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Capital One Spark Cash Plus: Earn a Return for Business Spending

The Capital One Spark Cash Plus rewards businesses that spend a lot annually.

The Capital One Spark Cash Plus* offers business owners a flat cash-back rate for a steep annual fee, but it has potential to be a rewarding choice. 

For $150 annually, business owners can earn 2% cash back for their expenses, regardless of what they are. However, for its high price tag, and with many of its best perks catering to high spending, it should only be considered by businesses that spend quite a bit each year.

There are a number of business-related perks, but its primary features are its flat rate for all purchases and high welcome bonus of up to $1,000 ($500 after spending $5,000 in the first three months, and an additional $500 for spending $50,000 within six months of account opening). 

For business owners who travel, the card also earns 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked directly from Capital One. There are also no foreign transaction fees to worry about.

It's important to note that the Capital One Spark Cash Plus can't be used to revolve a balance, so it doesn't have an annual percentage rate, or APR. That means your credit card statement will need to be paid in full every month or you'll incur a 2.99% monthly late fee.

Its cash-back rate is competitive with many cash-back credit cards without an annual fee, but the Spark Cash Plus's earning potential for high business spending certainly isn't.

In this article

Capital One Spark Cash Plus

6/10 CNET Rating
Card Highlights
Intro OfferEarn up to a $1,000 cash bonus; $500 once you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months, and $500 once you spend $50,000 in the first 6 months of account opening
APRN/A
Intro Purchase APRN/A
Recommended Credit Excellent
Reward Rates
  • Earn unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2% cash back on every purchase, everywhere—with no limits or category restrictions
Annual Fee$150
Additional Details
Intro Balance Transfer APRN/A
Balance Transfer APRN/A
Balance Transfer Fee N/A
Late Payment Fee 2.99% of the unpaid portion
Foreign Transaction Fees None
Penalty APR N/A
Rewards & Redemption Details
  • Earn unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2% cash back on every purchase, everywhere—with no limits or category restrictions

Rewards and redemption

The Spark Cash Plus for Business has a straightforward rewards program. You can use the card for all of your business spending to earn 2% cash back for your purchases. While that can be good for businesses with a wide variety of spending, if your business spends heavily on one or two types of purchases, it might be better to choose a business credit card that offers a higher rate for specific purchases.

Your cash back is delivered to you as either statement credits -- which lower the overall balance of your account -- or as a check in the mail. You can also automate the process by setting up a preferred method and choosing if you want it redeemed at a certain calendar date or a certain cash-back amount.

There is also an annual $200 cash bonus for spending $200,000 or more with the card. However, $200 for spending $200,000 is a measly offering.

Again, keep in mind you'll need to pay off your credit card balance in full each month or you'll end up paying a fee of 2.99%, wiping out the value of your rewards. You can set up an AutoPay feature on your account to make sure you pay it off in time.

Welcome bonus

The Spark Cash Plus's welcome bonus is one of the highest, and it works a little differently to most. New cardholders can earn up to $1,000. You'll earn $500 for spending $5,000 in the first three months, and the other $500 by spending $50,000 within six months of account opening.

It's a high spending qualification, but if you have a sizable business, it might not be too much of a challenge to reach. Transactions made on employee cards will also help you unlock the welcome bonus. 

Other card perks

The Capital One Spark Cash for Business features a few standard business management tools and a handful of travel protections.

  • Annual $200 cash bonus: Earn a $200 cash bonus every year you spend $200,000 or more with the card.
  • Account managers: You can set an account manager who can then make payments and purchases, review transactions and have the authority to resolve any problems.
  • Purchase records: You can securely download your purchase records onto multiple platforms, including Excel, QuickBooks and Quicken.
  • Year-end summaries: Check out an itemized report of your spending to help budget your business and make tax season less stressful.
  • Free employee cards: You can issue employee cards at no additional cost.
  • Extended warranty: If a new purchase has a manufacturer's warranty of three years or less, you could have it extended by an additional year.
  • Roadside assistance: If you run into car trouble while traveling, you can get help with changing a tire, jumping your car or getting gas delivered, among other things.

Alternative cards

While the Capital One Spark Cash Plus could be a lucrative choice for business owners, it does take quite a bit of spending to get the most from the card, so it's not a great choice for every business type. Consider these alternatives if the Spark Cash Plus doesn't fit your business's budget.

Ink Business Cash® Credit Card

The Ink Business Cash is a great option for small businesses. It earns 5% cash back at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services on the first $25,000 spent on combined purchases annually (then 1%). It also earns 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants with the same spending cap (then 1%).

It also comes with a solid welcome bonus (earn a $900 bonus for spending $6,000 with the card in the first three months of account opening) with a bit more of a realistic spending requirement. It's also a cut above the competition when it comes to business credit cards with no annual fee.

Basically, if you're unable to hit the high spending requirements to obtain the best of the Spark Cash Plus card, consider the Ink Business Cash.

Capital One Spark Miles for Business

The Capital One Spark Miles for Business* is primarily focused on travel, but it has a much lower annual fee ($0 intro annual fee your first year, then $95) with no set spending level to get the most out of it. Cardholders earn 2x miles for your spending, and 5x miles for hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.

The card has a welcome bonus of 50,000 miles for spending $4,500 on purchases within the first three months of account opening, so it's easy to reach yet still plenty rewarding.

It'll make your business trips a little easier and less expensive with its application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck and by using your miles for airfare, hotels or rental cars. You could also transfer them to Capital One's travel partners, but they don't feature many US airlines.

If your business has you traveling often, and you don't have high enough spending to qualify for everything the Spark Plus offers, perhaps the Spark Miles for Business would serve you better.

FAQs

How do I choose the right business credit card?

You'll need to look at your business's budget. If you spend a lot annually, consider a card that rewards that spending. If you travel often, consider a business travel credit card that offers amenities and rewards. It comes down to what your business needs are, and what aspects of your business you're looking to bolster.

Should I get a credit card just for its welcome bonus?

While welcome bonuses certainly play a role in why you should get a card, you shouldn't get a credit card solely based on the welcome bonus. Consider the other aspects of the card that offer lasting value compared to short-term reward. It's also a bad idea to change your spending habits just to reach a welcome bonus. Let the card match your budget, rather than trying to change your budget to fit the card.

What's the difference between a credit card with and without an APR?

You're able to revolve a balance each month with a credit card that has an APR, but the balance will accrue interest at that rate. A credit card with no APR -- sometimes known as a charge card -- must be paid off in full each month, but you won't have to worry about interest charges. Late fees, however, may apply.

*All information about the Capital One Spark Cash Plus and the Capital One Spark Miles for Business has been collected independently by CNET and has not been reviewed by the issuer.

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