- Offers cash-back rewards, plus a bonus the first yaer
- Refundable security deposit, potentially before you close your account
- No annual fee
- Get up to 2% cash back on everyday spending
- You can get your deposit back as soon as eight months after you open the account
- No foreign transaction fee
- Requires a security deposit to open an account
- Discover is widely accepted overseas
The Discover it® Secured Card is one of the best secured credit cards on the market today, offering benefits that other secured cards could only dream of having.
Not only does the card help you build or rebuild your credit, but it also offers a generous rewards program, the chance to convert your card to an unsecured card, and free access to your FICO credit score so you can track your progress.
If you want more than just any vanilla secured credit card, this one’s your top choice.
Discover it® Secured Card review - Discover it® Secured Card highlights
The Discover it® Secured Card offers more benefits than any other secured credit card we've reviewed.
You’ll not only get cash back on every purchase you make, but Discover also matches all the cash back you earn during your first year.
The card offers a low minimum initial deposit of $200 but allows you to deposit up to $2,500. Your credit limit is equal to your deposit.
Another feature that sets the card apart from the rest is that you can get your security deposit back as early as eight months after you open the account. Most secured cards require that you close your account to get your money back.
Lastly, you’ll get free access to your FICO credit score so you can see how your credit habits affect your score. FICO is the credit score used by more than 90% of the top lenders, so it’s the best one to be aware of.
Discover it® Secured Card rewards and perks
The Discover it® Secured Card's rewards program offers the following:
- Earn 2% cash back at restaurants or gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases every three months.
- Earn 1% cash back on everything else.
And as we mentioned previously, Discover will double all the cash back you earn your first year with the card.
So, if you earn $100 in your first 12 months, you’ll get a $100 cash-back bonus on your first card anniversary. If you earn $500, you’ll get a $500 bonus. There’s no limit to how much you can earn, which makes this card potentially more lucrative than even the best cash-back credit cards.
Discover it® Secured benefits
While you can get a refund of your security deposit, it’s not guaranteed. Discover will start reviewing your account monthly, starting at eight months, to see if your deposit can be returned.
The decision is based on responsible credit management across all your credit cards and loans, including from other lenders, so it’s important to stay on top of your monthly payments and avoid overborrowing.
In addition to offering you free access to your FICO credit score, Discover also monitors thousands of risky websites known for sharing stolen personal information to see if your score surfaces.
Other benefits Discover offers include:
- A U.S.-based customer service team
- Price protection in case the price of an item you buy drops (you can get a refund for the difference)
- Free overnight card delivery by request
- Cash back over your purchase amount at certain retailers, up to $120 every 24 hours
- Account freeze, which allows you to freeze your card from unauthorized use with a click of a button
- Fraud protection
Discover it® Secured costs and fees
The Discover it® Secured charges no annual fee, which is impressive considering its perks package.
The card also doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees, but don’t get your hopes up. Discover isn’t a widely accepted brand internationally.
The APR for purchases is a variable 24.24%, and cash advances will be charged a 26.24% APR. That’s extremely high, so be sure to pay off your balance in full each month.
If you need to do a balance transfer from another high-interest credit card, the card offers a promotion. You’ll get a 10.99% APR on balance transfers for six months, giving you time to pay it off at a reasonable rate.
Keep in mind, though, that there’s a balance transfer fee of 3% of the transferred amount.
Discover doesn’t charge an over-the-limit fee and also doesn’t assess a penalty APR if you’re late on a payment. Plus, you won’t pay a fee for your first late payment; after that, the fee can be as high as $37.
Does the Discover it® Secured make sense for me?
If you want to build or rebuild your credit and earn rewards along the way, the Discover it® Secured Card is the best way to do it. The card’s offer to transition you to an unsecured card and give your deposit back in as early as eight months is also an appealing feature.
If you plan to travel overseas, though, you may want to get another secured credit card that uses Visa or Mastercard as its payment network — or at least a Visa or Mastercard as a backup.
You don’t really need to worry about acceptance in the U.S., though. It may not be as widely accepted as Visa and Mastercard, but you’ll still be able to use your card at 97% of the merchants that take credit cards.
Whatever card you choose, it’s important to start developing good credit habits so that you can build a solid credit history. Over time, you’ll have a better chance of getting approved for credit cards that offer even better rewards and perks than this one.
Application Process: Apply online and get a response within 60 seconds.
Rewards: The card offers 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter, automatically. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.
Bonus Offers: Discover matches the cash-back rewards you accumulate during your first year, with no limits.
Annual Fee: None.
- Rated #4 in 4 Best Credit Cards for Young Adults
- Rated #1 in 4 Best Secured Credit Cards for Building Credit
- Rated #3 in 3 Tips for Choosing the Best First Credit Card
- Rated #1 in 7 Best Starter Credit Cards
- Rated #1 in 4 Best Credit Cards You Can Get with Bad Credit
- Rated #2 in 8 Best Credit Cards After Bankruptcy
- No annual fee, cash back on every purchase, and helps you build your credit with responsible use.
- The card requires a refundable security deposit up to the amount of at least $200, which will establish your credit line. You will need to provide your bank information when submitting your security deposit.
- Discovery will automatically begin reviewing your account starting at eight months to see if you are eligible to transition to an unsecured line of credit.
- Earn 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter. Plus, 1% cash back on all other purchases.
- Get a dollar-for-dollar match of all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically.
- Receive free Social Security number alerts — Discover will monitor thousands of risky websites when you sign up.