[Update] Citi Custom Cash Card: 5x Points/Cash on up to $500 Spend Per Month, $200/20,000 Signup Bonus

Update 8/29/22: There is a link with $750 in spend (though there is one mention of $1,500 in the fine print there as well)

(Update 8/28/22: Spend requirement has increased from $750 to $1,500. Same $200/20,000 bonus. hat tip JigglyJello1)

Citi launches today the Citi Custom Cash card which earns 5x cashback/Thankyou points per $1 spent on up to $500 in spend per month in your top spend category and has no annual fee. Card has $200/20,000 points signup bonus.

Citi Custom Cash signup link | Another Link | Press Release

Contents

Signup Bonus

  • Signup bonus of $200 after you spend $750 within the first 3 months.

Bonus is not available if you received one for opening a new Citi Custom Cash Card account in the past 48 months.

Card Details

  • No annual fee
  • Card earns 5% cash back/points on your top spend category of the month, up to $500 in spend ($25 cashback) per month. Categories include things like Grocery, Dining, or Travel and more. Category adjust automatically to your top category each month – no need to enroll or to select your top category. You’ll be able to see your top category in the Citibank mobile app.
    • The top eligible spend categories of the Custom Cash Card are: restaurants, gas stations, grocery stores, select streaming services, select travel, select transit, home improvement stores, fitness clubs, live entertainment and drugstores.
  • Card earns 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Cash back is earned in the form of ThankYou Points, which can be redeemed for cash back as a direct deposit, check or statement credit. Or cardmembers can choose other ways to redeem points, including redeeming for gift cards, charitable donations, travel, Shop with Points at Amazon.com, and more.
    • If you have a Citi Premier or Prestige card you’ll be able to pool the points and then redeem them to transfer partners.
  • Low introductory rate on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months.
  • Foreign transaction fee is 3% of the U.S. dollar amount of each purchase.
  • Only one Citi Custom Cash Card account per customer.
  • The Custom Cash Card comes with an instant card number upon approval, no need to wait for the card to come in the mail. (Instant credit limit is 10% of your credit limit, subject to a minimum of $500 and a maximum of $1,000. Instant credit limit is usable for 10 days.)

Our Verdict

This sounds like an upgraded version of the old Citi Dividend card. Similar total cashback amount of $500 per month versus the Dividend’s $6,000 per year, but the Custom Cash is much better since it allows you to customize the categories for popular places like groceries or drugstores. Another major advantage is the fact that it earns ThankYou points and gives the option of either cashing out your points or using them toward travel, similar to the DoubleCash card which offers both options.

Could be a useful card to apply for and max out the monthly category. Also interesting as a product change option when getting rid of a card – it’s possible to product change most Citi cards into a Custom Cash and even get multiples that way.

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Bill
Bill

Can you have more than one Custom Cash card? I have one and also have a TY Premier card, which I’m going to be billed the AF on soon and will want to convert to something free. Don’t need Double Cash since the BofA Premium Rewards card is better.

Alan H
Alan H

YES! I had a Double Cash card and a Custom Cash card for awhile. Since I have other 2% cards, I did a product change with the DC card to a second Custom Cash card.

There was no credit pull, and the account number on my old Double Cash card didn’t even change!

Bill
Bill

Thanks, good to know. I just got an email saying that it’s the anniversary of my Premier card, but haven’t seen the annual fee hit yet. When I do, I’ll call or chat and get it changed.

Andy
Andy

This card is great for all my “real” grocery store shopping. At the dreaded Walmart, I either use VGC purchased (via Chase Ink) at whichever office store chain has most recently rebated the service charge, or use my PenFed Plat Rewards card to get 3%….ok, almost 3% with their blasted points situation. Hopefully, the chuckleheads at Wally World will eventually cave in and join the NFC game. Their garbage WalMart Pay can take a flying leap. If I could avoid shopping at the home of Sam Walton, I certainly would, but $$$ dictates otherwise.

20201103
20201103

What do you mean by “the NFC game”

jd
jd

Andy are you saying that walmart doesn’t sell “real” groceries? lol
NFC is the wireless tech that enables tap to pay with your phone/CC etc

Andy
Andy

Mobile pay and CC tap to pay….both require Near Field Communication. Samsung Pay formerly had a protocol that didn’t, but they eventually ruined that great feature.

Bill
Bill

What’s wrong with Walmart Pay, other than it not printing a receipt unless you pay partially in cash (even a penny)? It codes as an online purchase for me, so I use my BofA Customized Cash Rewards card and get 5.25% back.

David
David

I already got one Custom Cash card via product change. Any chance I can get a second one via this offer?

Namaste1
Namaste1

From their application page

“Our policy is to offer only one Citi Custom Cash℠ Card account per customer. Bonus is not available if you received one for opening a new Citi Custom Cash℠ Card account in the past 48 months.”

So, I would say no but I do not have any firsthand knowledge.

Wei
Wei

You could not apply for custom cash if you have one. You could still get multiple custom cash card with product change.

