Rewards rate: 5X points on air travel and restaurant purchases; 3x points on hotels and cruise line purchases; 1X point on all other purchases
Welcome offer: 50,000 bonus ThankYou points after spending $4,000 within three months of account opening
Annual fee: $495
Purchase intro APR: None
Balance transfer intro APR: None
Regular APR: 16.99 percent–23.99 percent variable
Current welcome offer
The Citi Prestige comes with a respectable 50,000 ThankYou points if you spend at least $4,000 in the first three months. This sign-up bonus is redeemable for $500 in travel if you book through the ThankYou Travel center—effectively offsetting your entire annual fee in the first year.
While this is a solid bonus, Chase Sapphire Reserve® has a great welcome offer for qualifying cardholders. But 60,000 Chase points (after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening) is worth $900 in travel—if redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
The Citi Prestige earns Citi ThankYou points, which provide a solid 1:1 value toward travel through Citi. Luckily, there is a good variety of redemption options, but it’s hard to squeeze extra value out of your points without utilizing Citi travel transfer partners. Waiting till the right moment is no problem, though, since your points won’t expire as long as your account stays open. However, points that are shared with another account expire in 90 days and purchased points must be used within a year.
Unless you bank with Citi, the only way to earn substantial rewards is through spending with your credit card. Your biggest bonus category earns 5X points on air travel and at restaurants (including cafes, bars, lounges and fast-food restaurants—which isn’t always the case), but you’ll also rake in 3X points at hotels and on cruise lines. Naturally, you’ll also earn 1X points on all other purchases.
If you plan to maximize your rewards for travel, this 5X rewards rate makes the Citi Prestige one of the best cards for restaurants and airlines.
Rewards redemption is where Citi Prestige comes into its own. You can use points to cover recent travel purchases (such as flights, hotels and car rentals) or eligible online bills, redeem them for a gift card, pay for purchases at participating retailers, receive them as cash back, donate them to charity or even share them with another person who has a ThankYou account. You may also be able to use points for payments up to $1,000 toward qualifying Citi credit lines, like a mortgage or student loan.
What’s particularly special about the Citi Prestige is that points earned on this card (and the Citi Premier® Card) can be transferred to a partner airline loyalty program at a transfer ratio of 1:1. Points transfer at this ratio is not available with other no annual fee Citi credit cards.