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Which is Better: Capital One Savor Rewards vs. Discover it Chrome?

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The Verdict

The Capital One Savor Rewards Credit is more rewarding because it offers higher cash-back on dining and groceries

Capital One's newest dining rewards card—the Savor Rewards Credit—offers one of the highest cash-back rates for dining purchases: 3%!

And Capital One defines dining generously—the category includes not only fine restaurants but also food carts, take-out venues, and coffee shops.

If you're a foodie who enjoys eating out and cooking lavish meals at home, you'll also appreciate the 2% cash-back the Savor Card offers on grocery purchases.

All other purchases will earn you 1%.

How Often Americans Dine Out at Fast Food Restaurants?

The Discover it Chrome Gas & Restaurant card only offers 2% cash-back at restaurants—and no cash-back at the grocery store or coffee shop.

Both cards have no annual fee, but if food is a passion of yours and a big monthly expense, you'll earn more cash-back with the Capital One Savor Rewards card.

Why One Is Stronger

Besides the cash, the Capital One Savor Rewards card also offers a $150 sign-up bonus

When Capital One replaced its Premier Dining Rewards credit card with the Savor Rewards card in October 2017, it also upped the ante when it comes to rewards.

Instead of a $100 sign-up bonus, you'll now earn $150 when you spend $500 within three months of opening the card.

Now, that's a sweet deal!

Enjoy the perks of an elite credit card. Though it has no annual fee, the Capital One Savor offers many perks usually reserved only for luxe credit cards.

These World Elite Mastercard Benefits include complimentary concierge service, identity theft resolution services, trip cancellation/interruption insurance, price protection and extended warranty, and more.

We'll go into the more details in a bit.

Bask in unlimited rewards. Many reward credit cards—including theDiscover it Chrome Gas & Restaurant Card—limit the amount of spending that qualifies for bonus cash-back per category.

The Discover it isn't particularly generous—cardholders earn 2% on restaurants and gas only on the first $1,000 they spend each quarter, which is equivalent to only $20!).

That makes it even more noteworthy that the Capital One Savor card offers unlimited 3% back on dining and 2% back on groceries.

So, if you're a big spender on eating out—or cooking at home—you'll fare better with the Savor card.

It's accepted everywhere—even internationally. The Capital One Savor card doesn't charge a foreign transaction fee, making it a good card to use when traveling abroad. Discover, on the other hand, isn't accepted widely in places like Europe.

People who love to eat love Capital One Savor's rewards

For those whom food is an art form and a delicious meal is the highlight of the day, the Savor card delivers in the form of generous cash-back not only at restaurants, but also food carts, bakeries, coffee shops, and take-out.

Cardholders like that they also earn 2% back on grocery purchases—so they have the freedom to eat out or cook at home.

"The Savor card would be useful for a person that eats out a lot, likes cash back instead of points or miles, and doesn't want to pay annual fees," says a user who goes by the name stampman.

"Food is central to so many of life's moments—big and small—sometimes it's to celebrate, other times to nourish and feed," says Matt Robinson of the Real Food by Dad blog.

"Whether we all meet up at my house or out—I could get rewarded in more ways than one" with the Savor card, he says.

What are the most popular American Deli Meats The biggest customer complaint about the Capital One Savor Rewards card is its high APR

Those who don't spend a lot of money each month on food weren't too excited by the Savor card, and understandably so. "I am not big on entertainment so that one doesn't really work for me," said user ABCD2199.

Others complained about the short 0% interest introductory period (only 9 months) and high interest thereafter, ranging from 15.49-24.49%.

The takeaway

The Capital One Savor Rewards card is perfect for those who pride themselves on their foodie habits—whether they frequent restaurants or coffee shops or prefer to try out new recipes at home.

Counter Argument

Then again, the Discover it Chrome Gas & Dining credit card could be a better fit because of its longer 0% interest period

If you spend a lot on gas each month or are planning a big purchase, the Discover it Chrome can be a better choice.

Get free money for longer. The Discover it Chrome card offers a longer-than-average 0% interest promotional period of 14 months.

Compare that to the 9 months of 0% interest offered by the Savor card.

After the promotional period ends, the Discover it Chrome card charges variable interest ranging from 11.49-23.49%, depending on your credit—which is lower than the 15.49-24.49% in interest that the Savor card charges.

Bonus cash at the pump. You'll earn 2% back in cash when filling up your car with gas—1% more than you'd earn with the Savor card.

