Premier cards auto-upgraded to Strata Premier

24

Mother’s Day brought a surprise to Citi Premier cardholders who logged into their accounts. There, they found that they no longer had the old Citi Premier card, but now had the new Citi Strata Premier. The Strata Premier is almost identical to the Premier, but with a few minor enhancements. The most notable enhancement is that the new card has travel protections. It has long seemed bizarre to me that Citi had removed travel protections from their travel cards and so its great to see that back for what may be the best travel card they offer.

Citi’s landing page for the Strata Premier card (found here), shows the following new benefits:

  • Travel Protection Benefits: “Help stay protected with travel insurances, including Trip Delay Protection, Common Carrier Trip Cancellation and Interruption Protection, Lost or Damaged Luggage, and MasterRental Coverage (car rental insurance)”
  • Earn 3x on EV Charging Stations: “Earn 3X points per $1 on Air Travel and Other Hotel Purchases, at Restaurants, Supermarkets, Gas Stations and – newly added – EV Charging Stations. Earn 1X point per $1 on All Other Purchases.”
  • 10x Citi Travel now an ongoing benefit: “Now an ongoing benefit! Earn a total of 10 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on Hotel, Car Rentals and Attractions booked through CitiTravel.com.”

My Take

I’ve long thought that the Citi Premier card was one of the best points & miles cards on the market, especially when paired with the Double Cash (2x everywhere), Rewards+ (10% back when redeeming points, up to 10K back per year), and the Custom Cash (select 5x categories, whichever you spend the most, up to $500 per billing cycle). The one Achilles heel was that the card didn’t have travel protections. How could a travel card not have travel protections?! Anyway, it’s awesome to see that this issue has now been addressed!

We’ll publish more about the Strata Premier soon.

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[…] competitor in the travel rewards game. And if you had a Citi Premier card this just happened: Premier cards auto-upgraded to Strata Premier. And it looks like Citi kind of botched its big reentry in the travel rewards credit card space […]

Webazoid@gmail.com

Can u have two reward plus for 20k back per year I instead of 10k?

Yuri

Yes, but you will need to have two different Thankyou account for that.

John

I would love if you could clarify about the Mastercard car rental insurance. It looks like since I don’t have other insurance this would go from secondary to primary CDW insurance. If so, that means I could switch from using my Chase Sapphire Preferred to using my Citi Strata Premiere when renting cars? (CSP vs CSP)

eds183

I think that the real issue is that outside niche 1:2 Choice hotel transfers, TY points are now the stepchildren of the CC points game. Once Turkish devalued and Qatar moved to Avios, there is very little outsized value IMO. The points are harder to accumulate than MR/UR and they don’t have any TY business cards. Plus, having to hold the Premier card to xfer points is annoying. (At least chase gives you a few options on which card to hold and the option for 1.25/1.5 cent redemption towards travel with those cards.)

IMO, the whole TY universe is basically meh…

Dima

The attraction of Citi ecosystem is that you can build a 3-4 card setup, earning 2-5 TY pts per $1 spent, for $95 in AF. It is not as exciting for getting outsized value, but it is a respectable setup for someone who does not want dig too deep (or invest much $) into the points game.

Yuri

It’s not hard to earn TYPs, if you have the right cards, i.e. multiple Custom Cashes, Prestige, AT&T Access More and Sears. I earn around 50-60k every month right now.

TravelGeek

> Prestige, AT&T Access More and Sears

If you have them, they might still be useful, but if you don’t have them, are they still available for signup?

Yuri

As we see from the new FAQ on Strata Premier, you might be able to convert to Prestige, you can also get multiple Custom Cash cards. I converted SYWR card to Sears TYP earning card few years ago. They say it’s not possible anymore, but you can still get SYWR card. It’s not possible to convert to ATTAM anymore.

Last edited 12 days ago by Yuri
Adam

What’s SYWR?

eds183

Sears Shop Your Way Rewards

eds183

Only if you can accumulate all the custom cashes, and to the new user that is the only option.. Gone are the TY Sears and At&t card. It’s a lot of work to monitor 5-10 cards on a monthly basis. Perhaps if the custom cash cards were quarterly on the 5%, but monthly – what a pain.

I can see the allure of lots of 5x earning, but TY’s lack of business cards is a real weakness. I would rather crank through SUB’s and hit them via tax payments and other MS avenues online.

Yuri

I use Curve to manage all that. But usually I just make 1 purchase per CCC card per month, and there are a lot of options to make this purchase. I adjusted all of them to have the same closing date.
I have 9 of them, and I’m going to convert another one soon.

Last edited 12 days ago by Yuri
eds183

It takes a long time for someone to build up to 8-9 custom cashes. But 50K TY a month means churning ~$100K+ a year . The use of SUBs between P1/P2 last year netted me 1,487K pts/miles on ~$59K of spend. Now that was a banner year, but I am on track to be 900K pts/miles on ~40K this year.

You are in a unique position with having the At&t and the Sears TYP card. Well done you, but not easily repeatable by anyone new.

Yuri

No, Sears multipliers are 10-30x. One Sears card brings around 20-40k per month.

eds183

Which is a card that nobody can get anymore. It’s a dead hack. Eventually they will stop supporting the card after 7-10 years and do a mandatory product/terms change. Citi made a mandatory product change my At&t universal card about 9 years after dropping the product. Enjoy it while you have it. You have a good loophole. Eventually it will get closed.

To people not lucky enough to have the Sears TYP card, TY point earning and redemption is still probably meh…

Pierre

On the other hand, a 75K SUB is great. Downgrade to a CC after year 1

bill

It would be appreciated if FM could clarify why the prior post about the Strata card was deleted.

Other Bill

It looks like they edited the old post with the new info

Dima

bill, it looks like Citi leaned on multiple blogs they partner with (including this one) to remove the info that was leaked prior to the official launch.

Scott

It’s NOT a leak if they post it on THEIR OWN WEBSITE.

M.A.

From the FAQs for the Strata Premier:

Q: Can I upgrade from the Citi Strata Premier℠ Card to the Citi Prestige® Card?

A: To see if you are eligible to upgrade your Citi Strata Premier℠ Card to the Citi Prestige® Card, please call the number on the back of your Citi Strata Premier℠ card.

ECR12

Interesting!

TravelGeek

Would be good if this could be tested or clarified (via contacts at Citi). I suspect my card isn’t eligible yet for product change even if they do offer it as it is less than a year old.

Edit:

Then again, the old Citi Premier FAQ, viewable via wayback machine, has the exact same information:

”Can I upgrade from the Citi Premier® Card to the Citi Prestige® Card?
To see if you are eligible to upgrade your Citi Premier® Card to the Citi Prestige® Card, please call the number on the back of your Citi Premier® card.”

So when did they last allow such an upgrade? I suspect they just search/replaced every instance of “Premier” to “Strata Premier“ and didn’t actually bother to proof-read it for accuracy otherwise…

Last edited 12 days ago by TravelGeek