Discover Has "It"

January 7, 2013

To start off 2013, Discover Financial Services has added a new credit card to its portfolio that it claims will change the credit card industry. The Discover it card offers rewards, Discover's vaunted customer service and a look like no other.

"We believe that consumers want something different from a credit card company--something that addresses their specific needs, treats them fairly and gives them what they deserve," said Roger Hochschild, president and chief operating officer at Discover, in a statement. "This card is a natural extension of Discover's 'It Pays to Discover' brand positioning and truly shows ho Discover is looking to build a long-term relationship with its customers."

To showcase the differences of its card, Discover is trying to make Discover it an experience in all ways. The card itself is sent in a box, rather than in a envelope. The front of the card simply has the Discover it logo on, reserving the back of the card for the cardholder name and credit card number. The card itself is a metallic blue that looks like brushed steel.

Discover has five general tenets about this credit card, and it's set up the guidelines with them in mind: fair, safe, generous, flexible and human.

Under fairness, Discover has taken away many fees. The card has no annual, over credit limit, pay-by-phone or foreign transaction fees. If a cardholder makes one late payment, there's no charge for the first incident. Discover also won't raise the APR on the account if a cardholder has a late payment.

Discover it intends to carry on Discover's legacy of safety, which ranks high in identity fraud resolution per Javelin Strategy & Research's Card Issuer's Safety Scorecard Report. This card also has Discover's $0 Fraud Liability Guarantee that absolves cardholders of unauthorized charges made on their account.

Discover it will also be a part of Discover's Cashback Bonus program. This gives cardholders one percent cash back on all purchases and five to twenty percent cash back on purchases made through ShopDiscover, an online shopping portal. Discover also offers a special five percent incentive on purchases made in specific categories. This category list changes on a quarterly basis throughout the year, and cardholders must register for each one. Cardholders can also use their rewards to pay for purchases at Amazon.com. Discover's Cashback Concierge is another resource that will help people learn how to maximize their rewards.

For cardholders who'd prefer to have specific due dates, this card gives them the option to choose their own, and they can pay by midnight Eastern time online or by phone on that date without it being considered a late payment. The company also has a variety of account management tools, including online features, mobile apps and e-mail reminders.

As for the human aspect of this new card, when cardholders call Discover to discuss account matters, they have the option of being connected to a live, U.S.-based customer service representative. Also, if a cardmember becomes unemployed, Discover will find a way to work with him to manage the account.

As an incentive, Discover is offering a zero percent APR for 14 months on purchases and balance transfers. After that period, the APR will be a variable 10.99 to 19.99 percent.

Discover also has a student version of the card designed for those in college who are starting to build their credit. It offers the same options as the standard version of the card, but it has slightly different terms and conditions. Its 0% introductory APR offer is only good for nine months, and the variable APR is 12.99% to 18.99% thereafter.

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