Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide

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We’ve seen some great enhancements recently to Citi’s ThankYou Rewards program!  Most recently, they introduced the Citi Custom Cash which earns 5x in whatever category you spend most each billing cycle.  Other recent changes and additions include: Citi Double Cash’s ability to convert cash back into points; the new Rewards+ card offers a 10% rebate on awards; and the Premier card has expanded 3x categories, including grocery stores.  With all of those changes, ThankYou Rewards may now be the most rewarding of all transferable points programs for credit card spend.  Chase and Amex still have Citi beat by a mile, though, with respect to earning points via signup bonuses.

Citi ThankYou Rewards points can be transferred to airline partners, used to pay for travel or merchandise, redeemed to pay bills, or converted to cash back.  Citi ThankYou Rewards competes directly with three other bank issued transferable points programs: Chase Ultimate Rewards, Amex Membership Rewards, and Capital One “Miles”..

Below, you’ll find everything you need to know about ThankYou Rewards.

Earn Citi ThankYou Rewards Points

Credit Cards

The easiest and quickest way to earn ThankYou points is through Citi credit card signup bonuses, credit card spend, and retention offers (call about once per year to ask if any offers are loaded to your cards).  Below are the current Citibank cards that earn ThankYou rewards.  Of particular note are cards that earn 3X to 5X rewards within certain categories of spend: Citi Premier (3X grocery, dining, gas stations, flights, hotels, and travel agencies), AT&T Access More (3X online retail), Custom Cash (5X in various categories), and Citi Prestige (5X airfare, dining, and travel agencies; 3X hotels and cruise lines).

Recent additions to the list include:

  • Custom Cash: Earn 5X in whatever category you spend most each billing cycle, up to $500.  Available categories are Restaurants, Gas Stations, Grocery Stores, Select Travel, Select Transit, Select Streaming Services, Drugstores, Home Improvement Stores, Fitness Clubs and Live Entertainment.
  • Double Cash: Earn 2% back everywhere. The card isn’t new but the ability to convert your cash back to ThankYou points is new.  This makes the Double Cash a 2X everywhere ThankYou card!
  • Rewards+: This card rounds up rewards to the nearest 10 points (which means that it is great for low cost transactions) and, most interestingly, offers a 10% rebate on redeemed points, up to 10,000 back per year.  When the card’s ThankYou account is combined with other ThankYou cards, you get 10% of your points back for any award redemption including transfers to airline miles!  For more about this card, see: Citi Rewards+ is a great companion to Premier or Prestige.

Important: You cannot get a bonus on a new ThankYou Rewards card if you have received a bonus or cancelled the same card or another card in the same family within the past 24 months. This limitation does not apply to the Double Cash card since it is not considered a full-fledged ThankYou Rewards card.  This limitation also does not apply to the Custom Cash card since it has its own restriction (can’t get a new bonus if you’ve received one for the same card in the past 48 months).  The credit card offer terms for the rest of the ThankYou Rewards cards state the following:

Bonus ThankYou® Points are not available if you received a new cardmember bonus for Citi Rewards+®, Citi ThankYou® Preferred, Citi ThankYou® Premier/Citi Premier® or Citi Prestige®, or if you have closed any of these accounts, in the past 24 months.

Card Offer and Details
Citi Premier Card
80K points
80K points after $4K spend in the first 3 months

$95 Annual Fee

Recent better offer: None. This matches the best offer we've ever seen.

FM Mini Review: Very strong earnings for spend. Excellent bonus categories. Points transferable to select airlines. Recommend pairing this card with Citi Double Cash and Citi Rewards+. Sadly, this travel card doesn't provide any travel protections.


Card Type: Mastercard World Elite

Base
Travel
Dine
Gas
Grocery

Earning rate: 3X grocery ⚬ 3X dining ⚬ 3X gas stations ⚬ 3X flights, hotels, travel agencies

Noteworthy perks: Transfer points to airline partners ⚬ $100 Annual Hotel Savings Benefit

See also: Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide

Citi Custom Cash Card
20K Points
20K points after $750 spend in the first 3 months

No Annual Fee

Recent better offer: None

FM Mini Review: This is a great card to have and hold for a single category where you spend no more than $500 per month as it represents an excellent return without rotating categories to track.