Plus, your cash-back is matched your first year. New cardholders enjoy an added benefit: They receive a dollar-for-dollar match of all the cash-back earned throughout the year.

This only applies to the first year you have the card.

But it means that your effective cash-back rate for everyday purchases becomes 2%, and you'll earn 4% on gas and restaurants.

That beats the Savor 3% back on dining—but, again, this only applies to the first year.

People love Discover it Chrome because of its free credit monitoring

Younger customers, particularly those who are getting their first credit card or saving up to make a big purchase, said they liked the free FICO feature.

"I really like the freeze feature if you misplace your card momentarily," says Jessica H. "I lost mine for a month once and I froze it in case it was stolen. It was just in the back of my car and I was able to unfreeze it and reuse it without it affecting my subscriptions."

The biggest customer complaint about Discover it Chrome Gas & Dining credit card is that it is not widely accepted outside the U.S.

While the Discover it Chrome card doesn't charge a foreign transaction fee, customers complained that Discover cards aren't widely accepted internationally, particularly in Europe.

Other customers, including Annabel from Florida, complained that the minimum payments are higher with Discover than other credit card companies.

The takeaway

The Discover it Chrome Gas & Dining credit cardis a better bet for those who need more than a year of 0% interest to finance a big purchase, as well as foodies who drive a lot and are looking for a dining rewards card that also offers bonus cash-back for gas.

About The Companies

Capital One's Savor card resembles copper cookware while the Discover it card ads have folks seeing double

Capital One

Capital One has 45 million cardholders (coming in seventh among the top 10 credit card issuers).

It's Savor card's look and feel that evokes high-end copper cookware, making it easy to spot in a crowded wallet.

Sarah Michelle Gellar, the former Buffy actress-turned-foodie, is the spokesperson for the card.

Discover

Discover is the fifth-largest credit card company, with 57 million cardholders.

You might recall the TV commercials featuring "twins" that highlight the Discover it cards offer of free FICO scores for cardholders.

U.S. Largest Credit Card Issuers (2017)

Services Offered

Capital One and Discover offer cash-back rewards on dining with 0% APR

Restaurant-goers will earn bonus cash-back rewards and 0% interest with both Capital One and Discover.

The good and the bad about Capital One Savor's services

The Capital One Savor card offers a 9-month 0% interest promotional period.

But don't forget the balance transfer fee. With the Capital One Savor card, you'll have 9 months with zero interest, buying you time to pay off purchases and balance transfers.

Just don't forget that 3% fee on the initial balance transfer amount.

Your meals will be extra rewarding. You'll earn 3% back on dining (defined broadly to include restaurants, coffee shops, food carts, and bakeries), 2% cash back on grocery store purchases, and 1% back on everything else.

But you could earn more cash back. Other cards, including the American Express Blue Cash Everyday card, offer 3% cash back on grocery store purchases.

They have a limit of $6,000, though, while the Savor card offers unlimited bonus cash-back rewards.

The good and the bad about Discover it Chrome's services

The Discover it Chrome card offers a longer 0% promotional interest rate period of 14 months—helpful if you are planning a large purchase such as bedroom furniture or a new swing set for your kids.

But it also charges a balance transfer fee. This one incurs a 3% fee on the initial balance transfer amount as well.

Quit worrying about your credit. Discover lets you view your FICO Score for free on your monthly statements and when you log into your online account.

If you're working on improving your credit score—or simply want to be careful in the wake of the Equifax and other breaches—this is a great feature that would normally cost at least $20 a month.

The takeaway

Both cash-back cards have no annual fee, but the Discover it Chrome card gives you 5 extra months of 0% interest and a free updated FICO score.

Rewards and Bonuses

Only the Savor card offers a $150 sign-up bonus

When it comes to earning a sign-up bonus by spending a certain amount of money on your new credit card, the Savor card comes out ahead

The good and the bad about the Savor card's rewards and bonuses

The Savor card's $150 sign-up bonus is a good one, and you'll only need to spend $500 in the first three months to earn it. Whereas…

The good and the bad about Discover it Chrome's rewards and bonuses

The Discover it Chrome card, on the other hand, doesn't offer a sign-up bonus at all.

That's the bad news.

The good news is that Discover will match all the cash-back you earn the first year you have the card, dollar for dollar.

That means even more cash in your wallet.

The takeaway

The Capital One Savor card makes it easy to earn the $150 sign-up bonus—just spend $500 within 3 months.

The Discover card gives you a dollar-for-dollar match of your first-year cash-back earnings.

