

The card earns “premium” Membership Rewards points

There are two types of Membership Rewards points. There are the “premium” Membership Rewards points, which can be converted into airline and hotel points, and then there are more limited Membership Rewards points, which can’t be converted into airline and hotel points.

The Blue Business Plus Credit Card is one of the few no annual fee cards that earns full Membership Rewards points, which can be transferred to all Membership Rewards airline and hotel partners. That makes this a fantastic card to hold onto, in case you decide you want to cancel a premium Amex card.

For example, if you have The Platinum Card® from American Express but decide you want to cancel it, having the Blue Business Plus Credit Card will let you preserve the full value of those points.

Transfer your Amex points to Aeroplan for redemptions in Lufthansa first class

Applying doesn’t count against Chase’s 5/24 rule

Many people try to limit their credit card applications to stay under Chase’s 5/24 rule. Essentially Chase won’t approve people for many of their cards if they’ve opened more than five cards in the past 24 months. Generally speaking, applying for Amex business cards won’t count towards that limit, so you can apply for this card without impacting your chances of being approved for a Chase card in the future.

Another card that gives you access to Amex Offers

As I wrote about in a post yesterday, one of the best perks of having Amex cards is access to Amex Offers. This is a program offered by American Express where you can score discounts and bonus points with select retailers. The more cards you have, the better your odds of scoring the best Amex Offers. So you can actually sort of make money by holding onto many no annual fee Amex cards, given the huge money savings available through Amex Offers.

You can’t convert existing Amex products to the Blue Business Plus

Some people might prefer converting an existing card to the Blue Business Plus Credit Card rather than applying new (even though you don’t get the sign-up bonus then). However, as of now it looks like American Express isn’t letting people product change to this card. So if you want the Blue Business Plus, you have to apply for it directly. I think that’s the best option anyway, but…

Applying for the card is (usually) risk free

The first thing to be aware of is that generally Amex business cards are among the easiest business cards to be approved for. I’ve written in the past about applying for Amex business cards as a sole proprietorship using your social security number. If you’ve never had a business card before, this is a great card with which to start, and you might be surprised by how easy it is to be approved for.

If you haven’t had a business card before and are concerned about the possibility of a rejection, keep in mind that if you’re an existing Amex cardmember and get denied, it typically won’t be reported to credit bureaus. That’s because Amex uses existing customer data to conditionally approve people for credit cards, and only after conditional approval do they pull your credit score, to see if anything major has changed.

So not only is the card easy to be approved for (even if you haven’t had a business card before), but if you’re an existing cardmember and get denied, there likely won’t even be an inquiry showing on your credit score.

Bottom line

The new Blue Business Plus Credit Card is no joke — to me it’s the most exciting new card since the Chase Sapphire Reserve. This is the most lucrative card for the first $50,000 of annual, non-bonused spend, but beyond that, there are so many more reasons to get this card. If you haven’t yet applied for this card, I’d highly recommend doing so.

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  1. I know with my Ink Plus business card currently it doesn’t show up on our personal credit report since I applied for the card via my LLC. If I apply again under my LLC, the card wouldn’t show up on my personal credit report right?

  2. lucky,

    If I open this card and get approved…can I transfer my AMEX Plat MRs to this account and still be able to transfer them to airlines?

    You know, just how chase lets you transfer UR points between your Freedom and CSR and so on.

  3. I wish you had mentioned the 2.7% foreign transaction fee before I applied. I won’t make that mistake again.

  4. @ Kent — That’s correct, in terms of payment history, etc. However, there may be an inquiry for the actual application, though even that’s not definitely going to happen.

  5. @ Michael — Sorry, wasn’t intending to “hide” that. In general I wasn’t even viewing this as a card to use when traveling. For example, I think the Sapphire Reserve is much better for that, since it offers triple points on dining and travel, which is what a lot of us spend money on when abroad. Instead I was viewing this as the ideal card for consistent expenses when not traveling.

  6. @Michael—Though any foreign transaction fees suck, I truly think the pros with this card outweighs this one con. Plus, you can just use another CC that doesn’t have foreign transaction fees when aboard.

  7. @Lucky,

    To dovetail AT’s question, here’s my intended plan…

    Just approved for the Blue Biz Plus card. Will keep my Plat Biz card through the end of the CY since I’ve already paid the annual fee. Come December of this year I will jump on my partner’s Plat Biz card account as an authorized user so I still maintain access to Centurion Lounge and Priority Pass. Since we use our MRs together anyway, having a separate account doesn’t necessarily do me a whole lot of good and I will still maintain the benefits of MRs from the Plat Biz with the Blue Biz Plus – transferring to airlines and such. I can then use JUST the Blue Biz Plus card for legit spend in the States and the Plat Biz for foreign spend or another card with no FTFs.