Card Type: Mastercard

Base
Travel
Dine
Gas
Grocery
Other

Earning rate: 5x on purchases in your top eligible spend category each billing cycle, up to the first $500 spent, 1x thereafter. Eligible categories: Restaurants, Gas Stations, Grocery Stores, Select Travel, Select Transit, Select Streaming Services, Drugstores, Home Improvement Stores, Fitness Clubs and Live Entertainment. ⚬ 1x on all other purchases

Citi Rewards+ Card
20K points
20K points after $1.5K spend in 3 months

No Annual Fee

FM Mini Review: 10% points rebate (up to 10K rebate per year) make this a great choice to pool with ThankYou Premier, Prestige, and/or Double Cash


Card Type: Mastercard World

Base
Gas
Grocery

Earning rate: 2X at supermarkets and gas stations on up to $6,000 per year ⚬ Round up to nearest 10 TY points on all purchases

Noteworthy perks: Round up to the nearest 10 points on all purchases with no cap. ⚬ get 10% of your points back on the first 100K redeemed each year

See also: Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide

AT&T Access Card

FM Mini Review: This card may be worth it for a welcome bonus, but it would be worth considering a product change to the Double Cash down the road..Unforunately, it seems it is no longer possible to product change to the AT&T Access More card.


Card Type: Mastercard World

Base
Travel
Shop
Brand

Earning rate: ⚬ 2 points per $1 on products and services that are purchased directly from AT&T ⚬ 2 points per $1 on all purchases at online retail and travel sites ⚬ 1 point per $1 on all other purchases

See also: Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide

Citi Double Cash Card

Recent better offer: None

FM Mini Review: 2X rewards for all spend with no annual fee makes this card a winner. Earn 2X everywhere and redeem for the equivalent of 2% cash back or 2X ThankYou points. Pair with the Premier or Prestige card to make points transferrable to airlines.


Card Type: Mastercard World Elite

Base

Earning rate: 2% cash back everywhere (1% cash back for each purchase + 1% when paying your credit card bill for that purchase)

Noteworthy perks: 1X when you make a purchase + 1X when you pay for those purchases

Citi Rewards+ Student Card
None
This card is not currently available to new applicants.

No Annual Fee

FM Mini Review: 10% points rebate (up to 10K rebate per year) make this a great choice to pool with ThankYou Premier, Prestige, and/or Double Cash


Card Type: Mastercard World

Base
Gas
Grocery

Earning rate: 2X at supermarkets and gas stations on up to $6,000 per year ⚬ Round up to nearest 10 TY points on all purchases

Noteworthy perks: Round up to the nearest 10 points on all purchases with no cap. ⚬ get 10% of your points back on the first 100K redeemed each year

See also: Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide

Citi ThankYou Preferred Card

FM Mini Review: Downgrade from Prestige or Premier to this card in order to keep points alive


Card Type: Mastercard World

Base
Dine
Other

Earning rate: 2X dining and entertainment

See also: Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide

Citi Business ThankYou Card

Card Type: Mastercard World

Base
Other

Earning rate: 3X rotating quarterly categories

Noteworthy perks: Anniversary bonus on base earnings each membership year. (1% in year 1, 2% in year 2 and 3% in year 3 and beyond.)

See also: Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide

AT&T Access More Card

FM Mini Review: Excellent choice for those who shop often online (thanks to 3X earnings)


Card Type: Mastercard World Elite

Base
Travel
Shop
Brand

Earning rate: ⚬ 3 points per $1 on products and services that are purchased directly from AT&T ⚬ 3 points per $1 on all purchases at online retail and travel sites ⚬ 1 point per $1 on all other purchases

Big spend bonus: 10,000 anniversary bonus points after $10,000 in annual spending

See also: Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide

Citi ThankYou Prestige Card

FM Mini Review: The Prestige card's best in class 5X rewards for dining, airfare, and travel agencies is hard to beat. Sadly, this travel card doesn't provide any travel protections.


Card Type: Mastercard World Elite

Base
Travel
Dine

Earning rate: 5X airfare, dining, and travel agencies ⚬ 3X hotels and cruise line ⚬ 1X everywhere else

Noteworthy perks: $250 travel rebate per calendar year ⚬ Free lounge access: Citi Properietary Lounges; and Priority Pass Select with free guests ⚬ $100 Global Entry application fee credit ⚬ 4th night free hotel benefit

See also: Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide

Bank Products

Some Citi banking products also earn ThankYou Rewards points.  If you can find a good signup bonus (like this one), you can earn 40,000 to 60,000 points that way.  Unfortunately, very few points can be earned after the signup bonus.

