NHL® Discover it® Review [2024]: Elevate Your NHL Experience

CREDIT CARDS - CASHBACK CREDIT CARDS
Show your NHL team pride while earning cash back.
Updated Feb. 21, 2024
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The NHL® Discover it® credit card is a cashback credit card that lets you show your NHL team loyalty while earning a respectable cashback rate. You can earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases in rotating quarterly categories when you activate, and 1% back on everything else (enrollment required for rotating quarterly categories).

If you’re an NHL fan who wants to show your team pride while you’re spending, this cashback rewards card could have a place in your wallet. Learn more in our NHL Discover it credit card review.

4.2

NHL® Discover it®

Current Offer

Discover will match all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year

Annual Fee

$0

Rewards Rate

5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases in rotating quarterly categories when you activate, and 1% back on everything else

Benefits and Drawbacks
Card Details

In this NHL Discover it

Key takeaways

  • Card designs are available for all 32 NHL teams.
  • Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases in rotating quarterly categories when you activate, and 1% back on everything else.
  • The Discover Cashback Match® automatically matches all of the cashback you earn in your first year.

Who should get the NHL® Discover it® credit card?

You should get the NHL Discover it card if you want to showcase your team loyalty, as the credit card offers card designs for all 32 NHL teams. You could show off your favorite team every time you make a purchase.

You should also get the NHL Discover it Card if you prefer to earn cash back on your purchases. Some credit cards earn points or miles, which you may not want if you don’t travel often.

You should also consider this card if you frequently spend in the card’s rotating categories. Discover publishes these categories every quarter, so you’ll have to check them regularly to ensure you’re taking full advantage of the card’s benefits.

Keep in mind that you must manually activate your quarterly categories to earn the higher rate. If you don’t activate for the quarter, you’ll earn the standard 1% cashback rate.

This card is also worth considering if you have good to excellent credit, as this card requires a score within this range. Banks typically use the information on your credit report along with other factors, such as income, when determining eligibility.

Credit card basics

Card type Cash back
Credit card issuer Discover
Annual fee $0
Welcome offer Discover will match all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year
Intro APR See terms
Reward rate 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases in rotating quarterly categories when you activate, and 1% back on everything else
Recommended credit score Excellent, Good
Foreign transaction fee None

Why we like the NHL® Discover it®: benefits and perks

  • Rotating cash-back categories: Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in rotating quarterly categories when you activate. In the past, these categories have included common purchases such as gas, groceries, restaurants, digital wallets, and wholesale clubs.
  • Cashback Match: Discover will match all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year.
  • $0 annual fee.
  • Free online privacy protection: Discover will regularly remove your personal info from people-search websites that might sell your personal data.
  • Social Security number alerts: Get an alert if Discover finds your Social Security number on one of thousands of Dark Web sites.

What we don’t like about this card: drawbacks

  • Manual activation required: You’ll only get 5% cashback on cash back on up to $1,500 in rotating quarterly categories when you activate if you manually activate every quarter. If you don’t activate, you’ll only earn the 1% on everything else cashback rate.
  • Categories change every quarter: This card’s cashback categories change every quarter, and you have no control over what the categories for the quarter will be. Some cashback cards give you some control over your highest-earning categories, but this card only gives you the higher rate on whichever categories Discover picks for the quarter.
  • Good to excellent credit required: This card typically requires good to excellent credit scores. Banks typically consider other factors as well like your income.

Earning and redeeming NHL® Discover it® credit card cash back

As mentioned, you can earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases in rotating quarterly categories when you activate, and 1% back on everything else. Enrollment is required for the higher rate on rotating categories.

Redemption options include:

  • Cash deposited into your checking or savings account
  • Statement credit
  • Gift cards
  • Charitable donations
  • PayPal
  • Amazon

You can redeem cash back in any amount at any time. The only exception to this is gift cards, which you can redeem starting at $5.

Potential earnings in years one and two

Here's a look at how your rewards can add up with the NHL Discover it card. To calculate these values, we used a point valuation of $0.01.

Remember, this is an estimation. The actual value will be determined by how much you spend and in which categories you spend.

Year one earnings: $750

Year two earnings: $375

These values are based on the FinanceBuzz Credit Card Rewards Valuation Model, which takes a look at points earned via spending, the welcome bonus, and the annual fee.

Best ways to earn

This card earns the most on its 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in rotating quarterly categories when you activate. You can maximize your redemptions by spending at least $1,500 in these categories every quarter.

