Discover it® Cash Back
Good to Excellent
5%: Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate.
1%: Earn 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases – automatically.
Pros: While other cards offer tiered rewards for specific spending, this card is one of the few that rewards with 5% cash back on rotating categories, plus another 5% back at the end of your first year. Categories can include restaurants, gas, groceries and more. For example, for April through June 2019, it's gas stations, Uber, and Lyft. While there is no traditional sign-up bonus, Discover will automatically all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year.
Cons: This card can be a bit of a hassle, because you have to enroll each quarter to qualify for the 5% rewards. Note that the 5% rewards rate will only apply up to the $1,500 quarterly maximum in purchases.
Nearly identical to the Chase Freedom card, the Discover it Cash Back card offers a substantial amount of value for cardholders who don’t mind keeping track of rotating bonus categories; but what really sets this card apart from its competitors is its consumer-friendly terms and ultra generous sign-up bonus, which matches the amount of cash back you earn at the end of the card member’s first year.
Annual Fee $0
Average Yearly Rewards Value ($1,325 monthly spend) $351
APR 14.24-25.24% (variable)
Other Notable Features: Fraud protection, free FICO® credit score, no penalty for first late payment, instant account freeze, 100% U.S.-based service, free social security number alerts
If you don’t mind keeping track of rotating quarterly bonus categories – the Discover it Cash Back is a top choice for cash back enthusiasts. You’ll have to activate the categories each quarter, but you can earn a generous 5 percent cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases per quarter.
With the Discover it Cash Back card, you’ll earn 5 percent cash back in rotating categories that you must activate each quarter (up to $1,500 in purchases per quarter).
Cash match sign-up bonus
Rather than a flat cash bonus, the Discover it Cash Back includes a unique introductory offer for new cardholders – it matches the cash back you earn at the end of the first year. This is an incredibly lucrative offer, even for a more moderate spender. If you max out the quarterly purchase limit on 5 percent bonus category purchases, you can bring in $600 in the first year on bonus purchases alone. Plus, there is no limit to the 1 percent cash back that you earn on general purchases.
Even if you don’t max out the bonus category limit each quarter, we estimate the average spender will bring home $502 in the first year with the Discover it Cash Back card. No annual fee cash back cards that offer a more traditional bonus can’t bring home quite as much, even with varying rewards rates.