Discover’s made strong inroads into student borrowing over the past few years. Discover it® for Students represents the bank’s latest foray onto college campuses, with pricing and features that resemble full-featured credit cards more than the typically watered-down student accounts on the market.
Loading up your wallet for the long haul
For years, student credit cards earned bad reputations for locking college kids into high-APR, low credit line accounts with few added benefits. Discover it for Students, like many of today’s new-look student cards, offers an experience that more closely matches the kinds of cards for which you’ll qualify after a few solid years of professional work.
Your initial credit line may feel a little constrained, especially if you’ve been an authorized user on a relative’s or a partner’s account. However, you’ll have plenty of room to maximize your rewards by swiping your card and paying down your balance as if you were using a debit card.
With 1 percent cash back rebate on all purchases, you can start racking up rewards redeemable as statement credits or on Amazon.com. Quarterly promotions can boost your rebates to 5 percent on purchases up to the maximum quarterly spend in rotating categories, as long as you sign-up each quarter. Shopping online or booking travel plans through Discover’s web portal can earn you even bigger rebates.
A student card that doesn’t feel like bumper bowling
Discover has promoted its new flagship credit card as a revolution in customer service, going beyond the requirements of recent federal regulations into territory that might make you question whether a major bank’s really capable of “being nice.” Other student credit cards have experimented with benefits that expand over time, as a way to prove your worth to a potential long-term lender. Instead, the Discover it for Students card includes all of the card’s perks and privileges from day one.
This card assumes you’re capable of running your financial life, while making some concessions for occasional mistakes and hardships that affect us all. For example, Discover will waive your late payment penalty the first time you miss a minimum monthly payment. In addition, your APR won’t automatically spike to the higher penalty rate common on most credit card terms sheets.
Features that fit both student and post-grad lifestyles
At a point in your life when adventure can pop up anywhere, you want a credit card that can help you accomplish your goals. With no foreign transaction fees and a growing merchant presence in Asia and South America, Discover it for Students makes a great travel companion for both spring break and study abroad trips. The lack of an overlimit fee can also prevent you from crashing your budget if you spend a little more than you intended.
Even though a late payment won’t tank your account, Discover’s flexible payment options reduce the likelihood that you’ll miss a deadline. As long as you submit your payment by 11:59 P.M. Eastern time on your due date, you’ll avoid late payment fees and any potential damage to your credit report. Just watch out: getting this spoiled with customer service at this stage of your financial life can set you up for disappointment if you eventually start dealing with some of Discover’s competitors later on.
Discover also offers other variations of this card that may better suit your needs. Be sure to read these additional reviews:
Discover it for Students – with $20 cash back offer
The Discover it® for Students with $20 cash back is a great way to get a taste of what credit card signup bonus are all about — without getting in over your head. Make your first purchase within three months of your account being open, and you’ll receive a promotional award of $20; that’s in addition to the cash back bonus you’ll earn on all purchases.
Discover it card
The Discover it® card makes a habit of saying no. No annual fee, no transaction fee, no overlimit fee, no APR hike for a late payment, and in fact, no late fee on your first late payment. Discover’s latest incarnation of cash back cards aims to simplify the relationship between cardholder and card issuer into one of easy cooperation. Plus, free FICO® Credit Score on your monthly statement to help you stay on top of your credit.*
The Discover it® arrived on the market with heavy fanfare, including lots of television ads and billboards touting personal service and a new rebate structure that frees customers from most cash back traps. Discover’s 18 month introductory balance transfer deal hits a sweet spot if you’re among the millions of Americans trying to shed an “average” credit card balance. Plus, free FICO® Credit Score on your monthly statement to help you stay on top of your credit.*
*Click “Apply” to see rates, rewards, free FICO® Credit Score terms and other information.
Updated January 2, 2014 and originally published May 1, 2013. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.