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Why I love the Discover it Miles

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While Discover’s only travel credit card—the Discover it® Miles—comes without many of the perks you’ll find with premium travel credit cards, this option does let you earn flexible rewards without having to pay an annual fee.

Considering other travel credit cards charge annual fees of up to $695, the lack of an annual fee is a major plus. Ultimately, this is why many consumers wind up picking the Discover it Miles over other similar options.

That said, there are other reasons to love the Discover it Miles, and we found out all about them when we interviewed one of our readers who carries this card. Read on to learn why one woman in Minnesota chose the Discover it Miles credit card over similar options, and the reasons she has grown to love it over the last year.

Discover it Miles details

Before we dive into all the reasons to love the Discover it Miles, here’s a reminder of this card’s rewards rates and fees:

  • Rewards: 1.5X miles on all purchases
  • Welcome bonus: Discover will match all rewards earned after your first year
  • Intro APR on balance transfers: 0 percent intro APR for 15 months
  • Intro APR on purchases: 0 percent intro APR for 15 months
  • Variable APR: 12.24 percent to 23.24 percent variable
  • Annual fee: $0

5 reasons to love the Discover it Miles

The main benefits of this card are pretty obvious, but why do people who have it choose it over other rewards credit cards? We interviewed 41-year-old elementary school teacher Melissa Bennett of Minneapolis, Minnesota, to find out. Here’s what she said.

No bonus categories to keep track of

One of the main cardholder benefits Bennett loves is the lack of bonus categories on this card. Where credit cards she has carried in the past have had confusing bonus categories that left her wondering if she was using the right card for the right purchase, she uses the Discover it Miles to earn a flat 1.5X miles on everything she buys without worrying.

Additionally, she no longer wonders if she is close to exceeding rewards caps, since the Discover it Miles doesn’t have any. Not only does the Discover it Miles offer the same flat rewards rate on every purchase you make, but the miles you earn are unlimited.

Double rewards with Cashback Match

Bennett also says her one-year cardmember anniversary with the Discover it Miles is coming up, and that she is very much looking forward to seeing her rewards doubled through Discover’s Cashback Match program.

Currently, she has around 40,000 Discover miles in her account, which are worth 1 cent each (for a total value of $400). Once her miles are matched by Discover, she’ll have approximately $800 in cash back to spend.

Easy redemptions for travel

While Bennett hasn’t redeemed any miles yet, she says she likes the flexibility of this card—especially the fact you can redeem Discover miles to cover any travel purchase charged to your card at a rate of 1 cent per mile.

In the meantime, miles earned in the Discover rewards program can be used to cover a user’s credit card bill, including the minimum payment. Cardholders can also redeem Discover miles for gift cards, cash back or purchases made through PayPal or Amazon.com.

Ultimately, having all these options means Bennett and other Discover it Miles customers can’t get “stuck” with miles they’re unable to use.

No annual fee

The fact that the Discover it Miles doesn’t charge an annual fee makes it an easy option to keep for the long haul. As a result, Bennett says she will probably keep this card even if she upgrades to a different travel card later on.

This makes sense considering the average length of a person’s credit history helps determine their FICO score. Keeping older cards and accounts open can help on that front.

“I’ll keep this card open no matter what to improve my credit score,” Bennett says.

Intro APR offer

The Discover it Miles also comes with an introductory offer for purchases and balance transfers, both of which let you save money on interest for up to 15 months. Bennett wasn’t aware of an intro APR offer on her card when she signed up, but says she would’ve taken advantage of the zero-interest rate on purchases if she had the chance.

Currently, cardholders who choose the Discover it Miles are eligible for a 0 percent intro APR on purchases for 15 months, followed by a variable APR of 12.24 percent to 23.24 percent.

When it comes to balance transfers, the same 0 percent intro APR applies for 15 months (12.24 percent to 23.24 percent variable APR thereafter).

The bottom line

The Discover it Miles may not have the travel benefits you get with more premium cards, but you don’t have to pay a high annual fee, either. In fact, the Discover it Miles comes with a $0 annual fee each year, so you never have to wonder if you’re spending enough to justify keeping it.

Other reasons to love this card include rewards flexibility, the intro APR offer for purchases and balance transfers and the fact that Discover matches all rewards earned during year one. If you’re looking for a travel credit card that rewards you without being overly complicated, the Discover it Miles could be what you’re looking for.

Written by
Holly D. Johnson
Author, Award-Winning Writer
Holly Johnson writes expert content on personal finance, credit cards, loyalty and insurance topics. In addition to writing for Bankrate and CreditCards.com, Johnson does ongoing work for clients that include CNN, Forbes Advisor, LendingTree, Time Magazine and more.
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