As you can see above, not counting any signup bonus, the most you can earn from a single banking account is 1600 points per month.  If you have the Citi Premier card and plan to use these points for 1.25 cents each towards travel, 1600 points amounts to only $20 in travel.  That’s better than nothing, but its a far cry from what is possible with credit card earnings.

Bank point limitations: Points earned through banking are taxable.  Further, these points cannot be transferred to airline partners (not even if you move the points to a friend’s account or combine with a premium Citi card).

Redeem Citi ThankYou Rewards Points

In general, ThankYou Rewards points are worth up to 1 cent each.  There are two ways in which it is possible to get more value, though: redeem points for travel or transfer points to airline partners.  More below…

Paid Travel

In general, if you book travel through the Citi ThankYou portal, you’ll get only 1 cent per point value (this doesn’t count the added value of having the Rewards+ 10% rebate).  One exception is the Citi Prestige 4th Night Free benefit…

Redeem points for a 4 night hotel stay: 25% point discount pre-tax (up to 1.33 cents per point value)

This option requires the Citi Prestige Card.  Book a 4 Night hotel stay for the price of 3 nights (not counting taxes & fees, the 25% discount results in 1.33 cents per point value).  If you would like to use points earned on other cards, either combine your cards together or share your points (move points) from the other card to your Citi Prestige.  This benefit can be used twice per year.

Hotels booked through the ThankYou portal way do not earn hotel rewards.  Worse, hotels booked through the portal often won’t offer you elite benefits even if you have status.

Details about the 4th Night Free benefit can be found here: Complete Guide to Citi Prestige 4th Night Free.

Transfer Citi ThankYou Rewards points

The best use of ThankYou points, in my opinion, is to transfer points to airline partners in order to book high value awards.  Your best bet is usually to wait until you find a great flight award before transferring points.  One exception: Citi often offers 25% or 30% transfer bonuses to certain programs.  If you’re confident that you’ll use the points for good value, it may make sense to transfer points when those bonuses are in effect.

Point limitations: Points earned through banking, or as courtesy points from Citi, cannot be transferred to airline partners (not even if you move the points to a friend’s account or combine with a premium Citi card).

Current Transfer Bonuses

At the time that I’m writing this there are no active transfer bonuses, but when a transfer bonus appears, details will automatically appear here:

Transfer Bonus DetailsEnd Date Sortable
Up to 40% transfer bonus from Citi to Qatar Avios2022/6/30

