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This is a phenomenal welcome bonus on a $95 annual fee card that has its fee waived for the first year. The card has excellent bonus categories, and I tend to think that ThankYou points are quite valuable.
At a minimum, ThankYou points can be redeemed for 1.25 cents each towards the cost of an airfare purchase, meaning that 60,000 points will get you $750 worth of airfare. That’s a bonus that anyone who doesn’t have the card should be considering.
Getting value out of Citi ThankYou points
Many people probably know that transferable points can be valuable for international premium cabin redemptions, but many have asked if there are more practical ways for the “average” person to use Citi ThankYou points for travel within North America.
On the surface some think there might not be great ways to redeem ThankYou points towards domestic travel, given that:
- Amex and Chase points can be transferred to British Airways Executive Club, which is great for domestic travel on Alaska and American; Citi doesn’t partner with British Airways, however
- Amex lets you transfer points to Delta, and Chase lets you transfer points to United, while Citi doesn’t let you transfer points to American, seemingly putting them at a disadvantage
In addition to being able to redeem Citi ThankYou points towards the cost of airfare, in this post I wanted to look at one other creative way to use ThankYou points for great value on travel within North America.
Redeeming Citi ThankYou points on Alaska
Citi ThankYou is a Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer partner (as are Amex Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards, for that matter, though for these purposes I consider that less valuable).
Since last year, Singapore and Alaska have had a partnership, including the ability to redeem Singapore KrisFlyer miles on Alaska. For the most part the values are really, really good.
To start, here’s Singapore KrisFlyer’s award chart for travel on Alaska:
And here’s how the five zones are broken up:
Now, there are some terms to be aware of:
- Pricing is per segment, so if you fly multiple segments, you’d be charged for multiple awards
- You have to book these awards by phone with KrisFlyer, though there are no phone ticketing fees
- Sometimes it requires patience to find a KrisFlyer agent who correctly searches award space
- KrisFlyer should have access to all saver level award space on Alaska (which you can search through American’s website or Alaska’s website)
Keeping all that in mind, this really is a phenomenal way to redeem Citi ThankYou points. For example:
- You could redeem 12,000 points for a nonstop flight from California, Oregon, or Washington, to Hawaii
- You could redeem 12,000 points for a nonstop flight from California to Costa Rica or Mexico
- You could redeem 12,000 points for a nonstop flight from the East Coast to California, Oregon, or Washington
- You could redeem 9,500 points for a nonstop flight from California, Oregon, or Washington, to the Midwest
- You could redeem 7,500 points for a nonstop flight between California, Oregon, and Washington
There are tons of opportunities to get outsized value there.
This isn’t always the best deal, though
While the above can represent great deals, keep in mind that sometimes airfare on Alaska can be really cheap, in which case it could make more sense to redeem points earned with the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card as cash towards the cost of a ticket.
To give one example, a Los Angeles to New York ticket would cost just 12,000 KrisFlyer miles, but even better is it you can redeem just 9,305 Citi ThankYou points, and then you’d even earn Alaska miles for the flight.
There are lots of great uses of the ThankYou points earned with the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card. While I personally like to redeem for international premium cabin redemptions, it’s tough to beat some of the redemption values available on Alaska when transferring points to Singapore KrisFlyer.
Hopefully this is a useful partner for anyone looking to redeem their ThankYou points for flights a bit closer to home.