Discover it Balance Transfer Credit Card Overview
If you’re paying off high-interest credit card debt, transferring it to Discover it® Balance Transfer allows you to pay it off over the long term, interest-free.
It also offers a rare feature to balance transfer cards: increased daily spending rewards. This gives you a good reason to keep the card long after your transfer funds are paid.
Note, however, that unlike other 0% introductory APR cards, Discover it® Balance Transfer is not a good option for financing large new purchases. While the card limits certain common fees, there is one fee to be aware of: the balance transfer fee, which increases over time from 3% to 5% after a few months.
What are the advantages and disadvantages?
- One of the few cards that is designed for balance transfers and offers rewards – 5% off quarterly rotation tiers enabled (up to $1,500 per quarter, then 1%) and 1% off all other purchases Discount
- Any cash back you earn in the first 12 months will be matched, essentially doubling your rewards in the first year
- 18 months 0% APR on initial balance remittance, variable APR thereafter from 13.49% to 24.49%, impressive
- No annual fee, foreign transaction fee, penalty interest or fee for the first late payment (up to $41)
- Introductory Purchase APR is short for balance transfer card that offsets the card’s premium spending benefits
- Barebones offering external rewards (balance transfer cards are not uncommon)
- Rotating category incentive programs require tracking of quarterly activation periods and spending limits
Learn more about current map offers
- Reward rate: 5% cash back on quarterly rotating category activation (up to $1,500 on quarterly purchases, then 1%), 1% on all other purchases
- Welcome Offer: Any cash back you earn at the end of the first 12 months will be matched
- Annual fee: $0
- Introductory APR: 0% for the first six months
- Introducing Balance Transfers APR: 0% for the first 18 months
- Conventional APR: 13.49% to 24.49% variable
Any cash back you earn in the first 12 months will be matched with Discover, which means all your rewards will be doubled for the first year.
While Discover’s unique Cashback Match™ offer isn’t the traditional prepaid sign-up bonus you’ll find on other no-annual-fee cards, it’s hard to find a balance transfer card with a first-year cash bonus. In fact, the only significant example is the BankAmericard® Credit Card, which grants cardholders a $100 credit limit after spending $1,000 in the first 90 days.
The welcome offer on the Discover it Balance Transfer Card may be even more valuable as you can get the same $100 for just spending about $167 per month on 5% of the rotating category (on activation, then 1%) Dollar. If you max out the $1,500 quarterly category, you’ll get three times as much, or $300, and then a total of $600 in cashback matches at the end of the first year.
Of Discover’s two cashback structures, Discover it Balance Transfer shares the same rotating category structure as the issuer’s flagship card, Discover it® Cash Back. The rewards rate on balance transfer cards is certainly impressive, but keep in mind that maximizing your rotating categories takes some work — which can be difficult if you’re spending less to cash out your balance.
How do you earn
You get 5% cash back on every dollar you spend on purchases that fall into the Rotating 5% category, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. However, you must remember to activate your Reward Tier quarterly and stay within your Reward Tier quarterly spending limit of $1,500 to earn 5%. Otherwise you only get a 1% return.
- Q1 (January-March): Grocery stores, health clubs, and gym memberships
- Q2 (April-June): Gas station and Target in-store purchases
- Q3 (July-September): Restaurants and PayPal
- Q4 (Oct-Dec): Purchases via Amazon.com and digital wallets (Google Pay, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and Garmin Pay)
How to redeem
Discover offers a wide range of redemption options for your rewards. You can get cash back in the form of:
- Electronic direct deposit to eligible bank accounts
- Bank statements
- Gift certificate
- Charitable donation
- Payment for purchases made on Amazon.com or PayPal.com
You do not have a minimum reward balance that must be redeemed and you can redeem it at any time unless you wish to use the reward as a gift card. Gift cards start at $5 and go up to $200 (redeemable in $5 increments), depending on the partner merchant. Your cashback also does not expire for the life of your account.
More benefits for cardholders
Cards with no annual fees often offer perks—except for Chase credit cards—but Discovery cards are only the bare minimum, even by those standards. Instead, Discover sheds fat and focuses on value with low cost, account protection, and world-class customer service.
In addition to standard security features like $0 fraud liability for unauthorized purchases and account alerts, Discover’s free Identity Alerter is a credit monitoring service that scans the dark web for your personal information and Social Security number, and Notify you immediately when your data has been compromised or any bad changes to your Experian credit report.
That’s pretty comprehensive coverage for a free publisher service that works with Discover’s in-app Freeze it® feature. Freeze it allows you to block and reactivate your credit card account when and for how long you want. This allows you to act quickly to prevent new purchases, cash advances and balance transfers without calling the issuer.
Prices and Fees
If you’re looking for a balance transfer card with enough ongoing value to hold after paying off your debt, look no further than finding it balance transfer. You’ll never have to worry about paying annual fees, penalty interest, or late fees on your first late payment (up to $41 thereafter). Also, it’s a great option if you plan to earn rewards while traveling abroad, as there are no foreign transaction fees.
The card’s 18-month 0% APR introductory balance transfer is longer than any other Discover card, and it has one of the longest zero interest periods you’ll find of many zero interest period rewards cards (13.49% to 24.49 percent variable APR). after). Estimated transfer fee of 3% of introductory balance (up to 5% for future transfers, see conditions), which is the standard rate.
The biggest downside is that the Discover it Balance Transfer Card’s 6-month 0% purchase introductory period is much shorter than the balance transfer it offers. While many balance transfer cards have matching purchase and balance transfer introductory APR products, the shorter purchase introductory APR is not shocking as it is the same length as the card has always offered in the past, and at 13.49% it reimburses a whopping 24.49 % (variable) Current APR. In fact, 13.49% is lower than what you can get on most balance transfer cards, and well below the current average rate.
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