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Business Credit Cards vs. Charge Cards

Unlock new potential by using business cards to optimize your cash flow and benefit your business.

Business Charge Cards and Small Business Credit Cards are useful tools that allow businesses to improve cash flow and earn rewards from company purchases and expenses. Decide what card is right for your company by comparing the features and benefits.

What is a business charge card?

A business charge card has no pre-set limit1 on how much you can spend and does not charge interest if you pay your balance in full each billing period. Business charge cards give you the opportunity to maximize your cash flow by offering up to 55 interest-free days.2 You cannot make unlimited purchases on the card, but your business can build up a good spending and payment history over time to increase the amount you’re able to put on the card. If you can easily pay off your balance in full each month and prefer a flexible spending limit, a charge card can give you the ability to make larger purchases.

What is a business credit card?

A business credit card gives your company a set amount of money that can be spent each billing period. You can either pay off your balance in full every statement period or carry a balance to manage your company cash flow.3 If you are looking to improve your cash flow and want to pay off your expenses over time, then your company may benefit the most from a credit card with revolving credit.

Key Differences Between Business Charge Cards and Business Credit Cards

American Express® Business Credit Cards and Charge Cards offer a convenient way to improve your business cash flow and earn rewards from company purchases and expenses. Decide which card is right for your company by comparing the features and benefits mentioned in the below list.


Business Charge Card

Business Credit Card

Pre-set spending limit
icon 1 icon
Interest charges None, unless you have an outstanding balance
(full balance must be paid off each billing period)*
Subject to interest rates if you pay what you
owe after the billing period ends2
Required payment Pay your balance in full each billing period** Pay at least the minimum required amount
each billing period3
Overdue payment charge  icon icon
Rewards icon icon

When comparing charge cards and credit cards, both can offer useful benefits. The right card for your business depends on your spending and payment history, the buying power you have, and your company’s financial health.

If you’re still unsure which card is right for your business, Call us at 1-877-891-0821 Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm EST, or request a call back. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the major difference between charge cards and credit cards?

Charge cards require cardholders to pay off their balance in full each month, and do not come with a pre-set spending limit.1 With a credit card, you only have to pay the minimum required amount each month and have revolving credit, which means you can carry your balance over to the next billing period.3 You will receive a pre-set spending limit on your credit card based on your financial information.

What happens if you don’t pay off a charge card?

For a charge card, the balance must always be paid in full each month. A 30% annual interest rate applies to balances not paid in full. Payments must be received and processed by the date of the next monthly statement to avoid interest charges.

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