When you’re a small business owner, a cash-back credit card can be one of your most valuable tools for trimming business expenses. Good thing there’s a nearly infinite number of cards that offer 1% or 1.5% cash back on all purchases. Some even offer 2%.
The Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card goes even farther. It offers 3% back in a category of purchases that you choose — a very strong return indeed.
It gets better. New users start out with an excellent spend-based sign-up bonus and an unusually long 0% intro APR purchase financing offer. If you’re a member of Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards program, you can earn even more — up to 75% over and above your cash-back haul.
All told, it’s a fantastic package for a card with no annual fee. Let’s dive into the details.
What Is the Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card?
The Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards credit card is a cash-back business card with no annual fee. It offers a solid cash-back earning structure, a strong 0% intro APR offer, and an above-average sign-up bonus.
Let’s start with the sign-up bonus: Earn a $300 online statement credit after making $3,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening. Not bad.
The card earns 3% cash back in the business spending category of your choice. It also earns 2% cash back on dining purchases. Earnings in the 3% and 2% categories apply only to the first $50,000 in annual combined purchases, but you’ll always earn unlimited 1% back on all other purchases. Yes, that includes purchases in the 3% and 2% categories above the annual spending cap.
This card offers even better rates if you qualify for the Bank of America Preferred Rewards program. The Preferred Rewards program has three tiers for customers with less than $1 million in combined Bank of America and Merrill Lynch accounts: Gold, Platinum and Platinum Honors.
Which you qualify for depends how much money you have on deposit in eligible accounts. The details are a bit complex, but basically, you can earn a bonus worth 25%, 50%, or 75% on your base cash-back rewards.
Best-case scenario, you can earn 5.25% cash back in your selected choice category and 3.5% cash back on dining purchases on the first $50,000 in those combined purchases each calendar year, plus unlimited 1.75% cash back on all other purchases.
Other notable cardmember benefits include:
- Overdraft protection for your linked Bank of America deposit account (if applicable)
- Free access to your company’s Dun & Bradstreet business credit score
- Travel and emergency services, including emergency ticket replacement, legal and medical referrals while traveling, and lost luggage assistance
- Up to $100,000 in travel accident insurance
- Insurance coverage for eligible rental cars
What Sets the Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card Apart?
This card has several features that help set it apart from other business cash rewards credit cards.
- Overdraft protection for linked Bank of America deposit accounts. If you have a Bank of America deposit account, you can link it to your card to prevent declined purchases, returned checks, or other overdrafts. This service involves per-transaction fees, but that could be better than a bounced check.
- Basic travel and emergency services. This card is not a travel rewards card, but it does offer some basic travel and emergency services, plus travel insurance coverage. Highlights include up to $100,000 in travel accident insurance, auto rental insurance on rentals paid in full with the card, emergency ticket replacement, lost luggage assistance, and legal and medical referrals while traveling.
- 0% intro APR promotion. This card comes with 0% intro APR on purchases for the first 9 billing cycles. After that, variable regular APR applies. While not long by consumer card standards, this promotion is longer than most business cards’.
- No annual fee. This card has particularly strong features for a no-annual-fee business credit card.
Key Features of the Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards credit card
The Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards credit card has a solid earning structure, a sign-up bonus, and a somewhat unusual 0% intro APR promotion offer.
Earn a $300 online statement credit after making $3,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening.
With this card, you can earn 3% cash back in the category of your choice. You can choose from gas stations (which is the default category) or:
- Office supply stores
- TV/telecom and wireless communications
- Computer services
- Business consulting services
You can change your chosen category up to once a month through Bank of America’s app or online banking site.
You also earn 2% cash back on dining purchases. You’ll earn 3% and 2% cash back on the first $50,000 in combined choice category and dining purchases each calendar year, and 1% after that.
And you earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases, with no caps or restrictions.
