If you’re launching a startup, you’ll need the right financial tools. One such indispensable tool is a credit card – not just any ordinary one, but a card specifically tailored to a startup’s unique dynamics.

Welcome to our guide on the best credit cards for startups in the UK.

In this article, we’ve got you covered, from card options that offer impressive cash-back rewards and travel perks for those frequent business trips to those that can help manage your cash flow more effectively.

Whether you’re a tech startup in London, a creative agency in Manchester, or a manufacturing unit in Birmingham, your financial requirements may be unique. Still, there’s likely a card out there that is perfect for you.

best credit cards for starty-ups

Pros and Cons of Using a Startup Credit Card


Easier Cash Flow Management – Purchase necessary items or services immediately, even if you do not currently have the funds in your bank account. This can be particularly useful in addressing unexpected expenses.

Separation of Personal and Business Expenses – Using a business credit card for all business-related expenses simplifies tracking and accounting. It helps to maintain a clear divide between personal and business finances, which is crucial during tax preparation.

Rewards and Benefits – Many business credit cards offer rewards programs, including cash back, points, or travel miles.

Building Business Credit – Just as individuals must establish a personal credit history, businesses must also develop a credit profile. Responsible use of a business credit card can help build your business credit, which can be beneficial for obtaining future loans or lines of credit.

Employee Cards – Most business credit cards allow you to issue cards to your employees, helping to streamline business expenses and reduce the need for reimbursements. These cards often come with customizable spending limits and the ability to monitor employee spending.


High Interest and Fees – If you cannot pay off the balance in full each month, interest charges can add up quickly. Additionally, business credit cards often come with various fees, such as annual, late payment, and cash advance fees.

Potential for Debt – A business credit card’s convenience and flexibility can lead to overspending. If not managed carefully, businesses can find themselves in a cycle of debt that’s not easy to break.

Personal Liability – Many business credit cards require a personal guarantee. This means that if the business cannot repay the debt, the cardholder (often the business owner) is personally responsible. This can put your personal assets at risk.

Impact on Credit Score – While using a business credit card can help build your business credit score, it can also have a negative impact if not managed correctly. Late or missed payments can harm both your business and potentially your personal credit score, depending on the card’s terms and conditions.

Complex Reward Structures – While rewards can be a significant benefit, they can also be complex and restrictive. It’s important to fully understand the rewards program of your business credit card, as some require specific spending categories to earn points or have restrictions on when and how rewards can be redeemed.

The Best First-time Business Credit Cards for Start-ups

The Best Business Credit Cards – An Overview

Card NameAnnual FeeAPRRewardRatingApply
Capital on Tap Business£0From 15.5%1.5% Cashback⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Apply
Barclaycard Select£023.30%1% Cashback⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Apply
AMEX Business Gold£2500%1.5 Points for Each £1⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Apply
MetroBank Business Credit Card£014.90%N/A⭐⭐⭐⭐★Apply
Santander Cashback Credit Card£3023.70%Unlimited 1% CB⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Apply
RBS Business Plus£7029.00%Up to 2% Cashback⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Apply
Juni Business Card£0N/A1% Cashback⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Apply

Best Overall Startup Credit Card – Capital on Tap Business Credit Card

capital on tap business credit card
Min. CreditMax. CreditAnnual FeeAPRRewardApply
£1000£250.000£0From 15.2%1.5% CashbackApply

With an impressively low starting APR 15.5% APR (variable) and no annual fee, Capital on Tap’s business credit card has become a favourite among businesses, big and small. These appealing features make it a popular choice.

Firstly, you’ll appreciate that there are practically no fees. Besides the non-existent annual fee, you don’t have to worry about ATM usage charges or foreign exchange fees.

Secondly, there’s a generous points structure which means you can earn useful points for any business purchases.

Adaptable to businesses of all scales, the card allows you to order unlimited additional cards, providing the flexibility and diversity necessary to cater to varied business requirements. Plus, they offer quite high credit limits, adding another layer of convenience for your business operations.

✅ Low Fees

✅ Low APR

✅ High Credit Limit

✅ Up to 1.0% Cashback

✅ Unlimited Additional Cards

Best Startup Business Credit Card with Benefits – Barclaycard Select

BarclaydCard Select
Min. CreditMax. CreditAnnual FeeAPRRewardApply
£1.000Subject to Status£023.30%1% CashbackApply

The Barclaycard Select Cashback card stands out as a dynamic and versatile credit solution to complement your business payment solutions.

This card is a perfect option to supplement your American Express card. With no associated costs, the Barclaycard Select Cashback card rewards you with cash returns, making it a lucrative addition to your financial toolkit.

The cashback feature provides 1% returns on nearly all of your expenditures, with rewards paid out monthly, helping you save while you spend.

Applying for the Barclaycard Select Cashback card is quite simple. You need to be 18 years or older and a UK resident. Furthermore, your annual company turnover should be at least £10,000.

