Breathe easy with 0% APR until 2023
Director and personal finance analyst for The Ascent by The Motley Fool. He has 15 years of finance experience and holds an MBA from George Washington University.
Check out the full review below to learn more about this card, including how to save $1,863 in interest charges paying off $10,000 of debt using a 0% intro APR promo like the one offered by Discover it® Balance Transfer.
Important: Is your credit score below 670? If so, you’re less likely to get approved for this card — but visit this page for our top-rated options for getting out of debt and building your credit.
Discover it® Balance Transfer
On Discover’s Secure Website.
On Discover’s Secure Website.
Purchases: 0% Intro APR, 6 months
Balance Transfers: 0% Intro APR, 18 months
11.99% – 22.99% Variable APR
Rewards Circle with letter I in it.
1% – 5% Cashback
Welcome Bonus Circle with letter I in it.
0% intro APR for balance transfers — Includes a 0% intro APR for 18 months for balance transfers.
0% intro APR for purchases — The 0% intro APR for purchases spans six months.
Earn up to 5% cashback — Cardholders earn 5% cashback on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, and when you pay using PayPal, up to the quarterly maximum of $1,500 on purchases and when you activate. Other eligible purchases earn 1% cashback. Maxing out bonus categories each year is worth $300 cashback.
Unlimited Cashback Match sign-up bonus — Discover will automatically match all the cashback you’ve earned at the end of your first year. This sign-up bonus is only available during the first year and for new cardholders, but it can be particularly lucrative since the match is unlimited. Cardholders who max out bonus categories quarterly in the first year can expect a total of $600 cashback ($300 in bonus-bonus category cash back, plus another $300 with Discover’s match!).
$0 annual fee — Credit cards packed with valuable features tend to charge high fees or APRs. This card balances this relationship well and doesn’t charge an annual fee, making it a fit for cardholders with modest credit needs, who won’t see their rewards get wiped out by an annual fee.
No foreign transaction fees — Most competing cards charge a 3% foreign transaction fee for each and every swipe abroad. This card doesn’t.
A long balance transfer offer can help you chip away at debt balances as you pocket some savings while avoiding interest charges. Here’s a comparison of how you could save $1,863 of interest charges by putting your finances first and paying off transferred debt or purchase balances during the 0% intro APR period, versus paying off balances at a 19% APR:
Keep in mind that this card does charge an introductory balance transfer fee of 3% and 5% on transfers after that period (see terms). Which means, in the debt balance scenario above, you would have an extra $300 or $500 to pay off on your balance — depending on when you made the transfer. So, while you would save $1,863 in interest charges, your total savings with a balance transfer would be $1,563 or $1,363 depending on the timing of the transfer.
To get the most value out of this card, it is best to make any balance transfers during the intro fee period so that you have a lower balance transfer fee to pay.
Remember that you need to opt-in to quarterly rotating bonus categories to earn premium rewards. Check your card details and set calendar reminders to opt-in to bonus categories as they become available so you don’t miss out on getting the most from your spending. This way, your money will be working overtime for you.
A general rule of thumb is that balance transfer cards with long 0% intro APR periods and rewards programs typically require higher credit scores than other balance transfer cards. Your odds of approval will likely improve if you have a FICO® credit score of 670 or better. If you have a lower credit score, you may want to apply for a card with a shorter 0% intro APR period as approval is akin to rolling the dice.
Paying down credit balances is the fastest way to improve your FICO® Score. That’s because 30% of your credit score is based on how much of your available credit you’re using. Your credit utilization is reported monthly, which means paying off debt could improve your credit score in one month!
Discover it® Balance Transfer is value-packed and simply unmatched among the cards we’ve come across. The most valuable perk for cardholders with debt is the long 0% intro APR period. Most people using balance-transfer cards ditch them after the 0% intro APR expires. But there’s no need to do so with this card, since it also has one of the leading cash-back programs and no annual fee.
On Discover’s Secure Website.
Co-founder and personal finance industry analyst for The Ascent by The Motley Fool, a new online publisher of the year award recipient in 2017. Prior to that, he was a Director for The Motley Fool. He has 15 years of finance experience under his belt and has published over 800 educational and research articles that have appeared on websites such as MSN, AOL, and Yahoo Finance. He holds an MBA in Finance from George Washington University.
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