Brex Credit Card Review [2024]: No Credit Check and Ideal for Startups

CREDIT CARDS - BUSINESS CREDIT CARDS
The Brex card is designed to help tech startups grow. But does it have the benefits and perks you’re looking for?
Updated April 9, 2024
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The Brex Credit Card is a charge card designed to help tech startups seamlessly navigate the different aspects of business management. This includes issuing employee cards, expense management, earning rewards points, and benefitting from partner perks.

Surprisingly, there’s no credit check involved in the application process. Instead, Brex determines your creditworthiness by reviewing your company’s business model, spending patterns, source of funds, and other applicable areas. But it doesn’t have the high financial requirements of a traditional corporate credit card.

In this Brex credit card review, you’ll learn about this small business card’s benefits and drawbacks, as well as how to earn and redeem your points. This will help you decide whether the Brex card is the right choice for your business.

No Personal Liability, Lots of Rewards Potential

Brex Credit Card
3.5

Brex Credit Card

Current Offer

Earn 10,000 points for spending your first $3,000 in the first 3 months, and an additional 20,000 if you link payroll to your Brex account, for a total 30,000 points

Annual Fee

$0

Rewards Rate

7X points on rideshare, 4X on Brex Travel, 3X at restaurants and on eligible Apple products, 2X on software subscriptions, and 1X on all other purchases with Brex Exclusive

Benefits and Drawbacks
Card Details

In this article

Who should get the Brex credit card?

The Brex credit card, previously known as the Brex for Tech card or the Brex for Startups card, likely makes the most sense for business owners who can take advantage of its rewards program and card perks.

The earning categories offer rewards on many common business expenses, such as recurring software. These rewards could help cardholders discount business travel and future business purchases. In addition, complimentary perks with partners like Amazon Web Services, Slack, Apple, Google Ads, Gusto, and more can help your business grow.

If the rewards and benefits don’t align with your business goals, this card might not be the best fit for you. Reward rates and redemptions are heavily geared toward travel, which may not be useful to all business owners. However, it’s also important to consider how the Brex card doesn’t require a personal credit check.

You can get a business credit card with an EIN only (employer identification number) instead of a Social Security number. If you’re finding it difficult to get approved for other business credit cards because of your personal credit history, this could be a potential option.

You may also want to use your EIN because you don’t want your personal finances tied to your small business. In this case, you should also know that Brex does not have a personal guarantee clause like many business credit cards do. This keeps your personal credit score and assets free from your business.

The Brex card is split between two different types, one with daily payments and one with monthly payments. The easiest approval is for daily payments and requires you to open a Brex Cash account. Your credit limit will be up to 100% of your Brex Cash account balance and you earn up to 8X rewards on company spending. This may not seem like much more than a debit card with rewards, yet the daily payment Brex card is for companies of any size and does allow you to build a credit history for your business. 

If approved for monthly payments, you may qualify for credit limits 10-20 times higher than traditional corporate cards. You can make payments from any company account, not just the Brex Cash account. Additionally, you can earn up to 7X rewards on company spending. Qualification for monthly payments depends on various factors such as your business type, company funding, current bank balances, and more. The final decision of which card you get is up to the Brex onboarding team.

Card basics

Card type Business
Credit card issuer Brex
Credit card network Mastercard
Annual fee $0
Intro bonus Earn 10,000 points for spending your first $3,000 in the first 3 months, and an additional 20,000 if you link payroll to your Brex account, for a total 30,000 points
Reward rate 7X points on rideshare, 4X on Brex Travel, 3X at restaurants and on eligible Apple products, 2X on software subscriptions, and 1X on all other purchases with Brex Exclusive
Recommended credit score No credit check required
Foreign transaction fee None

