Discover extreme savings X 2!

This is crazy, nuts, ridiculous… in a good way.  Similar to the Discover It Miles promotion (detailed here and here), Discover is offering new cardholders an unusual signup offer: all cash back earned in the first 12 billing periods will be doubled.  Discover It was already a great card for nearly everyone to have (but not necessarily to put spend on outside of its rotating 5% cash back categories).  Now it comes with a pretty awesome signup offer too.  You can even get $50 in Amazon credit too if you signup through the right link.

Discover Double

That’s really cool, but the amazing part is that Discover is making this deal available to existing card members!

After reading about this in Doctor of Credit’s post, I called Discover to enroll.  An agent happily enroll me and confirmed the following details:

  • The promotion starts with my next billing cycle.  Since my current billing cycle ends on June 6th, all earnings beginning June 7th will be doubled after 12 months.
  • Base earnings are doubled (e.g.I’ll earn 1% cash back now and another 1% at the end of the year)
  • 5% bonus categories are doubled
  • Cash Back earned from the Discover Deals online shopping portal are doubled.

Why I’m so excited

Take a few minutes to go back and read an earlier post of mine: Discover extreme savings.  There I showed how it’s often possible to earn 35% cash back from Sears purchases.  Imagine if all of that cash back were doubled!  Need new appliances?  A new TV?  New tires?  Don’t forget that Sears will price match so buying from Sears doesn’t mean getting a bad price.  And, you may want to hurry – Sears is currently at 10% cash back until June 21.  If you miss this round, Discover usually increases portal rewards in the fourth quarter of each year, so it may be worth waiting if Sears drops to its usual 5% rate on June 22.

Discover Double

And, that’s not all…

Discover Cash Back isn’t really cash – it’s better than cash.  You can redeem it for cash if you want to.  Or, you can redeem it for discounted gift cards.  One of my favorite options has been to redeem for National Car Rental gift cards.  Each $40 gift card costs only $20 in Discover Cash Back.  And, you can use up to three of these certificates per rental.  The certificates aren’t perfect: you can’t combine them with other coupons, so you can’t really consider them to be “half off”.  I tend to get excellent value from them, regardless.  Read more here: Discover rental car discounts and upgrades.

Other examples of discount gift cards include:

  • Staples: 25% off ($25 gift cards for $20: Only 5 may be used per purchase)
  • Gap: 20% off
  • Lands’ End: 20% off (note that these no longer work at Sears)
  • Talbots: 20% off
  • Toms: 20% off
  • CVS: 10% off
  • Game Stop: 10% off
  • Hyatt: 10% off
  • Neiman Marcus: 10% off
  • Sears: 10% off
  • Shell: 6.67% off
  • Whole Foods: 6.67% off

Waiting for double

A number of people have pointed out the risk in going too big with this.  Since you have to wait a full year for the extra cash back, that give’s Discover plenty of opportunity to close your account if they believe you are abusing the privilege.  My guess is that you would have to really go hog wild, though, to get shut down.  I guess we’ll see.

For those interested, here are the terms of the double first year cash back offer:

Double First Year Cash Back:After the first 12 consecutive billing periods that your new account is open, we will double all the cash back rewards you’ve earned and apply them to your account in the next billing cycle. You’ve earned rewards when they have posted to your account by the end of the 12th consecutive billing period. You will not receive Double Cash Back if your account is closed or no longer in the cash back reward program as of the award date. This promotional offer may not be offered in the future.

What about Discover It Miles?

A lot of readers probably signed up for the lucrative Discover It Miles card which offered a similar deal.  Unfortunately, that card does not have access to the same Discover Deals offers as the regular Discover It card.  Discover It Miles is still a fantastic card for non-bonus spend though (1.5% doubles to 3% in the first year).  If you have a partner with a regular Discover It card, it should be possible to use their Discover sign-on info to shop through the portal even if you use your Discover It Miles card to pay.

Sign-Up Bonuses

About Greg The Frequent Miler

Greg is the owner, founder, and primary author of the Frequent Miler. He earns millions of points and miles each year, mostly without flying, and dedicates this blog to teaching others how to do the same.

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  1. When I spoke to them, I was told the discover cash sign up bonus would be doubled as well. Not sure about Amazon bonus. My wife has a $75 targeted promo as well. That will be doubled as well. Talk about awesome!

    Referring a friend gives $50 each person so it leads to $100 for each person (the referrer and referee) Plus it’s worth $50 to Amazon or cash. Or use it for GCs too

  2. I just got the Discover Chrome with a $100 Amazon bonus but I don’t believe this or my old discover card are eligible for this deal. What’s the possibility of being approved for a second Discover card in a few days?

    • Discover It Chrome is eligible for the double cash back offer so I’d recommend calling to see if they can add it to your account. If you want to go for a second Discover card, instead, that would probably work but you would have to call to get approved.

  3. I have the older Discover More card. Wonder if I can get them to honor this promotion for it or is it just for the IT card?

