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Can You Get Cash Back With a Credit Card?

Last Updated: November 7, 2023

Key points about: getting cash back from a credit card

  1. Many credit cards offer cash back rewards on eligible purchases made with the card.

  2. Cash back rewards cards provide rewards based on percentages of spending and/or certain spending categories.

  3. Some cash back rewards cards offer a welcome bonus in the form of additional rewards.

If you want to get cash back on a credit card purchase, you’ll need a card with cash back rewards. Many credit cards offer cash back rewards programs, but the amount you can get back typically depends on the credit card company and the types of rewards cards offered. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you understand how to choose a cash back card, how to get cash back on a rewards credit card for everyday purchases, and how to redeem cash back rewards.

Choose a cash back rewards card

Start by choosing a credit card that offers cash back rewards instead of miles or points. The Discover it® Cash Back Credit Card, for example, lets you earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places you shop each quarter, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate.

When you’re thinking about how to get cash back from a credit card, don’t just look at the cash back you can earn when you shop. Make sure you compare each credit card’s welcome offer, too, because these often come with the potential to earn additional bonus cash. Take Discover Cashback Match, for instance. Discover gives you an unlimited match of all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year.1

Charge purchases that earn cash back rewards to your credit card

Some credit cards offer the same flat-rate cash back percentage, such as 1%, on all qualifying purchases. Other cash back credit cards offer a higher percentage of cash back on popular spending categories, which, for example, could include 2% cash back on qualifying gas and restaurants purchases and 1% cash back on all other purchases. Then there are cash back cards that allow cardholders to earn even greater rewards in bonus categories. For example, the Discover it® Cash Back Card lets you earn 5% Cashback Bonus at grocery stores, drug stores, and select streaming services, January 1-March 31, 2023, on up to $1,500 in purchases when you activate. This excludes Walmart and Target purchases.2

Can you get cash back from a credit card through categories that don’t match your day-to-day spending habits? Of course—but if you want to earn as much cash back as possible, try to pick a rewards credit card that offers its highest level of rewards for your everyday spending.

Redeem your cash back rewards

How do you redeem cash back rewards? Many credit card issuers allow you to redeem rewards for statement credits, gift cards to eligible retailers, online purchases, and more. When you’re ready to redeem cash back from your credit card, simply log into your online account or credit card app and follow the instructions to redeem your cash back rewards.

Discover offers several ways to redeem cash back rewards, including redeeming for cash, a statement credit, a gift card to participating merchants, or even a charitable donation. Plus, your Discover cash back rewards never expire—and you can redeem any amount, any time.3

Can you get cash back with a credit card? You bet. Choosing the right cash back rewards program for you can help maximize the potential of your rewards credit card. Understanding the terms of the cash rewards card and your own spending habits can help you make the best decision for using your new credit card rewards.


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