September 27, 2022
Explainer

The top 8 credit cards for nonprofits in 2022

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Nonprofits have to juggle a lot of expenses. Day-to-day operating costs, larger projects, and fundraising events can make it tough to manage cash flow and track spending.

One way to stay on budget is using a credit card designed for your organization's needs. Nonprofit credit cards offer benefits, including specialized rewards programs and waived fees.

If you're wondering whether a nonprofit credit card is right for you, here's a look at the top eight cards for nonprofits and how each can help your organization save money.

What is a nonprofit credit card?

A nonprofit credit card is a business credit card designed for nonprofit organizations. These cards usually offer benefits for nonprofits, such as waived fees or unique rewards.

These credit cards can be used for any of your organization's purchases, which makes them a helpful tool for managing your finances. Like other businesses, nonprofits often have expenses like office supplies, events, and marketing materials. Using a credit card lets you keep track of your spending and ensure you're staying within your budget.

You'll also have access to statements and can easily monitor your activity online. This can help you catch any potential errors or unauthorized charges before they become a problem. Left unchecked, these issues can shuttle your organization's operations by stifling your cash flow.

Because nonprofits are often subject to more stringent spending rules than for-profit businesses, using a credit card can give you more flexibility with your finances. Understanding and utilizing your credit card's features is crucial to getting the most out of your account.

What are the benefits of nonprofit credit cards?

It's not always easy for nonprofits to secure funding. This can make it challenging to cover expenses, especially when you're just starting. Startup costs can be a huge barrier to entry for new organizations.

Traditional funding sources, like grants or donations, can take time. But a nonprofit credit card can give you the flexibility to make purchases and pay your bills on time, even if funding is delayed. This will help you avoid late fees and interest charges which can further strain your budget.

Unlike business loans and other lines of credit, nonprofit credit cards are often easier to qualify for. The application process is simple, and you may not need to provide as much documentation. Plus, you won't be required to pay a down payment or origination fees.

There are several other benefits that come with using a nonprofit credit card. Here are some of the top benefits of using a nonprofit credit card:

  • Waived fees. Waived fees can reduce the cost of using a credit card for your nonprofit.
  • Lower APR. A lower interest rate can save your nonprofit significant money over time.
  • Signup bonuses. Signup bonuses, such as cashback or rewards points, can help you earn rewards on everyday purchases.
  • Mobile access. Mobile access allows you to check your balance, make payments, and track your spending on the go.
  • Fraud protection. Fraud protection gives you peace of mind knowing that your nonprofit's finances are protected.
  • Specialized rewards programs. Rewards programs give you points for things like office supplies or travel. This can help you get more value out of your credit card.
  • Virtual cards. Virtual cards can be used for online purchases. Virtual cards help protect you from fraud and allow you to track your organization's spending.

These cards can help you save money on expenses and make it easier to track your spending. This makes nonprofit credits a versatile tool in the management of your organization.

Top 8 nonprofit credit cards compared

The best credit card for a nonprofit offers a versatile mix of value and usability. When choosing a card, it's essential to consider your organization's needs and spending habits. Check out the top cards in this category to help you find the right one for your organization.

1. Ramp Visa Corporate Card

Ramp's corporate cards are designed to provide organizations with an easy way to manage finances. With Ramp, organizations can earn unlimited 1.5% cashback on all purchases with no fees. You’ll also get a full suite of finance automation tools that make day-to-day expense management pain-free—from accounting integrations to contract negotiations and one-click bill payments.

Additionally, built-in fraud protection ensures that your organization's finances are always secure. And with the ability to restrict spending, you can be sure that your business credit cards are being used wisely.

Best of all, you can use Ramp's virtual card with mobile pay to make purchases and payments on the go. With Ramp’s mobile app, you can easily access your cards and transactions anywhere. So, whether at home or on the go, you can always stay on top of your finances.

Introductory APR: N/A

Interest Rate: N/A

Annual Fee: $0

Advantages:

  • Finance automation tools that make expense management simple
  • $0 annual fee
  • 1.5% cashback

Disadvantages:

  • Best suited for small to medium-sized organizations
  • No introductory APR offer

2. Chase Ink Business Cash

If you're a nonprofit organization, you may be looking for a credit card to help you earn rewards to fund your cause. Chase Ink Business Cash offers many useful features, including 0% introductory APR, no annual fees, and bonus cash back.

While 0% APR doesn't apply to balance transfers, this card may be helpful if you need to finance a large purchase. Additionally, the $750 cash back bonus after you spend $7,500 in the first three months may come in handy for funding new projects.

