As a startup, you might have raised a lot of money and have a ton of cash in your bank account. But all the business credit cards for startups you find have the following problems:
Understanding how to get a business credit card for a startup can be daunting. But business credit cards specifically designed for startups exist. In this post we’ll show you:
Note: Looking for a startup credit card to apply to right away? Apply to Jeeves for free now!
Since we’re writing this article, we thought we’d begin with ourselves.
Jeeves is a startup business credit card built for founders, by founders. We’ve specifically created a business credit card for startups and currently work with over 4,000 customers in 25+ countries. Here’s why Jeeves is one of the best credit cards for international startups:
Whereas other business card providers take a long time, with us you’ll get a response within 24 hours, making us a fast-approval company card.
The sign-up process takes 5 minutes because we just need proof that you’re financially healthy and are in a position to pay the credit back. We don't need to see a long credit history or ask for personal guarantees. We can approve your card in within days and don’t charge any annual fees, interest, or international transaction fees.
You might have remote employees, or pay certain bills in different currencies. That can make forecasting difficult, plus you’re exposed to currency hedging fees and risk of currency fluctuations.
Here at Jeeves, we can help you set up a global company at low cost because you can:
With business debit cards or prepaid card, it’s still a hassle to manage business spending. You need to keep adding money yourself, you need to make sure there’s enough money and maybe, by the end of month, you might have some left over.
A credit card fixes that problem, because you are using someone else money. Then, all you need to do is pay off the balance.
With Jeeves, you’ll have free access to credit and a 30-day credit window. Pay back earlier and your credit will automatically renew.
With Jeeves you also get more spend management tools. You can create an unlimited number of free physical or virtual business credit cards with a click through Jeeve’s centralised spend management platform.
In seconds, you can issue credit cards to employees via the Jeeves dashboard (available on both desktop and app) to manage and track employee spending in real time and do away with time-consuming expense reimbursements.
Every cardholder will have their own unique access and dashboard where they can monitor and organise their spending data. Employees can upload and attach receipts to their transactions with a click, both via the Jeeves App when they’re on the go or through the website.
With your free Jeeves spend management software connected to your cards, you’ll have up-to-date spending information always available at a click to manage all your travel expenditures, avoid overspending and stay on top of all your recurring expenses.
As a Jeeves client, you’ll enjoy partner perks like free access to over 1,300 airport lounges worldwide.
Jeeves is one of the best cashback business credit cards with additional rewards to increase your cash flow and margins. You can receive up to 2% cash back on all purchases made by all your cardholders in your first 90 days of using Jeeves. And Jeeves’ cashback means cash that’s automatically added to your credit balance.
You can also save up to $100,000 with Jeeves benefits. For example, get up to $5,000 in AWS credits, $1,000 off any team plan in Notion and 30% off your first year in HubSpot (and 15% off the following years).
We’re going through a tough time for startups right now. What you need is a funding partner that can help with all types of funding.
We created Jeeves Capital, fast digital funding to help you scale without the risk of diluting your business, losing ownership, or paying hidden fees.
With Jeeves Growth Capital, you’ll be able to access 12-months of funding based on your revenue. With Jeeves Working capital, you’ll have a 30, 60, or 90-day credit line to help run your business.
Jeeves business credit cards for startups is great for all new businesses but we’re a perfect fit for high-growth companies and equity funded startups and scale-ups.
There are many ways startups can use Jeeves business credit cards.
You can use Jeeves business credit cards, line of credit and connected spend management software to increase your cash flow, reduce your cash burn and extend your startup runway.
Businesses with a global reach are also a great match for Jeeves business credit cards for startups.
For example, we have an HNW concierge service that uses Jeeves credit cards together with our spend management software to segment their spending across all their global clients. They arrange and pay for flights, holidays, temporary accommodation and the refinishing of high-end apartments by using virtual and physical Jeeves credit cards.
When our client suddenly needed to increase their credit limit quickly to buy a limited edition designer handbag for one of their customers, they got in touch with their account manager and asked for additional credit. We arranged for an increase in credit fast, enabling them to meet their customer's request.
They then settled their bill, including their additional credit at the end of the month, when their original credit limit reset.
Learn more about how to get the most from your Jeeves business credit card and apply today.
Of course, we understand that Jeeves is not the only credit card for new businesses and others might be a better fit depending on your business needs. Here are 12 more business credit cards that you may find suitable for your startup in the U.S., in the U.K. and in Canada:
Good for: Startups that spend more domestically and want cash back on all purchases.
Good for: VC or privately funded startups that spend over $120,000 yearly in credit card purchases domestically and internationally and are looking to increase their cash flow with unlimited cash back.
Good for: Creditworthy business owners and entrepreneurs who want to earn cash back rewards on everyday purchases like supplies and or on substantial spending like inventory.
Good for: The American Express Business Basic Card is good for startups where only the founder needs a credit card because you don’t earn points or rewards for your purchases.
Good for: The American Express Business Platinum Card is good for startup employees who travel frequently.
