In this review, we’ll delve into the benefits and features of the Discover it® Student Cash Back card. Designed for students, this card offers an opportunity to build credit while enjoying various rewards and benefits. We’ll explore its cashback offerings, rewards potential, introductory rates, and more. Let’s see how this student card can help establish healthy financial habits and pave the way for more rewarding credit cards in the future.
Discover it® Student Cash Back: Key Highlights
- Unlimited Cashback Match: Discover offers a unique feature where they automatically match all the cash back earned at the end of the first year, doubling the rewards earned during this period.
- Rotating Cashback Categories: Cardholders can earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter, such as Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, and gas stations. However, there is a quarterly maximum spending cap of $1,500 in these bonus categories.
- Base Reward Rate: Beyond the rotating categories, all other purchases earn an unlimited 1% cash back.
- No Annual Fee: The Discover it® Student Cash Back card comes with no annual fee, making it a cost-effective choice for students.
- 0% Intro APR on Purchases: For the first 6 months, cardholders enjoy a 0% introductory APR on purchases, making it an excellent option for managing expenses during the initial period.
- Credit Building: As a student card, this option is a great tool for establishing a credit history, provided it is used responsibly.
Discover it® Student Cash Back: Earning and Redeeming Rewards
The Discover it® Student Cash Back card offers an automatic 1% cashback on all purchases, which accumulates without the need to activate any category. However, to earn 5% cash back on rotating bonus categories, cardholders must activate the category each quarter.
The rewards earned with this card can be redeemed as a statement credit or deposit, with no expiration date. If the account is closed or remains inactive for 18 months, any remaining reward balance will still be credited back to the account.
Discover it® Student Cash Back: Rewards Potential
To assess the rewards potential, we considered typical college student expenses, estimating an annual spending of $13,640. Assuming the student spends $1,000 in each of the rotating categories, the expected total cash back earned each year would be approximately $296.40. This amount will be doubled at the end of the first year due to Discover’s Unlimited Cashback Match, resulting in $592.80 in cash back during the initial year.
Discover it® Student Cash Back: Introductory Rates
The card offers a 0% introductory APR on purchases for the first 6 months, making it a favorable choice for students to manage expenses without incurring interest charges. After the introductory period, the standard variable purchase APR ranges from 17.99% to 26.99%, depending on creditworthiness.
Discover it® Student Cash Back: Other Benefits
- Choice of Card Designs: Cardholders can select from several appealing card designs.
- Text and Email Alerts: The card offers notifications to keep users updated on their account activity.
- FICO Score Access: Discover provides free access to the cardholder’s FICO score.
- Social Security Number Alerts: Discover scans dark web sites for potential identity theft risks, enhancing account security.
- Mobile App: Access to rewards and purchase tracking through Discover’s mobile app.
- Freeze it: Cardholders can place holds on stolen or missing cards via the app.
- Online Privacy Protection: Discover helps remove personal information from various people-search websites, reducing the exposure of personal data online.
Discover it® Student Cash Back vs. Other Student Cards
When comparing the Discover it® Student Cash Back card to other student cards, such as the Discover it® Student Chrome and the Chase Freedom® Student credit card, students should consider the rewards structure, foreign transaction fees, and individual spending habits. While the Discover it® Student Cash Back offers rotating bonus categories and an unlimited cashback match, the Discover it® Student Chrome simplifies cash back with fixed rewards. On the other hand, the Chase Freedom® Student credit card may appeal to those seeking a flat-rate option, but it charges foreign transaction fees.
Additionally, students planning to study abroad should consider cards like the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card for Students, which offers great rewards for travel-related expenses and has no foreign transaction fees.
The Discover it® Student Cash Back card presents an excellent opportunity for students to build credit and establish healthy spending habits. With its rotating cashback categories and the unique Unlimited Cashback Match, this card can help maximize rewards during the first year. However, students should carefully consider their spending patterns and individual preferences to select the most suitable card for their needs.