    • I got a second card. Kept the D More card and got the DIT card, too. You will have to split your exisiting CL between the two cards, but other than that, doesn’t get much better than that. Get 10% all the time (2×5% cat bonuses) and 15% for one year in the cat bonuses. Also, get the one year of shopping portal doubles.

  4. Is there an overall limit to this deal, e.g., “on the first $1500 spent per year” or something similar?

    • If I wanted to keep things very simple, I would go with Discover It Miles. If I wanted to take advantage of quarterly bonuses and shopping portal bonuses (and I do!) I would go with Discover It.

  5. I’ll let you guys be the guinea pigs. No way I’d wait 12 months. “The terms of the program can change at any time.” Especially 11 months into the program when Discover decides you’ve bought too many Sears gift cards.

  6. Hmm… third quarter is department stores which, at least for chase freedom, has included Sears. Could be a nice stack (capped at $1500, but still).

    FM: Have you used discover deals as a portal for Sears gift cards/reloads? I know it’s not explicitly excluded but just wondering. And have you used other non-discover cards and had no trouble with the cashback posting for Sears?

    • Don’t know if this will help or not, but usually, any/all gift cards purchases are EXCLUDED from the extra cashback. Now, if you buy them in-store, it still counts as a regular purchase and you should have no problems.

      • When you say usually, do you mean usually with Discover Deals, or do you mean in general?

        I found one entry in the laboratory from August 2014 showing success for a reload purchase using Discover Deals and a non-discover card. But one entry… still leaves me wary. (I’ll probably test it with say $50 and see what happens, unless someone has more data points.)

        • Well, maybe I stand corrected…

          I was simply going on the usual fine print that says extra cashback will not be awarded for gift card purchases, like the example from Best Buy: “RESTRICTIONS: … gift certificate purchases, shipping, taxes & fees”

          HOWEVER, I did NOT see that one for Sears, so it may work out okay for you. Guess I’m not as smart as I thought I was. I apologize.

  7. Any idea if portal cash back will be doubled? I thought people concluded that portal cash back for the It Miles card wouldn’t be doubled?

    • The phone agent I talked with said that portal cash back would be doubled. Is it possible she was wrong? Sure, but they seem pretty clear that all cash back earned will be doubled, so that should include portal cash back

    • I was told the same thing when I signed up for my second card. Double cash back on everything, including portal purchases.

  8. No go with online purchases of Sears GC’s through Shop Discover. I tested out the August ’14 Lab theory back in December and did not get the cashback. Spoke with a representative and clearly told me that Sears would not pay out for purchases of online GC’s. Dagger.

    • @PCS Sorry for coming back to this so late, but did you do a reload of a physical gift card, or did you do an e-card?

      I think sears E-cards are fulfilled by kmart, or am I getting this mixed up?

      (I’m probably going to test this anyways once we get to July, but figured you might have the answer.)

  9. I understand I could buy a lot of Sears GC but what should I do if I never go to Sears and have nothing to buy…Can I buy VGC from Sears?

    • Search the miler’s archives about the mysterious sears gift card rack…figure it out from there….

  10. Have not done this for a while, but:

    The Frequent Miler; once again proving their are travel hacking blogs, then there is the Frequent Miler.

  11. How do you get the CDW rental car coverage if you pay the booking with car rental gift cards or with points like the Chase points?

    Also, can you book car rental or hotel with Thank you premier points?

    • The car rental gift cards appear to be just a discount on the fare, so as long as you pay some with a credit card that offers coverage, you should be OK. When paying with points for car rentals, check to see if your own auto insurance covers you (most do).
      Yes, ThankYou Premier points can be used to book car rentals and hotels

  12. Just signed up. After asking, rep told me that 5% bonus categories will not double, but it seems like everyone is getting a different story.

    • That’s very odd. I’ve consistently heard that “all cash back” will be doubled. The rep may have been confused about the $1500 limit per quarter which won’t be doubled, of course.

  13. please help me figure out how to milk this on a refrigerator purchase at sears or lowes.
    item is more than 1500$.
    can i complete a double dip through the portal or quad dip through the portal with discover it card?
    do I get a discoverIT card for wife and contribute?
    do i double dip with sears eGCs and then pay with GCs and balance with the DiscoverIT card? can a large purchase on be completed paying split with eGC and Credcard ?

    • A few months ago I contacted customer service and asked about using gift cards on purchases. They told me the ENTIRE amount must be on the card when shopping through the portal to get the cashback.

    • The 10% portal rebate at Sears is only good until the 21st, so it would be best to get going with the double dip now (if you already have an It card signed up for the promo, and the promo is already active for you):
      1. Go through Discover Deals to Sears to buy e-gift cards
      2. Go through Discover Deals again to Sears to use e-gift cards to buy refrigerator
      Step 1 gives you 11% (10% from portal + 1% from It card)
      Step 2 gives you 10%
      Total 21% is doubled at end of year to: 42%!

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