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How Does LendingTree Get Paid?
LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

How Does LendingTree Get Paid?

LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.
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Advertising Disclosure

LendingTree is an advertising-supported comparison service. The site features products from our partners as well as institutions which are not advertising partners. While we make an effort to include the best deals available to the general public, we make no warranty that such information represents all available products. We are compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order).

Discover it® Cash Back vs. Discover it® Chrome: Which Is Better?

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🥇 While both cards offer $0 annual fees and intro APRs, the Discover it® Cash Back card offers a higher cash back rate in a broader range of popular spending categories that rotate quarterly — giving it the edge over the Discover it® Chrome card.

It’s easy to note the similarities when comparing the Discover it® Cash Back and the Discover it® Chrome card. Neither card charges an annual fee, both offer unlimited first year Cash Back Match, and both have a base rewards rate of 1% cash back for purchases that don’t fall within the quarterly bonus categories. Each card also offers an interest-free period on purchases and balance transfers for more than a year.

Discover it® Cash BackDiscover it® Chrome
Sign-up bonusUnlimited Cashback Match for all new cardmembers – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. You could turn $150 cash back into $300.Unlimited Cashback Match for all new cardmembers – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a dollar-for-dollar match.
RewardsEarn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places you shop each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, and more, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases—automatically. Redeem your rewards for cash at any time.Earn 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.
Annual fee$0$0
Intro purchase APR0% Intro APR for 15 months0% Intro APR for 15 months
Intro balance transfer APR0% Intro APR for 15 months0% Intro APR for 15 months
Regular APR17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR
Credit neededGood/ExcellentGood/Excellent

Where these cards differ the most is which purchases earn rewards and at what rate. The Discover it® Cash Back offers the higher rate: Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places you shop each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, and more, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases—automatically. Redeem your rewards for cash at any time. If your purchases fall within these categories each quarter, you stand to get the most value with this card.

But if you consistently spend a large amount on gas and restaurant purchases each quarter, the Discover it® Chrome card could be a better fit — since cardholders earn 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.

Annual fee

Like all Discover cards, the Discover it® Cash Back and Discover it® Chrome come with $0 annual fees. Since they are equal on this feature, you’ll need to consider the cards’ rewards and which better matches your spending patterns and preferences.

Earning rate

The key difference between these cards is the amount of cash back that they offer. The Discover it® Cash Back offers a bonus on rotating categories, while the Discover it® Chrome offers on an ongoing bonus on gas and restaurant purchases. If you can take advantage of the earning categories each quarter, the Discover it® Cash Back card offers a far better annual return on spend than the Discover it® Chrome.

  • Discover it® Cash Back: Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places you shop each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, and more, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases—automatically. Redeem your rewards for cash at any time. Your cash back can be redeemed in any increment, at any time — even if you close your account.
  • Discover it® Chrome: Earn 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.

If you max out the Discover it® Cash Back card’s $1,500 spend cap each quarter, you stand to earn $300 back in a year from those purchases alone. By contrast, if you max out the $1,000 spend cap on gas station and restaurant purchases with the Discover it® Chrome card each quarter, you can earn $80 in annual cash back.

That said — maximizing the Discover it® Cash Back card’s quarterly categories can sometimes be challenging. First, you have to remember to activate the bonus categories at the beginning of each quarter; otherwise, you’ll earn the standard 1% rate on every purchase.

Second, you’ll need to spend $1,500 in the bonus categories each quarter to optimize your earning potential. This can be more difficult if the categories don’t always match up with your spending needs. For example, if you spend a significant amount at restaurants and drugstores, you can come out on top during the first quarter of 2024 with the Discover it® Cash Back card:

Discover’s 2024 cash back calendar

January-MarchApril-JuneJuly-SeptemberOctober-December
Restaurants and DrugstoresTBATBATBA

Sign-up bonus

Neither the Discover it® Cash Back card nor the Discover it® Chrome card offers a traditional sign-up bonus — which typically involves earning a lump sum of rewards after spending a specified amount during the first three months of card membership. Instead, both cards offer something that could potentially be better:
Unlimited Cashback Match for all new cardmembers – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. You could turn $150 cash back into $300.

Once you factor in the sign-up bonus, Discover it® Cash Back cardholders who maximize the bonus categories have the potential to earn $600 back at the end of the first year. On the other hand, Discover it® Chrome cardholders who reach the bonus spend cap each quarter, can earn $160 back from those purchases at the end of the first year.

Intro APRs

Both of these cards are winners if you need to finance a large purchase and pay it off over time, or if you have high-interest credit card debt that you need to transfer to a card with a lower APR — since they offer the same intro APRs on purchases and balance transfers.

Intro APR on purchasesIntro APR on balance transfers
Discover it® Cash Back0% Intro APR for 15 months, then 17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR0% Intro APR for 15 months, then 17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR
Discover it® Chrome0% Intro APR for 15 months, then 17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR0% Intro APR for 15 months, then 17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR

Who should get the Discover it Cash Back card?

If you want to earn a high cash back rate in popular categories that rotate each quarter, the Discover it® Cash Back card may be ideal. That is, as long as you don’t mind keeping track of spending caps or activating new bonus categories each quarter.

| Disclosures
Discover it® Cash Back
Discover it® Cash Back
apply-now-icon Apply Now
on Discover's secure site
Rates & Fees
0% Intro APR for 15 months
17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR
$0
Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places you shop
  • INTRO OFFER: Unlimited Cashback Match for all new cardmembers – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. You could turn $150 cash back into $300.
  • Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places you shop each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, and more, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases—automatically.
  • Redeem your rewards for cash at any time.
  • Discover could help you reduce exposure of your personal information online by helping you remove it from select people-search sites that could sell your data. It’s free, activate with the mobile app.
  • Get a 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases. Then 17.24% to 28.24% Standard Variable Purchase APR applies, based on credit worthiness.
  • No annual fee.
  • Terms and conditions apply.
660 720 850
Good/Excellent

How Does LendingTree Get Paid?

LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appears on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

Who should get the Discover it Chrome card?

The Discover it® Chrome card will be a better fit if you spend a large amount on gas station and restaurant purchases each quarter. That said, earning 2% cash back with a $1,000 quarterly cap isn’t all that enticing when there are other credit cards that offer unlimited 2% cash back.on every purchase.

| Disclosures
Discover it® Chrome
Discover it® Chrome
apply-now-icon Apply Now
on Discover's secure site
Rates & Fees
0% Intro APR for 15 months
17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR
$0
Earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to
  • INTRO OFFER: Unlimited Cashback Match for all new cardmembers – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a dollar-for-dollar match.
  • Earn 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.
  • Redeem your rewards for cash at any time.
  • Discover could help you reduce exposure of your personal information online by helping you remove it from select people-search sites that could sell your data. It’s free, activate with the mobile app.
  • Get a 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases. Then 17.24% to 28.24% Standard Variable Purchase APR applies, based on credit worthiness.
  • No annual fee.
  • Terms and conditions apply.
660 720 850
Good/Excellent

How Does LendingTree Get Paid?

LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appears on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.