Posted by William Charles on November 14, 2019
Credit Cards

Published on November 14th, 2019 | by William Charles

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[Confirmed] City National Bank To Change $250 Airline Credit Per User To $350 Across All Cards & Other Negative Changes

Update 11/14/19: They will begin charging a $95 fee per additional user in January (this fee won’t be charged until your card anniversary), remember CNB does not do annual fee refunds so it might make sense to cancel those cards ASAP.

Update 11/1/19: The change to the airline credit has now been confirmed with a number of other negative changes that go into effect January 1st:

  • Under the Airline Incidental Fees Statement Credit benefit, cardholders under the Crystal Visa Infinite Card Account (“Account”) may receive a statement credit of up to $350 per Account per calendar year for Qualifying Airline Purchases (as defined below) charged to the Account.
  • We are revising the Guide to Benefits (a) to change the Priority Pass Select program membership eligibility, enrollment, renewal and change processes and procedures; and (b) to reflect that we will no long cover the access charges for visits by accompanying guests of Members; instead, the Member’s Crystal Visa Infinite Card will be charged $32 per guest, per visit.
  • The Visa Infinite Discount Air Benefit is being discontinued. Accordingly, the section of the Guide to Benefits entitled “Visa Infinite Discount Air Benefit” is deleted in its entirety.
  • We are removing net purchases made at merchants that are classified as gasoline stations or groceries from the category of net purchases that accrue 3 Points for each one dollar spent.

Hat tip to DDG

Original post: City National Bank offers a Visa Infinite card, one of the best perks of that card is that it comes with a $250 airline credit and each cardholder including authorized users gets their own credit. You can add up to 3/4 authorized users, meaning that you could get a credit of up to $1,250 annually. Reddit user adao7000 said that they went into a branch to apply for this card and were told that City National Bank would be revamping this card and as part of the revamp this credit would be changing to $350 across all users. In addition authorized users might cost extra and the sign up bonus will be removed. Obviously this is not confirmed yet, but something to consider.



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YK3
YK3

Noooooo!

YK3
YK3

Anyone know if CNB will offer any prorated fee refunds if we cancel the card? I’m working on a targeted mailer promotion I got from them for 10K bonus points if I spend 5K by Jan 15. Don’t know if I should be canceling right after I hit that promotion or if I should be keeping the card for the calendar year.

Jags
Jags

Man this would be awful. At least I got in under a 50k bonus and got 1 set of $1000 reimbursements. With any luck nothing happens until after January and I can get another $1000 in reimbursements.

Geo
Geo

Of course!!!
You’re entitled to it!

Ray
Ray

We all are.

Kilian
Kilian

What did you spend the reimbursements on?

Raol
Raol

Good luck….Amen

Chong786
Chong786

This was expected.
They already removed sign up bonus

Jim
Jim

They cycle through the sign-up bonuses. It’s not unlikely another one will come back next quarter. But ridiculous that everyone brags about getting all the airline incidentals by adding AUs and then they clearly see it’s being abused.

Charlie
Charlie

Those who brag publicly on these blogs about how they take advantage of every loophole in the credit card rewards programs must not realize that the banks read these blogs, too.

MSer
MSer

How was it a loophole if it was a feature of the card? Card has been around for years.

Nick
Nick

Blogs of those who don’t brag such things are known by maybe 5 people and has ‘decade active users’ of 1 person or less 😉

Feel free to spend your life writing one if you’d like to join them.

Nick
Nick

How does everyone find 3 people to add as authorized users? I have a couple of possible people, but we all apply for cards very aggressively, so another account on their report will impact their status for Chase 5/24, Barclay 6/24, and possibly other banks. Seems not worth the $250, when each sign-up bonus is worth more than that.

Jags
Jags

I added my aunt and uncle. I got them into some mild churning (mostly bank accounts). Once you’re over 5/24 it rarely makes sense to wait to drop below. I’d much rather sign up for 5-10 cards a year getting between $1500-$4000 in SUBs (x2 with spouse) than wait to get another 50k UR points.

Midnight
Midnight

There are plenty of people on here where they are the only one in the household who actually cares about playing the game.

Rob
Rob

CNB AU cards do not report to credit bureaus, so they are “invisible.”

Aaron
Aaron

They don’t report the AUs to credit bureaus

Sideshowbob233
Sideshowbob233

I always use that lifelock CEO who published his SSN. Obviously I don’t send him the card.

YoniPDX

*Sigh* RIP another Unicorn bites the dust ‐ the Lifelock CEO AU bonus.

Geo
Geo

>>but we all apply for cards very aggressively, so another account on their report will impact their status for Chase 5/24

If you churn very aggressively, 5/25 is nothing but a blip in the rearview window. If you’re concerned about getting under 5/24, that doesn’t sound like “aggressive” churning to me.

Mike Anderson
Mike Anderson

How strict are they about using the airline incidental for airfare or gift cards? Is it easy to use for that?

Quango
Quango

AA charges tend to be rebated easily for me. for me, it works for award booking fees and award cancellation fees

Willy
Willy

I’ve had SW flights around $120 being reimbursed.

Savingwizard
Savingwizard

Pay $400 annual fee, you get $350 Airline Credit, priority pass with unlimited guests. Primary rental car insurance, Lots of 3x category, buy 2 round trip airline tickets within US with $100 discount… It is still one of the best card.

valueseeker
valueseeker

I don’t think the card is still a keeper comparing to other premium card. The 350 credit on this card is much harder to use comparing to other cards (unless you fly AA alot). And it’s point cannot transfer to airlines. If they limit credit to 350 across cards, then for most users there is minimal value to get extra AU, so I am not too worried about AU extra fee. But limiting travel credit is deal breaker.