Mark
Mark

I would hold off applying. Seems like a gradual step to a higher points offer (my guess $250/25K).

20201103
20201103

As noted earlier (but I’ll repeat it) that link https://citicards.citi.com/usc/lpaca/citi/cards/customcash/external_cch6/index.html (cut the extraneous stuff off the end of the address) says “Earn $200 cash back after spending $750 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening.” at the top of the page and “Earn $200 cash back after you spend $1,500 on purchases in the first 6 months of account opening.” lower down the page.

Sam
Sam

Not aware of this change, I logged into my Citi account to apply for this card. I saw the offer for $200 now required the $1500 spend. I assumed like for Amex, I could find a better offer by going “incognito,” so applied through the Experian website, which sent me to the old offer ($500 spend). I had place a temp unfreeze on all 3 credit bureaus yesterday. I applied and was not approved instantly. I will follow up with more info. Im curious if I get approved with the old offer requirement.

Sam
Sam

To confirm, I was approved under the $750 spend / 20,000 points offer.

Credit Card Offers

is it still hard to get approved for citi card i tried citi premier always denied

Otto
Otto

Premier seems to be more strict than other Citi cards. In general they seem to be a little sensitive to very recent inquiries/accounts in my experience, like in the past 3 months or so especially.

Deva
Deva

Good to know as I wanted to apply for the Premier next even though just got the Citi cash card.

Kitty Litter
Kitty Litter

I am looking for a cash back card with a 5% category for Insurance (home, auto, medical, etc). Any suggestions?

Dev1ldog
Dev1ldog

So am I! Try the Chase Flex card that during the last quarter of the year allows you to pay with PayPal the last two years running up to $1500.

atexit8
atexit8

Look for the full 5% off deals for the $250 virtual VISA eGift cards from giftcards.com
$12.50 (5% off promotion) – $5.95 (fee) + $5.12 (2% Fidelity Rewards VISA) = $11.67
$11.67 ÷ $250 = 0.04668 which is 4.668%

I was able to use them at my dentist office by having them key in the card #.
I was able to use them online at Penn Medicine’s website.

Curmudgeon
Curmudgeon

I’ve had good luck using a card that gets 5% at office supply stores (Chase Ink and others) then buying visa/mastercard gift cards when they go on sale with no fee, then using those to pay for medical and insurance. If you want a dedicated insurance card, US Bank has a State Farm card that gets 3% on insurance

Wei
Wei

Discover if they accept PayPal for this semester. Chase Freedom Flex for next semester if they accept PayPal. Discover for next semester if they accept Apple Pay or Google pay.

Michael Denner
Michael Denner

Suddenly becomes a tempting card…..

Matisyahu
Matisyahu

Say what? The deal is the same as it always has been, except they increased the spending limit.

Michael
Michael

Exactly. 5x on $1500=better.

Otto
Otto

The 5x part is the same. The difference is now you need to spend $1500 to earn the SUB instead of $750. Basically they made it worse unless you were planning to max a 5x category with it for 3 months anyway. In that case it’s the same, not better. Actually still a little worse since it will take an extra month to get your SUB when you need to spend $1500 instead of $750.

Dan
Dan

The monthly limit is still $500 that earns 5x. You just have to spend more to get the bonus. There is no benefit to them making the offer stricter as mentioned by Otto.

20201103
20201103

If you already have a good collection of cashback cards, this one really adds nothing IMO/IME. “Grocery” excludes all Walmarts even WMNM.

randomguy
randomguy

If you do grocery shopping in regular grocery stores, $1000 (with P1+P2) monthly expenditure on regular grocery store and restaurants gives 5%. This is a pretty good card overall.

barrytuneup
barrytuneup

You can also buy a 500.00 VGC in grocery chain or drug chain and liquidate for MO. Citi seems not to care at all. Did this on 2 Dividend cards for years. Maxed out quarterly cat when they have grocery or drugstores. This one is good for 300.00 back per 12 months. I use drugstore cat. Hope this helps somebody!

barrytuneup
barrytuneup

I use Amex OBC in grocery stores for actual groceries for 5% back with high Cashback limits.

JimT
JimT

Do the math for the OBC card only for everyday spending on groceries, gas, and pharmacy accounting for the $6500 initial spending limit. You will derive an equation for reward $ = 0.05 * T – 260 where T is your annual spend in everyday spending categories. Thus, you would need to spend a total of $13000 to get a 3% net return equal to $390 back. Quoting 5% back without accounting for the $6500 initial spend limit does not reflect your real return. High annual spending on everyday categories is required to exceed the return on one or two AMEX Blue Cash Preferred cards or the Citi Custom cash card which both make excellent grocery store credit cards.

20201103
20201103

I have never in my life seen a VGC or anything equivalent being purchasable by CC, only merchant GCs.

Otto
Otto

I’ve never seen a VGC that was NOT purchasable by credit card.

jd
jd

lol, its like he lives in the upside down

Yawgoog
Yawgoog

This card is useful for those who shop at grocery chains and it can be a backup when a cashback category is maxed out on another card.

randomguy
randomguy

Restaurants and gas 5% is also very useful category I believe.

