The Discover it® Student Cash Back categories for bonus rewards are different each quarter, and they can include Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, and more. These categories rotate each quarter, require activation and have a cap. Purchases that fall into the Discover it Student Cash Back bonus categories get cardholders extra rewards compared to the card’s base earning rate.
Whether a purchase falls into a card’s bonus categories depends on “Merchant Category Codes,” which are assigned by the major credit card networks to merchants based on what kind of business they conduct. So if a merchant has the MCC for “grocery stores,” for example, purchases made at that merchant will earn bonus rewards on cards that include “grocery stores” as a bonus category.
When choosing a rewards credit card, it’s a good idea to pick a card that offers the opportunity to earn bonus rewards in your most frequent purchase categories. So if you spend a lot in the categories offered on the Discover it Student Cash Back, it may be a good card for you.
The best Discover student credit card is the Discover it® Student Cash Back because it gives 5% cash back on different types of purchases each quarter (up to $1,500 spent quarterly, and $6,000 annually) in rotating categories that require activation. That bumps up the card’s earning potential to the top tier of student credit cards. You have to sign up for the new categories each quarter, but there’s an extra cherry on top for those who do: Discover it Student Cash Back will match the cash back that new cardholders earn the first year. That can be a huge benefit if you’re maxing out the card’s 5% back categories. All other purchases earn 1% cash back.… read full answer
The other Discover student card contender is the Discover it® Student chrome, which gives a consistent 2% cash back on up to $1,000 spent at gas stations and restaurants combined each quarter. All other purchases get 1% back. While this rewards setup could work to a commuting student’s advantage, the maximum a cardholder can earn in normal bonus rewards annually is $80. On the plus side, this card won’t make you register for cash back every quarter. Discover it Student chrome also doubles the first year’s cash back, though the bonus has less earning potential than with the Discover it Student Cash Back.
Discover it Student Cash Back: 5% back on up to $1,500 spent per quarter in rotating categories that require activation.
Discover it Student chrome: 2% back on up to $1,000 spent per quarter at gas stations and restaurants combined.
Features on Both Cards: 1% cash back on non-bonus purchases, first-year’s rewards doubled, no annual fee, no foreign transaction fee, 0% intro APR for the first 6 months on purchases, and 17.24% - 26.24% Variable regular APR.
Overall, students who are organized and eager to enter the world of credit card rewards will do well getting the Discover it Student Cash Back. The Discover it Student chrome might be the better option for commuting students who spend a lot at gas stations and restaurants, but the cash back opportunities aren’t quite as promising.
The Discover it student card approval rate isn’t public knowledge, but students with limited or no credit should have a good chance of approval. To be eligible, students must be at least 18 years old and enrolled in a 2-or-4-year college or university. Other requirements include U.S. citizenship, a Social Security number (SSN) and a verifiable annual income sufficient enough to pay at least the minimum amount due each month.… read full answer
While the Discover it Student Cash Back and Discover it Student chrome cards are fairly easy for students to get, approval is not guaranteed. Discover will look at a number of other factors, such as recent credit inquiries, number of Discover accounts open, and credit history. You may also have a hard time being approved if you have negative entries on your credit report, such as late payments.
If you are denied for a Discover it student card, you still have other options. The Discover it® Secured Credit Card has the best approval chances of all Discover cards. It’s available even to people with bad credit. But you will have to submit a $200 security deposit, which is fully refundable. You can also sign on as an authorized user on someone else’s credit card account. This will help you rebuild your credit.
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