Preferred Rewards Bonus
If you belong to Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards loyalty program, you can earn up to 75% more cash back on every purchase.
That means you could earn:
- Up to 5.25% cash back in your selected choice category
- Up to 3.5% cash back on dining purchases on the first $50,000 in those combined purchases each calendar year
- Up to 1.75% cash back on all other purchases with no limits
See Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards guide for more on balance requirements and potential bonus earnings, plus other program perks.
You can redeem your cash-back rewards as:
- A deposit into your Bank of America checking or savings account
- A statement credit to your credit card account
- A check mailed to your address on file
Regardless, your rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open and in good standing.
0% Intro APR Promotion
New cardholders may qualify for the intro APR promotion, where you can get 0% intro APR on purchases for the first 9 billing cycles. After the intro APR offer ends, variable APR applies.
There’s no annual fee. The foreign transaction fee is 3%. Other fees may apply, including balance transfer and cash advance fees.
This card offers an optional service to help prevent declined purchases, returned checks or other overdrafts. When you link your credit card to a Bank of America business checking account, you get overdraft protection through Balance Connect. Terms and fees apply.
This card requires excellent credit to qualify.
The good news is that you can qualify on personal credit if you have limited or no business credit history. The bad news is that if your FICO score is much below 720, or your personal credit history is limited, then you may have trouble being approved.
Pros & Cons
As with any small-business credit card, the Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards card has some high points and some low points.
- Up to 3% cash back in your choice of purchase category
- Excellent sign-up bonus
- Up to 75% more cash back for Preferred Rewards members
- 0% intro APR offer on purchases
- 3% and 2% spending categories have an annual spending cap
- Intro APR doesn’t apply to balance transfers
- 3% foreign transaction fee
Overall, this is an above-average cash-back credit card for small business owners who aren’t looking for tons of frills.
- Up to 3% cash back in a category of purchases that you choose. This feature adds crucial flexibility to what’s otherwise a pretty straightforward rewards program.
- Excellent sign-up bonus. For a no-annual-fee small-business card, this sign-up bonus is among the very best.
- 9 months of 0% APR financing on new purchases. Few business credit cards offer any sort of introductory financing, let alone an offer stretching as long as this.
- Up to 75% more cash back for Preferred Rewards members. If you have enough on deposit with Bank of America or Merrill Lynch, you could qualify for a tidy boost to your cash-back earnings.
This card isn’t ideal for high spenders nor anyone with existing high-interest credit card balances to pay down.
- Caps on 3% and 2% cash-back categories. Your potential 3% and 2% cash-back earnings are limited to the first $50,000 in combined purchases each calendar year. In other words, the most you can possibly earn in those categories is $1,500 per year.
- Introductory APR isn’t valid for balance transfers. This is a notable downside if you’re already struggling with high-interest business credit card debt.
- 3% foreign transaction fee. Leave this card stateside when you travel abroad and bring one of the many small-business cards with no foreign transaction fees.
How the Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards credit card Stacks Up
The card’s closest competitor is probably the U.S. Bank Triple Cash Rewards Visa Business Credit Card. Here’s how the two cards compare:
|Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards credit card||U.S. Bank Triple Cash Rewards Visa® Business Credit Card|
|Rewards Rate||Up to 3%||Up to 3%|
|0% Intro APR||0% intro APR on purchases for the first 9 billing cycles||0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 billing cycles|
|Foreign Transaction Fee||3% of each transaction||3% of each transaction|
|Credit Needed||Excellent||Good or better|
The Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card has a list of features that’s almost as long as its name. But the key feature is 3% cash back on a category of your choice, which can become as much as 5.25% when you’re a top tier member of their Preferred Rewards program. That’s where the real value lies.
And so for most small-business owners who want to earn cash back, this card is a strong competitor. For existing Bank of America customers who qualify for their Preferred Rewards program, it’s a no-brainer.
The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airline, or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the bank, credit card issuer, airline, or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.