AMAZING: Citi Double Cash Now Earns ThankYou Points

Filed Under: Citi, Credit Cards
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The Citi® Double Cash Card is one of the all around most lucrative cash back credit cards. The card has no annual fee and offers 1% cash back when you make a purchase, and 1% cash back when you pay for that purchase.

In my opinion this is a card that a vast majority of consumers would benefit from having, since the average person isn’t earning two cents back for every dollar they spend.

Citi Double Cash Rewards Now Transfer To ThankYou

While we’ve heard rumors about this for quite a while, this functionality has finally gone “live” today.

As of today (September 22, 2019) it’s possible to convert Citi Double Cash rewards into Citi ThankYou points. This means you’ll be able to pool rewards earned on the Citi Double Cash with rewards earned on cards like the Citi Premier℠ CardCiti Prestige® Card, and Citi Rewards+℠ Card.

Those who want to earn cash back as before can continue to do so — this is just intended to be an additional redemption option.

How This Functionality Works

Here are screenshots shared by Reddit user leetommy of the new functionality:

As you can see:

  • Points transfer at a ratio of $1 in cash rewards to 100 ThankYou points (in other words, each cent of rewards can be converted into one ThankYou point)
  • You need to convert at least $1 worth of rewards, and there are no maximums
  • Once you convert cash rewards into ThankYou points, you can’t reverse the transaction

I’d note that historically if you want to transfer ThankYou points to a ThankYou airline partner (which to me is the best value here), you need to have the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige in conjunction with this card.

So don’t expect you’ll be able to transfer these points to airline partners without one of those cards.

As a reminder, here are the Citi ThankYou airline partners:

AirlinesHotels
Aeroméxico Club PremierN/A
Air France/KLM Flying Blue
Avianca Lifemiles
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
EVA Air Infinity MileageLands
Etihad Guest
Jet Airways JetPrivilege
JetBlue TrueBlue
Malaysia Airlines Enrich
Qantas Frequent Flyer
Qatar Airways Privilege Club
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
Thai Airways Royal Orchid Plus
Turkish Airways Miles & Smiles
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

2x ThankYou Points With No Caps Is Industry Leading

The execution of all of this seems to be the best-case scenario of what we could have expected, and puts the Citi® Double Cash Card into a league of its own.

2x points on non-bonused spending isn’t completely unheard of, as The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express offers 2x Membership Rewards points on the first $50,000 spent every calendar year. However:

  • You’re limited to earning 2x points on the first $50,000 spent every calendar year, and
  • This is a business credit card

Currently one of my primary cards for everyday spending is the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, which offers 1.5x points. In conjunction with a card earning Ultimate Rewards points, those points can be converted into Ultimate Rewards points as well.

However, as far as I’m concerned earning 2x ThankYou points is significantly better than earning 1.5x Ultimate Rewards points.

It Will Be Interesting To See How Citi Markets This

Historically the Citi Double Cash is purely a cash back card. Based on Citi’s website, they’re not making this sound terribly appealing to consumers yet. Being able to get a $100 Olive Garden or Red Lobster gift card rather than $100 doesn’t sound great. You’re also not getting more than one cent of value when redeeming through Amazon or Paypal.

So it will be interesting to see if Citi will basically maintain the airline transfer option as a secret, or if they’ll somehow market it as part of this card. It’s possible this essentially just remains a secret redemption option, given that it is nuanced — you need to have the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige to be able to redeem that way.

Best Way To Get The Citi Double Cash Card

You can, of course, apply outright for the Citi® Double Cash Card. The catch is that the card has no sign-up bonus.

While it could absolutely be worth applying directly for the card, the other option is that you can also product change to this card. Citi is among the most generous issuers in letting people product change between cards.

Generally speaking, you can downgrade any personal Citi credit card to the Citi Double Cash. This even includes co-branded cards.

You can generally only product change if you’ve had a card for at least 12 months, so you can’t do this with a new card.

The other benefit of product-changing rather than applying new is that you can maintain your credit line, and also that it won’t count as a further inquiry on your credit report.

Summary

One of the challenges that Citi has in comparison to American Express and Chase is that they don’t have the same “portfolio” of cards that you can use for their transferrable points currency.

It’s incredible to see that at this point Citi has created a card that’s in a league of its own, in my opinion. Being able to earn 2x ThankYou points with the Citi® Double Cash Card is awesome, and you can bet that this means I’ll be picking up the card.

Personally I value Citi ThankYou points at ~1.7 cents each, so that’s like a return of 3.4% on spending:

  • This will be my new go-to card for paying taxes (for a fee of 1.87%, which means I’d be acquiring ThankYou points for under one cent each)
  • It might even be worth making payments with Plastiq at the “regular” cost of 2.5%, as that’s like acquiring ThankYou points for 1.25 cents each

Will the Citi Double Cash be your new card for everyday spending?

(Tip of the hat to Doctor Of Credit)

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Comments
  1. I thought Citi had weird rules that you can’t transfer points out that were originally earned on cards/accounts that didn’t have transfer partners which limits the impact of transferring between cards/accounts. As opposed to Chase where the points take on the rules of which ever account they are currently in.