This card also has fraud protection and no liability for unauthorized charges. Plus, you'll be able to take advantage of the Chase Ultimate Rewards program. You can use your cashback and rewards for your organization's travel, gift cards, and more.

Introductory APR: 0%

Interest Rate: 15.49% to 21.49% variable APR

Annual Fee: $0

Advantages:

  • Chase Ultimate Rewards program
  • Up to $750 cash back
  • Fraud protection

Disadvantages:

  • Balance transfer fees
  • Variable interest rates

3. American Express Blue Business Cash Card

The American Express Blue Business Cash Card is designed for nonprofits of all sizes. It offers a more flexible credit card option with no annual fee and a 0% APR intro period. In addition, cardholders can earn 2% cash back on all business expenses up to $50,000 annually. The cashback is automatically credited to your account, so there's no need to keep track of it.

While cash advances aren't allowed, these cards offer expanded buying power. For example, you may be able to spend beyond your credit limit based on usage, payment history, and credit score. This can allow you to make larger purchases when you need to.

Introductory APR: 0%

Interest Rate: 15.49% to 23.49% variable APR

Annual Fee: $0

Advantages:

  • The ability to spend beyond your credit limit
  • 0% introductory APR
  • Cash back automatically credited

Disadvantages:

  • No cash advances
  • Good credit required

4. Charity Charge Nonprofit Business Card

If you're looking for a credit card that will give you cash back on everyday expenses, the Charity Charge Nonprofit Business Card is a good option. This Mastercard has automatic rebates on recurring costs from more than 200 vendors. You're entitled to 4% rebates on hotels and dining, 1% rebates on gas, and more.

There's no annual fee, and purchase protection is included. It's worth noting that you don't need a personal guarantee to qualify. But, your organization needs at least five years of history and $100,000 in annual revenue or two years with $500,000 annual revenue for eligibility.

The Charity Charge Nonprofit Business Card is worth considering when you want to stretch your budget further.

Introductory APR: N/A

Interest Rate: N/A

Annual Fee: $0

Advantages:

  • Automatic rebate program
  • Purchase protection
  • No annual fee

Disadvantages:

  • Must meet stringent qualifications
  • 2+ years of business history

5. U.S. Bank Triple Cash Rewards World Elite Mastercard

U.S. Bank Business Triple Cash Rewards World Elite Review | NerdWallet

The U.S. Bank Triple Cash Rewards World Elite Mastercard is a great option for nonprofits that favor cash-back benefits.

With 3% cash back on eligible purchases like gas and office supplies, you can earn rewards to offset everyday expenses. Additionally, the rewards never expire so nonprofits can use them at their discretion.

For larger purchases, U.S. Bank also offers 0% APR for 15 billing cycles, making it a great option for balance transfers. The card has other benefits, including a $100 credit for software and a MasterRental car collision damage waiver.

The U.S. Bank Mastercard is a great choice for nonprofits looking to earn rewards on their spending.

Introductory APR: 0%

Interest Rate: 16.24% to 25.24% variable APR

Annual Fee: $0

Advantages:

  • Extended introductory period
  • 3% cash back
  • $100 software credit

Disadvantages:

  • Balance transfer fees
  • High variable APR

6. Capital One Spark Miles for Business

The Capital One Spark Miles for Business credit card is an excellent option for frequently traveling nonprofits. With this card, you'll earn twice the miles for every dollar spent on eligible purchases. You can redeem your miles for travel expenses like airfare, hotel stays, and rental cars.

Plus, you'll get a $500 travel reward after you spend $4,500 within the first three months. Other perks include travel emergency medical assistance and airport security screening rebates. You'll also have access to free employee credit cards.

There's a $95 annual fee after your first year, but considering all the benefits, this card is worth it for frequent travelers.

Introductory APR: N/A

Interest Rate: 21.24% variable APR

Annual Fee: $95 after the first year

Advantages:

  • $500 travel reward
  • Emergency travel insurance
  • Employee cards

Disadvantages:

  • Comes with annual fees
  • Good credit required

7. Bank of America Business Advantage Unlimited Cash Rewards

Bank of America® Business Advantage Unlimited Cash Rewards Credit Card

The Bank of America Business Advantage Unlimited Cash Rewards allows you to earn unlimited cash back to fuel your growth. You'll earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase, and you can boost that to 3% cashback if you have a business checking account with Bank of America.