Brex credit card benefits and perks

  • Generous welcome offer: Earn 10,000 points for spending your first $3,000 in the first 3 months, and an additional 20,000 if you link payroll to your Brex account, for a total 30,000 points
  • Valuable rewards: Earn rewards on common business expenses, including 7X points on rideshare, 4X on Brex Travel, 3X at restaurants and on eligible Apple products, 2X on software subscriptions, and 1X on all other purchases with Brex Exclusive.
  • No hidden fees: A $0 annual fee and no foreign transaction fees on the Brex card.
  • Charge card: Since the Brex card is a charge card, you won’t have to worry about paying any interest charges.
  • Brex Cash: Linking your card with a Brex Cash account, a cash management account, can provide additional benefits. This may include: increased earning rates and possibly a higher credit limit. In addition, Brex Cash accounts have no opening or monthly maintenance fees, and no fees for ACH transfers or wire transfers.
  • No credit check: Brex doesn’t check your personal credit history as part of the application process for the Brex card, so there’s no hard credit pull to affect your credit score.
  • Build business credit: On-time payments on your Brex card are reported to Experian and Dun & Bradstreet to help build your business credit.
  • Higher limits: Brex claims the Brex card has 10 to 20 times higher spending limits than traditional corporate credit cards.
  • Employee cards: Issue and manage employee cards through Brex. This includes issuing virtual cards, monitoring spend, setting limits, and making other changes.
  • Integrations: Brex integrates with Xero, NetSuite, QuickBooks, Concur, Pilot, Expensify, and Sage Intacct to help with your accounting needs.
  • Redemption options: Redeem your points for flights and hotel stays through Brex Travel, gift cards, cash back, or transfers to partner airlines (more on this below). Points can also be converted to airline miles and gifted to employees. Recently, Brex also added the option to redeem your rewards points for cryptocurrency. They support both Bitcoin and Ethereum.
  • Brex Travel: Receive access to discounted rates in the Brex Travel portal. This may include savings of up to 60% on certain bookings, though 30% savings is the average. You also get complimentary access to 24/7 concierge services to help with your travel needs.
  • Partner perks: Free partner perks (worth up to $150,000) include Amazon Web Services credits, Slack discounts, Google Ads credits, and more.
  • World Elite Mastercard benefits: With the Brex card, you get World Elite Mastercard benefits like cell phone protection, car rental insurance, Mastercard Luxury Hotel Program benefits, and more.
  • Global acceptance: Brex is part of the Mastercard network, which is accepted worldwide.

Drawbacks to this card

  • EIN requirement: Brex underwrites with EINs instead of Social Security numbers. This means those without an EIN — like consumers, sole proprietors, and unregistered businesses — won’t qualify. But this does make the Brex one of the best credit cards for LLCs since registered U.S. companies in the form of C-corps, S-corps, LLCs, and LLPs could be eligible.
  • Charge card: It’s important to be aware that the Brex cards are technically charge cards. You will need to pay the balance in full on either a daily or monthly basis.
  • Best earning rate: If you want to qualify for some of this card’s best benefits, such as an increased earning rate, you need to make daily payments. With this option, your current statement balance is automatically deducted each day from your linked Brex Cash account (required for this benefit) instead of every 30 days. You also need to qualify for Brex Exclusive, which means exclusively using your Brex card for your business. Whether or not this will work for you will depend on your business’s finances and cash flow.
  • Atypical credit limit: Your available credit limit is based on the balances of any business bank accounts including a Brex Cash account, if applicable, linked to your card. If you can’t link a bank account and don’t have a linked Brex Cash account, your credit limit will be based on submitted bank statements instead. So if your cash balance for your linked account or the amount shown on your bank statements changes, expect your credit limit to change as well.

Earning & redeeming points

Best ways to earn

Many business credit cards for startups share similar traits, like offering bonus points for everyday business expenses and letting you redeem points for travel or cash back. But few business cards offer as much earning potential as the Brex card. To earn the most with this card, be sure to take advantage of its high earning rates in its bonus categories.

Keep in mind that you need to take these two steps to qualify for the best earning rates:

  • Qualify for Brex Exclusive status: If you exclusively use the Brex for Tech card for your business instead of other business cards, you’ll qualify for Brex Exclusive status and earn a higher rewards rate on your purchases.
  • Use the Brex card daily statements option: Brex has two payment options. The monthly statements option automatically deducts your card’s statement balance from your linked account every 30 days. The daily statements option automatically deducts your statement balance each day. If you pay your balance in full each day, you qualify for extra points (even above what you get from Brex Exclusive) in the card’s bonus categories.
Categories Rewards rate
Rideshare (with Brex Exclusive) 7X
Brex Travel (with Brex Exclusive) 4X
Restaurants and eligible Apple products 3X
Software subscriptions (with Brex exclusive) 2X
All other purchases 1X

Maximizing your redemptions

The Brex card earns points that can be redeemed for travel (through Brex Travel), gift cards, cash back, or transfers to airline partners. As with many credit cards, the best point redemptions for the Brex card are likely for travel, cash back, or points transfers. This is typically the case because gift cards don’t often offer as much flexibility as cash or as much value as certain points transfers and travel redemptions.