Transfer Partners

Rewards ProgramBest UsesCiti Transfer Ratio
(and transfer time)
Aer Lingus AviosAer Lingus shares the "Avios" currency with British Airways and Iberia. In most cases it is best to move points to one of those programs in order to book awards for less.  See also: Complete guide to Avios - British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus.1 to 1 via Qatar, BA (1 to 2 days)
AeroMexico ClubPremierAeroMexico is a SkyTeam partner. Club Premier points can be used to book flights on AeroMexico, SkyTeam alliance members (such as Delta or Korean Air), or on select partner airlines. Unfortunately many have reported that awards are extremely difficult to book through AeroMexico so we do not recommend transferring points to this program. If you want to fly AeroMexico, look to transfer points to another SkyTeam partner (such as Air France) and then book AeroMexico with that program.1 to 1 (~6 days)
Air France KLM Flying BlueMonthly Air France Promo Awards often represent very good value. Air France miles can be used to book Sky Team awards, including Delta awards. Air France offers very good business class award pricing between the US and Europe & Israel.1 to 1 (Instant)
Avianca LifeMilesAvianca LifeMiles can be great for Star Alliance awards. They offer reasonable award prices and no fuel surcharges on awards. They also offer shorthaul awards within the US (for flying United, for example) for as few as 7,500 miles one-way. Best of all, their mixed-cabin pricing can lead to fantastic first-class award prices. See this post for details.1 to 1 (Instant)
British Airways AviosWhile flights on British Airways itself often incur outrageously high fuel surcharges, many BA partners charge low or no fuel surcharges. Excellent value can be had in redeeming BA points for short distance flights. It's possible to move points (Avios) between Iberia, British Airways, Aer Lingus, and Qatar. See also: Complete guide to Avios - British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus.1 to 1 via Qatar (1 to 2 days)
Cathay Pacific Asia MilesCathay Pacific has a decent distance based award chart, but they no longer allow stopovers longer than 24 hours. Cathay Pacific Asia Miles can be a good option for booking American Airlines flights with a distance based award chart, especially if other OneWorld Alliance miles aren't available. For long distance flights, it is possible to reduce the cost of first class by adding on a business class flight. See this post for details.1 to 1 (Instant)
ChoiceChoice Privileges points seem to be randomly valuable within the US, but dependably valuable internationally in expensive locations such as Scandinavia and Japan1 to 2 (Instant)
Emirates SkywardsThe best use of Emirates miles has been to fly Emirates itself. Unfortunately fuel surcharges can be steep. See: Emirates Sweet Spot Awards - First class from 30K miles round trip. Another great use is to book JetBlue Mint flights. See: Book JetBlue Mint (including Mint Studio) with Emirates miles.1 to 1 (Instant)
Etihad GuestEtihad has a very competitive award chart for American Airlines flights, among others.  For example, they charge only 50,000 miles one-way for business class flights from North America to Europe. Partner awards must be booked over the phone.1 to 1 (~1 hour)
EVA Air Infinity MileageLandsIf you want to fly one of the best business class products in the sky, the best way to snag EVA flights is with their own miles since they release more award space to their own members. One-way business class flights from the US to Taipei cost 75K to 80K miles. Fuel surcharges are very low on these routes.
1 to 1 (Instant)
Iberia AviosIberia offers very low award prices on their own flights. Round trip partner awards can offer good value under some circumstances as well. Fuel surcharges are often lower when booking with Iberia rather than British Airways. It's possible to move points (Avios) between Iberia, British Airways, Aer Lingus, and Qatar.  See also: Complete guide to Avios - British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus.1 to 1 via Qatar, BA (1 to 2 days)
Jet Airways Inter MilesJetAirways JetPrivilege miles are useful only for a few very specific cases such as certain flights to Hawaii for as low as 15K (30K business) one-way, or to the Caribbean or Central America for as low as 10K (20K business) one-way. Details can be found here.1 to 1 (Instant)
JetBlueJetBlue points offer the most value when cheap ticket prices are available and when award taxes are high relative to the overall cost of the ticket (more details can be found here). The JetBlue Plus Card and the JetBlue Business Card offer a 10% rebate on awards, so you can get more value by holding one of these cards. JetBlue points can also be transferred to Amtrak 2 to 1 (with Amtrak points worth up to 2.9 cents each, this transfer can offer good value).1 to 1 (Instant)
Malaysia EnrichGiven Malaysia's award chart devaluation in June 2017, I'm not aware of any good uses for these miles.1 to 1 (1 to 2 days)
Qantas Frequent FlyerBest use is probably for flights on El Al with no fuel surcharges. Also useful for short AA flights. Qantas offers distance based award charts similar to Cathay Pacific. Both are OneWorld Alliance members. I recommend comparing award prices across both programs before transferring to either. Qantas offers round the world business class awards for only 280,000 points (but with many restrictions)1 to 1 (~1 day)
Qatar Privilege Club AviosQatar has reasonable award prices for flying Qatar itself. Points are now transferable 1 to 1 to British Airways (and from there to Aer Lingus or Iberia)1 to 1 (1 to 2 days)
Shop Your Way RewardsDon't do it. Shop Your Way points can be redeemed for a variety of gift cards. That said, unless Shop Your Way starts offering discounted gift cards, there's no point in converting transferrable points to Shop Your Way.1 to 10 (Instant)
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyerUse to book Singapore Airlines First Class awards (generally reserved for their own members), Alaska Airlines economy awards, or for Star Alliance awards (including United Airlines).1 to 1 (~1 day)
Thai Airways International Royal Orchid PlusI'm not aware of any good uses for these miles1 to 1 (3 to 7 days)
Turkish Airlines Miles & SmilesMiles & Smiles offers a number of awesome sweet-spot awards including 7.5K one-way anywhere within the US, even to Hawaii. Many awards cannot be booked online but can be booked via phone or email. See: Turkish Miles & Smiles Complete Guide and Turkish business class sweet spots from the US.1 to 1 (~1 day)
Virgin Atlantic Flying ClubVirgin Atlantic offers a few great sweet spot awards including ANA first class between the US and Japan for as low as 55K points one-way; and US to Europe on Delta One business class for 50K points one-way. See: Best uses for Virgin Atlantic points (Sweet Spot Spotlight).1 to 1 (Instant)
WyndhamWyndham often allows booking multi-room suites for the same price as a standard room. It's sometimes possible to get great value from points in that way. Bonus: award nights are not subject to resort fees. Additionally, you can book Vacasa vacation rentals for only 15K points per room per night. Wyndham Earner cards offer automatic 10% discount on award stays.1 to 1 (Instant)

