NHL® Discover it® Credit Card Review: Is It a Good Card For Hockey Fans?

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer.

Citi is an advertising partner.

The NHL® Discover it® is a very good rotating category cash back credit card. It is only slightly different from the regular Discover it® Cash Back, which is one of our favorite cash back cards. This card is made for NHL fans who like to buy official gear from the online NHL store. When using the card, along with the promo code ITPAYS, you can get 10% off at shop.NHL.com. We believe this card to be a great deal for hockey fans who always find themselves ordering official team gear and merchandise. Your card can even have a custom design, featuring any NHL team.

The NHL® Discover it® Pros:

  • 10% discount on NHL gear

The NHL® Discover it® Cons:

  • Not very good for individuals who spend over $2,000 per month
  • Discover network not as widely accepted as Visa, Mastercard, or American Express

Review: Is the NHL® Discover it® Worth It?

The NHL® Discover it® is a must-have credit card for hockey fans who like to buy gear from the online NHL store. This card provides a 10% discount on those purchases, provided that you enter the code ITPAYS when checking out. You can’t get a deal this good with any other credit card – most rewards cards can produce a rewards rate of 5% at best.

This credit card is also a decent everyday rewards card, provided your spending aligns with the NHL® Discover it® bonus calendar to maximize rewards. On top of great rewards on spending, what makes this a decent everyday card are some of the Discover-wide benefits. All Discover cardmembers can check their FICO® score free of charge online and on their monthly statements. Users can also "turn off" their card whenever it becomes misplaced, then turn it back "on", should it be found - all with the use of a simple mobile app. This benefit, called Freeze it®, helps users prevent their card from being used by other individuals should it become lost or stolen. This level of management, which few other cards have, gives users unparalleled control over their card and credit score.

Individuals who are looking for the best short-term rewards and savings might want to opt for a card with a welcome bonus – something the NHL® Discover it® lacks. For example, the Chase Freedom® earns its users a $150 bonus when they spend $500 in purchases within the first 3 months of card membership. That means, if you only want a one-time specific purchase from the NHL’s website, you are better off using the Chase Freedom®.

You can use the card to get the most out of it for their seasonal bonuses and your NHL shop purchases, and rely on other cards whenever they are better suited for an individual purchase.

NHL® Discover it® Benefits & Features

The NHL® Discover it® earns you 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, select rideshares and online shopping, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate., 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases - automatically. For example, if you were to use the NHL® Discover it® to buy $1,600 worth of gas in a quarter in which it is a bonus category, you'll get a total of $76 in savings. The first $1,500 will receive 5% back resulting in $75 bonus category rewards while, the remaining $100 receives just 1% cash back, or $1. Below, we've included the 5% rotating bonus calendar for 2020.

January-MarchApril-JuneJuly-SeptemberOctober-December
Grocery stores, Walgreens & CVSGas stations, Uber, Lyft & wholesale clubsRestaurants and PayPalAmazon.com, Target & Walmart.com

NHL Benefits & Savings

Outside of the credit card’s regular cash back rewards, you can get a 10% discount on purchases at shop.NHL.com by using the NHL® Discover it® . In order to take advantage of this offer you must enter the promo code ITPAYS when checking out. The regular 1% cash back bonus still applies to your purchases, and stacks on top of the 10% NHL gear discount. That means, you can think of the total discount on NHL purchases as being 10.9% - the 10% is immediate, while the .9% can be redeemed like all other regular Discover it rewards.

Every once in a while, one of Discover’s bonus quarters will include an “Online Shopping” category. To NHL fans who don’t mind waiting to pick up a jersey, or other merchandise, we recommend waiting for this category to come through. In that way, you can stack the 5% cash back bonus category, on top of the instant 10% discount, for a total savings of 14.5%.

NHL® Discover it® Comparisons

Some cash back credit cards will not have rotating bonus categories, and instead reward users with a flat cash back rate on all spending. The two best examples of this are the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer and the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card. The advantage these cards provide is more spending freedom, and unlimited rewards potential. Only a small portion of your total spending has to fall into the 5% bonus categories of rotating cash back cards in order for their savings to be better than a flat rate credit card. You can see the overall rewards rate below.

% Of Spending in Bonus Categories

Overall Rewards Rate

10%

1.4%

25%

2.0%

50%

3.0%

100%

5.0%

Spending just 15% inside the bonus categories will net you an effective rewards rate greater than 1.5%, while 25% is needed to overtake a 2% cash back card. It is important to keep in mind all of this applies exclusively to spending within the bonus cap. If you spend over $1,500 you will go back to earning a measly 1% on all spending. If you spend over $6,000 every quarter on your credit card, you will be better off with a 2% flat rate card.

NHL® Discover it® vs Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

Citi® Double Cash Card
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We recommend the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer to consumers who fit one of two molds. Firstly, if 25% of your total spending doesn't fall into the NHL® Discover it® bonus categories, you should get the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer. If you think you can meet the NHL® Discover it® bonus categories at least 25% of the way, you should next consider your total quarterly spending. If you, on average, spend more than $2,000 a month on your credit card then, once again, we recommend going with the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer instead.

NHL® Discover it® vs Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

The Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card earns users 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase, every day. This means that you have to spend just 15% in the NHL® Discover it® bonus categories, in order to outperform the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card. The only way in which the distribution of your spending won’t matter is if you spend over $12,000 each quarter. If that’s the case, then the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card’s unlimited 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase, every day overtake all the rewards from the NHL® Discover it® . One additional consideration to make is bonuses. The Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card, unlike the NHL® Discover it® , comes with a $150 bonus if users spend at least $500 in purchases within the first 3 months of card membership. This reward boosts the short-term value of the card.

NHL® Discover it® vs Chase Freedom®

In the realm of rotating category cash back credit cards, Discover and Chase reign supreme. These cards offer the best incentives rewards for consumers for this card type. When comparing the NHL® Discover it® against cards like the Chase Freedom®, one should consider the rewards calendars. The card whose bonus categories best line up with your spending is the superior choice. The Chase Freedom® offers users the following rewards structure: Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate. Enjoy new 5% categories every 3 months. Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases..

The Chase Freedom® has one very valuable benefit going for it: its bonus. Users can earn a $200 Bonus after spending $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. The NHL® Discover it® falls short in this regard, as it has no welcome offers for new cardmembers.

The information related to the Chase Freedom® has been independently collected by ValuePenguin and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

Comparison Tool

You can use our credit card tool below in order to see which cards are best suited for you, based on your individualized spending.

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Joe Resendiz

Joe Resendiz is a former investment banking analyst for Goldman Sachs, where he covered public sector and infrastructure financing. During his time on Wall Street, Joe worked closely with the debt capital markets team, which allowed him to gain unique insights into the credit market. Joe is currently a research analyst who covers credit cards and the payments industry. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin, where he majored in finance.

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How We Calculate Rewards: ValuePenguin calculates the value of rewards by estimating the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using the card less any associated annual fees. These estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone, not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Example of how we calculate the rewards rates: When redeemed for travel through Ultimate Rewards, Chase Sapphire Preferred points are worth $0.0125 each. The card awards 2 points on travel and dining and 1 point on everything else. Therefore, we say the card has a 2.5% rewards rate on dining and travel (2 x $0.0125) and a 1.25% rewards rate on everything else (1 x $0.0125).