  2. These sound like these will be points like the ones earned from Citi checking accounts, aka not transferable to transfer partners. Find it hard to believe Citi would allow these points earned from the Double Cash card to be sent to transfer partners without a shi**y ratio if they do allow the transfer-def not a 1:1 ratio. Or a devaluation is coming.

  3. If they convert at a 1:1 ratio, and can be transferred to partners at 1:1, this would suddenly make this card very solid. I wonder if like Chase, they’ll require you to have a premium card too to convert them? If not, there would be very little reason to retain the Citi Premier card given it losing all of the travel and purchase protections.

  4. @AdamH – I think you’re misremembering. Points earned on (any) credit card are “credit card TYP,” and redemption possibilities depend on the cards you have at the time you redeem (not the time you earn). The points I earn on my Rewards+ are transferable because I have the Premier; the points my wife earns on her Rewards+ and “shares with” (transfers to) me can also be transferred by me, but otherwise expire after 90 days; and if she upgrades to, or opens, a Premier or Prestige, the points she originally earned on the Rewards+ become transferable.

    Points earned from BANKING are taxable, cannot be transferred, and expire after 3 years; but AFAIK can be redeemed on the TYP portal at your credit card’s (cards’) rate (e.g. Premier 1.25 cpp for the foreseeable future).

  5. They’ve been pushing this card hard to their Dividend Card holders. Problem is, as with other cards, “Points” can have a flexible value, whereas with the Dividend Card, you’re still earning DOLLARS.

  6. A question that remains is whether those converted ThankYou points will be transferable to ALL TYP partners. Several of the basic ThankYou cards (e.g. ThankYou preferred) only allow transfer to a subset…JetBlue being the only one of arguably limited use.

  7. “I think we’re all hoping that this is the case. Could each reward “cent” earned on the Citi® Double Cash Card be transferable into one ThankYou point? That would be amazing, and logically it would make sense in terms of one “unit” of cash converting into one “unit” of points.” – This would be the smart move for citi. They would need to put a cap on it like amex business blue plus does, but I don’t see the double cash getting used if they only give 1.5 points per dollar. Willing to bet most people will go with the freedom unlimited card in that situation and those with the amex business blue plus will have no reason to use the DC. A straight 2 pts per dollar would be enough to get me to seriously look at using mine. I still don’t know if I would use it over the amex business blue plus but it would at the very least replace the times I use my freedom unlimited.

    All of the above being said given many of the recent moves by Citi I have a hard time believing they will do anything positive for their card holders.

  8. Not if you have to also have one of the premium cards, which have now been stripped of almost
    all their benefits.

  9. Doesnt really matter unless they force you to take TYPs. If they do, im out. 2% cash back works perfect combined with my other cards. With chase, you can take freedom cash back points and combine with the sapphire. I bet they are doing that. 5% back on categories ttansfer to CSR is pretty sweet.

  10. Is it really worth the extra 1/2 percent from the Citi Double Cash World Elite MasterCard compared to a myriad of 1.5% no annual fee cash back credit card alternatives to have a World Elite card with the higher swipe fee but with no added benefits as of September 2019; hard to understand, scripted, and generally ineffective overseas customer service; a foreign transaction fee; and now with the dubious option of converting cash to points with many redemption options worth less than one cent per point? Seriously?

    It is a no brainer to cancel this card and every other Citi card except perhaps the Costco card.

    The Citibank Double Cash was the best cash back card when it was released. No more.

  11. why is everyone so pessimistic about this possibly being a 2 TYP per dollar spent card?

    Amex already has this, and both chase and amex have many cards that earn 3-5 points per dollar spent on different categories. Citi could be doing this to become more competitive with the other 2. It’s true their cards are not on par with Chase or Amex. Prestige got nerfed bigtime, and while premier is a solid card, the rest of their portfolio, personal or business, is lackluster.
    as
    I can totally see them turning this into a 2 TYP/dollar card, and that would be great. IMO TYP is highly underrated. I find TYPs as valuable as MRs or URs, and when you add in the fact that you can transfer them from 1user to another, and they might actually be considered more valuable, as long as you can find at least 2-3 transfer partners that make sense. There’s enough overlap between transafer partners of Amex and Chase that it’s a damn good program.

    Here’s hoping 2 TYP/dollar is what it is, and they will be transferable! Stop being negative nellies!!!

  12. A Citi CSR indicated to JT from TPG that the points would indeed be transferable to airline partners, though, as of the time of his writing yesterday, a Citi representative that he reached out to in attempt to confirm still hadn’t responded back to him.

  13. Sounds great until I remember that I need to switch to CSR because they took all the protections off my Prestige card.

