Understandably a lot of people are at least temporarily reassessing their approach to using credit cards. Some people are looking for ways to be more efficient with their strategy and spending, and for many that involves considering no annual fee cards.
In light of that, I wanted to take an in-depth look at the Citi Rewards+℠ Card, a popular no annual fee card. This card could potentially be worthwhile whether you’re considering applying for it outright, or just want to downgrade another Citi card to this one.
Citi Rewards+ Card Review
The Citi Rewards+ Card is a no annual fee card that a lot of people could benefit from. It has some features that you won’t find on other cards, like the ability to round up points on every purchase, some bonus categories, and a rebate on points redemptions. The card also makes a great complement to the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige.
So, does this card deserve a spot in your wallet?
Citi Rewards+ Card 15K Point Welcome Bonus
The Citi Rewards+ Card is offering a welcome bonus of 15,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 within the first three months from account opening.
Do note that the bonus ThankYou points aren’t available to those who have received a new cardmember bonus for the Citi Rewards+, Citi ThankYou Preferred, Citi Premier, or Citi Prestige, within the past 24 months. Furthermore, it’s not open to those who have closed any of the above cards in the past 24 months.
This is in addition to the typical rules for Citi card applications, like being approved for at most one Citi card every eight days, and at most two Citi cards every 65 days.
This card is also potentially available to you as a downgrade option. If you get the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige and have them for at least a year, you should be able to later downgrade either of those to the Citi Rewards+, for example.
Citi Rewards+ Card Bonus Categories
The Citi Rewards+ has a couple of useful bonuses that make this card worthwhile, and which are potentially particularly worthwhile in the current climate. The Citi Rewards+ offers:
- 2x ThankYou points at supermarkets and gas stations, for the first $6,000 spent per calendar year
- Rounds up purchases to the nearest 10 ThankYou points
Both of these are useful, especially in conjunction with the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige:
- Neither of those cards currently offers 2x ThankYou points at supermarkets, so this is the best ThankYou card for that; see this post for the best credit cards for supermarkets, and see this post for the best credit cards for gas stations
- This is a fantastic card for small purchases, since even a $1 purchase would net you 10 ThankYou points
I like when card issuers think outside the box, and in this case Citi was clearly thinking outside the box. Getting these kinds of bonus categories for a no annual fee card is great.
You can even combine the two bonus categories. If you spend $6 at a supermarket you’d earn 20 points — 12 points for earning 2x points, and then it would be rounded up to 20 points.
Citi Rewards+ Card 10% Points Back On Redemptions
In addition to the 2x points and “rounding up” feature, the card also offers a nice perk when redeeming points.
When you have the Citi Rewards+ Card you get 10% points back for the first 100,000 ThankYou points you redeem per calendar year.
In other words, assuming you redeem at least 100,000 ThankYou points per year (even if they’re earned with the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige), just having this card will earn you the equivalent of 10,000 points every year.
Citi Rewards+ Card No Annual Fee
I said it above, and I want to emphasize it again — the Citi Rewards+ Card has no annual fee, so this is a card you can hold onto long term without it costing you anything. Having some cards long term can also be great for your credit score, since it helps your average age of accounts.
What Kind Of ThankYou Points Does The Rewards+ Card Earn?
While the card earns ThankYou points, independently these points can’t be transferred to the Citi ThankYou airline partners, which is my preferred use of ThankYou points.
However, if you have this card in conjunction with the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige, then you can pool points at thankyou.com, and can redeem points that way. You should be able to link this card with other Citi cards using your Citibank login.
Assuming you plan on having the Premier or Prestige, the card will essentially earn points that can be transferred to airlines. Of course that’s of limited use at the moment, given what’s going on in the world.
How Much Is A Citi Reward Point Worth?
The points you earn on the Citi Rewards+ Card can be worth that if you have the card in conjunction with one of the other cards above.
However, independently points earned on the card are only worth a cent each, so that’s not quite as valuable if you have the card independently.
Is The Citi Rewards+ Card Worth It?
The Citi Rewards+ Card is a fantastic complement to the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige.
This is true even if you don’t plan on spending any money on this card, as you’ll basically receive 10,000 ThankYou points back every year just for having this card, assuming you spend at least 100,000 ThankYou points per year.
On top of that, this card can actually be worth spending money on, for the 2x points on supermarkets and gas stations, not to mention the ability to have your purchases rounded up to the nearest 10 ThankYou points, which is great for small purchases.
However, it’s worth noting that you can also acquire this card by downgrading to it. So this is a card that in the future you could get by phoning up Citi and asking them to downgrade the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige.
Citi Rewards+ Vs. Citi Double Cash
- The card earns 1% cash back when you make a purchase, and 1% cash back when you pay for that purchase
- In conjunction with the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige, rewards can be converted into ThankYou points (and then into airline miles) at a ratio of one point per cent, which is incredible
- This essentially means that the Citi Double Cash can earn you two ThankYou points per dollar spent
With that in mind, I think both of these cards can make a lot of sense:
- The Citi Double Cash is an incredibly well rounded card for everyday spending, whether you’re looking to earn cash back or rewards points
- The Citi Rewards+ is great for small purchases, and a fantastic complement to the Citi Premier or Citi Prestige
Personally I have the Double Cash, and I plan on picking up the Rewards+ soon.
Citi Rewards+ Card Summary
The Citi Rewards+ Card is a no annual fee card that can add value for earning and redeeming ThankYou points. You can earn 2x points per dollar spent in certain categories, and have your purchases rounded up to the nearest 10 points.
On top of that, having this card will get you up to 10,000 points back per year, thanks to the 10% points back on redemptions. Of course this isn’t the ideal time to be earning travel rewards, but this card gives you a lot of flexibility in that regard.
With this card I’m also happy to see Citi building more of a card economy. One of the great things about Amex and Chase is how many personal and business cards they have that earn their transferrable points currency, while Citi has a much more limited portfolio. Citi is moving more in the direction of Amex and Chase in that regard, which is exciting.
Lastly, if I could just choose one Citi no annual fee card, I’d go with the Citi Double Cash, as it’s my go-to card for everyday spending.