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Credit Cards For Those Who Carry A Balance… or Who Like 5% Cash Back Rewards

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It isn't often that I write about credit cards. I have a couple of credit cards that I've had for about 5 years with really good cash back rewards. I get 4-6% off of almost everything that I buy from groceries, gas, and restaurants to home improvement and office supply stores. Unfortunately, those cards are no longer offered, and it is pretty hard to find something as good in today's credit environment. However, I think I might have found something that's pretty close.

As always, with credit cards, I recommend that you pay off the balance each month. It's not a reward if end up paying fees. However, for those who already have a balance, I have a little help for you today in the form of two cards that may help you through a balance transfer:

Discover: No Balance Transfer Fee Card

If you carry a credit card balance and are paying interest on it.... stop! You can transfer your balance to Discover's No Balance Transfer Fee Card . Many cards have a 5% balance transfer fee and then give you some time with a 0% APR rate before they bring it up to the typical (high) rates. That 5% balance transfer fee can scorch you for $200 on a $4000 balance. However, this card has no balance transfer fee and a 0% APR interest rate for a whole year. If you are carrying a balance, this is a great way to save some money while you pay it off.

As an extra bonus new purchases for the first 12 months also have a 0% APR. However, remember, the plan here is get rid of the balance, not add to it.

This offer is available for a limited time, so as Beyoncé says, "Put a Ring on It."

Discover: 24 Month Balance 0% APR Transfer Card

I don't like this deal as much as the one above. Why? Well it has a 5% balance transfer fee (or $10 whichever is higher). What do you get with that fee? You get 24 months a 0% APR interest rate. Over the last few years, I've successfully killed most of my mathy brain cells with beer (so please correct me in the comments), but it seems like this would be equal to taking your current credit card balance and only paying 2.5% interest per year over two years on it. Given the annual rates on credit cards, locking yourself into this for two years would seem to be quite helpful while you are digging out of a debt hole.

In addition to that, new purchases for the first 6 months also have a 0% APR. As I said with the other card, stop buying stuff until you pay the balance off :-).

If this sounds like something that could help you out, sign up for the Discover: 24 Month Balance 0% APR Transfer Card now.

Discover Rewards

As I mentioned at the beginning of the article, there are rewards for these cards as well. You get 5% cash back on the following:

  • January"“March - Travel and Restaurants
  • March - Grocery and Drug Stores
  • April - June Home and Fashion
  • July - September - Gas, Hotels, Movies and Theme Parks
  • October - December - Restaurants and Fashion

That's a nice perk. It isn't exactly a game changer since deals change each month and I find few retailers take Discover. However, that July - September 5% cash back just screams vacation to me (maybe as a reward for paying off 75% of the balance you transferred). Road trip to Disney World or Disney Land anyone?

Posted on January 20, 2011.

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3 Responses to “Credit Cards For Those Who Carry A Balance… or Who Like 5% Cash Back Rewards”

  1. Tiffany says:

    I have a Discover card and I’m a fan. Over the holiday season they had 2x cash back on any online purchases, and they also have one of those buy-through-our-link-for-more-CB stores too. They mostly have 5-10% on stores, but they also have 15% CB on Groupon and I’ve seen 20% on one or two things before.

  2. Sun says:

    I don’t own a Discover Rewards card, but since I got 5% back on groceries, I stocked up gift cards purchased at Ralphs/Krogers. They were also running a 4x rewards special on gift cards, so I got 9% (in various ways) by purchasing gift cards. Looks like there’s another opportunity in March with the Discover Rewards card.

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