Best Discover Credit Cards of 2020

If you’ve never considered a Discover credit card, it might be time to give the brand another look.

It’s common to overlook Discover credit cards based on the fact they use their own processing network — similar to American Express credit cards — not the widespread Visa or Mastercard networks. Although that can become an issue when traveling outside of the United States where Discover isn’t widely accepted, the vast majority of U.S. merchants accept Discover cards.

Why should you consider one?

Quite simply, Discover offers some of the absolute best cash back rewards in the business.

Discover also never charges annual fees on its cards and offers some unique perks not available with other credit cards.

If you’re looking for cash back and travel perks without fees, check out our list of the 7 Best Discover cards available.

7 Best Discover Credit Cards

Discover it® Cash Back – Best Cash Back Card

discover it cash back credit card imageThe Discover it Cash Back card doesn’t mess around when it comes to rewarding cardmembers with great cash back perks. It offers 5% cash back on the most popular spending categories which rotate quarterly. All other spending still earns an unlimited 1% cash back.

If that’s not enough, Discover will match all of your cash back earnings for the first year. If you earned $500 cash back over your first year, you’d get $1,000. There’s nothing cardmembers need to do. Cash back matching is automatic. The generosity of this first-year bonus cannot be underestimated. When you combine the cash back match bonus with Discover’s no annual fee rewards structure, you have one of the best cash back cards on the market, hands down.

Redeeming cash back is easy with the Discover it Cash Back card, too. Cash back rewards can be redeemed at any time, for any amount. Rewards never expire either.

  • Sign-up Bonus: Unlimited cash back matching at the end of your first year
  • Earning Potential: 5% on rotating spending categories like gas stations, groceries stores, and Amazon, 1% for everyday spending
  • Annual Fee: $0

Discover it® Balance Transfer – Best Balance Transfer Card

discover it balance transfer credit card imageDiscover also has one of the best balance transfer credit cards around. New cardmembers get 0% APR on balance transfers for 18 months from account opening.

Keep in mind there is a 3% fee during the introductory period. Discover it Balance Transfer is perfect for people looking to get rid of old credit card debt.

The perks don’t end there with this Discover card. It also earns 5% cash back in rotating spending categories, including Amazon.com.

All other spending earns an unlimited 1% cash back. All of your cash back earnings from your first year are matched at the end of the year.

It’s rare to find a balance transfer credit card that offers competitive rewards. This Discover card is the whole package. Use it to save money as you pay down your balance and then use it as your everyday rewards card. It’s one-stop shopping.

  • Sign-up Bonus: Unlimited cash back matching at the end of your first year
  • Earning Potential: 5% on rotating spending categories like gas stations, groceries stores, and Amazon, 1% for everyday spending
  • Annual Fee: $0

Discover it® Miles – Best Travel Rewards Card

discover it miles credit card imageDiscover is no stranger to great credit card travel rewards. There is no limit on the number of miles you can earn with your Discover it Miles card. All spending earns 1.5x miles, no matter what category.

Cardmembers also earn an unlimited bonus, with their first-year miles earned matched automatically.

  • Sign-up Bonus: Unlimited miles matching st the end of your first year.
  • Earning Potential: Unlimited 1.5x on all spending
  • Annual Fee: $0

Discover it® Chrome – Best Gas & Dining Card

discover it chrome credit card imageDiscover it Chrome offers extra earning potential at places most people visit frequently.

You’ll earn 2% cash back at restaurants and on gas station purchases up to your first $1,000 combined purchases quarterly. All other spending earns an unlimited 1% cash back.

Like other Discover cards, cash back earnings from your first year are matched automatically. It also comes with 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for your first 14 months.

Discover it Chrome has no annual fee and also no foreign transaction fees, although Discover isn’t as readily accepted in countries outside the U.S.

  • Sign-up Bonus: Unlimited cash back matching at the end of your first year
  • Earning Potential: 2% at gas stations and restaurants up to $1,000 in combined purchases quarterly, 1% for everyday spending
  • Annual Fee: $0

Discover it® Student Cash Back – Best Student Credit Card

discover it student cash back credit card imageBeing a student doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be able to earn rewards for your spending.

Discover it Student Cash Back is a perfect credit card choice for students who spend money on dining out, gas, groceries, and online shopping at Amazon.

This card earns 5% cash back on rotating spending categories and an unlimited 1% cash back on everything else. All of your cash back earnings from your first year are matched automatically.

Students making large purchases like a new laptop or other school expenses can take advantage of 0% APR on purchases for the first six months from card opening.

Getting good grades can also earn extra bonuses with Discover it Student Cash Back. You can earn a $20 statement credit every year (up to the next five years) that your GPA is 3.0 or higher.

  • Sign-up Bonus: Unlimited cash back matching at the end of your first year
  • Earning Potential: 5% on rotating spending categories like gas stations, groceries stores, and Amazon, 1% for everyday spending
  • Annual Fee: $0

Discover it® Student Chrome – Best Starter Credit Card

discover it chrome credit card imageIt’s hard to find a starter credit card that earns rewards the way Discover it Student Chrome does.