In 2023, the Discover Cashback Calendar bonus categories included:

  • January to March: grocery stores, drugstores, and select streaming services
  • April to June: restaurants and wholesale clubs
  • July to September: gas stations and digital wallets
  • October to December: Amazon.com and Target

These are just examples of categories Discover has had in the past, but they often include common spending categories like these. To see the current categories, check Discover’s cashback calendar. Then log in to your account and activate for the quarter to earn your bonus.

The other bonus you earn with this card is the Cashback Match after your first year. You can maximize your rewards by putting additional purchases on the card as well.

Category Rewards rate
Cash back on up to $1,500 in rotating quarterly categories when you activate 5%
Everything else 1%

Maximizing your redemptions

Although earning the most points with this Discover card requires some extra work, there isn’t much work needed to maximize your redemptions. The reason is that this is a cashback credit card, so there’s no work needed to maximize the value of points or miles, as is sometimes the case with travel or rewards credit cards.

This also means that redeeming your cash back is simple. You can redeem your cash back in any amount at any time. The only exception is gift cards, which require at least $5 worth of cash back in order to redeem. None of the other redemption options require a minimum amount.

FAQ

Is the Discover NHL card worth it?

The Discover NHL card is worth it if you can keep up with the card’s 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in rotating quarterly categories when you activate. This is an exceptional rate, especially for a credit card with a $0 annual fee. However, you must activate your bonus cashback categories every quarter to get the higher rate.

You also get an unlimited dollar-for-dollar Cashback Match of all the cashback you earn during your first year as a cardholder. This lets you earn a great cashback rate on your purchases outside of your bonus categories.

If you can’t activate your bonus categories every quarter, you may be better off with a card like the Citi Double Cash® Card, which can earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases; plus, for a limited time, earn 5% total cash back on hotel, car rentals and attractions booked on the Citi Travel℠ portal through 12/31/24.

What are the benefits of the Discover NHL card?

The biggest benefits of the Discover NHL Card are its 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases in rotating quarterly categories when you activate, and 1% back on everything else and the unlimited Cashback Match of the cashback you earn during your first year as a cardholder.

Other benefits include online privacy protection and Social Security number monitoring.

What credit score is needed for the Discover it credit card?

A Discover it card is appropriate for those with good to excellent credit. What constitutes good credit varies depending on the model, but a good credit score is generally a FICO score 670 or higher.

Other cards to consider

If the NHL Discover it card isn’t right for you, the Chase Freedom Flex℠ could be a good fit. Like the NHL Discover it card, the Freedom Flex offers a higher rate on rotating categories. It also offers 3% back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants (including takeout and eligible delivery service).

Learn more in our Chase Freedom Flex review.

While the NHL Discover it card works well if you regularly spend money in its higher earning categories, that won’t be the case for everyone. If you don’t often spend money in these categories or you forget to activate, you may be better off with a card that doesn’t require this manual step every quarter.

There are other credit cards that earn a higher rate with less work required on your end.

For instance, the Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card takes a different approach: you earn 3% cash back in the category of your choice and 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases) and 1% on all other purchases. While the rate is lower than you get with the Discover card, there’s no need for manual activation every quarter. Plus, the quarterly limit is higher for the Bank of America card.

Learn more in our Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card review.

Credit card Annual fee Reward rate Welcome offer
NHL® Discover it® $0 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases in rotating quarterly categories when you activate, and 1% back on everything else Discover will match all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year
Chase Freedom Flex℠ $0 5% cash back on rotating quarterly categories you activate (on up to $1,500 spent) and travel purchased through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal; 3% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants (including takeout and eligible delivery service); and 1% cash back on all other purchases Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card $0 3% cash back in the category of your choice and 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases) and 1% on all other purchases Earn a $200 online cash rewards bonus after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening

4.2

NHL® Discover it®

Why We Like It

Discover will match all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year

See how these cards compare:

Chase Freedom Flex℠
Chase Freedom Flex℠
  • Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • Up to 5% cash back on spending
  • Perks from Lyft, DoorDash, and more
Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card
Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card
  • Earn a $200 online cash rewards bonus after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
  • Up to 3% cash back in one category of your choice
  • Long intro APR on purchases and qualifying balance transfers
  • No annual fee

Bottom line

The NHL Discover it card is a good choice for hockey fans because it lets you show off your favorite NHL team by adding any of the 32 NHL team logos to your card. Its rotating categories give you a cashback boost, as does its Cashback Match of the cashback you earn your first year as a cardmember. You could also consider another one of the top Discover credit cards.

If you don’t want to deal with enrolling in rotating categories each quarter, a card with a simpler cashback structure could be a better fit.

Author Details

Bob Haegele Bob Haegele is a seasoned personal finance writer, leveraging his bachelor's degree in information technology from Marquette University to dissect complex financial topics.

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