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This $95 annual fee card is underappreciated for its cost, its earning power, and for its bonus. And Citi points are transferable to a variety of different airline programs including some that don’t partner with Chase or Amex. Right now the card has its biggest-ever initial bonus offer, the second best up front offer of any card right now behind the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.
Great Initial Bonus
Citi Premier® Card is offering a 80,000 point signup bonus after $4000 in purchases on the card within your first 3 months of account opening.
What I’ve seen most of the time over the years has been either a 30,000 point bonus or no signup bonus at all. This is a great bonus for a card with transferable points, second only to the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.
Earns Transferable Points Fast
Citi Premier® Card earns 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets, 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels; 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
Unique Points Transfer Partners
Not all ThankYou points transfer to airline miles, for instance points from checking accounts and no annual fee Citi ThankYou points-earning cards do not.
However points from the Citi Premier® Card transfer one-to-one to a variety of frequent flyer programs or can be spent directly towards airfare on any airline or redeemed for gift cards.
This card’s Citibank ThankYou points transfer to:
- Star Alliance: Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer, EVA Air Infinity MileageLands, Thai Airways Royal Orchid Plus, Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles, Avianca LifeMiles
- SkyTeam: Air France-KLM
- oneworld: Cathay Pacific Asia Miles, Malaysia Airlines Enrich, Qatar Airways Privilege Club, Qantas Frequent Flyer, and [through November 23, 2021] American AAdvantage
- Non-alliance: Etihad Airways Guest, Emirates Skywards, Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, jetBlue, InterMiles (formerly JetPrivilege)
My favorite transfer partner choices do overlap Chase and American Express:
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer for better premium cabin award space than is offered to partners, upgrades from premium economy to business, and United domestic premium awards)
- Etihad Guest for Etihad premium cabin awards, American Airlines awards at cheap prices
- Air France KLM Flying Blue for better availability on Air France than is offered to partners and Air France arguably has the best transatlantic business class now
- Cathay Pacific AsiaMiles for distance-based premium cabin awards on Cathay
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club for ANA first and business class to and from Japan and Delta business class trips to and from Europe.
But you can’t discount Turkish Airlines which has some of the least expensive awards, and partners with Star Alliance carriers like United. And Emirates has great value awards for JetBlue business class. EVA Air’s Star Alliance program is also underrated.
ANA First Class
Virgin, Singapore, and Air France are duplicated by both Chase and American Express, and Cathay Pacific and Etihad are duplicated by American Express. However there are niche reasons to transfer to other partners like Qantas and Garuda as well.
And this duplication is a huge benefit rather than a downside to the card. It means you can sign up for a Citi Premier® Card and a Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and put the points from each into the same place so that you can redeem for better travel for yourself or have enough points to travel with someone.
EVA Air Business Class
Some Things to Consider With Citi Cards When Choosing to Apply
Citibank doesn’t have a hard limit on the number of their cards you can have though of course how much credit they’ll make available for each person will vary.
After you apply for one card they’ll consider another application from you 8 days later, but you can’t apply for more than 2 cards in 65 days.
Generally Citi will not give you the bonus on a new card account if you received a bonus from a product’s family in the past 24 months of if you’ve closed an account in that family. If you’ve gotten a Citi Prestige bonus (or Rewards+, ThankYou Preferred, or this card’s) in the past 24 months you won’t be eligible for this bonus. If you get this bonus now you won’t be eligible for a Citi Prestige bonus.
CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® Earn 65,000 AAdvantage miles.