Amex Business Credit Card Review

Understand whether the AMEX Business Credit Card is worth it for your start-up company or generally small business.

Updated: May 18, 2024
Matt Crabtree

Written By

Matt Crabtree

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When you're running a business, it's generally advised that you separate all of your personal finances from your business ones, and the best way you can do this isn't just by using a separate part of your online banking app to handle business funds.

It's by actually getting a dedicated card that comes with a range of specific benefits for business owners.

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Having said that, this isn't a particularly unique concept, and as such, there's a very saturated market out there when it comes to selecting which card you're going to use.

More or less all of them come with the same kinds of benefits (to varying degrees), but one card in particular, the American Express Business Basic Card, is definitely one of the most well-rounded options available to you.

Still, it can be slightly awkward to find out all the information you need from a card in an unbiased fashion, so throughout this article, we'll be taking a balanced look at some of the specific features, benefits, and, of course, drawbacks you can expect when using this card — all with the ultimate aim of helping you know if this is the right card for your business.

What Are Business Credit Cards?

Put simply, business credit cards act as a kind of financial lifeline for you when you're running a business, and the general idea is that you're able to manage a lot of your expenses much more efficiently — as well as all of your financial transactions.

You'll probably be familiar with the concept of credit/debit cards offering rewards, things like discounts on shopping or entertainment services, but, as touched on, these cards tend to focus more on how they're able to help your business needs instead — whether you're a big or small company.

So, whether it's things like business travel rewards or the ability to track your expenses and build credit a lot easier, business credit cards, especially American Express's, are generally going to simplify a lot of your financial management.

How Do Business Credit Cards Work?

When it comes to how these cards actually work, they (including the American Express Business Basic Card) tend to function more or less exactly like a personal credit card does — one of the only major differences is the kinds of additional benefits you're able to access with them.

In essence, whenever you go to make a purchase with a business credit card, you're going to be given a line of credit from whoever's issued you your card and naturally expected to repay this on a monthly basis (usually, though the specific repayment terms can sometimes vary depending on your provider).

One of the main takeaways here is that the credit limit we just mentioned is generally always a predetermined amount so that you're able to keep your spending in check, and this goes for American Express customers, too.

Lastly, one of the standout features of business cards is the membership rewards point program that comes with them — think of things like for every £1 you're spending using your card, points will show up in your membership rewards account that'll you then be able to redeem for rewards like travel, merchandise or even cashback.

Now, it's worth mentioning before we go any further that this specific card we're writing about, the American Express Business Basic Card, unfortunately, doesn't come with any such additional benefits, largely due to the simplistic (‘basic', if you will) nature of this specific card.

That's not to say that the American Express brand as a whole is useless for this sort of thing; it's just this one card that we're covering that's a bit lacklustre for rewards.

Having said that, it still comes with a bunch of great features that we'll be moving onto shortly, but if a fairly extensive rewards program is what you're set on, you'd probably be better off with their Business Platinum card (though the terms on this card are definitely more geared towards the large business owners out there).

Do I Really Need a Business Credit Card?

The necessity of having one of these cards can generally be a bit ambiguous if you're only a small business owner, so before we take a closer look at some of the specific features of this credit card, let's explore whether you'd actually need to apply for one in the first place.

Ultimately, this sort of thing hinges on some of the specific needs of your business — not to mention the scale, too — but generally speaking, business credit cards are worth signing up for various reasons:

Separating Personal and Business Expenses

As we briefly discussed earlier, having a credit card that's entirely dedicated to all of your business expenses is going to make it a lot easier to distinguish them from personal expenses.

Naturally making you a lot more organised in general, whether it's a simpler process for accounting or even things like tax reporting since you no longer have to sift through a bunch of transactions.

Building Business Credit

Just like your personal credit score, being able to build business credit is more or less just as essential — especially if you're looking to use one of these cards for the long term.

So, being able to use the card responsibly and make all of your repayments promptly and on time can be a huge boost when it comes to establishing a strong business credit score.

Access to Rewards

Remember, you're not able to do this with the Amex business card, but business cards in general (particularly some of the less cheap options out there) are a great opportunity to earn membership rewards points on all of your purchases (usually for every £1 spent).

So, if you're a business owner who needs to travel around quite a lot — whether it's flights as part of their international airline program or even just domestic options like trains — these cards are generally a bit of a game-changer that you should be taking advantage of.

Additional Perks

While the Business Basic Credit Card is slightly more limited in the range of benefits they cover, one of the things all of these cards tend to have in common is that you're able to access a bunch of exclusive perks.

Whether that's travel insurance, purchase protection, or even things like extended warranties, they'll definitely help you save some money in the long run.

American Express credit cards are generally known for being pretty extensive when it comes to their range — coming with a bunch of different options like the Business Gold Card and the Corporate Platinum Card.