This card comes with 0% intro APR for nine billing cycles, making it an ideal choice for businesses planning a significant purchase. You'll also get a $300 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in the first three months.

Enjoy peace of mind with $100,000 in travel accident and auto rental insurance. Plus, you can use your credit card as overdraft protection for your Bank of America checking account. For reliable cashback or an easy way to manage finances, this Bank of America card delivers.

Introductory APR: 0%

Interest Rate: 13.74% to 23.74% variable APR

Annual Fee: $0

Advantages:

  • Unlimited cash back
  • Travel insurance
  • $300 statement credit

Disadvantages:

  • Short introductory APR period
  • Lower cash back without a Bank of America account

8. PNC Points Visa

5 Things to Know About the PNC Points Credit Card - NerdWallet

The PNC Points Visa credit card is a balance transfer card that offers 0% APR for nine billing cycles. This means you can transfer your high-interest rate from another card and save on interest payments. The credit card also offers unlimited rewards with five points for every dollar spent. You can redeem your points for cash back, statement credits, or merchandise.

In addition, PNC offers Cash Flow Insight — a tool that helps you monitor your spending. It lets you see where you are spending your money and how much you have available.

You can also integrate Cash Flow Insight with Excel or your accounting software. This helps you track your spending and keep on top of your finances.

Introductory APR: 0%

Interest Rate: 13.24% to 22.24% variable APR

Annual Fee: $0

Advantages:

  • Cash Flow Insight
  • Software integrations
  • No annual fee

Disadvantage:

  • Rewards expire
  • Short introductory APR period

How credit cards for nonprofits can help your organization

As a nonprofit organization, you know that every penny counts. So why not put your spending to work using a credit card designed specifically for your organization?

Whether you're a small- or medium-sized nonprofit, Ramp is committed to helping you find the right financial solution with products — including credit cards — to help you manage expenses and stretch your budget.

Ramp considers your organization's unique needs and understands that not all nonprofits are alike. Learn more about how you can use Ramp to reach your financial goals.

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FAQs
Does a nonprofit have a credit score?

Like for-profit businesses, nonprofits have credit scores separate from personal credit scores. The credit score of a nonprofit is calculated differently by different credit reporting agencies, but it does take into account payment history and outstanding debt.

Two popular business credit scoring models include FICO Small Business Scoring Service and Dun & Bradstreet's PAYDEX score. PAYDEX indicates an organization's risk of defaulting on payments.

You can use your nonprofit credit score to help you qualify for loans and lines of credit from financial institutions. In addition, a strong credit score can help you negotiate better terms with vendors. Thus, you need to pay attention to your organization's credit score and work to keep it strong.

How do nonprofits accept credit cards?

There are three main ways that nonprofits can accept credit card payments.

Third-party payment processing. This is a popular option since you only need to create a third-party account and add a donate button to your website. Third-party processors include services like Paypal or Venmo.

However, there are some downsides to this method. For one thing, Paypal takes a small percentage of each donation as a fee. Additionally, donors will be redirected to Paypal's website when they make a donation. This could disrupt the donation process.

Merchant accounts. A merchant account is an account with a bank or financial institution allowing you to accept credit card payments. Using a merchant account usually includes lower transaction fees. You will also keep donors on your own website during the donation process.

Unfortunately, merchant accounts can be challenging to set up. They can also have higher monthly fees than third-party processors.

Your own software. You can develop your own software solution for accepting credit card payments. This gives you the most control over the donation process and requires the most work upfront. If you choose this option, you'll need to find a compatible payment gateway and a payment processor.

Developing your own payment solution can be expensive and time-consuming, but it can pay off in the long run.

Can a nonprofit have a bank account?

Nonprofit organizations are allowed to open and maintain one or more bank accounts. Some banks offer accounts with reduced fees as an option for nonprofits.

A nonprofit organization must provide the bank with specific documentation to open a bank account. This can include an Employer Identification Number (EIN), articles of organization, or proof of the organization's tax-exempt status from the IRS.

By law, banks must verify their customers' identities before opening an account. This means you must provide basic information about your organization and its officers. However, once the account is opened, you can manage finances like any other business.

What is the average interest rate for a nonprofit credit card?

The average interest rate for the top nonprofit credit cards is between 15% and 20%. However, this rate can vary depending on the issuer, the type of card, and the creditworthiness of your organization.

Nonprofit credit cards are still business cards, which often have higher interest rates than personal cards. However, your nonprofit organization may be able to qualify for a lower interest rate if it has a strong credit score.

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