The best Discover credit cards offer standout rewards or low APRs in addition to the $0 fees that all Discover cards are known for. There are several contenders for the title of best Discover card overall, and the answer ultimately depends on each applicant’s creditworthiness and preferences.
With that in mind, WalletHub’s editors compared Discover cards and selected the top offers for a handful of common consumer needs.
Best Discover Credit Card
You can learn more about each of 2021’s best Discover cards below, including how they compare to the top offers from other issuers. And to see what type of credit card you’re likely to get approved for, you can check your latest credit score for free on WalletHub, the only site with free scores and reports that are updated daily.
Best Discover Card for Cash Back
The best Discover card for cash back is the Discover it® Cash Back credit card, considering that the average person could earn as much as $1,815 over the first two years of use, according to WalletHub calculations. Much of that value is front-loaded, however, thanks to Discover’s generous offer to double your first-year earnings. And you really have to work to maximize what you earn, since the highest rewards rates apply only to bonus categories that change on a quarterly basis.
We aren’t big fans of rotating bonus categories, given their quarterly sign-up requirements and the fact that most purchases inevitably won’t qualify for bonus earning rates. So if you’re going to go the Discover it Cash Back route, do so with your eyes open.
Side-By-Side Comparison: Discover it® Cash Back vs. Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer
Best Discover Card for Travel Rewards
The best Discover card for travel rewards is Discover it® Miles. It is a decent offer for people with good credit, but this it card’s terms really can’t hang with the market’s elite. There are simply too many great deals available these days to waste time and rewards potential on Discover it Miles.
It’s also worth noting that Discover isn’t accepted by as many merchants or in as many countries as Visa and Mastercard. International travelers and folks who shop from foreign-based merchants should make sure to take that into account.
Side-By-Side Comparison: Discover it® Miles vs. Barclaycard Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard®
Best Discover Card for Building Credit
The best Discover card for bad credit is Discover it® Secured Credit Card because it doesn’t charge an annual fee but does offer rewards. That alone makes it an amazing deal, and the fact that the rewards are really good only adds to the appeal.
You get 2% cash back – double the market average for a rewards card – on the first $1,000 you spent at restaurants and gas stations each quarter, in addition to 1% cash back on all other purchases. And as the grand finale, Discover will double all of the rewards you earn the first year.
Side-By-Side Comparison: Discover it® Secured Credit Card vs. Secured Mastercard® from Capital One
Best Discover Card for Students
The best Discover card for students is Discover it® Student Cash Back because it has the potential to be one of the most rewarding student credit cards on the market, especially if you qualify for its yearly good-student bonus: a $20 statement credit (up to 5 years). But it won’t make things easy on you. Exactly how valuable the Student it Card will be depends on how much you spend in its bonus categories, not to mention your ability to actually sign up for the bonus rates each quarter.
Side-By-Side Comparison: Discover it® Student Cash Back vs. Journey Student Rewards from Capital One
Whichever card you choose, we recommend signing up for a free WalletHub account. You’ll be able to track your credit score’s progress, learn from the grades on your credit scorecard and enjoy 24/7 credit monitoring.