The Ink Business Preferred vs. Chase Sapphire Reserve [Detailed]

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Chase issues a dynamic collection of travel rewards credit cards. Whether you travel mostly for business, take a few family vacations each year, or a mix of both, you’ll find a Chase card that supports your unique travel profile.

The 2 Chase travel rewards cards we’re comparing today are some of the best Chase has on offer. You’ll find that both cards earn valuable Ultimate Rewards points, have elevated earnings on travel, and deliver up to 50% more value at redemption time.

While the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card is a business credit card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve® card is a personal credit card, we’ll tell you why they should both be contenders for consideration as your next travel rewards card.

We’ll also explain how they can potentially work harmoniously together.

But let’s first talk about some differences between business credit cards and personal credit cards, in an effort to clarify which bests fits your situation.

Let’s get started on the path to discovering the features and benefits of the Ink Business Preferred card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

Business Credit Cards vs. Personal Credit Cards

You may not think you need a business credit card. Perhaps you’ve been doing just fine with your personal credit card running your small business. You may even be satisfied with having a separate personal card you use solely for business purposes.

If you have business activity, even with little cash flow, a business credit card can offer advantages over a personal credit card.

Keep Expenses Separated — A primary reason for securing a business card is to keep personal and business expenses separate. Business credit cards come with organizational, management, and financial tools that personal credit cards may not offer.

Organization and Support at Tax Time — Business credit cards come with annual reports that breakdown your spending. When it comes time to file your taxes, having all your business expenses well-organized will make filing easier. You’ll also have supporting records should you face an audit.

Fund the Growth of Your Business — As your business grows, you may need emergency funding to purchase that next piece of equipment or cover a major expense. Business cards often offer a solution in the form of a short-term loan for financing a large expense.

Business Cards Have More Spending Power — Business credit cards generally have higher limits than personal credit cards and allow you to add employees to your card so you can track all of your business’s spending.

Rewards — Earning rewards on all your business spending allows you to put that income back into your business or use rewards to offset travel expenses. Business credit cards often offer higher rewards earning on business category expenses.

Build Your Business Credit History — Initially, your personal credit plays a key role in whether you will be approved for a business credit card. This is because you will be personally responsible for the debt. Over time, it’s possible for your business to establish its own credit history.

The Difference in Protections — Personal credit cards are covered under the CARD Act of 2009 which limits APR increases and fraud liability. While business credit cards are not covered under the act, many issuers have altered their policies positively.

Bottom Line: There are many prudent reasons to have a business credit card, including separating business expenses from personal expenses, having higher credit limits, earning rewards on business purchases, and building your business credit history.

businessman paying with credit card
Entrepreneurs may qualify for a business credit card. Image Credit: Monkey Business Images via Shutterstock

Who Qualifies for a Business Credit Card

You don’t have to be a corporate entity or have hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash flow to qualify for a business credit card. In fact, even the IRS recognizes that a small operation can qualify as a business by its own definition:

“A trade or business generally is an activity carried on to make a profit. You do not need to actually make a profit to be in a trade or business as long as you have a profit motive.”

With this statement as a guideline for what constitutes a business, activities such as part-time coaching, selling your artwork, repairing bicycles, or any other business pursuit, regardless of the size, may qualify. If you have a business activity and good credit, you could potentially qualify for a business credit card.

To learn more about business credit cards and to get tips on how to apply, access our complete guide to the best credit cards for small businesses.

Welcome Bonuses

The Value of a Welcome Bonus

Ink Business Preferred Card

The Ink Business Preferred card allows you to redeem your Ultimate Rewards points for 1.25 cents per point on the Chase Travel portal. With this valuation, a welcome bonus of 50,000 points could be worth $625 when redeemed for travel.

You could receive even higher value by transferring points to airline and hotel partners.

Chase Sapphire Reserve Card

Welcome bonuses are ever-changing but you can count on each Ultimate Rewards point to be worth at least 1.5 cents when redeemed for travel via the Chase Sapphire Reserve card. A 50,000 point welcome bonus would equate to $750 in travel value.

And, like the Ink Business Preferred card, you may receive higher value by transferring points to Chase’s travel partners.