Willy
Willy

I’ve had SW flights around $120 being reimbursed.

Tim
Tim

really? when? my $44 UA seat fee charged on 9/4 even didn’t get reimbursed.

Jeremy
Jeremy

+1

aubergine
aubergine

The credit is NOT hard to use on this card. It’s somewhere in between Amex’s and Citi’s in ease of use.

Nick
Nick

Need to keep in mind that:
1. If not for their special benefit/loophole, most would not have bothered looking at ‘yet another mediocre PPS CC’

2. Because of their special benefit/loophole, most would feel strongly about the huge negative change, regardless of how good or bad the end results of the change (i.e. if A was deep in debt yesterday but has a $1MM net worth now, A would usually be quite happy. But if B used have $10MM and has the same net worth of $1MM now, do you suppose B would ‘still be one of the happiest people like A’?)

3. Them contemplating this is an indication of how many are using this special benefit/loophole (i.e. they obviously always know about this, but are likely also feeling the pain bottom-line-wise now)

Raghu
Raghu

I agree. For $50, you get priority pass with unlimited guests, roadside assistance for $60 co pay. $100 off 2 round trip tickets. Luxury hotel collections benefits. Global entry $100 every 4 years. It is a winner

$50 * 4 = $200 – $100 (global entry) = $100 cost over 4 years
$25/year with unlimited priority pass guests

Jeremy
Jeremy

Any details related to this? Are talking a $50-$75/authorized user fee, but an extra $100/AU credit? If that’s the case, that seems like a win. If it’s $400/person, that’s a different story, but I find it hard to see that happening. I guess we’ll find out.

Chong786
Chong786

“changing to $350 across all users” = $350 per account not per card

Jeremy
Jeremy

I obviously read that too quickly. Thanks for pointing this out.

Matt ivan
Matt ivan

95/AU card. Absolute bullshit. I’d have kept it with all the other changes if AU cards were still free.

CJ
CJ

I’m not thrilled to hear that they are revamping the benefits. Despite the reimbursement increase to $350, I’m concerned what might be removed.

Nick
Nick

Decrease (from $1250) to $350 would be the right way to put it

Max
Max

Why are you saying 1250 if it’s 250 per user so card holder + 3 max allowed should be 1k?

“No annual fee for authorized users! You can add up to 3 authorized users. What’s different from other similar cards is, the limit for airline credit is separate for each card! Assuming you added all 3 authorized users, and count the main account holder as well, your annual airline credit limit is $250*4=$1000!!”

Willy
Willy

I have 4 Authorized users on my account.

son
son

wth. didn’t know that. too late now 🙁

Jason
Jason

how did you get 4th Authorized user added? CS said it’s only 3.

Monica
Monica

Woody: Hey hey hey now, we all knew this day was coming.
Rex: But now it’s here.
-Toy story 3

Parts Unknown
Parts Unknown

Sounds great as long as they drop the AF to $49.

MXD
MXD

New CEO – former head of JP Morgan Private Bank. I foresee a trend…

Jason Davis
Jason Davis

Cmon people, card benefits always change. Citibank is increasing annual fee and took away many good benefits.

Churning Dan
Churning Dan

If this rumor is true, it would not surprise me. The math never worked for the bank. So, the alternative to changing the reimbursement amount is to for CNB to just “Citi” the card. Hopefully, if CNB does in fact change the reimbursement amount, the make the reimbursement applicable to all travel charges similar to CSR.

kokoro
kokoro

I booked a hotel using concierce but now I need to cancel it. When I called the representative, she said I am eligible to cancel the hotel but I might lose all the points or get a refund. Does anybody have any experience with this? Thanks

aubergine
aubergine

This is one of the few cards which pumped up benefits in the last year – adding the lounge reimbursement for those who made certain spend requirements. I think they should just constrain the card to those who are profitable banking customers; that would help their profitability in likely the same way.

It’s a great card even if they change things. 3x on 4 useful categories is fine with me.

David
David

If you are specifically looking at cashback for various categories, have you considered no AF options? For example, the Uber card has 4x dining, 3x travel, 2x online, and 1x everything else. This is also with no AF and comes with an additional $50 credit for a subscription service after 5k of spend every year. If you spend 20k on travel and 10k on food you would end up with a 1k cashback + $50 subscription credit = $1,050 in overall cashback.

On the CNB card that would be 90k points. If you value them at 1.3c/pt, that would be worth $1,170 – $400 AF = $770 overall value. If you book flights via their portal or for actual cashback purposes, your overall value would be closer to $650 or less. Even if you were to use the VISA Infinite $100 credit, you would need to run that a couple of times to run even with a no AF card. This also depends on how much you spend on incidentals and value lounge access. If they start charging for AUs, then it makes it even harder to compete with the Uber card, especially if their spend target is 50k.

Uber doesn’t cover groceries or gas station spend, although many other no AF cards can cover those gaps as well. My different AMEX cards currently do this quite well.

Mike
Mike

why not BOA Cash reward? 20K on travel = 60Kpt, 10K food = 30K or 10Kpt, plus 1.75x, you will be cash out as (60K+30K) x 1.75 = $1,575 without AF

David
David

Only if you dump 100k into BoA… and also you only get to pick one of those categories as 3%, so no double-dipping there.

Jeremy
Jeremy

Also, BoA Cash Rewards is limited to $2500/quarter/card

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