The card’s accessibility extends to sole proprietors and Limited Liability Companies, meaning a variety of business entities can benefit from this card’s features.

✅ Great Option to Supplement an AMEX Card

✅ Rewards Paid Monthly

✅ Ideal for Businesses with a Smaller Turnover

Best Startup Business Credit Card for Rewards – American Express Gold

amex business gold
Min. CreditMax. CreditAnnual FeeAPRRewardApply
NoneNone£250 After 1 Year0%Up to 1.5 points for each £1 SpentApply

The American Express Business Gold Card, often abbreviated as AMEX Gold Business Card, is an exceptional choice for those seeking to maximise rewards from their business expenditures while enjoying a low APR. This card offers a multitude of features that can significantly elevate the value your business receives from each eligible purchase.

For starters, the rewards scheme is very attractive. For every eligible £1 spent on the card, the cardholder earns one Membership Rewards® point. This earning rate essentially equates to a 1% return on all purchases. Furthermore, when the card is used to book travel services such as flights, hotels, and car hire through American Express Travel, the points earned are effectively doubled, netting an additional point per £1 spent.

The AMEX Gold Business Card also offers a very enticing welcome bonus. Upon spending at least £3,000 within the first three months of Cardmembership, new members will receive a hefty 20,000 Membership Rewards points. It’s essential to know that this offer is solely available for cardholders who haven’t participated in the Membership Rewards programme during the previous 13 months.

Cardholders who spend heavily can also benefit from the threshold bonus of 10,000 Membership Rewards points if they spend £20,000 per quarter. This reward feature can certainly incentivise regular usage of the card, essentially rewarding businesses for their necessary expenditures.

The Membership Rewards points you earn are versatile and can be redeemed for various rewards, such as shopping gift cards, flight upgrades, and dining experiences. The flexibility of these rewards ensures that they can be tailored to suit the unique needs of your business.

Another advantage of the AMEX Gold Business Card is its capacity for multiple cardholders. You can request up to 99 additional cards at no extra cost, making it easier to manage and track business expenses across different departments or team members.

Further enhancing its administrative prowess, the AmexExpense App can help streamline spending management, making it simple to monitor and control expenses directly from your mobile device.

One of the unique features of the AMEX Gold Business Card is its structure as a charge card. Unlike credit cards that have a preset spending limit and charge interest on balances not paid by the due date, the AMEX Gold Business Card doesn’t have a set spending limit and doesn’t charge interest. Instead, balances must be paid off in full every month. This structure encourages disciplined spending and helps avoid the pitfall of carrying costly credit card debt.

Finally, the card does come with an annual fee of £250. However, this fee is waived for the first year, allowing businesses to experience the card’s full benefits before making a long-term commitment.

✅ Compelling Rewards

✅ First Year Free

✅ No Credit Limit

✅ No Interest

✅ Easy Expense Control and Monitoring

Business Startup Credit Card with Low Fees – Metro Bank Business Credit Card

metro bank credit card
Min. CreditMax. CreditAnnual FeeAPRRewardApply
£500Subject to Status£014.90%N/AApply

If you’re in the initial stages of your business and looking for a cost-effective financial solution, Metro Bank’s Business Credit Card is an exceptional option worth considering. It is an especially compelling choice for start-ups due to its low fee structure and competitive interest rate.

A standout feature of the Metro Bank Business Credit Card is that it does not impose any minimum turnover requirement. This means businesses, regardless of their size or financial strength, can apply without meeting stringent revenue thresholds.

This is particularly beneficial for start-ups that are just beginning to generate income.

While it doesn’t offer certain perks, such as cashback, the card’s financial benefits are indeed significant. With a flat APR of 14.9% applicable to all successful applications, the credit card provides an affordable line of credit that’s predictable and easy to manage.

In addition, the card provides up to 56 days of interest-free credit on purchases, which essentially allows your business to borrow for short periods without incurring any interest as long as you pay off your balance in full. This is an excellent benefit that can aid cash flow management in the critical early stages of your business.

Finally, the card does not charge foreign exchange fees when used in most European countries. This can lead to substantial savings if you or your colleagues regularly travel, making it a genuinely low-cost option that supports the international growth of your business.

✅ Flatt 14.90% APR

✅ No Annual Fee

✅ No FOREX Fees in Europe

✅ No Minimum Turnover

Best Startup Credit card for Small Businesses – Santander Cashback Credit Card

santander credit card
Min. CreditMax. CreditAnnual FeeAPRRewardApply
£500Subject to Status£3023.70%Unlimited 1% CashbackApply

The Santander Business Cashback Credit Card is an excellent choice for small businesses, startups, and sole traders looking for a rewarding financial instrument. It provides benefits that can immensely facilitate the growth of such businesses while minimising costs.

