Discover it® - 14 Month APR Offer and Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer are 2 different versions of the popular Discover it® cash back credit card issued by Discover Financial Services. These are some of my favorite credit cards when it comes to 0% intro APR offers on purchases and balance transfers, in addition to their great cash rewards program.
As rewards cards, they let you earn cash rebates in return for your spending, so it's really like having a discount card with you. The only real difference between the two cards is that Discover it® - 14 Month APR Offer comes with a 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 14 months with 10.99% - 22.99% variable APR thereafter, while Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer gives you 0% intro APR for 18 months on balance transfers and 0% intro APR for 6 months on purchases followed by 10.99% - 22.99% variable APR. Here I will go over the benefits that these cards give you and explain how to use this card to earn cash back on your purchases.
First, a look at what both cards have in common:
No annual fee. Enjoy the cash back rewards and other exclusive cardholder benefits of this card at no charge at all.
Earn 5% Cashback Bonus in categories that change each quarter. This is another attractive benefit this card will offer you. It can help you save a lot of money by giving you 5% cash back for purchases you make in categories that change every quarter. Important note: You must sign up (it's free and you can do it online or through the phone) to earn 5%! You earn this 5% up to the quarterly maximum for spending on category purchases every quarter, and if you spend more than the specified amount for each 5% program, the excess will automatically earn 1% cash back.
Here are the 5% cash back categories for 2015:
- Jan-March: Gas stations and ground transportation. You will earn 5% cash back on a maximum of $1,500 spent in these categories (which equals $75) after signing up for the 5% cash back bonus! Any excess will earn you 1% cash back.
-April-June: Restaurants and Movies. You will earn 5% on purchases at restaurants & movies for up to $1,500 in purchases after you sign up, and 1% cash back on all other purchases.
-July-September: Summer spruce up and more. 5% cash back for up to a quarterly maximum spent on combined quarterly purchases in these categories, with 1% cash back on purchases above that cap.
-October-December: Holiday shopping and more. Earn 5% cash back for combined purchases in holiday related shopping categories, up to a quarterly limit. 1% after.
Receive 1% cash back on all other purchases. You will receive a 1% rebate on all the rest of your purchases. This includes the excess of purchases in the quarterly rotating categories. This is a new benefit that's greatly improved from the previous version when it used to offer 0.25% rebate on the first $3,000 spent on the card, and then 1% thereafter. Now, it's 1% flat on all other purchases! We give it a thumb's up.
Receive extra cash back on purchases made at Discover's online shopping mall. You can earn additional cash back when you purchase deals from top retailers through Discover Deals.
Redeem Cashback Bonus cash back for any amount, any time. Cashback Bonus can be redeemed for gift cards, merchandise, or cold hard cash in the form of a direct deposit to your bank account or a credit to your Discover it card account.
Up to double Cashback Bonus. You can earn up to a double Cashback Bonus when redeeming your rebates for gift certificates from participating retailers.
Use your Cashback Bonus to pay directly at Amazon.com when you link your account to it. What's great about this is that you can use any amount, and there is no minimum spending required! Since I frequently shop at Amazon.com, I find this to be a great tie-up.
Earn rewards for paying your monthly household bills with your card. Set up automatic recurring payments for your cable, cell phone, insurance, internet etc on your Discover it Card, and you earn Cashback Bonus with every bill you pay!
Free FICO® Credit Score on monthly statements, online and in the mobile app. This is a new perk Discover offers, in which you can view your Credit Score every month for free on your monthly statement, online or on the mobile app. This will help you keep track of your Credit Score for free!
Your Discover purchases are monitored. Your account is monitored every day, and you’ll be alerted either by phone, text or email if any unusual purchases are made. You will never be responsible for unauthorized purchases on your Discover card.
No foreign transaction fee. When you use this card outside the U.S. or when you pay in a different currency, you won't be charged any foreign transaction fee, a fee that most other credit cards will charge you when you do that.
