Earlier this month, Citi launched a new offer on their Citi Prestige® Card that might just be the best up-front bonus offer they’ve ever had. Other issuers like Capital One and Chase are better known in the credit card community for having big bonuses whereas Citi draws you in with a terrific ongoing offer (but little up front). The new Citi Prestige® Card seems to have it all; big up-front bonus and a rewards program that most everyone would love to have.
For a limited time, new cardholders of the Citi Prestige® Card will earn 75,000 bonus points after spending $7,500 in purchases within the first three months of account opening. If you use those points to redeem for airfare at ThankYou.com, those points can be worth in upwards of $900.
In addition to the big up front bonus, there are two additional recurring perks associated with the Citi Prestige Card.
- Complimentary 4th Night FREE – Booking travel through ThankYou.com, you can earn a 4th night free whenever you book three consecutive nights in your hotel stay. You can also use the Citi Prestige® Concierge when booking. The free 4th night is based on the average price of your first three nights so for example if the 4th night is a Saturday, you may pay a little out of pocket.
- $250 Annual Credit on Air Travel – Every year you renew the Citi Prestige® Card, you’ll earn a $250 air travel credit. This means that when an expense like airfare, baggage fees, or upgrades is charged to your card, The first $250 will be credited back. If you do not spend $250 each year in travel expenses than the difference is NOT credited to your account (and truth be told, this card is not for you).
The rewards program for the Citi Prestige® Card is straightforward. Cardmembers will earn the following ThankYou® points:
- 3 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on Air Travel and Hotels
- 2 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on Dining Out and Entertainment
- 1 ThankYou® Point per $1 spent on everything else
As if everything you read above isn’t enough to get you excited about the Citi Prestige® Card, here are a few more benefits to being a cardmember.
Airport Lounge Access – Cardmembers have access to all Priority Pass lounges in the US. Currently, 26 airports have Priority Pass lounges (which means a lot of them do not, unfortunately) and the cardmember + immediate family or two guests gain free entry.
25% Point Bonus – When you use your points to book travel through ThankYou.com, they instantly become 25% more valuable. This mean that 100 points (usually worth $1) are worth $1.25 in travel. You also have the ability to transfer your points to other loyalty programs like TrueBlue, Virgin Atlantic Flying Club and Hilton Honors (to name a few). The minimum point transfer is 1,000 points and there is no penalty or fee to do so.
Global Entry / TSA Statement Credit – For those who benefit from using TSA Precheck, Citi will reimburse you the $100 Global Entry fee every five years. This is the security line you see at the airport going faster than yours. It’s renewal is required every five years, thus why Citi is offering you this $100 once every five years.
Citi Prestige® Card Pricing Details
Now that you see all of the benefits above, the question that begs itself is “How much is this going to cost?” The annual fee on the Citi Prestige® Card is $450 and it is not waived for the first year. If you add an authorized user to your account, they will pay their own $50 annual fee. The standard variable interest rate for purchases is 16.74% – 24.74% and it also applies to balance transfers. Balance transfer fee is 3% (or $5, whichever is greater).
Few cards today charge an annual fee that high, but the Citi Prestige® Card almost dares you to complain about the high annual fee. With all of the current benefits and the 75,000 point bonus, I’m not sure you can.
- 75,000 bonus ThankYou points
- $250 annual travel credit
- $100 Pre Check credit (every five years)
- 4th night free at almost every hotel
- Airport lounge access
- 25% bonus on points when you book at ThankYou.com
If you find yourself traveling often, the Citi Prestige® Card has the potential to save you thousands. If you’re a light traveler, than using this card for at least one year is a must. After your test drive, figure out if the $450 annual fee makes sense for your budget. Staying a 4th night at a hotel just a few times a year should pay for the annual fee and then some.
Consider owning the Citi Prestige® Card while the 75,000 ThankYou point bonus is in play.