I applied last year for the Citi Premier’s 80,000 point bonus, and now that the second annual fee is due, the card is on the chopping block. After failing repeatedly to receive a retention offer from Citi, I gave up and decided to downgrade the card. My only active Citi card is the Premier card.
After some consideration, I came to the conclusion that it would be beneficial to have two Citi cards for the long term, with additional cards thrown in as needed or as bonuses become available:
- The Citi Rewards+ card has no annual fee and offers a 10% rebate on redemptions, including redemptions made on other cards – if your ThankYou accounts are linked.
I wanted the ability to earn a 10% bonus on cash redemptions, but the Rewards+ card does not allow cash redemptions, only gift card redemptions:
- The Citi Custom Cash card has no annual fee and offers 5% back on your top category each month on up to $500 in spend. The card also enables redeeming ThankYou points for cash at 1 cent-per-point.
The Custom Cash card will allow me to cash out ThankYou points at 1 cent-per-point, and then I’ll get a 10% redemption bonus with the linked Rewards+ card.
I decided to get one of the two cards via product change and the other via new application. Both the Custom Cash and the Rewards+ card offer a 20,000/$200 bonus signup bonus. I applied for the Custom Cash card via new application and product changed my Premier to the Rewards+.
Product changing from Premier to Rewards+ should avoid resetting my 24 month clock on the Prestige/Premier/Preferred/Rewards+ family of cards if the card number remains the same. Indeed, my card number remained the same through the product change, and my ThankYou points remained intact through the downgrade as well.
Citi always says some confusing thing about how their product changes are only complete after 45 days. For me, everything seemed to change over to the Rewards+ within a week or two, and the $95 annual fee was refunded within a couple of weeks as well.
So that’s my latest Citi churn. Hopefully someone found this interesting. 🙂