Cash back

Citi Preferred, Premier, Prestige and Custom Cash cardholders can redeem points for 1 cent each either as statement credits or as cash back.

Other ways to redeem points

Through the ThankYou Rewards portal you can redeem points for gift cards, merchandise, charity, bill payments, and more.  At most, with this approach you’ll get 1 cent per point value.  One exception is that Citi occasionally offers gift cards at a discount so you may be able to get better than 1 cent per point value during a gift card sale.

You can also use points to pay some merchants directly (Amazon.com, for example).  Don’t do this.  These options offer very poor value.

Sweet spot awards

Our post, Citi ThankYou points sweet spots for high value redemptions, details the best value uses of Citi ThankYou points. Either click here or click below to jump to a section of the post:

Manage Citi ThankYou Rewards Points

Combine Points Across Cards

If you are the primary account holder with multiple cards, you can combine ThankYou Rewards accounts.  When your points are combined, they can then automatically be redeemed at the same value as your best card.  For example, if one of your cards is the Prestige card, and have combined ThankYou accounts, then you’ll get 4th Night Free on hotels booked with points even if the points were earned on a card other than the Prestige card.  Similarly, if you combine other cards with the Rewards+ card, you’ll get a 10% rebate on all award redemptions (up to 10,000 rebated points per year) even if the points originated from a different card.  If you have both the Prestige and the Rewards+ card combined together, then you can get both 4th Night Free and 10% back on the same award.

There are some disadvantages to combining points:

  • You lose the ability to pick and choose which points are used when you redeem awards.
  • You lose visibility into how many points remain with each card.

The above disadvantages become important when you want to cancel a card: when you cancel a card, all points earned from that account are lost after 60 days.  I recommend downgrading to a no-fee ThankYou card rather than cancelling outright.  That way your points are safe.

Share Points Across Cardholders

Citi generously allows people to transfer ThankYou points to anyone else, for free.  There are two “catches” to this:

  1. Shared points expire after 90 days. Make sure you have a specific near-term use in mind before transferring points.
  2. 100K limit: Each member may share up to 100,000 points per calendar year.  Each member may receive up to 100,000 points per calendar year.

Why this is valuable:

  • A friend or family member with a Premier card can book travel for you in order to get the 20% point discount.
  • If a friend has airline elite status with one of Citi’s transfer partners with which you want to book an award, you may be better off transferring points to your friend who can then transfer the points to the airline partner and book the award for you (to get free award changes, for example).

How to Keep Points Alive

There are several situations in which you may have Citi ThankYou Rewards points that will expire:

  • Points earned by a credit card account expire 60 days after cancelling that account.
  • Points transferred to your account expire after 90 days.
  • Points earned from some older credit cards expire in a set amount of time after points were earned (e.g. 3 or 5 years after December 31 of the year in which the points were earned).
  • Points earned from some credit cards expire if your credit card account has no purchase activity in 18 months.
  • Points earned from Citibank banking products expire 3 years after December 31 of the year in which the points were earned.

Credit card points: how to keep points alive

With most credit card points (except with some older credit cards which are no longer available), points remain alive until you cancel the card from which they were earned.  Once you cancel the card, points expire after 60 days.

Combining accounts does not solve the problem.  When you combine multiple ThankYou accounts, it’s natural to assume that as long as you keep any ThankYou Rewards credit card open, your points will be safe.  That’s simply not the case.  Citi keeps track of where each ThankYou point came from.  If you cancel a card, the points earned on that card expire after 60 days.  Period.

