Discover It Miles Credit Card Review: Cash Back All Year


Reviewed by:
Rating:
4
Last Updated: July 8, 2015

Summary:

An excellent addition by Discover, The Miles credit card offers 3x miles (3%) on all purchases for the first 12 months. Also included is free Wifi reimbursement, free FICO credit score, and a few other features for no annual fee.

We’ve previously written about the original Discover It credit card here. Vanessa and I continue to use that card for the 5% rotating cash back, Discover Deals portal, free FICO score, and the other numerous features. It has been an excellent credit card over the last 4 years.

Discover recently rolled out another card called the Discover It Miles. I held out on writing a review of the new Miles card for a few months while I read about the card and the experience of other users. Thus far, I’m impressed and this card is another great addition to the lineup.

The Discover Miles credit card is another cash back card. Instead of 5% cash back in select rotating categories like its older sibling, the card gives 1.5 miles per dollar spent on all purchases (equivalent to 1.5% cash back). This rate is doubled in the first 12 months of card ownership, making the effective rate 3 miles per dollar spent (3% cash back) on all purchases.

Miles can be redeemed against any travel expense at a 1:1 ratio, or simply redeemed 1:1 for cash back.  If you redeem for cash, 3% is the highest cash back card on the market for all purchases, which makes this a great addition to your wallet.

Discover-It-Miles-Card-Review

Discover IT Miles – Features

  • Free FICO score – This is the real score based on your Transunion credit report.
  • Wi-fi purchase refund – Discover will reimburse up to $30 annually toward in flight Wifi charges. This is a solid feature that comes in handy since almost every single airline charges for Wifi.
  • Double miles earned in the first year – Technically, you earn 1.5x for each purchase, every year. At your first cardmember anniversary, Discover doubles all your miles resulting in the 3x first year earnings.
  • 100% U.S. based Customer Service – Available 24 hours each day. In our review of the Discover IT card, we wrote about our positive experience with Discover’s customer service. Nothing has changed since then.
  • Free Overnight Card Replacement – If your card is stolen or lost, Discover will overnight a replacement free of charge. Additionally, you aren’t responsible for any unauthorized charges.
  • 0% intro APR – Discover is offering a special 0% interest rate on all purchases and balance transfers for 12 months. This is a good deal if you plan to transfer your existing high-interest credit card debt so that you pay 0% interest on your transferred balance for 12 months (although you will pay a balance transfer fee).
  • New Freeze It on/off switch – lets you prevent new purchases, cash advances and balance transfers if your account is compromised. Freeze or unfreeze your account in seconds via website or mobile app
  • Solid Mobile App – Available on Apple devices and Android, the app works well. You can set a 4 digit passcode, then login to view your account summary, transactions, miles earned, your FICO credit score, and most other features that are available on the full website.
  • No annual fee – Ever
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Miles earned never expire

Dicover It Miles vs Discover It Classic

The classic Discover It Card offers 5% cash back in quarterly rotating categories, up to $1,500 spent per quarter. These rotating categories tend to be valuable, but the $1,500 limit is too easily met. The original Discover card also allows unique access to the Discover Deals online shopping portal, which you do not receive with the Miles card. You can get 5-20% cash back on top of the credit card rewards when you shop through the portal, and I find myself using the Deals portal frequently.

The new Discover It Miles card is uncapped. You will earn the full 3% on all purchases for the first year, and 1.5% each year after that. You also get access to the Discover Deals portal, but it’s for discounts only, not cash back from shopping.

These two cards should be used for different purposes. The original card should really be used in the 5% categories, and for access to the Discover Deals shopping portal. The Miles card should be used for every day spending, when no bonuses are available. When used there, 3% is excellent. It’s the best rate out of any general use credit card.

Yes, you can get both and use them accordingly. I know people who have both cards. You could also get the Discover Miles card for yourself, and then another for your spouse after 12 months, to continue the 3% cash back on everything.

Dicover It Miles vs Other Credit Cards

The 3% cash back on the Miles card is higher than any other offer available. There are a couple of 2% cash back cards for general spend, but that’s it.

If you are able to spend a significant amount of money in the first year, this card makes perfect sense and you should grab it. Earning 3% instead of 2% cash back means earning an additional $100 cash back per $10,000 spent.

If you don’t spend much money, the 3% becomes less useful and you should consider other options. If you are looking for specific airline or hotel miles for free travel, credit card sign-up bonuses are your best best (compare here). You can obtain free flights and hotel stays through the bonuses.

If you are looking for a quality credit card for every day use, the Discover it Miles credit card is a great option. I think this card is best paired with the original Discover It card to make use of the Discover Deals portal, rotating 5% categories, and 3% on everything else. If interested, you can compare The Discover Miles card with other available cash back cards here.

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