Now, in terms of American Express membership rewards points, these are definitely your go-to choice over the basic business card, but they still come with all of their own pros and cons, so just to keep things simple, we'll only be focusing on the latter option throughout this review.

Ultimately, though, the main thing to takeaway from all of this is that American Express is generally one of the most trusted brands out there for business card members, so definitely keep that in mind even if the Business Basic Card is a bit limited for what you need it for.

The American Express Business Basic Card — A Closer Look

American Express Business Basic Card

American Express Business Basic Card
Credit Limit
None
Representative % APR (variable)
None
  • No pre-set spending limit.
  • No annual fee.
  • No interest charges.

You pay no interest fees with American Express Charge Cards if you pay your balance in full each month.

Right, so now that we've covered pretty much all of the basics of business credit cards in general, let's get specific by delving into all of the things you can expect with the main focus of this article — the American Express Business Basic Card.

Before we move any further, it's worth mentioning that this isn't a card you're necessarily going to be blown away by, and it doesn't particularly hold up when your business starts growing in size.

Having said all that, though, it's still a fantastic entry-level option for any business owners in the UK who don't have masses of expenses to deal with and just need something simple to get them started and separate their personal finances.

Furthermore, one of the best parts about this card is that it doesn't come with the annual fee you'd expect to pay with the other Amex cards we've mentioned (like the Business Gold Card or Platinum Card), so it's definitely one of the most cost-effective ways of managing your business expenses.

Aside from some of the rewards, though, one thing that's guaranteed with the American Express Business Basic Card is the number of tools you'll gain access to for managing your expenses.

From things like online access to your card account (meaning you'll be able to handle business expenses wherever you're located so long as you have an internet connection) and detailed expense reports.

Ultimately, it's a fairly hassle-free solution when you're trying to simplify your financial management, so let's break it down in more detail throughout the following few sections:

Eligibility

To kick things off, it's commonplace for business credit cards to have various kinds of criteria you need to meet in order to actually get your hands on one of their cards, and it's not any different for the American Express Business Basic Card.

Fortunately, the good news here is that it's one of the more lenient options out there, so as long as you meet the following requirements, you'll be good:

  • The business that you're running needs to already have a current UK Bank or Building Society account.
  • You, as the cardholder, are going to need to be older than at least 18 years of age and have a permanent home address in the United Kingdom.

Flexible Spending Power

You'd traditionally expect some kind of pre-set spending limit with credit cards in general, but one of the standout features of the American Express Business Basic Card is the lack of one, meaning they're incredibly flexible options for accessing business finance.

So, put into practice, this essentially means that your card's going to be able to accommodate any kind of changes should your business grow or generally just experience some form of fluctuation in the amount of expenses you have.

Cash Flow Management

In addition, you'd be able to get 42 days of payment period on any of the business-related purchases you need to make with this Amex credit card, so it's definitely a solid way to hold onto your cash for longer — naturally allowing your company or start-up to run a lot more financially stable.

Still, the way to get the most out of this feature in particular is, of course, paying your balance in full each month so you're able to avoid any kind of interest charges.

No Pre-Set Spending Limit

As we've mentioned, one of the main reasons you should consider applying for this card is the fact that there isn't any pre-set spending limit, so flexibility is a key figure here — even meaning that you can start spending and repaying the balance pretty much as soon as you actually receive your card.

Aside from this, you've also got the freedom to make repayments multiple times within your billing cycle, so you shouldn't ever need to wait should you already have the money to get it out the way with.

World-Class Service With American Express Credit Cards

Generally speaking, one of the main things that sets American Express apart as a brand is the level of customer service you'll be receiving, and this extends to literally all of their business credit cards — not just the more expensive options like the Platinum Card.

So, as a member of one of these cards, you'll be gaining access to a fairly wide range of resources that'll help you maintain control of your business spending.

Let's take a look at some of them to round the article off:

Protection

You'll be covered in the case of any emergencies, and you need to replace your card urgently with the American Express Business Basic Card, so regardless of where your business takes you, the team at Amex will help you out if your card is either damaged, stolen, or even just lost.

Business Account Management

It goes without saying that being able to manage your account in an efficient way is one of the top features that distinguishes the seemingly endless amount of business cards out there, so it's just as well that you're able to do this around the clock with the American Express Business Basic Card.

Obviously, their platform comes with a mobile app and online banking tool, but to get specific, you'll be able to do some of the following things:

  • Check your balance
  • Review past statements
  • Monitor available credit
  • Generally, just keep track of all the business purchases you've made on your card.

Aside from all of this, though, you'll be able to do it all on the go since they provide you with an app you can use for both iPhone and Android devices, so all in all, it's a very convenient way of managing your finances.

Related Guides:

FAQs

What Customer Support Options Are Available to American Express Business Basic Cardholders?

Is There a Credit Score Requirement to Qualify for This Card?

What Is the Typical Credit Limit for the American Express Business Basic Card?

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