If your Brex card is on a monthly statement period, you qualify for statement credits as well. However, redeeming your points for statement credits is likely the worst redemption option on this card because of the lower redemption rate. Redemptions for travel through Brex Travel, gift cards, and cash back all have a 100 points to $1 rate. So 100,000 points would be worth $1,000. Statement credits redeem at 100 points for $0.70, so 100,000 points would only be worth $700.

Recently, Brex also added the option to redeem your rewards points for cryptocurrency. You'll need to set up a crypto wallet to take advantage of this, but once you do you'll be able to turn your points into either Bitcoin or Ethereum.

Brex transfer partners

The Brex card allows you to transfer any points you earn on your card to multiple partner airlines. This can be helpful if you have elite status with an airline or an airline alliance, such as Oneworld Alliance or Star Alliance. Being able to transfer points also gives you flexibility with redemptions.

Transferring points to partner airlines happens at a 1:1 ratio, so transferring 100,000 points to an airline such as Singapore Airlines would net you 100,000 KrisFlyer points. Points transfers are excellent redemption options because you may end up with more value than was possible with other options. For example, 86,000 KrisFlyer points could secure you a Singapore Suite worth $3,000 or more and allow you to travel in luxury using only points.

Brex transfer partners include:

  • Aeromexico - Club Premier
  • Air France KLM - Flying Blue
  • Avianca - LifeMiles
  • Cathay Pacific - Asia Miles
  • Emirates - Skywards
  • Qantas - Frequent Flyer
  • Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

Brex credit card FAQs

Is Brex a good credit card?

Brex is technically not a credit card. It is a charge card. But Brex has several reward categories and integrated partners, all of which can be good fits for business owners because of their high earning potential and helpful benefits. 

In addition, no Brex card requires a personal credit check. This can be helpful if your credit is blocking you from applying for other business cards.

How does Brex earn money?

Brex earns a percentage of the interchange fee whenever a Brex card is used to make a transaction. This fee is split with the card network the card is on. This is one way many charge card and credit card issuers make money.

Is Brex FDIC-insured?

If you have a Brex Cash account, you get to decide how you want to store your money. You can put a percentage of it into a Brex program bank, which is FDIC-insured for up to $250,000, and a percentage into a money market account, which is SIPC-insured for up to $500,000. Storing money with a Brex program bank won’t earn interest while putting funds into a money market account could earn interest. However, money market accounts might also have certain expenses and fees attached to them.


Other cards to consider

The Brex card offers many benefits and excellent earning rates for business owners. But if it doesn’t have what you’re looking for, you might consider small business credit cards like The American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card or the Ink Business Cash® Credit Card.

The Blue Business Cash Card from Amex has a $0 annual fee and offers 2% cash back on the first $50,000 in eligible purchases each year, then 1% after that. This earning rate may not compete with some of the bonus categories on the Brex for Tech, but not having to worry about different categories can be helpful. If your business has lots of different expenses, a general cashback card could be the best option for earning rewards.

The Ink Business Cash Credit Card might make more sense if you want to earn points on specific business expenses that the Brex for Tech doesn’t cover. This card has a $0 annual fee and earns 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services each account anniversary year; 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year; and 1% cash back on all other purchases. If these bonus categories make more sense for your business, this card could be a better fit.

No Personal Liability, Lots of Rewards Potential

Brex Credit Card
3.5

Brex Credit Card

Why We Like It

Earn 10,000 points for spending your first $3,000 in the first 3 months, and an additional 20,000 if you link payroll to your Brex account, for a total 30,000 points

See how these cards compare:

The American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card
The American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card
  • Earn a $250 statement credit after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
  • Earn 2% points at eligible purchases on up to $50,000 spent each year, after that 1%
  • No annual fee. Terms apply,
  • See rates and fees | Terms Apply
Ink Business Cash® Credit Card
Ink Business Cash® Credit Card
  • Earn $350 when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first three months and an additional $400 when you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first six months after account opening
  • $0 annual fee
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months (then 18.49% - 24.49% Variable)
  • Up to 5% cash back

Author Details

Ben Walker, CEPF, CFEI® Ben Walker, CEPF, CFEI®, is a Senior Credit Cards Writer at FinanceBuzz. For over a decade, he's leveraged credit card points and miles to travel the world. His expertise extends to other areas of personal finance — including loans, insurance, investing, and real estate — and you can find his insights on The Washington Post, Debt.com, Yahoo! Finance, and Fox Business.

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