But unless you're spending a lot, you're better off with the Savor card.

Benefits

Both Capital One and Discover offer buyer protection benefits

In addition to cash-back, both credit card companies offer a variety of consumer protection benefits and insurance programs.

Capital One Savor benefits

The Savor card offers the luxe benefits associated with World Elite Mastercard status:

Buy with confidence. The card provides extended warranty and price protection. And if your card is used fraudulently, Capital One will help you avoid or fix identity theft.

Total Fraud Victims Reaches Record High in 2016

Have the concierge make the reservation for you. Enjoy assistance 24 hours a day, from home and when you travel.

No need to swipe. The card's contactless technology enables you to pay without having to swipe or dip.

Just tap your card on the card reader.

Great travel perks. The card offers 24-hour travel assistance, auto rental collision damage waiver, and travel accident insurance.

Discover it Chrome benefits

Monitor your credit for free. You'll get a free FICO Score on your monthly statements, enabling you to keep tabs on your credit score.

This is helpful for those planning to buy a new house or car and working to improve their credit scores.

Lost your card? Freeze your account in seconds. You can freeze or unfreeze your account by logging online or via the mobile app. This gives cardholders peace of mind.

Earn extra cash-back when shopping online. Shop through Discover Deals and earn 5-20% in cash-back bonuses and instant savings when shopping online at major retailers.

You can also redeem cash-back on Amazon.com

The takeaway

Both Capital One and Discover offer many purchase protection and related benefits that can make travel simpler and more enjoyable.

Costs and Fees

Neither card charges an annual fee

While both of these cash-back credit cards don't charge an annual fee, there are other fees to be aware of.

The good and the bad about Capital One Savor's costs and fees

The no annual fee is a big all-around winner here, and those who love to travel will be happy to know that it doesn't have a foreign transaction fee, either.

No cost for cash-back. You'll earn cash-back rewards without having to pay an annual fee for the privilege.

Other fees are fairly standard.

As with most credit cards, you'll pay a 3% fee on the amount of each balance transfer.

The good and the bad about Discover it Chrome's costs and fees

The Discover it Chrome card does away with many unnecessary fees, including no foreign transaction fee.

No cost for keeping it in your wallet. You won't have to pay a fee each year to use this credit card.

Get a pass on paying late. You won't be charged a late fee on your first late payment, saving you around $38.

No over-limit fee. If you spend beyond your credit line, Discover won't penalize you for it.

Watch for standard fees that still apply. While you won't pay interest on balance transfers for 14 months, there is a 3% fee applied to each transfer to your account.

The takeaway

While there is no annual fee, if you do a balance transfer you'll pay 3% of the amount being transferred—on both cards.

Customer Service

Customer service at Capital One and Discover is mixed

Some people love them while others hate them—here's the lowdown on customer service at these two credit card companies.

The good and the bad about Capital One's customer service

Quick and easy issue resolution. Capital One's "customer service actually is quite good," says user FLL.

"No foreign reps to deal with in my experiences. They are very quick in taking care of rental car claims, based on a few friends' experiences when they used the Venture for International car rentals and had to file claims."

The Future of North American Car Rental Market

Sensitive to cardholders' woes. There was even a news story that went viral about a jilted-bride-to-be whose Capital One credit card was shut down for fraudulent charges whose faith in humanity was restored when the customer service rep, Tonya, sent her flowers and gave her nearly 5,000 miles and encouraged her to take a trip to get her mind off the untimely break-up.

But not all the time. Other users complained about Capital One's customer service.

One such user paid the bill online, but it didn't show up in the mobile app so the user paid again.

Upon realizing the accidental duplicate payment, the customer called Capital One to have them revert one of the charges.

The end result wasn't positive—the cardholder was hit with overdraft fees from the double payment out of her bank account.

"My recommendation, use Discover. Their customer service is amazing…and I regret ever switching."

The good and the bad about Discover's customer service

Discover doesn't make high grades across the board with its customer service, either.

Watch out for credit line demotions. "My credit line was reduced without explanation and without for notice," Jacob B. reports on the Better Business Bureau website.

He says he was current on payments and was never notified about the credit limit decrease, and that customer service reps he contacted were unhelpful.

Unpredictable purchase protection. William said that Discover's customer service reps didn't honor the purchase protection benefits outlined in his card benefits.

"A vendor has robbed me of nearly $900 and Discover has basically told us there is nothing that can be done," he writes.

The takeaway

Neither Capital One nor Discover offers fantastic customer service, unfortunately.

