No, unfortunately, you can’t apply for a Discover credit card with a cosigner. Discover stopped allowing it in December 2016. That’s problematic, considering most Discover credit cards require good credit or better for approval. But there are still two ways to get your hands on a Discover card with less-than-good credit: 1) apply for Discover it® Secured and 2) become an authorized user. And if you’re a college student, Discover’s two student credit cards are options as well, even if you have no credit experience.
Discover it Secured will accept applicants with bad credit, and it reports to the credit bureaus just like any other credit card. All you have to do is place a refundable security deposit, which serves as your credit line, when you apply. You have a higher likelihood of approval with this Discover card than any other.
If you have your heart set on an unsecured credit card, you can ask a family member or a friend to make you an authorized user on their account. That means someone who already has a Discover card agrees to give you access to their credit account to make purchases. And the best part is, you’ll still be able to build credit. Sure, your score won’t improve as dramatically as if you had your own card, but it will go up nonetheless, provided you’re being financially responsible. As an authorized user, you’re not responsible for any purchases you make; the cardholder is. So you’ll need to work out a way to pay them back.
Here’s how a Discover cardholder can add you as an authorized user:
1. Log in to the Discover account center.
2. Click “Account Profile.”
3. Click “Add User.”
4. Add information (name, address, date of birth, SSN) about you, the authorized user, and submit.
You’ll be on your way to building credit before long. And if you can’t get a Discover it Secured or find anybody to add you as an authorized user, don’t fret. At least three major credit card issuers – Bank of America, U.S. Bank and Wells Fargo – do allow you to apply for a card with a cosigner. So you can always check out options from those issuers, too.