No penalty APR. With other credit cards in the U.S., your APR gets bumped up to a ridiculous rate when you don't pay on time, in addition to a late fee. But with this card, your APR won't be increased at all when you pay late. Of the cards we have reviewed, only this one and the Citi Simplicity® Card have this new benefit. Plus, for your first late payment, you won't have to pay any late fee.
100% U.S.-based call center service. They will answer your call in seconds, and you get to speak to a real person no matter what time of day or night.
Balance transfer fee of 3%. This is a relatively low balance transfer fee you have to pay when transferring your balance from another credit card account to this account.
Flight accident insurance. This credit card can also be very useful for your travels since it provides up to $500,000 in flight accident insurance, as well as car rental insurance and many fraud and security protection services.
$0 Fraud Liability Guarantee. If there are any unauthorized transactions on your Discover it card, you won't have to pay a single cent for it!
No sign-up bonus cash back. Unlike some other credit cards, this card doesn't let you earn a bonus when making your first purchase or when spending a certain amount on purchases within the first few months.
To read the full terms for rewards, rates and FICO scores just click on the apply now button.
Now let's have a look at the differences between these two cards:
Discover it® - 14 Month APR Offer:
0% introductory APR on balance transfers for 14 months. For the first 14 months, you will enjoy a 0% introductory APR on all balance transfers. This is a good deal if you plan to take advantage of the intro 0% balance transfer by transferring your high-interest credit card debt or store card debt to this new card account, so that you pay ZERO interest on your transferred balance for 14 months! This allows you to pay off your existing debt faster as you stop paying interest on it. After the 14 months, your variable purchase APR will be 10.99% - 22.99%, depending on your credit score. Make sure you can pay off all your debts within the 14 months so that you won't incur the higher non-promotional interest rates. Balance transfer fee is 3% of each transferred balance.
0% introductory APR on all your purchases for 14 months. You will also enjoy the benefit of having a 0% introductory APR on all your purchases for 14 months, after that you will have to pay the standard variable purchase APR, which is 10.99% - 22.99% depending on your credit score. This 14-month period of 0% APR on purchases is a very good offer as it is one of the longest offered by credit card companies in the US. So if you are thinking of buying a big ticket item, and have 14 months to pay it off interest-free, you'll make the most out of this card.
Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer:
0% introductory APR on balance transfers for 18 months. If you want a longer intro APR period for balance transfers then this card might be the better choice. You get 0% intro APR for 18 months on balance transfers and 0% intro APR for 6 months on purchases followed by 10.99% - 22.99% variable APR, depending on your credit score. That means you will have a year and a half to pay off your balance without a high APR. A 3% fee applies to each balance transfer.
0% introductory APR on all your purchases for 6 months. This card has 0% intro APR on purchases for 6 months, followed by 10.99% - 22.99% variable APR (depending on your credit score) for purchases. If you plan to use your card to make a big purchase, then the Discover it® - 14 Month APR Offer might be a better option as it gives you a longer intro APR for purchases.
If you would like to get 14 months of 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers as well as earn great cash back on your purchases, you should consider getting the Discover it® - 14 Month APR Offer. It is a solid cash back card to have since you can save quite a lot of money through rebates, and redemption is easy through the many different options.
The Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer is a better card for balance transfers, since you get 0% intro APR for balance transfers for the first 18 months, but it gives you a much shorter intro APR period of 6 months for purchases. You might want to make a note on your calendar when the 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers end, so that you can budget your spending in advance and avoid the standard purchase and balance transfer APR of 10.99% - 22.99% (variable).
Both versions of this card are on our best rated cash back cards list as you can get 5% cash back on different categories throughout the year after you sign up for 5%, up to a quarterly maximum spent on purchases in these quarterly changing categories. You might also want to consider carrying a few different cash back cards so as to maximize your rebates when a particular card has a higher rebate on a certain category. These Discover cards don't charge any foreign transaction fee or any penalty APR, which makes them stand out from other cash back cards on the market. Because of all these features, we highly recommend both the Discover it® - 14 Month APR Offer and the Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer.