Airplane
Earn triple rewards on all your travel purchases with a Chase Ultimate Rewards earning card. Image Credit: Chase

Comparing Earning Potential

Both the Ink Business Preferred card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve card earn valuable Ultimate Rewards points. Ultimate Rewards points are valuable because of their redemption flexibility, which we’ll explain shortly.

Let’s first take a look at how you earn points on these 2 travel rewards cards.

CardEarnings
Ink Business Preferred card
Chase Sapphire Reserve card
  • Earn 3 points per dollar spent on travel and dining worldwide
  • 1 point per dollar on all other purchases

Earning 3 points per dollar on travel is a significant feature of these cards because Chase’s definition of travel is very broad. Included in the travel category are merchants and purchases such as airlines, hotels, car rental agencies, cruise lines, tolls, travel agencies, discount travel sites, transit providers, sightseeing activities, and much more.

Bottom Line: Whether you travel for business or pleasure, you’ll realize 3x earnings on all your travel purchases with either the Ink Business Preferred or the Chase Sapphire Reserve. Since Chase defines travel quite broadly, it’s easy to accumulate rewards for these purchases. 

Comparing Redemption Options

At redemption time, you’ll have several options for your Chase Ultimate Rewards points.

CardBest Redemption OptionsAdditional Redemption Options
Ink Business Preferred card
  • Redeem for 1.25 cents per point on Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal
  • Transfer to airline/hotel partners
  • Statement credits, gift cards, plus Amazon, Apple, and Chase experiences.
Chase Sapphire Reserve card
  • Redeem for 1.5 cents per point on Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal
  • Transfer to airline/hotel partners
  • Statement credits, gift cards, plus Amazon, Apple, and Chase experiences.

For examples of the best ways to redeem your Chase Ultimate Rewards points, you’ll want to look at our list of creative options.

Bottom Line: Both the Ink Business Preferred card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve card offer several flexible redemption options. You can redeem points for up to 1.5 cents per point on the Chase Travel portal, transfer points to travel partners, and even receive 1 cent per point in value as a statement credit. 

How the Cards Can Work Together Harmoniously

One advantage of earning Ultimate Rewards points is their flexibility. You’ll realize this flexibility at redemption time but another useful feature is that points earned on 1 card can be transferred to another Ultimate Rewards earning card.

Points earned on the Ink Business Preferred card can be redeemed for 1.25 cents per point on the Ultimate Rewards Travel portal. However, if you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve card, you can transfer points to that card and redeem them for 1.5 cents per point.

Additionally, if you have a lot of business travel expenses, you can earn big on the Ink Business Preferred card but still take advantage of the worldwide access to over 1,200 Priority Pass lounges that comes with your Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

Both cards offer the advantage of transferring Ultimate Rewards points to airline and hotel partners.

Of course, Chase does have some rules when it comes to applying for their cards. You’ll want to review Chase’s 5/24 requirements prior to applying for any Chase card.

Now, with the possibility of having both cards on your mind, let’s look at the benefits each card has to offer.

Airport Lounge Access

Ink Business Preferred Card

The Ink Business Preferred card does not offer any complimentary airport lounge membership.

Chase Sapphire Reserve Card

Having access to a comfortable airport lounge when you’re traveling is a welcome benefit. The Chase Sapphire Reserve offers complimentary access to over 1,200 worldwide lounges with a complimentary Priority Pass Select membership.

Enjoy complimentary access for yourself plus up to 2 additional guests. Subsequent guests can enter at a cost of $32 each, per visit.

Fairmont Orchid Hawaii
Receive VIP benefits at the Luxury Hotel Collection properties. Image Credit: Luxury Hotel Collection

Hotel and Rental Car Program Benefits

Hotel Program Benefits — Ink Business Preferred Card

Book your hotel directly through the Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection and receive special hotel benefits at over 900 properties worldwide.

  • Best rate guarantee
  • An upgraded room, if available
  • $25 food/beverage credit
  • Continental breakfast for 2 daily
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Late check out
  • VIP treatment

Hotel Program Benefits — Chase Sapphire Reserve Card

The Chase Sapphire Reserve, being a premium Visa Infinite travel rewards card, has an elevated level of hotel benefits.