Key Digital Services

Monitor your credit card usage on the go with mobile apps

Both Capital One and Discover offer mobile apps for Apple and Android devices to help you monitor your credit card activity on the go.

The good and the bad about Capital One's mobile app

Capital One's mobile app makes it simple to check your account balances, transfer money, deposit checks, and pay bills while you're on the go.

Stellar app ratings. The app received good ratings and reviews in both the Google Play store (4.6 stars) and iTunes (4.5 stars). "The app is simple and easy. I love that I get notifications instantly when the card is used. I've prevented some fraud because of it," writes user Brandi Stroh.

Be aware of updates. Some Apple users reported the latest version of the app crashing on their devices.

And some features—like setting up an online account or canceling certain transfers—still need to be done from a desktop computer as opposed to the mobile app.

The good and the bad about Discover's mobile app

The Discover mobile app can be downloaded on an iPhone or Android mobile phone.

The app lets you view your statements, make a payment, and view your cash-back rewards.

Free, easy download. To download the app, text APP to DISCOV (347268) on your mobile device.

Mobile App Store Downloads Worldwide

View your free credit score. Just log into the Discover app to view your FICO Score—making it simple to monitor your credit.

Don't worry, just Freeze It. If your Discover card is lost or stolen, just log into the app and use Freeze It to freeze your card to prevent fraudulent transactions.

You can just as easily unfreeze the card when it mysteriously turns up the next day.

The takeaway

Prevent fraud and keep track of spending by downloading the credit card company's mobile app.

How To Start Using Their Services

Go to the company website if you want to sign up for a cash-back credit card

The best way to sign up for a new cash-back credit card is to visit the card issuer's website.

You'll need your Social Security number handy, and you'll also have to enter information about your employer and salary.

Best way to begin with Capital One Savor

You can sign up for the Capital One Savor card on the Capital One website.

At the time of this writing, the card is offering a $150 bonus when you spend $500 within three months.

Note that you'll need an excellent credit score (over 700) to qualify for this card.

How best to begin with Discover it Chrome

You can visit the Discover website to sign up for the Discover it Chrome card.

The card is easier to get approved for than the Capital One Savor card. You'll need a good credit score of 645 or higher to qualify.

FAQ

The top questions about these two cards

  • What does each card provider offer new customers as incentives?

    The Capital One Savor Card offers a $150 sign-up bonus when you spend $500 in three months. The Discover it Chrome card does not offer a sign-up bonus.

  • What does each card provider offer as ongoing incentives for loyal customers?

    The Capital One Savor provides 3% cash back on all dining purchases, 2% back at supermarkets, and 1% on everything else.

    The Discover it Chrome card gives you 2% back at restaurants and gas and 1% cash back on everything else.

  • Which offers a better 0% interest promotion?

    The Discover it Chrome—you'll get 14 months as opposed to only 9 months with the Capital One Savor.

  • What are the interest rates for each card provider?

    After the introductory period, Capital One Savor charges between 15.49-24.49% interest, depending on your credit.

    Discover it Chrome charges between 11.99-23.99% after the introductory period.

  • Does either card have an annual fee?

    No.

  • What about a foreign transaction fee?

    Neither card charges a foreign transaction fee.

  • What credit score range should you be in before applying for each card?

    You'll need an excellent credit score (over 700) to qualify for Capital One Savor card.

    The Discover it Chrome card is easier to qualify for—you'll only need a good credit score of 645 or higher.

  • How do I cancel each card?

    If you'd like to cancel either your Capital One Savor or your Discover it Chrome credit cards, just call the customer service number on the back of your credit card—that way, you'll reach a customer service agent who specializes in your credit card.

    With both cards, you'll have to pay off your balance before the account can be closed.

    Be sure to redeem any cash-back available before closing the account, or you risk forfeiting it.

Unless you need more than a year of 0% interest, the Capital One Savor card wins out

When it comes to cash back rewards cards, a card with no annual fee is the way to go.

If you're spending a lot of money each month on dining out and groceries, we recommend the Capital One Savor card over the Discover it Chrome since you'll earn up to 3% back, as compared to 2% cash back at restaurants.

Plus, the Savor card defines restaurants very broadly, so you'll earn that extra cash back at coffee shops, bakeries, and even food carts.

So, eat up—the potential of all these bonus rewards is deliciously unlimited.

What do you think of these cards?

Has one been a dream and another a nightmare?

Let us know how you feel in the comments below.


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