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Discover it® chrome for Students

Discover it® chrome for Students

 

Rated 4/5 stars by our editorial team

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Your Rating:

3.7/5.0 from 35 Offer Ratings
Over the Past 60 Days!

(35 ) Over the Past 60 Days!

  • Regular Purchase APR 14.49% - 23.49% Variable
  • Intro Purchase APR 0% for 6 Months
  • Intro BT APR 10.99% for 6 Months
  • Annual Fee $0
  • Credit Needed

    Fair Credit

  • Card Brand Discover

Highlights

Card Fees

Expert Review of the Discover it® chrome for Students

  • 4.0

    Regular APR

  • 3.5

    Intro APR

  • 4.0

    Fees

  • 4.0

    Benefits

  • star rating 4.0 /5

    Overall Rating

Who the card is best for

The Discover it® chrome for Students is a great option for students — especially those commuting back and forth to class — who are just beginning their credit journey. Not only can you earn cash back, but you can keep track of your FICO® credit score, all at a $0 annual fee.

But before you get too excited, remember that with every rewards card you should do the math to be sure you’ll spend enough in the key rewards categories to make it worth it. We crunched the numbers for you. So long as you spend at least $333 a month on combined gas and dining, you’ll maximize your rewards in those categories (since the 2% rate is on up to $1,000 in combined purchases every quarter).

Since the cash back program for this card is tailored to restaurant and gas purchases, students who don’t spend in these categories may see more benefit with other student cards.

Where this card stands out in its category

This card has a fantastic new cardmember offer with Cashback Match™: Discover will automatically match all the cash back you earn at the end of your first year. There is no limit to the size of the bonus you receive, and you don’t have to meet any requirements to earn it. Another great feature is the Good Grades Rewards program allowing you to earn $20 cash back each school year you maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA up to the next 5 years — all the more reason to maintain good grades. There is also an intro period for purchases at 0% for 6 Months, allowing you to carry a balance for several months without being charged interest.

Where this card falls short in its category

Unfortunately, you can’t earn unlimited cash back forever. With this card, there is a quarterly cap on the 2% categories up to $1,000 every quarter, limiting the amount of cash back you can earn at this rate to $20 a quarter. Also, this card has a low cash back rate for purchases outside of restaurants and gas, therefore if you don’t spend in those categories, you’d be better off with a different card like one that earns you a decent flat-rate on all purchases.

Additional card benefits

The Discover it® chrome for Students has several additional benefits:

  • Cashback Match™: Discover will automatically match all the cash back you earn at the end of your first year.
  • Good Grades Reward: Maintain a GPA of 3.0 or higher during the school year (September to August) and you can receive a $20 Cashback Bonus. This offer is valid for up to 5 consecutive years.
  • Simple cash-back redemption: Cash back can be redeemed at anytime with no minimum to redeem. Even if your account is closed, Discover will give you a credit for your remaining cash rewards.
  • Freeze it®: If you misplace your card, just freeze it online or in the app. During the time your account is frozen, Discover will not authorize new purchases, cash advances or balance transfers.
  • Discover® Identity Alerts: For free, Discover will monitor your account on a daily basis and send you alerts if a new account has been listed on your Experian® credit report or if your Social Security number on is found on thousands of risky websites.
  • Free FICO® credit score: Discover Credit Scorecard provides your credit score for free, updated every 30 days.
  • 100 percent U.S.-based customer service: Representatives are available 24/7 to answer your questions.
  • No penalty APR: Even if you pay late, Discover won’t increase your interest rate like many other cards do.
  • No fee on your first late payment: Discover will waive the fee on your first late payment, giving you a free pass and reminder to set up autopay for future payments.

How to use the card most effectively

To see the most benefit from the Discover it® chrome for Students, make sure you use it for all of your gas and restaurant spending since those purchases earn the highest rate. When you receive your bill, make sure to pay it on time and in full so you don’t rack up interest. This is also a good habit to get into so you can build credit. Also, maintain a GPA of 3.0 or higher so you can earn the $20 Good Grade Reward.

If you plan on studying abroad or spending your school breaks outside the U.S., this can be a good card to take with you since there are no foreign transaction fees (typically 2-5% of each purchase). Keep in mind the Discover network isn’t as widely used compared to Visa and Mastercard, so you may not be able to use your card at all merchants abroad.

Rewards breakdown

The Discover it® chrome for Students offers 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases every quarter--no sign-ups needed. 1% cash back on all your other purchases. You can redeem cash back at anytime and for any amount for a variety of options ranging from statement credit and direct deposit, to payments at Amazon.com, gift cards and charity. The ability to redeem at any amount is unique since most cards require a $25 minimum redemption value. Beyond cash back rewards, there is a standout new cardmember offer where Discover will automatically match all the cash back you earn at the end of your first year.

Compare it with the Discover it® for Students

Discover offers two student cards that have all the same card benefits and features, but different cash back programs. The Discover it® for Students is more beneficial for students who don’t have clear spending habits and want to maximize rewards with 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com, or wholesale clubs up to the quarterly maximum each time you activate. 1% unlimited cash back automatically on all other purchases. Meanwhile, the Discover it® chrome for Students is ideal for commuter students and those who like to dine at restaurants with 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases every quarter--no sign-ups needed. 1% cash back on all your other purchases.

Here’s a breakdown of the features of each card:

 
  Discover it® chrome for Students Discover it® for Students
Annual Fee $0 $0
Purchase Intro Rate 0% for 6 Months 0% for 6 Months
Balance Transfer Intro Rate 10.99% for 6 Months 10.99% for 6 Months
Balance Transfer Fee 3% 3%
Regular Purchase APR 14.49% - 23.49% Variable 14.49% - 23.49% Variable
Rewards 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases every quarter--no sign-ups needed. 1% cash back on all your other purchases 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com, or wholesale clubs up to the quarterly maximum each time you activate. 1% unlimited cash back automatically on all other purchases.
Sign Up Bonus Discover will automatically match all the cash back you earn at the end of your first year. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you earn at the end of your first year.
Foreign Transaction Fee None None

Bottom Line

The Discover it® chrome for Students is a good choice for commuter students looking to build credit and earn a good cash back rate for gas and restaurant purchases.

Ongoing Information

Additional Card Details

Consumer Reviews

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Offer Rating

3.7/5.0

35 Total Ratings

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