    Does that make sense?

  8. Thx for this. My primary reason for not having apply for this card yet is primarily because of the 5/24 rule with Chase but good to hear that it shouldn’t apply to business cards. Are you aware of any exceptions to this?

  9. @ Andy — As far as I know, all non-Chase business cards don’t count towards the 5/24 limit. Someone correct me if I’m wrong.

  10. @ AdamR — One potential pitfall there. The authorized user fee on the Amex Business Platinum Card is $350, which is steep. So I’m not sure that’s an ideal card on which to be added as an authorized user. Otherwise the card has a $450 annual fee and offers a $200 annual airline credit and all kinds of other benefits, so I’m not sure you’re actually coming out ahead in this case by being an authorized user rather than having your own account. Let me know if you have any other questions!

  11. @Lucky have never had an Amex biz card for my business before …. must I have a separate Amex account for the biz cards? I can see where I want to have the Platinum Biz and Blue Biz Plus for all my business spending. But I have personal Delta co-brands and a Platinum. Would prefer to have them all in the same account, rather than spending a bunch of time juggling two accounts.


  12. I’m interested in this card, but what are your thoughts on using a business card for personal spend? I have a legitimate business I can use to qualify for the card, but as of now the vast majority of my credit card spending is for personal rather than business purposes.

  13. @Lucky:

    Thanks! For some reason I was operating under the impression the AU fee was a mere $200 – a number I made up and took as gospel, apparently. Thanks for doing the math for me!

  14. @ AdamR — Adding authorized users on the personal card is a MUCH better deal. You can add up to three authorized users on the personal card for $175. Maybe it makes sense for you and your partner to consider that, so one of you can be the primary member, and then you can add authorized users at a more reasonable cost?

  15. @ Eric — You can manage them all online under the same account, and pool all your Amex points. 🙂

  16. @Lucky perfect, thanks. Will get Blue Biz Plus and then next time I have a concentrated biz spend to make the Plat bonus work, will do that.

    That may lead to me downgrading my Delta co-brands to just the Gold and only using that to get the MQD waiver. I like flying Delta, but other airlines have better award flights. MR’s are getting to be more useful than SkyMiles. And the Biz combos can earn a lot really fast.

  17. @Nick mixing personal and business spending on a single credit card means you have to do a very good job of accounting for who spent what. Only the business spending is deductible, chargeable to clients, etc. Try and find ways to legitimately move personal spend to business spend and still keeping your personal and business credit cards separate. I’m thinking that I’m moving everything to Amex, separating personal and business for legal/tax/accounting purposes, but managing all in the same Amex account. And pooling my MR’s into one account. I’ll keep my CSR for those places that don’t take Amex AND for car rentals since CSR provides primary rather than secondary insurance.

  18. Finally, the 9th and the most important reason is for the Amex referral fees given to the blog.

  19. @Sam well you also don’t wouldn’t get a sign-up bonus if you just applied directly on Amex rather than through the links on these blogs so by all means apply directly through amex.

  20. Hey Lucky:

    Can my wife and I each get the card and combine MR points like we do with Chase UR points?

  21. Lucky, just apply with your link and got approved for 2 cards (wife and I). How much is my commission? :0) We also have the regular Blue card, cancelling next year after the bonus points post. Do you know if the 2x points for the first 50k runs on a calendar year or card anniversary year? Thanks

  22. #&@*! applied earlier and was approved without realizing that the 20k bonus offer was only through affiliates. Any idea if they’ll give me the bonus if I ask and meet the minimum spend?

  23. I got the approval letter from Amex. It says that I get MR points. However, since I also have a premium card, I will get the premium MR points. Therefore, don’t cancel all your premium cards.

  24. @ Mark — In this case they should be the same type of points. No need to keep another card that accrues “premium” points, as these can be transferred to airlines and hotels as well.

  25. Lucky,

    I just got the card in the mail and the Open benefit of 2x points seem to be limited to select partners. One would think this means I wouldn’t get 2x spend on everything. Am I misreading the terms and can expect 2x anywhere I use the card?

  26. @ Brian — Hmmm, is that maybe referring to something else? There’s no limit on the retailers for the primary 2x points benefit.

  27. @ Brian — I did a double take when I received my card as well. I assume you are talking about the “OPEN benefits” graphic on the page the card itself is attached to?