Good for: The American Express Business Gold Card is good for startups with many employees who travel a lot.
Good for: Startup employees who do a lot of travelling.
Good for: The Capital on Tap business credit card is good for startup business owners who don’t want to pay FX fees or fees to transfer money to business bank accounts.
Good for: Startups who want visibility on expenses and spending and have high creditworthiness.
Good for: Startups that invest heavily in domestic travel expenses.
Good for: SME startups that want to offset utility and office supply costs with cashback.
Good for: Startups that want to maximise their cashflow by accumulating points via a special welcome offer and spending that can be redeemed on common business purchases and travel expenses.
Related reading: 14 best business credit cards in Canada
There are many business charge cards out there, but not all of them have the specific features a startup would need. Whereas the majority of them can help you build business credit, here’s what you really want to look for in a business credit card for new companies:
The most important aspect of getting a credit card as a startup is making sure you can actually get the credit. If credit lenders require 1 - 3 years of statements, a high business credit score, a personal credit score, personal credit history and other conditions you can’t meet, then it’s not a credit card for you. That’s why looking for a credit card happy to work with startups is important.
Make sure the credit cycle is at least 30 days and that you’ll be able to get a credit limit that matches your current monthly spending.
You’ll also want to ensure you can apply online easily and receive a quick application response so you can either get started right away or try another credit card provider.
When you’re working in a fast environment and cash is a precious resource, you need a tool that makes it easy to control business spend. The last thing you want is an unexpectedly high bill at the end of the month or to overspend your budget.
For this reason, you want to pick a charge card with integrated expense management. With a spend management tool, you can track each employee’s expenses, set spending limits, as well as track receipts and transactions. It also means you can get rid of paper receipts and be 100% digital.
Looking for a spend management platform. Read our comparison piece to find the right one for your startup: Payhawk vs Spendesk vs Soldo vs Jeeves: Which One's Best For You?
A spend management solution only works well when staff have their own employee business credit cards. Giving employees their own business credit card not only empowers them to pay for items (and remove expense bottlenecks such as dealing with expense reimbursements), but it helps you track all spending by employees, whether they’re onsite, traveling, or working remotely.
The large benefit of using employee credit cards versus prepaid debit cards is that you won't have to top up every person's card each month. While you usually would be topping up 10+ prepaid cards individually, with credit cards, you just make a one-off payment at the end your billing cycle.
Ideally, you also want to pick a credit card that allows you to order extra employee cards — enough for all your current employees and your future hires as your company grows. The best business credit card issuers for startups will give you extra cards free.
One of the unique benefits of credit cards is that they offer much better benefits and perks than other payment methods like debit cards and balance transfers.
If you’re travelling a lot, for example, getting a credit card that helps you earn Avios and air miles on eligible purchases is a great bonus. If you spend a lot on AWS, for example, it’s worth getting a credit card optimised for those business expenses. Make sure you match the rewards program offer that best suits your type of business spending.
Credit cards date back to the 1960s, which means you’ll get your fair share of credit cards with clunky dashboards and outdated fee structures.
Many credit cards have high annual fees, transaction costs, cash balance fees, interest fees and international transaction charges. If you’re not careful, all the rewards you’re earning will disappear with the fees you’re paying.
Make sure you’re aware of all the fees before signing up for a business credit card offer for new companies. Sometimes, the fees are worth it if you’re getting good rewards. But it does depend on your use case: if you do many international transactions, you want to pick a credit card like Jeeves that doesn’t charge high international fees. If you know you need long-term credit, then make sure to pick a business credit card with low interest rates.
As a startup, you’re probably growing quickly and your spending isn’t as predictable as it would be for other types of businesses. If you require certain features or want to increase your spending limit, you’ll want easy access to your credit card provider. Make sure to pick a credit card with fast and responsive customer support.
If they offer personal account management, even better.
And finally, managing an outdated dashboard and clunky app can make it incredibly frustrating to track your card spending, especially for time sensitive transactions like payments.
Ensure the credit card provider has its own app, and see if they have additional features like accounting software integration to make expense reconciliation easier. If you’re able to do a demo or a free trial before signing up, do it.
Most credit cards will require some sort of credit history. Some will require six to 12 months of trading. Others will hold you personally responsible for the credit card debt.
Check the eligibility criteria of the card you want to apply for because they all differ.
However, it only makes sense to apply for a credit card when you’re in a financially healthy position. For startups and small businesses, that either means having a healthy amount of revenue and being profitable, or having recently raised a large amount of money.
At Jeeves, we can underwrite startups that are not profitable yet, but we do need to see your new business is financially healthy. We’ll also need to know that you’ll use the credit card for growing your business, instead of maintaining it.
Get more startup insights in our post: What VCs are recommending to startups
We hope we provided you with enough information on business credit cards for startups so you can find the best card for you. Remember to find one that’s easy to access, provides rewards, and doesn’t have high costs or hidden fees.
And if you’re looking for a high cashback business credit card specifically made for startups and new companies, apply now to Jeeves below for free.