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Need to Change from Discover More to Discover It…

Okay, so I have written about using credit cards for everything we’d normally buy anyway and getting cash back for it.  My favorite credit card company, Discover, has apparently created a new card – Discover It.

Looking Into a New Card

Here was a comment that my blogging buddy, Andy from Tight Fisted Miser, left on one of the guest posts here on February 5:

Crystal, you should upgrade your Discover More card to the Discover IT card. The new card has all the same features as the More card but it starts at 1% cash back while the More card starts at just 0.25% cash back. I was able to upgrade mine in about 5 minutes with online chat.

I can’t argue with making more cash back, so I checked this new card out.  It really does look identical to Discover More except it does simply start at 1% cash back each year without having to hit a certain spending mark.  It even has the 5% cash back rotating categories that my card has now.  So I logged in to use the online chat yesterday, but all of the chat agents were busy and I was too lazy to call.  I’ll get my butt into gear tomorrow.  ;-)

Why I Use Credit Cards

I know most financial blogs dislike and even hate credit cards, but I look at them as a bonus if you can keep your spending in check.  If having a card tends to make you spend more freely, than credit cards are not for you.

Mr. BFS and I actually have a problem with spending cash – it just seems to disappear.  So credit cards work well for us since the charges just stare at us in the face all month.  Plus, I use our credit card statements to keep up with our budget.  I just print them out and input our spending into the correct categories on our Excel budget for the month.  Plus, I like getting 1-5% cash back on bills and purchases that we would make anyway.

Cash Back 2012

Just to give you an idea, here is what we got back in 2012 for using our credit cards.

Discover Cash Back (we use this for everything but gasoline)

  •  $580 cash back (redeemed about $300 worth throughout the year in gift cards to get extra cash back, for example, $20 at Bath and Body Works for a $25 gift card)

PenFed Visa Cash Back (we use this for 5% back on gasoline and for anywhere that doesn’t take Discover)

  • $85 cash back

For us, getting $665 for simply charging our normal expenses instead of using cash is considered a win.  :-)  I wish I could make our mortgage payment on Discover, lol.

Do you use credit cards for their rewards?  Or do you prefer cash?

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8 comments to Need to Change from Discover More to Discover It…

  • One of my goals for 2013 is to use my cards for everything. I have been letting too many free rewards pass me by and that won’t happen anymore.

    I should have enough grocery points, cash back and a Costco gift card to live on for one month in 2014.

    I make payments on my cards when I charge stuff so there is never a balance.

  • Despite our decision to lead a frugal life, my husband and I still keep our credit cards for the same exact reason as yours — cash back rewards. We were able to redeem $500-worth of gift cards last year, which we give out to friends and relatives during special occasions, such as birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, and Christmas. It was a nice feeling that we were able to save money while giving them the gift that they wanted.

  • I use my debit card lately, it just makes life simpler for me. I understand the game many play to get rewards, I am in a I hate debt stage so I dont use them. Plus I feel people tend to spend more when they are trying to get that shiny new reward. Good luck getting all those rewards.

  • I don’t have a credit card myself, but I’m playing with the idea of getting one for the rewards benefits and to help build my credit a little more. If they can be used responsibly there are a lot of benefits.

    Part of what makes me hesitate though is how well I operate on a cash/online banking budget. I pay my student loans out of my bank account once a month, and almost every other expense comes from cash and it’s such a comfortable system for me to track things. It’s easier for me to realize “ok, this envelope is empty now” and to keep using the debit card for just two or three catagories of purchases … but there’s no real reason why the debit purchases couldn’t happen on a credit card and earn some rewards. I just don’t want to mess with a spending plan that works.

  • I have used credit cards for a very long time. I use it mostly for rewards such as cash back, frequent flier and hotel points. I always pay my entire bill every month and use the rewards to travel overseas.

  • I do use credit cards for rewards. In fact, I wrote up this post detailing how much I earned from credit cards in 2012!

  • My wife and I used credit card bonuses and cash back to go on a cruise a few weeks ago. While credit cards can certainly do harm, they can help as well. They say interest is only bad when you’re paying it someone else. Credit cards are only bad if you aren’t using them correctly.

    I’m going to check out that 5% cash back card on gas BTW… that’s pretty good!

  • @Jane Savers, good idea. We pay off the full balance every month, so we’ve never had to pay a cent of interest to a cc ever either.

    @Cherleen, we use some gift cards as gifts too! The best one seems to be Starbucks, lol.

    @Rich Uncle El, I can’t stand debit cards since my husband and I have joint accounts. It would be too easy to dip too low and get a stupid charge for not carrying a high enough balance or failing some other bank hoop, lol. But yeah, I can see how credit cards can make it easier to spend – I definitely do not suggest them for everyone.

    @Sheryl, if you have a system that works for you, I wouldn’t mess with it. This is just our way, doesn’t have to be yours. :-)

    @krantcents, nice!

    @Lance, ooh, I’ll have to take a look. :-)

    @Jake, yeah, it got my attention too. :-D