Luxury Hotels & Resort Collection

Enjoy special benefits at over 1,000 properties worldwide.

  • Daily breakfast for 2
  • Early check-in and late checkout
  • Upgraded room when available
  • Unique property benefit
  • Free Wi-Fi

Relais & Châteaux

Receive a VIP welcome and complimentary breakfast at participating locations.

sbe Hotels Program

  • Book 4 consecutive nights with your qualifying card and receive the fourth night free
  • Free breakfast for 2 people per room, per day
  • $30 food/beverage credit per stay
  • Free Wi-Fi for an unlimited amount of devices
  • Room upgrades, when available
  • Late checkout, when available
Rental Car on Road
Primary car rental insurance is a benefit offered on both the Ink Business Preferred card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve card. Image Credit: Thrifty

Rental Car Program Benefits — Ink Business Preferred Card

Your Ink Business Preferred card qualifies for several benefits including discounts with several car rental companies. You’ll receive discounts with Dollar, Hertz, Silvercar, and more. You’ll also qualify for upgrades, accelerated earnings, and discounts via the Avis Access Ink Insider after registering.

Rental Car Program Benefits — Chase Sapphire Reserve Card

  • National Emerald Club Executive Level membership
  • Benefits and discounts with Avis
  • Benefits and discounts with Silvercar by Audi

Bottom Line: While the Chase Sapphire Reserve card offers a few more hotel and car rental program benefits than the Ink Business Preferred card, the lower annual fee on the Ink Business Preferred card may make it a better value in this category. 

Statement Credits and Additional Benefits

Statement Credits

The Ink Business Preferred does not offer any statement credits for specific purchases.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve offers 2 travel statement credits :

The $300 travel statement credit offered by the Chase Sapphire Reserve card is easy to use as travel is defined broadly to include most travel categories.

Travel Benefits and Protections

Travel benefits and protections can save you money, provide needed assistance if something should go wrong, or give you peace of mind knowing you have coverage during your journey.

Here’s how the 2 cards compare on travel benefits and protections.

Benefit/ProtectionInk Business Preferred CardChase Sapphire Reserve Card
Car Rental InsurancePrimary CoveragePrimary Coverage
Trip Cancellation and Interruption InsuranceUp to $5,000 per tripUp to $10,000 per trip per person/$20,000 per incident
Trip Delay InsuranceUp to $500 for trip delays more than 12 hoursUp to $500 for trip delays more than 6 hours
Cell Phone Protection$600 coverage provided with $100 deductible, maximum of 3 claims/yearLimited coverage under the extended warranty coverage that comes with the card
Lost, Damaged and Delayed Baggage InsuranceUp to $3,000 for carry-on, $2,000 for checked baggage if stolen, lost or damaged; up to $500 for delayed baggage more than 6 hoursUp to $3,000 for carry-on or checked baggage if stolen, lost, or damaged; up to $500 for delayed baggage more than 6 hours
Roadside Assistance CoverageFlat fee per service call4 free service calls per year (limits apply)
Travel Accident InsuranceUp to $500,000 for dismemberment or loss of lifeUp to $1,000,000 for dismemberment or loss of life
Emergency Evacuation CoverageN/AUp to $100,000 in coverage
Emergency Medical and Dental CoverageN/A$2,500 medical/dental coverage ($50 deductible per day), $75 per day for prescribed hotel needed due to covered loss for up to 5 days
Concierge and Emergency Travel Assistance24/7 assistance worldwide24/7 assistance worldwide
Foreign Transactions FeesNoneNone

Shopping Benefits and Protections

Shopping Benefit/ProtectionInk Business Preferred CardChase Sapphire Reserve Card
Extended Warranty1 additional year on manufacturer’s warranties of 3 years or less1 additional year on manufacturer’s warranties of 3 years or less
Purchase ProtectionCoverage for damage and theft up to 120 days from purchase date, $10,000 per qualifying item, maximum of $50,000 per yearCoverage for damage and theft up to 120 days from purchase date, $10,000 per qualifying item, maximum of $50,000 per year
Return ProtectionN/A$500 per item if a merchant will not accept a return of a qualifying item within 90 days of purchase
Price ProtectionN/A$500 per item if price decreases within 90 days of purchase

We’ve abbreviated benefit descriptions here but you can find full descriptions and the terms/conditions in each card’s guide to benefits.

