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2021 Discover Cashback Calendar

2021 Discover Cashback Calendar

*Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

This article was last updated Nov 02, 2020. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

Discover revealed the entire list of 5% cashback categories for 2021, so you can plan your spending for the year. That’s great news for Discover it® Cash Back and other eligible Discover cardholders will 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, select rideshares and online shopping, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate. 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases - automatically

Here, we’ll review the 2021 cashback calendar, what you need to know to earn 5% cashback and how the Discover cashback calendar compares with the Chase Freedom® cashback calendar.

Discover’s 5% Cashback Calendar 2021
Jan-Mar Apr-June July-Sept Oct-Dec
Grocery stores**, Walgreens and CVS Gas stations, wholesale clubs and select streaming services* Restaurants and PayPal Amazon.com, Target.com and Walmart.com

Here’s what you need to know:

  • You need to activate the bonus categories to earn 5% cash back. Log into the Account Center or call 1-800-DISCOVER (1-800-347-2683) to activate.
  • Each quarter, 5% cash back is limited to $1,500 in spending. After you hit that ceiling, you’ll earn 1% cash back.
  • All purchases outside the bonus categories automatically earn 1% cash back.
  • Eligible cards include:

  • 0% for 14 months on purchases and Balance Transfers, then 11.99% - 22.99% Variable.

  • 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, select rideshares and online shopping, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate. 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases - automatically*

  • Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. You could turn $150 cash back into $300.

Highlights
  • INTRO OFFER: Unlimited Cashback Match – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. You could turn $150 cash back into $300.
  • Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations and when you pay using PayPal, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate.
  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - automatically.
  • Redeem cash back in any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.* Activate for free.
  • No annual fee.
  • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Discover it® Cash Back

More Info

  • 0% intro for 6 Months*

  • 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, select rideshares and online shopping, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate. 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases - automatically

  • 12.99% - 21.99% Variable*

Highlights
  • INTRO OFFER: Unlimited Cashback Match – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! So you could turn $50 cash back into $100. Or turn $100 into $200. There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a dollar-for-dollar match.
  • Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations and when you pay using PayPal, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases – automatically.
  • Good Grades Rewards: $20 statement credit each school year your GPA is 3.0 or higher for up to the next 5 years.
  • No annual fee. No late fee on first late payment. No APR change for paying late.
  • Get 100% U.S. based customer service & get your free Credit Scorecard with your FICO® Credit Score, number of recent inquiries and more.
  • Freeze It® on/off switch for your account that prevents new purchases, cash advances & balance transfers in seconds.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.* Activate for free.
  • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 6 months, then the standard variable purchase APR of 12.99% - 21.99% applies.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Discover it® Student Cash Back

More Info

How the 2021 calendar compares with 2020

The 2021 cashback calendar is very similar to 2020’s calendar, but streaming services has replaced last year’s ride-sharing categories of Lyft and Uber. Plus, the grocery store category now includes Walmart grocery pickup and delivery purchases, but not other Walmart purchases. It’s also worth noting that during the fourth quarter of 2020, Discover added Best Buy to the bonus category from Nov. 25–Dec. 31, 2020.

Discover cashback calendar vs. Chase cashback calendar

Discover releases its entire cashback calendar a year in advance, while Chase unveils its categories on a quarter-by-quarter basis.

Here’s how the Discover and Chase cashback calendars compare for 2021:

  Discover it® Cash Back Chase Freedom®
Jan-Mar Grocery stores**, Walgreens and CVS To be announced
Apr-June Gas stations, select streaming services* and wholesale clubs To be announced
July-Sept Restaurants and PayPal

To be announced

Oct- Dec Amazon.com, Target.com and Walmart.com To be announced

*Eligible streaming services are Apple Music, Apple TV+, AT&T TV Now, BET+, CBS All Access, DAZN, Disney +, ESPN+, Fubo TV, Google Play Movies & TV, HBO Max, Hulu, Netflix, Pandora, Philo, Peacock TV, Showtime, Sirius XM, Starz, Sling, Spotify, Vudu, YouTube TV. 

**Grocery store purchases now also includes Walmart grocery pickup and delivery purchases only; other purchases at Walmart are not eligible. Purchases made at convenience stores, gas stations, warehouse clubs, discount stores, supercenters (or at grocery stores associated with supercenters or discount stores) are not eligible. Target purchases are not eligible..

Which cashback program is better?

It’s hard to choose the best cashback program, since everyone has different spending habits. Depending on where you shop most should help you determine which card is a better fit.

If you’re in the market for a new cashback card, you should also take a close look at the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card, which will provide cardholders a flexible rewards program, which began early in 2019. Existing and new Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card holders will be able to earn 3% cash back in one of six categories: gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores or home improvement and furnishings; 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs; and unlimited 1% on all other purchases. Cardholders can choose which category they want to earn 3% in every month.

The information related to the Chase Freedom® has been independently collected by CompareCards and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.


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