Just a few years back, credit cards for students came with a T-shirt or a baseball cap to lure the young adults into signing up. What they did not know is that they would soon face a higher-than-average annual percentage rate (APR).
The features of the card were less than appealing as well. The good news is that this is all in the past now especially as the Discover it for students has been introduced.
The Discover it card for students has competitive rates and even gives the cardholders 1% cash back for every qualifying purchase.
Instead of attempting to entice students with a promo that will soon expire, Discover simply gives $20 in return for applying.
Be sure to research different credit cards before applying. Use our FREE credit card chaser tool for fast and easy comparisons!
Understanding the $20 Cash Back
Before you get too excited about the cash back reward, it is important that you completely grasp what this is all about and how you can obtain it. The truth is that you will not earn the $20 bonus once you have been approved of the card.
You have to make your first purchase with it. The amount will also not appear right away in your cash back bonus balance. You have to wait around eight weeks or two months in order for it to be credited into your account.
Once you see the amount in your balance, you can spend it as a statement credit. You also have the option to use it in online stores such as iTunes and Amazon.
The $20 cash back is also different from the cash back reward associated with the card. You will only get the $20 rebate once after you have purchased any item using your card.
Meanwhile, the cash back reward will help you maximize your earnings up to 5% on categories that rotate once every three months. These categories can be restaurants, movie theaters, department stores, or home improvement.
Other purchases you make will give you 1% rebate and the best part is that there are no limits when it comes to the amount you rack up.
Advantages of the Discover it Card vs. Other Cards for Students
The students do get spoiled in their financial life as seen above with their low and attractive fees. Apart from those, here are the other great things to expect from the credit card:
- The Discover it for Students card will never charge you with annual fees.
- Aside from the absence of annual fees, there is no need to pay additional for foreign transactions, pay-by-phone, and over-limit charges.
- Discover understands that students often have difficulty in paying bills, which is why they will not charge extra or increase your APR when you pay late for the first time. Of course, you should not make this a habit because the succeeding late payments will have a fee.
- US-based cardholders never have to worry about reaching Discover’s customer service department. For 24 hours, 7 times a week, students will simply have to dial the hotline and they can ask for assistance or report something to the representative.
- One of the best features of the card is that it offers flexible payment due dates. You get to choose when you want to pay each month and it even gives you until midnight to settle your balances.
- Unauthorized transactions can be reported immediately. With the $0 fraud liability, students do not have to worry about paying for the purchases they did not make.
More Benefits to Enjoy
You will be happy to know that the Discover it card for students have even more benefits aside from the ones mentioned above. These include the following:
- Purchase Protection. Anything that you have purchased using your Discover it card will have 90 days of protection. You can use this benefit against accidental damage or theft. The coverage can go up to $500 for every purchase made.
- Extended Warranty on Purchases. When you buy something, you normally get six months to a year for the warranty of the product. If you use this card to purchase an item online or at physical stores, you get an additional year of coverage. This benefit is available for all cardholders without paying extra for it.
- Return Protection. You purchased a product online but when you received it, it was the wrong item. As long as you return the item within 90 days, Discover will give you a refund up to $500 for the qualifying purchase. What is even better is that you can get the refund even if the store does not want to accept the returned item.
- Credit History Builder. In addition to the benefits and protection you acquire from the Discover it card, you also get to build your credit history. This should be the main reason why you want to apply for this card. Responsible use including paying on time and not going over the limit will certainly give you good credit rating. You can use this to your advantage if you ever plan on applying for a loan. There are even employers who check credit rating before hiring someone into their workforce.
Now that you know the advantages of the Discover it card for students, it is time to face the cons. This card is great, but it is not perfect due to the following disadvantages:
- Cash back bonus limit. It has been mentioned above that there are no limits to the amount that you accumulate on the cashback bonus. However, you have to understand that this is only applicable to the 1% rebate. When it comes to the 5% rebate (the one for the rotating categories), there is a limit. You can only purchase up to $1,500 for each quarter. In this case, you are only limited to racking up to $75 every rotation or equivalent to $300 every year. It is a good amount, but the limit usually turns off students who purchase a lot with their cards.
- Not all stores accept Discover. In comparison with competing brands such as MasterCard and Visa, Discover is not accepted everywhere. Therefore, if you are searching for a credit card for most of your purchases, you may have to ensure that your favorite stores admit Discover it.
- Not the best card for balance transfers. This disadvantage is negligible if this will be your first credit card. However, if you already have another card and you intend to transfer your balance from it to this card, you may have to look somewhere else. It is true that this card does not have interest for six months on your purchases, but balance transfers will cost you 10.99% on the first six months. That is only the introductory rate and you also have to pay for the 3% fee for the balance transfer you plan on making.
- More restrictions on rewards. You will probably not like the fact that you cannot redeem your rewards unless you have $20 worth of rebates at the very least. This means you cannot use your rewards from your card for purchases until you have reached the mentioned amount. In addition, you cannot cash out your rewards except if you have at least $50 worth of bonus in your balance. Given the reality that you have to wait around eight weeks for the rewards to be credited into your account, you may have to wait longer than you wish to spend your rewards.
Applying for a Discover it Card for Students
This card, just like other Discover credit cards, is quite easy to apply for. Apart from the traditional requirements such as being a college student and a US resident of legal age, you can qualify for the card if you have fair score. Most of those who apply with good credit rating have no problems with approval.
Once approved, you will not generally have issues with the fees associated with the card.
There are no annual fees or penalty fees and you are given 23 to 25 days as your grace period for payment. Note that only those enrolled in a university or college with 4-year course will be allowed to apply for the card.
Comparison with Other Student Cards
Competing credit cards include Journey Student Rewards Credit Card from Capital One, Bank Americard for Students, US Bank College Visa Card, and Citi Dividend Platinum Select Visa Card for College Students. Most of the features of these cards are comparable with Discover it, save for a few exceptions:
- 24/7 customer service for US customers
- No increase in APR for late payments
- No extra cost for first late payment
- Foreign transaction fee-free
- 5% cash back for all cardholders
- Unlimited 1% cash back on every purchase made that do not qualify for the 5% cash back
- Amazon.com checkout support for claiming rewards
- Lenient deadline for due dates on payment
Is This Card for You?
The low fees and the striking cash back rewards are more than appealing for a first time cardholder. Add the fact that there is great customer service from Discover, you may have already considered this student card as the ultimate credit card for you. Experts agree that Discover it for Students is actually better than most other cards for college students.
However, if you already have an established history for credit, you may want to opt for the regular Discover it. This card has even better deals: lower rates on interest if you have good credit rating and longer promo period for the introductory rates.
As a student though, it is difficult to find a much better offer than the ones from Discover it for Students. If you have not built a solid credit history yet, this is one of the best cards in the market today. This is because of the undeniable difference with other cards when it comes to the fees, terms, and rewards.
The Discover it for Students is apparently the latest offering of the bank for college students. The rates and qualities of the credit card almost resembles a full-featured card – probably enough to cover the limited acceptance of cards from Discover.
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