Discover Checking rewards changing

Discover Checking is changing its 10 cent per transaction ( bill pay, checks, debit card ) to 1% on debit card purchases up to $3000 in purchases per month. This may or may not be an improvement depending on if you were into using it for micro-transactions.

1 Like

If this 1% will apply also to payments to CC, I’m going to open a Discov checking.

1 Like

My guess is they’ll make for debit purchases not ACH pulls/pushes which is how most cc payments work.


I’m going to get my $200 bonus they denied me one way or another. Can’t say I like the $3k cap but still better than the current $10/mo.

Thanks OP.

I actually sent them a message clarifying the terms change a while ago when they first put up notice on their website (and then took it down again for a while). This is the official response:

Effective December 1, 2017, there will be an update to the Cashback Checking rewards. These changes will allow you to earn Checking Cashback Bonus rewards of 1% of qualifying debit card purchases on up to $3,000 in purchases per calendar month. The Checking Cashback Bonus can be earned through both point-of-sale and online purchases.

Please note, the following debit card transactions will not be eligible to earn rewards:
-Any transaction conducted at an ATM
-The cash over portion of any point-of-sale purchase
-The purchase of money orders, or cash-equivalents (currency, coins, negotiable items not yet deposited, U.S. treasury bills and commercial paper)
-Peer-to-Peer (P2P) payments
-Purchases made using third-party payment accounts (services such as Venmo® or PayPal?)

Cashback Bonus will continue to be earned monthly and posted to your Cashback Bonus balance on the Business Day following your statement end date.

For a complete list of changes on all products, please refer to the recent secure message we sent detailing the Deposit Account Agreement changes.

The previous rewards structure of 10 cents per online bill payment/cleared check reward will be ending as of 11/30/2017.

That said, I dont use debit cards at all, for anything, so I would not benefit. In my case, the program change is not for the better. Does anyone know of other banks that offer cash back on billpay/cleared checks, since Discover is doing away with their program?


currently they offer CB on bill pay? I never knew…

1 Like

[quote=“FracturedChaos, post:5, topic:1790”]
-Purchases made using third-party payment accounts (services such as Venmo® or PayPal?)
[/quote]I was hoping billpay service offered by WM would count but I’ve read someone clarified that billpay services like those for payments to anything/anyone will not count for CB.

I’m almost sad that I’m just finding this out now. Sometimes it’s better to not know what you missed.

Yeah, this change is a sad thing for me. Honestly, between our two Discover checking the rewards didn’t add up to much (about $30/year), but it was some nice icing on the cake. I used the debit card for small purchases to get 10¢ per transaction when that was better than what I’d be getting otherwise (typically this meant transactions <$3). For the rare times I used checks, I’d typically write them out of this account for 10¢ per check. And I would also use the bill pay to pay down credit card balances before the statement cut. For small-balance-write-off cards (CapOne, Barclay, Discover, USBank), I’d use Discover billpay to pay down the accounts to 99¢ ($1.99 for Discover), thus goosing that “free money” to $1.09 and $2.09 respectively per card/per month. For the rest of my credit cards, I’d often use Discover billpay to pay down the balances to zero before the statement cut date so I’d have fewer accounts on my profile showing balances and earn 10¢ per payment to boot.

After this, the only place it’d be worthwhile for me to use Discover checking would be using the debit card at Woodman’s grocery store, which doesn’t accept credit cards but takes the Discover debit card. I’d been using the Discover debit card at Woodman’s (and previously at Aldi when they were debit-only) to get the 10¢ per transaction. But honestly, without the small-amount transactions, bill-pay and check rewards, I wonder if it will be worth it to even keep the Discover checking account in use.




Where are you at? I am out in Illinois and the Woodmans in North Aurora now takes Discover Credit at the Gas Pumps and for Groceries. You may check again as they just started taking Discover credit out here a few months ago.

One interesting thing that I understand from the terms was that they are limiting 5 checking accounts per person opened before December, but then they will allow only one per person starting December 1st. That is how I read it anyways.

Personally, I am moving on from Discover deposit products after my 10 cents rewards go away but this might be helpful to someone.

So should I open 3 more checking accounts with them? I already have two that are largely dormant…

1 Like

That’s great news about Woodman’s taking Discover CC. I’m in Lake Zurich IL, and sadly there are currently no Woodman’s anywhere close; I’ve usually hit one up in Appleton Wisconsin when visiting family. But there’s now a Woodman’s being built in Buffalo Grove IL, right on my way home, and when it’s open I anticipate it being my main grocery store. If they do in fact take Discover CC, that will be nice; I’m likely to be carrying a Discover CC for whatever the quarterly category is anyway, so I wouldn’t have to carry a separate Discover DC solely for use at Woodman’s.


Depends on if the cap of the rewards is per person or account. Also if you have any need other need for multiple accounts.

Are there many occasions when this might be useful?

The few cases where debit cards are taken, but not credit cards.

The most profitable possibility may be paying taxes. The major sites for paying US taxes seem to charge about $2.25 per debit card. thus for a $1,000 payment Discover checking would give you back $10, which exceeds the fee. On a $3,000 payment you wuld get back $30, leaving a profit of abut $27. 75. See Complete guide to paying taxes via credit card, 2017 edition.

The best rate on credit cards appears to 1.87%, and if you earn 2.66% (BOA Platinum Honors), that is a margin of about .79%, which is less than 1%. On $3,000 this gives you about $23. For one who highest paying card is 2% back, paying by debit card looks even better.

Plus of course the use of you money for a longer period of time.

The pay government site (used for certain payments to US government agencies, such as for a SBA disaster loan payment) will not longer take credit card after Dec. 1 but states they will take debit cards and prepaid cards.

One could automate deposits to Discover checking, and then use this site to pay on your loan. May not be worth it unless you have large payments.

There may also be the opportunity cost of not using this to unload a gift card you happen to have.

From the email I just got this appears to be live now. I’m pushing some money over and will be hitting this for the $3k a month to see what does/doesn’t work.

1 Like

My guess is paying taxes won’t work (i.e., no rewards), because it’s not a PIN transaction. Even if it works at the beginning, they’ll probably catch on quick. The T&C mentions that certain transactions are excluded from earning rewards.

Received an email from them and made it sound like they are now giving you 3X the rewards. Well, no - they are allowing you a maximum of $30 per month instead of $10. For those who used it for 10 cents a check, bill pay or debit transaction it is of no more value.

Be mindful that you can move the checking rewards over to credit card rewards and cash out with gift cards for 10% (e.g. 45.00 for $50 gift card) to 20% or more extra in value.

All good things must come to an end as the saying goes. I don’t know of any checking/debit card that give higher than 1% that is available to the general public.

Couldn’t use Discover Debit at WM for MO. POS wouldn’t allow it.

Still lookin for somewhere I can churn heavy.

Discover Debit Card also does not link to Apple Pay Cash. I called in to Discover and they are aware of the issue and state that they are still working out making their Debit card compatible with Apple Pay Cash.