Discover card: how to apply, features, pros & cons

Here’s some useful info about Discover cards

Discover card

Discover card: how to apply, features, pros & cons. Source:

Discover is one of the largest credit card companies in the United States. It used to offer clients a mix of sensible rates and enjoyable bonuses/rewards. It was originally founded by Sears, which is one of the biggest (at that time) US retailers. Discover credit cards are now issued by Discover Bank, and processing is carried out through the Discover Network. Discover debit cards are processed through the Pulse payment system. There are several good reasons why customers in the United States love Discover cards and often prefer their cards to VISA and MasterCard issued by other banks.

All Discover cards are known for instant approval, so you don’t have to wait a week to get a response on whether your application will be approved. Discover tries to implement approvals in 30 seconds. However, in difficult cases, the processing of an application may take up to 30 days.

Discover Cash Back (former Discover More) credit card, for example, is considered to be a very good and fair cashback offer that gives you a 5% refund for selected categories and 1% for any other purchases. The reward amount is unlimited if we are talking about 1% cashback. On the other hand, normally, 5% cashback works only for the first $1,500 worth of purchases, and then it decreases back to the 1% rate. 5% cashback works for gas stations, grocery stores, diners/restaurants,, and more (you’ll have to monitor the bonus categories since they are changing constantly).

Discover card

All Discover cards (even NHL and Business cards) have no annual fee. Source:

The Discover Miles card gives you a bonus of 1.5 Miles on every $1 you spend, and there is no limit to the number of miles. Furthermore, you get all this without an annual fee.

Actually, an annual fee is one of the best things about Discover cards. All Discover cards (even NHL and Business cards) have no annual fee.

Convenient features of the Internet and mobile banking is another good feature of Discover cards. Such features help you control your expenses and rewards, and customer service 24/7 makes it even easier.

Discover cards advantages

So, here’s what is really good about Discover cards:

  • Fair cashback. It works especially well if you are going to make some large purchases.
  • Easy and flexible redemption. It means the company offers clients the ability to redeem their cashback bonuses anytime they want with no minimum requirements.
  • Low fees. Discover has very few fees compared to other companies. First of all, there is no annual fee. What’s more, Discover doesn’t charge over-limit fees, pay by phone fees, or foreign transaction fees.
  • Late payment leniency. As a minimum, the company never increases your card APR if you fail to pay on time.
  • Introductory APR. The company offers an introductory 0% APR on purchases for 14 months (after that, an APR of 13.49% – 24.49%).
  • Free FICO Credit Score
  • Free Identity Theft Alert Service
  • Decent fraud protection


Discover card

Discover’s rivals, such as Visa or MasterCard are accepted almost everywhere.

  • Cashback limits. Unlimited only for 1% general cashback. However, 5% cashback works only for the first $1,500 worth of purchases (bonus categories).
  • There is a need for monitoring cash back categories. If you stay tuned on the rotation of categories, then all will be fine. Otherwise, you’ll earn not so much in bonuses.
  • It is not so widely accepted. Yes, Discover’s rivals, such as Visa or MasterCard are accepted almost everywhere. Especially, it can become a problem when it comes to small merchants. Thus, there is a chance you may need more than one card. Anyway, this one is still good for bonuses.

How to apply for a Discover card

Basically, the process is similar to applying for a card from any other card company. You’ll need a full name, birth date, SSN, address, email, and income statements. Applying online is the best way, and it usually takes no longer than one minute (as we’ve mentioned above). But there are some nuances you should consider before applying:

  • Credit score

We already have an article about credit scoring (ссылка на статью), so, we believe there is no need to tell you what it is. And yes, it is important to have a good credit score to get a card. You should know it before applying. On the one hand, it is useful to know. On the other hand, it will not be a surprise for you if you are not be approved since you’ll already know the most probable reason (knowing that you have a bad credit score).

Discover card

Discover cards offer a good combination of rewards without an annual fee. Source:

  • Pay down your debts

It’s quite straightforward – reduce your debts.

  • You’ll probably have to provide proof of your financial health

Be ready for the situation when your income can be verified. Credit card companies must be sure you have enough money to carry out repayments.

The bottom line

In general, Discover cards offer a good combination of rewards without an annual fee. The only real drawback is that it is not accepted around the world as much as Visa or MasterCard. But if you stay in the USA, it works great almost everywhere. Another issue is that you must have an excellent credit score if you want to apply for Discover cards.


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