Discover cash back calendar 2018 – Earn 5 percent back on groceries in Q2


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Earn 5 percent back on groceries in Q2

Discover cash back calendar

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The content on this page is accurate as of the posting date. Please see the bank’s website for the most current version of card offers.

Discover has launched its 5 percent cash back category for
the second quarter of 2018. From April through June 2018, Discover it cardholders
can earn 5 percent back at grocery stores on up to $1,500 in combined spending
upon enrollment. In terms of earning rewards for grocery shopping, 5 percent
cash back is a generous rate.

To activate the second quarter bonus category, click

Here’s what you need to know at a glance:

  • You must activate the bonus each quarter to
    receive 5 percent back.
  • The second quarter bonus is active from April 1,
    2018 – or the date on which you activate it, whichever is later – through June
    30, 2018.
  • The bonus is capped at $1,500 per quarter.
  • All other purchases earn 1 percent cash back.

Discover’s 2018 cash
back calendar

Discover is doing things a little differently this year. Instead
of announcing its bonus cash back categories on a quarter-per-quarter basis,
they have unveiled the full 2018 calendar in advance. According to Discover,
the 2018 calendar is designed to include more places where Discover it card members routinely shop. See the categories and activation
dates below:

Discover 5 percent cash back calendar 2018

Winter Spring Summer Holiday
January – March April – June July – September
(Activate starting May 1, 2018)
October – December
(Activate starting Aug. 1, 2018)

  • Gas stations
  • Wholesale clubs

  • Wholesale clubs

While several of Discover’s 2018
categories are the same as those from 2017, the major items that stand out are
the absence of ground transportation, home improvement stores and Target
stores. However, if you frequently shop at wholesale clubs, you’ll still come
out on top with the 2018 categories. Because Discover is offering the bonus
rate at wholesale clubs during the first AND fourth quarters of 2018, you can
essentially earn 5 percent back at stores like Sam’s and Costco for half of
2018. Since you can earn the 5 percent rate on up to $1,500 in purchases per
quarter, and 1 percent cash back after that, you can potentially earn more than
$150 cash back at wholesale clubs during 2018.

What is
included/excluded in the “grocery stores” category?

The “grocery
stores” category excludes purchases made at convenience stores, gas stations,
wholesale clubs, supercenters, discount stores and any grocery stores
associated with supercenters or discount stores. Purchases made using
tap-and-pay, mobile or wireless card readers, virtual wallets or similar
technology also may not be eligible.

Tips for maximizing your bonus

  • Use your Discover it card to purchase groceries
    from supermarkets.
  • Avoid purchasing food from wholesale clubs,
    supercenters, convenience stores, discount stores and gas stations to ensure
    that you receive the 5 percent bonus.
  • Check Discover’s shopping portal
    for opportunities to stack your rewards.

Discover vs. Chase bonus categories

Chase also offers a
5 percent cash back bonus in categories that rotate quarterly. From April 1
through June 30, 2018, Chase Freedom cardholders can earn 5 percent cash back
on up to $1,500 of grocery purchases, Chase Pay purchases and PayPal purchases.

Chase vs. Discover
cash back categories 2018

Chase Freedom
Chase Freedom
January – March Gas stations and wholesale clubs Gas stations; internet, cable and phone services; Chase Pay, Android Pay, Apple Pay and Samsung Pay
April – June Grocery stores Groceries, Chase Pay and PayPal
July – September Restaurants Summer – coming soon
October – December and wholesale clubs Holiday – coming soon

Which card offers the
best deal?

Ultimately, we think Chase does.

Although Discover’s 5 percent bonus on groceries is a great
offer, the Freedom card offers the same deal – but with more flexibility and
options. In addition to getting 5 percent back on groceries, Freedom
cardholders can earn the bonus rate anywhere Chase Pay and PayPal are accepted.
Meaning that Freedom cardholders can also
receive 5 percent back at wholesale stores, department stores, restaurants, gas
stations and more.

Beyond the second quarter, though, we can’t tell you which
card offers the better deal. Based on past years, we can guess that Chase may
offer the bonus rate at restaurants and department stores some time during
2018. But because they don’t release their full calendar in advance, it’s
impossible to tell which card will best suit your spending habits throughout
the year. 

See related: Chase launches its cash back category for Q2 2018, Chase Pay: How to use it and rack up cash back rewards, Credit
card special offers and limited-time promotions

The editorial content
below is based solely on the objective assessment of our writers and is not
driven by advertising dollars. However, we do receive compensation when you
click on links to products from our partners. Learn
more about our advertising policy

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