If you prefer a card that offers a Bonus promotion, you might want to consider Chase Freedom® (read our review of Chase Freedom®) which lets you earn a $100 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. It also gives you a minimum of 1% unlimited cash back on all purchases and 5% cash back on quarterly changing categories, up to $1,500 in combined purchases per quarter.
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Erik Von Handorf
I have had a regular Discover Card for several years. All of the features of the new "It" card are available with the regular Discover card, including the rotating 5% cash back periods, direct link with Amazon, etc. What is not available generally, although it is offered now and again, is the 0% balance transfer. It should be noted, however, that while it is indeed zero percent, there are two significant aspects to be aware of: (1) there is a fee of 3% of the amount transferred, and (2) the balance transfer is paid off first with whatever monthly payment you are making. This latter factor means that if you use the It card to buy anything during the 14-months you have to repay your balance transfer at 0%, your new purchases will continue to accrue interest charges at whatever APR you get (say based on your credit rating that your APR is 12.9%) until the entire balance transfer is paid in full. In the long run, this deal could end up costing you more and, if you already have a regular Discover card, you get nothing of real value in return.
September 18 2014 at 05:40
Hi Erik, at this point in time there are two versions of the Discover it card. The flagship version has a 0% intro APR for both purchases and balance transfers for 14 months. This means that during those 14 months you will not pay any interest at all on balance transfers and on purchases. You will only have a variable APR of 10.99% - 22.99% on purchases and balance transfers once the 14 month 0% intro period ends. However, as mentioned in the review, there is a 3% balance transfer fee. The other version of this card has a 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 18 months and a 0% intro APR on purchases for 6 months. With this card you have a shorter 0% intro APR period on purchases so you have to be careful to pay your balance off before it ends to benefit from no interest. After the intro period there is a variable purchase and balance transfer APR of 10.99% - 22.99%.
September 18 2014 at 08:40
What a racket! People are so devoted to their "credit" card(s) they ignore the penalties charged shortly after the cards have been used! (for a specified initial period).One of the problems I have run into is the purchase of goods/services by phone. It is so much easier. But then I figure in the card fee and realize the PENALTY which can be, in my mind, excessive. There is one option however in some cases I have asked to submit a check in payment which covers cost and shipping upon receipt of the check. No one has said "No" and I have saved the alleged "handling fee" (credit card charge). But "to each his own" how others manage their finances is an independent exercise. I know what you may be thinking....maybe; No, I don't squeak when I walk. Have a nice day! ;-) "
September 25 2014 at 02:59
Discover....a crappy company to work for and a crappy company to have a credit card from. They say they are family oriented and they care about their vets...but no they don't they will pull peoples records from 7 to 10 years ago and if they ever got in trouble for even a speeding ticket they will not hire you. Or they will come up with an excuse saying you should have disclosed information to them..even if you had no idea it was even on your record. So before you apply for anything with discover...whether it is a job or a credit card...make sure you have nothing in your past..not even 10 years ago...however I would not suggest applying with them at all. They are just like all other corporate companies they only want to make money and they could careless about their employees
November 14 2014 at 20:01
I don't know about working for them, but I have been with them for 20 some years, and they are #1 in my book. I've never had to pay for something that wasn't authorized by me, and I've had nothing but complete respect for the people that I deal with at Discover.
February 01 2015 at 16:38
Judy Williams Dunshee Harrell
I have had a Discover credit card for many, many years, and have had excellent service from them, in all experiences. Now that they are giving such great cashback offers, as well as other benefits, this is my go-to card for just about everything!
January 06 2015 at 08:45
Discover can not win any dispute cases at all! Compare to Bank of America or Chase or Citi, Discover is worst in solving dispute issues. Very disappointing!
March 04 2015 at 21:38