The Smart Investor has collected card information independently. Issuers did not provide the details, nor are they responsible for their accuracy. The review is not a recommendation, the actual rates/fees may be different.
The Discover It Secured credit card is a great way to build your credit history while still earning cash back rewards like a normal credit card. This is a great credit card option for students as well as folks trying to repair their credit history.
Discover It Secured Credit Card
On Discover Secure Website
Our Bottom Line
Credit Rating Requirements
Establish your credit line by providing a refundable security deposit from $200-$2500 after being approved.
Bank information must be provided when submitting your deposit. Automatic reviews starting at 8 months to see if Discover can transition you to an unsecured line of credit and return your deposit.
Here’s a summary of the main pros & cons (click to see explanation or scroll down):
The Discover It Secured has a couple of important benefits for those who need to improve and build their credit:
The main benefit of this credit card is building your credit history and raising your credit score!
You get access to the Discovers credit score tools so you can monitor how you’re doing and check your FICO score for FREE each month on your statement or online.
Get 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases every quarter, automatically.
Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. This is a much better deal than most secured credit cards which usually have no cash back rewards.
Whatever dollar amount of cash back rewards you earn in your first 12 months, Discover will match that amount helping you earn double.
The redemption option allows you to redeem your miles as cashback at a rate of 1 cent per mile. You can choose to redeem your miles towards travel or as a statement credit.
This is equivalent to earning 1.5% cash back since you are earning 1.5 points per dollar you spend.
You can redeem $1 for every $1 in cash back you’ve earned and there are a variety of ways to redeem your credits.
You can have the credit applied towards your next statement to reduce your balance. You can have it deposited directly into your bank account.
You can also have it turned into a gift card or a donation towards a charity of choice or use it towards shopping money for select retailers like Amazon.
Each gift card redemption will get at least $5 added for free, and more in some cases.
American Eagle, for example will give you $50 when you redeem $40 in cash back, thus you earn an extra $10 free.
There are many categories of retailers available, so you should be able to find one you can use
As a cardholder, you can earn cash back for referring friends to apply for Discover credit cards. You must send them the referral link you get from Discover, and they must use that link to apply.
If your friend is approved you will earn a $50 cash back bonus. If your friend makes his first purchase within 3 months of opening the account, he will earn a $50 cash back bonus too.
You can refer a maximum of 10 friends per year, and your account must not be late on payments or over the credit limit to qualify for this benefit.
Discover It Secured Credit Card – Drawbacks
Now, let’s review the things you should be aware of when choosing Discover It Secured Card
In order to use the Discover It Secured credit card, you’ll be required to open an account and put down a refundable deposit.
However, the larger deposit you put down, the larger your credit line limit will be up to the amount you are approved for.
Discover isn’t as widely accepted by merchants as other credit cards like Visa and Mastercard.
Getting acceptance overseas may prove to be more difficult for the Discover It Secured card holders.
If you’re transferring a balance, you may not like that you have to pay 10.99% APR when there are other balance transfer credit cards that offer 0% APR for long intro periods.
Alternatives to Discover It Secured Card
There are several other secured credit card options that will help you establish a credit history and fix your credit score.
Let’s take a look at a few alternative options we would recommend if the Discover It Secured card doesn’t suit you.
The Capital One Secured Mastercard is another great option to help you get back on your feet if you have a bad credit history. It’s a no annual fee credit card but also has no cash back rewards unfortunately.
The amount of money you put down helps determine your credit line. The more money you put down, the larger your credit line will be. You’ll be given a required minimum security deposit, from $49 to $200. This will provide you with an initial credit line of $200.
You can deposit more if you’d like to raise your credit line, up to $1,000 for a $1,000 credit line. Additionally, there are no foreign transaction fees if you plan to use it overseas.
As a Mastercard holder, you’ll enjoy wide merchant acceptance across the world compared to Discover and lesser known credit card brands.
You can also enjoy a minimal security deposit requirement of $200 with the City Secured Mastercard as well as no annual fee. There are no rewards with this credit card and there is a 3% foreign transaction fee which can be drawbacks.
Additionally, the APR is 29% which is quite high especially for a secured card but you shouldn’t be paying interest on a secured card anyway since it’s meant for keeping a small credit line to increase your score.
This option stands out among secured credit cards thanks to its low variable APR and solid rewards program.
It boasts an extremely low rate of 14.99%, far below not just secured cards but also the national average.
Customers can also earn 1 point for every dollar spent on purchases, giving you a strong incentive to swipe.
Is the Discover It Secured Card Right for You?
The Discover It Secured credit card is one of the best secured credit cards on the market. With most secured credit cards, there are no cash back rewards or 1% at best.
But with the Discover It Secured Credit Card, not only do you get 2% back on gas and at restaurants, all the cash back you earn in your first year will be doubled.