  14. I hadn’t used my Double Cash card for a while but wanted to use it to buy a plane ticket. I had also recently changed my address and phone number. I knew this would wave a red flag, so I tried online chat to notify the gnomes first. After 15 minutes, I was told I had to call somewhere, which I was not in a location to do. So I bought the ticket anyway, and of course it raised a fraud alert, and when I logged in to my account next time, I was told to call. I did, and to verify my identity I had to give the offshore gnome my complete bank account number that I use for making payments. (I had just made a payment with it.) No, the last four digits would not work. Two days later the charge still shows as “pending,” but at least it hasn’t been rejected.

  15. Hey

    I have a 65k typ and want to downgrade my premier card to the double cash to save on the fee.

    Would I still be able to use travel transfer partners if I only have the double cash card.

  16. @Lucky – Happy to!

    Points “currency dilution” is when one accumulates points in many different currencies or denominations and ends up with not having enough in any one of the denominations to afford a decent redemption, much less an “aspirational” one.

    With Citi and AMEX working overtime to try to replicate the CSR’s ‘magic’, which had spooked them, we have seen the two CC issuers introduce (as well as pull) all kinds benefits the past three years, with travel bloggers hailing each such new benefit as the one that is going to make the CSR obsolete or ‘passé’. As a result, ‘less critical players of the game’, fearful of missing out on the latest and greatest, have gone for every such “opportunity”…and ended up with a credit card for every occasion, the logical consequence of which is what I defined above as “points currency dilution”: they earn points in many different denominations, but not enough in any one of the denominations to afford a decent redemption, much less an “aspirational” one.

    What would be a good exercise would be to compare the advantages and disadvantages of (a) earning all of one points in a single currency with the best available points-earning cards for that currency vs. (b) earning points in different currencies with the best available points-earning cards for each of the currencies.

    I would be Exhibit A for scenario (a): I now earn my points almost exclusively in Ultimate Rewards with the CSR (3x) for travel and dining (both very broadly defined), the Ink business cash (5x) for what are some of my biggest recurrent bills (internet connection, phone), and the CFU (1.5x) for everything else. I do not wish to sound like a broken record, but with that perfect card trifecta I am sitting on my large stash of transferable points ever.

    Other than @Lucky, who is disqualified for obvious reasons, does any one want to be Exhibit A for scenario (b)? 🙂

  17. I actually find this a great news. As I typically max out (50k) Amex business blue way before year end. Then I’m left with 1x per dollar options. Sure, I can find a card with 1.5x per dollar options…. but obviously I prefer 2x per dollar uncapped. I do have currencies in Amex, chase, and citi. I find this actually quite useful as I have plethora of options to fly many different airlines if I can actually find F or minimally J redemptions…. I would love to get more AA miles for redemptions on none AA metal. Sadly AA cc all suck and I can’t transfer cc points to AA.

  18. For some reason, I’d thought I heard that Garuda Indonesia was being dropped as a Citi ThankYou transfer partner. Did I pull that out of nowhere?

  19. In my portal, it is indeed allowing me to transfer to airlines, but Jet Blue being the ONLY one and at a rate of 1000 Thank You Points to 800 True Blue Points

  20. The only Citi card I have is the DoubleCash and the only airline I can transfer to is JetBlue, at a rate of 1000 TYP to 800 Trueblue points

  21. Based on the preliminary data points I have read, I’m gonna go ahead and guess that DC points converted to Thank You points will only be eligible for Jet Blue transfers regardless of what other cards the customer holds. It doesn’t make sense for Citi to allow for 2% conversions to Thank You points; for one, it would make their Premier Card significantly less valuable even for bonused spending.

  22. Double Cash Thank You points are separate from my Prestige Thank You points in ThankYou.com

    And right now, I only see transfer options to Jetblue at 1000:800 and a Sears Shop Your Way.

    Ouch.

  23. Any data points or other advice about converting my TY Preferred card to the DC card — a current offer being made to me by Citi.

    Citi explains:

    “What else is changing and what will happen to my ThankYou® Points balance if I convert?
    When you convert to your Citi Double Cash Card, you will no longer earn ThankYou Points (even if you’re currently enrolled in a promotional offer). You can redeem your existing ThankYou Points at thankyou.com up to 60 days after converting to your new card. Any unused ThankYou Points balance in your program account will be forfeited at that time.”

    Can I expect Citi to claw back and forfeit the TYP earned from my preferred card, or will they stay as TY points by virtue of my prestige card? Unclear to me whether this is an obvious upgrade or a potential (or actual) trap.

  24. @JimT
    What swipe fees are you referring to below…the ones the merchant pays?

    “Is it really worth the extra 1/2 percent….to have a World Elite card with the higher swipe fee but with no added benefits as of September 2019?”

  25. Fee for foreign purchases – 3% of the U.S. dollar amount of each purchase.

    Strange none of the bloggers ever mention this in multiple reviews.
    Anyway, that right there is a no go.

  26. I’m not quite getting the excitement over 1 to 1 for thank you points unless its for travel. I don’t have this card and not sure what all the Thank you points can do. so let me ask this, so i convert $100 in cash back to 100 thank you points, won’t that just get me $100 in whatever i want to redeem? I checked thankyou.com so you can redeem on a lot of places but not sure what advantage it is for me.

    thank

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