The best way to preserve your ThankYou points is to keep your credit card account alive.  If you don’t want an annual fee, then call to downgrade to a no-fee ThankYou card.  There is a side benefit to this approach too: Your no fee card may be eligible for occasional lucrative retention offers.  See: How one call led to a points bonanza and rethought plans.

Bank product points: how to keep points alive

Points earned from banking products (such as checking accounts) expire 3 years after December 31 of the year in which the points were earned..  Fortunately, when redeeming points combined across multiple accounts, Citi automatically uses first whichever points have the most recent expiration date.  So, in general, your banking product points (which eventually expire) will be used first if you have combined accounts.

More information

Citibank’s official ThankYou Rewards FAQ can be found here.

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JN2

I saw in your post from 2019 — when Double Cash (DC) earnings first were allowed to be converted to Thank You Points (TYPs) — that transferring TYPs converted from Double Cash to a Premier/Prestige TYP account allowed the DC TYPs to be transferred to airline partners, but in that example, I think all the credit cards were in the same person’s name.

Do you know if shared TYPs could be transferred to airlines in the following situation:
1) Person A only has the DC card
2) Person A converts DC earnings to TYP and shares TYPs with Person B
3) Person B has a Premier card and plans to transfer TYPs to an airline.

My uncertainty is about whether points shared from someone’s account who only has a DC card would have full TYP functionality after being transferred to another person’s TYP account that includes a premium card. Assuming the shared points are unrestricted TYPs, I understand that they would be used first for the airline transfer, due to Citi using points expiring soonest first.Thanks!

JN2

Thanks, Greg!

Yen

If I have 20K points under my CTY account, and I transfer another 30K from p2 because I have rewards+ card, how do I ensure I redeem p2’s 30K points first ? I think my real question is, is it possible to redeem p2’s expirable points while p1’s points keep untouched ?

Last edited 5 months ago by Yen
trix

Applied for Citi premier through your link, got instant denial. This was for my husband, excellent credit, has had and cancelled a Citi Aadvantage Business card last year. No other Citi cards for over 12 years. We’re retired, no outstanding debt.
Reasons for denial were lack of loans, too many open credit cards, with too much available credit. Very nice CSR when calling reconsideration line. But still denied when they got back to us a few hours later.
Husband opened Wyndham Bus card a few months ago, and Chase Bus Ink this past Aug.
Really wanted that Citi! Is this happening to other retirees? Is it just Citi? Chase has not been a problem.

kurson

If I convert cash rewards from MY Double Cash CC to TYP, do they expire after some time?

[…] miles.  Points can be transferred 1 to 1 from Amex Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, or Citi ThankYou Rewards.  Additionally, points can be transferred from Marriott Bonvoy: 60,000 Marriott points becomes […]

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[…] but not great for spend everywhere else.  For example, the Citi Prestige card offers 5X ThankYou Rewards for airfare, dining, and most travel agencies, and 3X for hotels and cruise lines.  That’s […]

[…] Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide […]

[…] Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide […]

Jacob Y

Thank you for the interesting post.

I currently have Double Cash which has only 1 travel partner at 0.8 transfer rate. If I open Prestige and/or Premier, and then eventually transfer my Double Cash associated Thank you points to Prestige and/or Premier associated Thank you account, will I be able to transfer those DC-associated TY points to the extended list of travel partners (subject to 90-day limit)?

I am a long time customer of Chase, but thinking about shifting to Citi. I keep comparing this to Chase, where you can combine or transfer points from zero fee credit cards (like Freedom or Freedom Unlimited, alternative of Citi’s Double Cash) to Sapphire (alternative of Prestige or Premier) that opens the door to travel partners. Chase does not have any restrictions to use points received from Freedom and these points once transferred become a part of total points in Sapphire.

Thanks!

[…] Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide […]

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james

What are your thoughts about now downgrading from Prestige to Rewards plus? Was planning on cancelling anyway now that fee is due, at least that way I keep 10% of Prestige points ( have earned about 100k TYP on just that card) that I will be forced to use in 60 days – Plus keep from resetting the 24 mo. clock. Seems like a good option for anyone coming up on the anniversary.

kim

can I get the double cash back card with no other Citi card and still transfer to thank you points? Or do I need the prestige card?
Thanks!