One of the primary advantages of this card is its low annual fee. Businesses can access numerous financial benefits for a modest sum of £30, including unlimited 1% cashback on all business purchases. This means that any business spending over £3,000 a year effectively cancels out the annual fee due to the cashback earned. This is a significant advantage for businesses with substantial regular expenditures, as the cashback rewards can directly contribute to their bottom line.

Furthermore, the Santander Cashback Credit Card presents an opportunity for startups to manage their cash flow effectively. The 56-day interest-free credit on purchases helps businesses manage their expenses better and pay off the balance without incurring any interest, provided the balance is paid in full within the stipulated period.

Eligibility for the card is also remarkably inclusive. Santander requires no minimum turnover, thereby offering a level playing field for all small businesses and startups. The only prerequisite is the possession of a Santander Business Current Account.

Moreover, the card is highly adaptable to growing businesses. It facilitates expansion by allowing up to three additional cardholders at no extra cost. This feature provides flexibility, as the main account holder can manage the credit limits for these cardholders, ensuring business expenditure remains controlled and within budget.

Lastly, businesses with frequent overseas operations or travel requirements would find this card particularly beneficial. With no foreign exchange fees on purchases, businesses can save on their international expenses, which often amount to substantial sums.

✅ Low Annual Fee

✅ Unlimited 1% Cashback

✅ Up to 3 Free Additional Cards

✅ No Minimum Turnover

Business Startup Credit Card with High Cashback – RBS Business Plus

rbs credit card
Min. CreditMax. CreditAnnual FeeAPRRewardApply
£500N/A£7029.00%Up to 2% CashbackApply

The RBS Business Plus Credit Card is an excellent choice for startups that are looking for ways to maximise their cashback benefits. Startups usually have to make various necessary purchases to keep their operations running smoothly. Everything from office supplies to software subscriptions can quickly add up.

A business credit card that offers high cashback on these everyday expenses can help startups save significant amounts of money.

The main feature of the RBS Business Plus Credit Card is its generous cashback rate. Depending on the specific offer at the time of application, you may receive up to 2% cash back on all eligible purchases, a rate that outperforms many competing business credit cards. Depending on your spending habits, this can potentially mean hundreds or even thousands of dollars in savings per year.

One of the reasons the RBS Business Plus Credit Card is ideal for startups is its broad eligibility for cashback. Many business credit cards limit their cashback offers to specific spending categories like travel or dining. In contrast, the RBS Business Plus Credit Card offers cashback on all eligible business expenses, making it a more versatile choice for businesses with diverse spending habits.

Beyond cashback, the RBS Business Plus Credit Card offers a suite of additional benefits that can be valuable for startups. These can include travel insurance, purchase protection, and extended warranty coverage, which could save your business money in unforeseen circumstances.

As a startup, your business needs might change rapidly. RBS understands this and offers flexible credit limits with the Business Plus Credit Card. This means you can have more purchasing power when needed, helping your business grow without unnecessary constraints.

Startups are often run by busy people who don’t have time for complicated financial management. The RBS Business Plus Credit Card has easy online management tools, allowing you to track your spending, make payments, and view your cashback balance anytime.

✅ Up to 2% Cashback on Expenditures

✅ Up to 3% Cashback at Eligible Fuel and Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

✅ No FOREX Fees

✅ Easy Management Tools

Best Challenger Business Credit Card for Startups – Juni Business Card

juni credit card
Min. CreditMax. CreditAnnual FeeAPRRewardApply
£10.000£250.000£0N/A1% CashbackApply

The Juni Business Credit Card, a recent entrant in the challenger bank space, offers a compelling package for start-ups, particularly those focused on digital marketing. This new player is stepping into the ring with market leaders like Capital on Tap and American Express, offering a unique combination of benefits that sets it apart.

One of the Juni Business Credit Card’s key differentiators is its focus on revenue growth through everyday business spending. This feature directly addresses the needs of start-ups that are in the process of scaling up and need financial solutions that adapt to their growth.

Moreover, the card is practically fee-free, making it a cost-effective option for small businesses that want to maximize their resources.

Another advantage offered by Juni is its cashback feature. Cardholders can benefit from up to 1% cashback on all eligible card spending, offering an avenue to receive a return on investment from routine operational expenses. This is an excellent feature for start-ups that could use these rewards to offset costs elsewhere in the business.

For start-ups in the digital marketing space, the Juni Business Credit Card offers scalable credit limits of up to £250,000, providing ample room for increased ad spend and, in turn, enhanced return on ad spend (ROAS). The flexibility of credit limits can allow businesses to react quickly to market trends and opportunities, thereby providing a competitive advantage in the dynamic digital marketing arena.

✅ High Credit Limit

✅ Instant Credit Option

✅ Fee-Free

✅ 1% Cashback

Startup Credit Card FAQs

Can a startup apply for a business credit card?

What if my startup doesn’t have a credit history?

Are there specific credit cards for startups?

What should I do if my startup’s credit card application is denied?

Can I increase the credit limit on my startup’s card as my business grows?