Students earn 2% when dining out and at gas stations up to your first $1,0000 in combined purchases every quarter. All other spending earns an unlimited 1% cash back.

Want more rewards? Discover it Student Chrome matches all cash back earnings your first year just like other Discover cards. Students also earn a $20 statement credit for every year their GPA is 3.0 or higher, up to the next five years.

Discover it Student Chrome doesn’t require a credit history to qualify. Students who practice responsible use of this card can build up credit since it reports to the three major credit bureaus.

There’s no need to worry about fees with this card either. It carries no annual fee or foreign transaction fees.

  • Sign-up Bonus: Unlimited cash back matching at the end of your first year
  • Earning Potential: 2% at gas stations and restaurants up to $1,000 in combined purchases quarterly, 1% for everyday spending
  • Annual Fee: $0

Discover it® Secured – Best Credit Builder Card

discover it secured credit card imagePeople having a hard time getting a credit card because of bad credit or no credit can turn to Discover it Secured. A secured credit card is a tool to get your credit back on track, which is essential as you get older and face more significant financial decisions.

Secured credit cards are real credit cards, but require a refundable deposit to get started. Your deposit becomes your credit line.

As you practice responsible credit card use, you will build your credit up. Discover it Secured also gives you access to your FICO® credit score for free, so that you can track your progress.

Discover it Secured also earns rewards as it builds up your credit. Cardmembers can earn 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants up to $1,000 in combined purchases quarterly. It also earns an unlimited 1% cash back on everything else.

  • Sign-up Bonus: Unlimited cash back matching at the end of your first year
  • Earning Potential: 2% at gas stations and restaurants up to $1,000 in combined purchases quarterly, 1% for everyday spending
  • Annual Fee: $0

Discover Credit Card FAQs

What is the best Discover card to get?

The best Discover card to get depends on what you are looking for in a credit card.

For example, Discover it Cash Back is a great credit card, but not if your goal is to earn travel rewards. Discover it Miles is a much better choice for frequent travelers. Many of the Discover cards listed above have similar perks and reward structures.

The best Discover card is whichever one fits your needs. That said, if you’re unsure, you can’t go wrong with the Discover it Cashback Match. It’s one of the best cash rewards credit cards on the market.

Is the Discover card a good card to have?

Yes, the Discover card is a good card to have as long as there is one that fits your specific needs. None of the seven cards listed carry an annual fee, so there’s no financial commitment tied to having a Discover card. Plus, Discover offers competitive rewards that are comparable to or better than many other credit cards.

Used responsibly, most Discover cards can earn valuable rewards for cardmembers. You may find other credit cards with higher earning rates than the cards listed here, but they also may have an expensive annual fee.

What banks offer Discover credit cards?

Discover doesn’t partner with any bank to offer its credit cards. They offer credit cards to consumers directly.

How popular is the Discover card?

Although it’s true that Discover card is not as widely-accepted at merchants as Visa and Mastercard, it’s rare these days to find many merchants that don’t accept Discover within the United States. Discover tends to be accepted at more places than American Express, for example.

But Discover cards are not widely accepted outside the U.S. If you’re traveling abroad, you’ll want to carry a Visa or Mastercard. Check out some of the best credit cards for international travel here.

How does Discover’s cash back matching work?

One of Discover’s most highly touted perks is its cash back matching program. For new cardmembers, Discover will match all of your cash back earnings from your first year from card opening. At the end of 12 consecutive billing cycles, Discover will match your cash back earnings and apply it to your account within the next two billing cycles.

There are no limits on cash back matching. For anyone looking to make large purchases, opening a new Discover card that offers cash back matching will maximize rewards. Although Discover doesn’t offer traditional sign-up bonuses, using their cards in the first year for large purchases is almost like getting a sign-up bonus.

What redemptions are available for Discover cash back rewards?

Discover has a simple cash back rewards program. You can redeem cash back rewards at any time and for any amount. Redemption options include:

  • Statement credits
  • Electronic Deposits to a bank account
  • Donations to select charities
  • Cash Back shopping at select merchants
  • Gift cards and eCertificates for select merchants

Remember that at the end of your first year, most Discover cards match your first-year cash back earnings. Depending on spending habits, cash back rewards can build up quickly.

Is a Discover Card for You?

Nobody does cash back matching like Discover cards. If earning cash back is important to you, there’s a Discover card perfect for you.

Discover has credit card options to fit everyone’s needs. Compare the cards mentioned above to find the best fit for you.

What’s your favorite rewards credit card to use? Let us know in the comments.

David Weliver

David Weliver

David Weliver is the Credit Cards Editor at Millennial Money. He is the Founder of Money Under 30 and is widely regarded as one of the top credit card rewards experts in the world. David has been writing about personal finance and credit cards since 2006 and been featured in The New York Times, NPR, USA Today, Forbes, and many others.
David Weliver

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