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Bob

Greg: Does the 24-month rule (between applications and between cancellation and new application) apply only to the Prestige and Premier – or will the Rewards+ and/o DoubleCash be included? More generally, what are the time rules between Citi TY card applications? Recommend this info be included in your guide.

Josh

Is the 24 month rule between applications/approval or bonuses? I was approved for a thankyou card 25 months ago but received the bonus 23 months ago—am I good to apply for another card that earns thankyou points? Thanks!

Pahill

Is it possible to use the points and get it refunded as a cash statement credit?
I’ve done it with FlexPerks but not sure if it works with TYP or UR points, anyone with data points please share.

Yuri

You forgot to mention Sears card. This card has pretty good bonuses every few months.

CRUISINGFLYING4LIFE

Did JetAirways is shut down, right? So, no more transfer partner…

Rick I

DofC reader reporting on Reddit the only transfer partner from Citi Double cash transfers is JetBlue. It may be worth waiting a day or two for the smoke to clear

[…] Citi ThankYou Rewards Complete Guide […]

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Blair

Question: Can you now do a three way stack with Prestige, Premier, and rewards plus. 4th night, plus 20% , plus 10% rebate??

Andrew K

So doesn’t that mean you get 1.85 CPP for the first 100k towards hotels?! Obviously whether you count that or not is subjective because you could easily transfer them to airlines and get the same bonus, but seems like a big deal to me for someone who can easily pay for flights with Chase or Amex but has a hard time finding good value for hotels, especially with amex.

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Yati

If i downgrade from Premier to a no-fee thank you card, I’ll keep my points. Will they still be available to transfer to airlines at a 1:1 rate? Will I still be able to book travel and pay with points, but no longer with the 20% discount? Thanks so much for your help.

[…] published complete guides to most transferable points programs, including Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Points, and Amex Membership Rewards. Now that Capital One has added transfer partners and initiated the […]

[…] This post rounds out our guides to the big three transferable points programs: Amex Membership Rewards (this post), Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Citi ThankYou Rewards. […]

[…] Deep Dive Into Thank You Points:  Most are familiar with UR and MR points, however you may overlook Thank You points.  Some would argue that they are not very valuable, however this article shares a lot of facts that could be useful for you. […]

mangoMan

I have the Prestige and a CitiGold account, and have a mix of credit card and bank points. If redeeming points for travel, how do I ensure that I’m using the bank points first before the credit card points? Does Citi do this automatically?

[…] Greg published an excellent resource on Citi ThankYou points (See: Citi Thank You Points. Deep Dive.) Many readers found that resource useful, so I decided to steal borrow Greg’s useful format […]

[…] Miler does a deep dive into the Citi ThankYou Rewards […]

Elizabeth

There is at least some enforcement on the 100k/year sharing. I had transferred X number of points from hubby’s account to mine earlier this year. Recently I went to transfer more and it only allowed 100k – X.

Adam

Hey Greg, thanks for the comprehensive and helpful post!

One thing I’d like to be double-sure of, though: if I downgrade my Premier to a no-fee ThankYou Preferred card, are you SURE that I won’t lose those earned TY points? A customer rep (obviously incented to have me NOT downgrade) suggested otherwise earlier this year :(.

WR2

I would only disagree on one point: I think you are undervaluing EVA. Solid redemption rates for USA to Asia (75k one way from west coast to SE Asia in one of the best business class products in the world). Great availability, low fees. That is more than a niche redemption, and better than transferring to Singapore. This is where all my TYP go, except when there is a good transfer bonus to Asia Miles.

Andy

Why do you still say “up to 1.67 cpp” when in your old post about it, you said thought it was wrong to say it that way (which I agree with)?

“I now think it is much better to say that it is possible to stack the Prestige 4th Night Free discount with the Premier 20% pay with points discount.” — Yes, it is!

I know it’s not your intent, but saying “up to 1.67 cpp” is very misleading.

Andy

Logically, I don’t disagree with you if you are only comparing points options. Here’s the problem though:

Even if they ultimately decide to book with points, most people will also want to compare with cash.

To make an apples-to-apples comparison, for a Prestige cardholder, if you did your points valuation using a pre-discount price, you have to do the same with cash. Therefore, for this post’s example, $1,518.74 (value) / $1,173.30 (amount you actually pay) = 1.29 cents of value per penny.

