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Since mid-July, the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card has been offering an increased sign-up bonus. We’ve never seen a bigger bonus than that before, and it’s expected that the sign-up bonus will be changing tomorrow, presumably for the worse. So if you’ve been interested in the card, you’ll want to apply in the next 24 hours (there’s a chance a phantom link may stick around for some amount of time after that, but it’s no guarantee).
With that in mind, in this post I wanted to look at six reasons you should consider applying for the Citi ThankYou Premier Card before the offer changes:
50K point sign-up bonus
Until the offer changes, the Citi ThankYou Premier Card is offering a sign-up bonus of 50,000 ThankYou points after spending $4,000 within three months of account opening. We’ve never seen a bigger publicly available bonus on the card. A couple of years ago there was a similar offer, but this is as good as it gets. For a while the card had no sign-up bonus at all, and then it switched to 30,000 points.
$95 annual fee waived for the first 12 months
Like many mid-range cards, the card has a $95 annual fee, though the annual fee is waived for the first 12 months. This is a great opportunity to try the card before you buy it, so to speak. Given the card’s sign-up bonus and bonus categories, it’s especially great to have the first year’s annual fee waived.
Fantastic bonus categories on spend
Purely in terms of bonus categories, I consider this to be the most well rounded mid-range card out there, as it offers:
- 3x points on travel, including gas stations
- 2x points on dining & entertainment
- 1x points on all other purchases
While I do think Citi ThankYou points are worth slightly less than Amex Membership Rewards points and Chase Ultimate Rewards points, there’s not another mid-range card out there that offers such generous bonus categories, in my opinion.
At least $625 worth of travel
If you’re someone who doesn’t want to play the mileage game, at a minimum you can redeem Citi ThankYou points for 1.25 cents each towards the cost of airfare. So the 50,000 point sign-up bonus on the Citi ThankYou Premier Card will get you $625 worth of airfare, which is an awesome sign-up bonus.
Great transfer partners
If you do like getting outsized value of your points by converting them into partner points with an airline or hotel, Citi ThankYou has over a dozen airline and hotel partners, including the following:
|Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner||Transfer Ratio|
|Air France KLM FlyingBlue||1000 : 1000|
|Avianca LifeMiles||1000 : 1000|
|Cathay Pacific Asia Miles||1000 : 1000|
|Etihad Guest||1000 : 1000|
|EVA Air Infinity MileageLands||1000 : 1000|
|Garuda Indonesia GarudaMiles||1000 : 1000|
|Jet Airways JetPrivilege||1000 : 1000|
|JetBlue TrueBlue||1000 : 500|
|Malaysia Airlines Enrich||1000 : 1000|
|Qantas Frequent Flyer||1000 : 1000|
|Qatar Privilege Club||1000 : 1000|
|Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer||1000 : 1000|
|Thai Royal Orchid Plus||1000 : 1000|
|Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles||1000 : 1000|
|Virgin Atlantic Flying Club||1000 : 1000|
|Hilton Honors||1000 : 1500|
If you don’t otherwise have Citi ThankYou points, keep in mind that some of these points currencies overlap with partners of Amex Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest.
Solid travel protection
The Citi ThankYou Premier Card offers all kinds of fantastic travel and purchase protection, which is also among the best offered by any mid-range card. Here are the basic details, though you’ll want to check the cardmember agreement for all the terms associated with the benefits:
|Citi Premier Benefits||Details|
|Baggage Delay Benefit||• You can be reimbursed up to $100 per Covered Traveler, per Trip if the Covered Traveler’s checked baggage doesn’t get to their destination within 6 hours of arrival|
|Lost Luggage Reimbursement||• Receive reimbursement for lost, stolen, or damaged checked or carry-on bags and personal property|
• You are covered for up to $3,000 per Covered Traveler, per Trip ($2,000 per bag for New York residents), or up to $10,000 in total for all Covered Travelers
|Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance||• Receive the non-refundable amount of the passenger fare or $5,000 (whichever is less) in the event of a trip cancellation or interruption|
• If you only paid for a portion of the trip with your Citi card and/or ThankYou® Points, Citi will only reimburse the lesser of the actual amount paid for with your Citi card (including ThankYou® Points) or the maximum coverage per Trip
• Covered reasons for cancelation are more extensive than some other cards, but still require documentation by licensed professionals. These include not death of the traveler or family member, sicknesses and injuries (or threat of sickness due to government health advisories) to the traveler, family member, or traveler's pet, involuntary employment termination, jury duty or subpoenas that can't be postponed or waived, and other personal matters
• Severe weather or natural disasters that cause travel stops are also covered, as are terrorist incidents in your destination • This also covers you if your airline goes out of business or tickets are otherwise cancelled by the carrier
|Trip Delay Reimbursement||• Receive up to $500 (per traveler, per trip) if your trip is delayed for more than 12 hours|
• The trip has to be delayed because of severe weather, a natural disaster, a previously unannounced strike, a quarantine or hijacking
|Worldwide Travel Accident Insurance||• If you die (or are missing for more than 52 weeks) in a Common Carrier accident while traveling — or lose a limb, sight, speech or hearing — we may provide up to $500,000 in compensation|
• Unlike the other benefits, to be eligible for coverage under this bene t, your Citi card and/or ThankYou® Points must be used to purchase the full amount of the Common Carrier fare for the Covered Traveler(s)
• You're also not covered in a taxi, car service, rental car, and rideshare service, or if your death/injury is as a result of a riot or act of war
|Damage & Theft Purchase Protection||• Receive up to $10,000 per item, up to $50,000 per year, per Citi card account, for personal property that has been stolen, damaged within 120 days (90 days for New York residents) of purchase or delivery of the item|
• Long list of exceptions, so be sure to check coverage limits
|Citi Price Rewind||• If the same item is found at a lower price within 60 days of your initial purchase date, you may receive the difference between the price you paid and the lower price found by Citi, up to $500, with a maximum benefit per year of $2,500|
• Again, there's a long list of exceptions, so be sure to check coverage limits
|Extended Warranty||• Extends the manufacturer’s warranty for an additional 24 Months|
• Motorized vehicles (boats, cars, aircraft, etc.) aren’t included, along with other unique items that don't come with a manufacturer’s warranty
• In the event of a covered failure Citi will repair or replace the item or reimburse up to the amount charged on your Citi card and/or ThankYou® Points (excluding shipping and handling) or $10,000, whichever is less
|Return Protection||• If you try to return an item within 90 days of purchase and the merchant won’t take it back, Citi may refund you the purchase price up to $500 per item and $2,500 per year|
• Long list of exceptions, and the item must be returned to Citi in like-new and good working condition with all the original parts
Getting approved for the Citi ThankYou Premier Card
In terms of getting approved for the Citi ThankYou Premier Card, you’re not eligible for the sign-up bonus if you have had a ThankYou Preferred, ThankYou Premier, or Citi Prestige card opened or closed in the past 24 months. It’s fine if you have a Preferred or Prestige opened for more than 24 months, but you can’t have actively opened or closed one in that timeframe.
The Citi ThankYou Premier Card sign-up bonus is expected to change tomorrow, so if you haven’t yet applied, I’d recommend doing so shortly. This is a fantastic sign-up bonus on a card with the first year’s annual fee waived, great transfer partners, and a generous return on spend.