Bottom Line: While travel and shopping benefits alone are not key reasons for selecting a rewards-earning credit card, benefits and protections can save you money and provide assistance should things go wrong during your travel. As a result, they add value and can influence your card selection. The Chase Sapphire Reserve card comes out ahead in providing these benefits but it does have a higher annual fee than the Ink Business Preferred card

Annual Fees and Adding Additional Users

The Ink Business Preferred card comes with a low annual fee while the premium Chase Sapphire Reserve card has a much higher fee that parallels the additional benefits that come with the card. Access current fee and rate information here for the Ink Business Preferred card and here for the Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

The Ink Business Preferred card does not charge a fee for adding an authorized user while the Chase Sapphire Reserve card charges $75 per authorized user.

Additional users on both cards can share in the card benefits provided, including key benefits such as cell phone coverage on the Ink Business Preferred card and worldwide lounge access on the Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

Final Thoughts

Having a business credit card that earns rewards on all your purchases is a smart decision. The Ink Business Preferred card provides solid earning potential, along with flexible redemption options, and travel/shopping protections, all for a lower annual fee.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve card pairs nicely with the Ink Business Preferred card as it provides elevated benefits and greater value at redemption time. It also offers an easy to use $300 travel statement credit each year which serves to nicely offset the annual fee.

If not as a pair, selecting either card can be a potential win when you match the card to your spending habits, benefit preferences, and an annual fee with which you’re comfortable.


FAQ

Which card is better, the Ink Business Preferred or the Chase Sapphire Reserve?

The Ink Business Preferred card is, of course, a business credit card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve card is a premium personal credit card.

The best card for your situation will depend on if you need a business credit card or if a personal credit card is more of a match.

However, the 2 cards can work well in tandem because rewards earned on 1 card can be transferred to the other. This is a unique combination that allows you to earn the most rewards and redeem them for the best value.

For example, Ultimate Rewards points earned on the Ink Business Preferred card can be redeemed for 1.25 cents for travel and the Chase Sapphire Reserve receives 1.5 cents per point when redeemed for travel. You can earn rewards for your business expenses on your Ink Business Preferred card and transfer the points for a higher redemption value.

If you travel a lot for business and value lounge access, your travel expenses can be paid for with your Ink Business Preferred card but you can still enjoy worldwide airport lounge access complimentary with your Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

How do Ultimate Rewards points work?

Ultimate Rewards points are earned on every purchase you make with a Chase Ultimate Rewards earning credit card. Some cards have bonus earning categories that allow you to earn multiple Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent.

These bonus categories can include travel, dining, grocery stores, select business expenses, and more.

At redemption time, premium Chase credit cards, such as the ones mentioned in this article, allow you to redeem your points for travel, statement credits, merchandise, gift cards, or transfer your points to travel partners for potentially greater value.

Chase Ultimate Rewards points do not expire as long as you have a Chase Ultimate Rewards earning credit card that is active and you’ve transferred your points to that account.

How does cell phone coverage work on the Ink Business Preferred card?

Use your Ink Business Preferred card to pay your monthly cell phone bills and you will receive coverage automatically.

You could receive a benefit of up to $600 minus a $100 deductible if your cell phone is damaged or stolen. There is a limit of 3 claims per 12 month period.

Coverage is secondary to any other insurance you might have on the phone.

The primary cardholder is covered as well as any employees. Only phones on which you pay the monthly bill with your Ink Business Preferred card are covered.

Can I have more than 1 Chase credit card?

Yes. Chase will allow you to have several credit cards.

However, Chase does have what is called a 5/24 rule that dictates whether they will approve you for a card. The rule limits the amount of any credit cards you have been approved for in the last 24 months to 5.

Christine Krzyszton

About Christine Krzyszton

Christine, who lives in Northern Michigan, travels about 300,000 miles a year despite her remote location. Her expertise is traveling the world on a weekend with no pre-determined destination in mind, letting the cost of the airfare determine where she will go. She has over four million flown miles and elite status on all three major domestic carriers.

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