This last bit is 100% my subjective opinion, but any valuation system where the value of cash is anything other than 1 penny = 1 penny is incredibly misleading and should never be used.

tro

If you pay for airfare or hotel with points and need to use Trip Interruption, what happens? Do you get then get the points back?

I mostly do 1.25c redemptions through the travel portal, and I’ve noticed that the prepaid rates are often competetive with other OTAs, but the refundable rate will sometimes be much higher than what’s widely available elsewhere. I would feel better about taking the prepaid rate if I knew I could get the points backs for a covered reason.

Joel

Yes they refund the points used. They are refunded to the account you used to make the travel booking. Citi is great in handling cancellations – they make refunds quickly. BUT make sure the card you used to purchase the trip is still active – otherwise your refunded miles may disappear.

tro

Thx that helps. Relevant because I am actually considering downgrading the Premier. Since I don’t have the Prestige, I was expecting that if I do that I would lose the trip interruption protection for outstanding reservations. Although, I might have the Prestige by the time I would make the claim if I end up applying for it in January 🙂

Neil

Good overview. I currently have the Prestige – I believe I am still getting 1.25 cents per point on travel redemption. I recall reading that will drop to 1 cent per point, but do you know the effective date for that change (your article makes it sound like it has already happened).

Biggie F

Ah, important point for those of us who have Prestige but had dropped Premier. I had been kicking myself for not having taken the upgrade-your-Preferred-to-Premier-with-no-AF-in-first-year offers that I was being pelted with, but now see that I have another ten months before I have to worry about the Premier and its AF. This is being written by someone who uses TYPs for airfare since I have to make some AA status annually. At 5x x1.25 for airfare on dining (come Jan 2019), plus Prestige’s strong travel insurance, this is a nice discount. Glad I recently renewed Prestige… and that Citi thinks I’m still CitiGold.

Tamas Karpati

Greg,

Great article! Thanks you!
There is one more way to get TY points via the Sears no fee Master Card. I know Sears is likely to disappear, but on the CC front this card has been on a tear lately offering 10% back on grocery/gas/dining for 3 months and other great bonuses. Even if Sears disappears the TY points should be available since they belong to Citi.

Tamas

You are right. It does not seem to be available for signup anymore and likely there is no way to PC to it. But whoever has it should take advantage of the effective 10% back this quarter for up to 40K TY points.

Mr G

As discussed a few times over on doctorofcredit.com sign up for the Shop Your Way version and then after a few months you can product change to the TYP card.

Yuri

You should get it right away.

Yuri
Marc

There just seem to be too many gotchas throughout the program…so many things to keep track of to use your miles correctly. And there is still no way to combine 1.25 cpp with 4th night free without giving up any status benefits one might be able to get otherwise. For now, I like the earning potential but not the redemption qualities. Going to stay away and focus on the other options.

Chaser123

I know over the phone with 4th night free you can still keep and earn status benefits. They will happily book on the hotels website for you. You are right, you can not combine the point redemption. All they are doing is inputting your credit card on the hotels site.

tom

Another high quality post — thanks

Chaz

Thanks for this post. Interesting to note that you believe only five good partners exist: Air France, Avianca, Cathay Pacific, Singapore and Virgin Atlantic. Four of five are part of other programs, and Avianca is the lone wolf that’s unique. I picked up the Avianca credit card and bought miles earlier this year, but still am unable to book flights with blocked award availability compared to United or Aeroplan on Star Alliance.

This post basically confirms the Thank You Program isn’t great compared to Amex. Yes it might make sense to pick up the Prestige in January with a sign up bonus, but it will be hard to recoup the investment in annual fee after year one for only one point more in dining, considering I probably won’t use the fourth night free benefit. Despite dining being my biggest spend category, Amex Gold+BBP is too strong for everyday spend in the long term on an ROI basis.

I still don’t see the excitement in this program, especially considering Citi devalues earning / benefits on cards so quickly compared to Amex / Chase.

Jules

The AMEX Gold+BP combo is a good option but only if most or all of your spending is in USD. For those of us that travel a lot internationally, the AMEX Gold’s 4x on dining and supermarkets doesn’t apply and the BBP’s foreign transaction fee makes it pretty much useless. The Citi Prestige offers 5x on dining internationally which is lucrative. Pair this with the Ink Preferred and that would be the ideal combo imh.