    If so, that’s referring to the extra OPEN perks, not the general earnings rate of the card.

  28. @ Lucky / Tiffany – Thanks for the clarification. Yes, I was referring to the OPEN benefits page where it says I can get 2x spend on eligible partners OR 5% back. So based on your response I’m proceeding as that’s an additional (generic) perk which in this case the 2x would be irrelevant if the card gets 2x anywhere.

  29. @Lucky thanks for the input … I decided to move my business from Bank of America to Amex and this is the first card and credit line ….. Did it through your link, so you get the referral credit and I get the 20K bonus :-).

    When I did the signup, it wouldn’t let me add the card to my existing personal account. I am assuming that when I receive the card next week, I can solve that situation.

    In any case, not too worried. Amex customer service is great.

    Thanks for the input/feedback/support.

  30. I received the same letter as Mark. Seems like the card accrues “premium” MR points only if you have other premium-MR-earning amex cards.

  31. Not sure if anyone is looking at comments since this post is almost a month old, but Amex told me today that my MR from this card will NOT transfer to airlines/hotels, which is not what I have read here. I was just double checking with them since I have an Amex Personal Platinum, which I had planned on cancelling

  32. @Michael since I have a Amex play, Amex upgraded my Blue Biz Plus to be MR First also. I’d be surprised if they didn’t do the same for you

  33. @Eric…thanks, I didn’t realize that was an option. I do have an Amex platinum, but part of my goal in getting Blue Biz Plus was to let me cancel that card and keep my MR. I do have an SPG Amex (personal and biz) and I do put a lot of spend on the SPG card. I suppose I’ll call them and see what if they’ll upgrade the MR points or if I’ll need to open up a no fee Amex Everyday card.

    FWIW, I’m not seeing much in the blog world about the limited MR points on this card.

  34. @Michael the only non-transferable MR points are MR Express accounts. The Blue Biz Plus is not a MR Express account, if it is stand alone. At least as far as I understand. It should be a MR account. And if you have a Amex Plat card, which is MR First, I cannot envision Amex doing anything but MR First for everything.

    However, if you open the Biz Blue Plus and then close the Amex Plat, you will go from MR First to MR … still transferable, but not at the same level.

  35. @Lucky and @Eric…I’ve just been scrutinizing the Amex site and I also can find no reference to the Blue Biz Plus card only earning the second tier points. Perhaps the rep was thinking of the Blue for Biz card. (I hope she wasn’t being intentionally misleading…she was really trying to talk me out of closing my Amex Plat.)

    I very much appreciate the additional insights. Thank you.

  36. What is an American Express Affiliate where you can get 20,000 sign-up points?
    Are the points transferable to airline and hotel partners like other MR points?

  37. If I get this card in addition to my Amex Bus Plat, will the MR points from the new card be deposited into, or if not can they be transferred into, the same MR account holding my points for the Bus Plat card? I would like to earn 2X MR points on daily spend with this card, and then use those MR points to buy plane tickets on my chosen preferred airline through the Bus Plat online travel engine, which would result in a 35% points bonus coming back to me. Will that work?

  38. @Scott when you open a new Amex that has MR points, they all pool into the same MR account as far as I know.

  39. Arg, I missed the promotion yet I really need this card as I need to cancel my Amex platinum. Any idea if a promotion will come out soon ?

  40. @Eric @Lucky could you please explain the difference of transfer between MR First (Amex Biz Platinum) and MR (Blue Business Plus Credit Card) ?
    Also is there a difference when paying for a flight using MR points ?

  41. Any more data points on whether MR earned via Blue Biz Plus can be transferred to airline partners?? (if that’s the only AMEX card you have)

    If indeed only having Blue Biz Plus won’t let me transfer the MR points (to Singapore, let’s say), what is the ‘cheapest’ premium card I can have WITH the Blue Biz Plus for airline transfers?? =/

  42. I have the Amex Plat (non business) I do not own a business is this still an option? I am looking for a 2x point card to carry. Is this what you would recommend? Thanks for the input!

  43. Lucky,

    Just spoke write Amex. I have the Blue Business Plus.

    I also received the Blue Everyday Personal Card in 2015.

    The latter card had a 100 or 150 cash back bonus.

    Amex just told me that Amex gives one bonus PER LIFETIME across all Cards.

    Have you heard this?

    Also BofA told me that for Premium Card you must be invited and have 50 K in Investment accounts. Another rep said not true.

    Any idea what is true.

    Thank you for your time.

    I will happily use your links when applying for future cards. 🙂

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