Dev1ldog
Dev1ldog

I agree. This is limited. Walmart or Target excluded is where typical Americans grocery shop. There’s only so many times a year that I’ll travel or shop at a home improvement store just to use this card. I might as well continue with the Dividend card. Collecting credit cards just to collect $200? I’ll pass.

Matisyahu
Matisyahu

I don’t know anyone that shops as Walmart or Target for groceries. Maybe it’s based on location. For most people I know (outside of Costco) it’s Wegmans, Trader Joes, Aldi, etc.

Dev1ldog
Dev1ldog

Maybe, but don’t discount my comment because you and the people you know don’t shop there. In my state, Walmart and Target are like filling stations. They are within ten to 15 miles of each other. Cancel culture is a discerning quality, so check yourself.

jd
jd

so this card is useless because people in your neck of the woods buy groceries at walmart instead of at actual grocery stores? #irony

20201103
20201103

Wait, what? Are you saying that Walmart is not an “actual grocery store”?

jd
jd

i mean….its a store, and sometimes it sells groceries, but its not a grocery store. you know it, i know it, every one knows it

20201103
20201103

Okay I thought you were trolling, but now I’m convinced you are completely insane. A WMNM is literally a grocery store, it’s wall-to-wall nothing but groceries. A WMSC is much bigger and is groceries plus other stuff, but just the groceries section by itself is the size of a grocery store.

jd
jd

I thought we were talking about walmarts in general…but by your logic, amazon.com is a grocer because they have a handful of amazon fresh stores?
Also, a typical costco’s grocery/foodstuff/household item footprint is bigger than many grocery stores, but guess what, its not a grocery store either. Prove me wrong

randomguy
randomguy

Does any card give 5% on Walmart grocery? If not, your best bet is buying 1500$ WM gift cards on Discover or Chase in the quarter where they offer 5% on WM. Otherwise, you can buy WM gift cards from a grocery store if they sell them. Or you can buy Visa gift cards from any grocery store 500$ has 6$ fee, so effective 4%,

20201103
20201103

I get 5.25% for online category on BoA CCR (several cards), and so get GCs for various stores including WM.

jd
jd

this is the way…

20201103
20201103

Yeah, grocery category is garbage with this card. It’s basically completely useless. P2 got this card, and I don’t think I’ll even bother, certainly very low priority.

jd
jd

Interesting comment…don’t CFF and citi dividend have the same WM/TGT restrictions when grocery is the quarterly category? most people here seem to love when those categories come around, do you consider it garbage as well?

jd
jd

20201103 well? which card would you recommend for people who regularly shop at kroger/safeway/giant/aldi/etc since this one is “completely useless”?

20201103
20201103

My original comment said “IMO/IME”. From the context of your post, I presume “kroger/safeway/giant/aldi” are the names of places people “shop at”, but I’ve never seen any of those places, so you would need to ask someone who has ever stepped foot inside one of these.

jd
jd

seriously? kroger (and its brands) is the largest US supermarket (i.e. actual grocery store) operator, safeway/albertsons is next, and giant/ahold is third…what shithole town do you live in, where you can’t even buy vgc with a cc? lol
tldr: don’t call 5% grocery CCs useless just because there’s not one within 50 miles of you? and you say i’m insane…

Bockrr
Bockrr

Grocery is always a tough category because a lot of people split their food spending between regular grocery stores, Walmart/target (which code as discount stores) and Costco/Sam’s/BJ’s (which code as warehouse clubs).

On the other hand CC is an excellent card for gas or dining as it’s a MasterCard with no AF. It also doesn’t separate fast food vs sit down restaurants like the Cash+. Most people fall under the $500 monthly limit for these categories.

And it’s always useful to have a Citi card or two as certain gift cards can be used for payment by phone.

atc1
atc1

All good data points.
I was not aware you could make a Citi credit card payment with a gift card by phone. I’m assuming a VISA or MasterCard gift cards? Can you elaborate?

Bockrr
Bockrr

I believe the most detailed information is at flyertalk, but yes some common visa/mc debit gift cards such as those from Swagbucks or TCB work to pay Citi balances by phone. Obviously this is one of the best ways to liquidate as there are no fees and very low opportunity cost since you would not normally get any cashback on such payments.

Unfortunately many other gift cards have mcc restrictions and the payment will not work (for example staples cards). No harm no foul in this case, the automated phone system will just say there’s some problem. Using a rewards debit card like Coinbase will probably get shutdown, or others just may not issue the points/cashback based on mcc which is probably financial services or something like that.

TKB
TKB

While not 5% I’ve been using my Amex blue cash everyday at Walmart via WM pay to get 3% cash back. Haven’t tried swiping yet.

20201103
20201103

I believe BCE/BCP count at WMNM but not WMSC, but you can do a test purchase.

TKB
TKB

My 3% cash back has been at WMSC

20201103
20201103

My DP was when using the card (“swiping”) at checkout.