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Changes coming to the Citi Premier and Preferred cards’ earning structures

Citi is adding new benefits to its Preferred and Premier cards – but some of the existing earning categories will lose value

Summary

Citi is adding new earning categories to the Premier and Preferred cards, including supermarkets, restaurants and popular streaming services.

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On April 9, 2020, Citi announced upcoming changes to the earning structure of two cards – the Citi Premier℠ Card and Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card. To meet the evolving needs of its cardholders, the issuer is launching new benefits, including adding new earning categories such as supermarkets, restaurants and popular streaming services.

The changes are expected to go into effect on Aug. 23, 2020.

How the cards’ benefits will change

When the new benefits are implemented, Citi Premier cardholders will be able to earn 3 ThankYou points on every dollar spent at supermarkets and restaurants, including takeout. The card will also continue earning 3 points per dollar on air, travel, hotels and gas stations.

On top of that, Citi is adding a new travel benefit – $100 off on a single hotel stay of $500 or more (excluding taxes and fees). Cardholders will be able to take advantage of this offer once per calendar year through ThankYou.com.

“As our cardmembers’ needs evolve, we want to ensure we’re evolving with them and offering products that best meet their spending habits and deliver exceptional value”, Lora Monfared, Citi’s General Manager of Proprietary Rewards Products, said in a statement.

Some of the existing benefits will change as well. For instance, the rewards rate for other travel such as cruises, tolls and parking will be reduced from 3 points to 1 point per dollar. The same will happen to the entertainment category, which will receive 1 point per dollar instead of the current 2 points per dollar. For new cardholders, these changes will go into effect on Aug. 23, 2020. For existing Premier users, they will go into effect on April 10, 2021.

Earning structure for the Citi Premier Card

Current rewards rateNew rewards rate
  • 3 points per dollar on travel (air, hotels and gas stations)
  • 3 points per dollar on other travel (cruises, tolls and parking)
  • 2 points per dollar on entertainment
  • 3 points per dollar on travel (air, hotels and gas stations)
  • 3 points per dollar on supermarkets and restaurants, including takeout
  • 1 point per dollar on other travel (cruises, tolls and parking)
  • 1 point per dollar on entertainment

Starting April 10, 2021, cardholders will no longer receive 25% more value when redeeming points through the ThankYou Travel Center for airfare, hotels, cruises and car rentals – as compared to gift cards.

The changes will not affect the card’s annual fee, and it will continue to offer no foreign transaction fees. Additionally, new cardholders will be able to earn a 60,000-point bonus offer after making $4,000 in purchases in the first three months of account opening – the same bonus Citi is currently offering.

As for the Preferred card, it will get new earning categories as well. Currently, the card is offering 2 points per dollar for dining and entertainment and 1 point per dollar on other purchases. Starting Aug. 23, 2020, cardholders will also be able to earn 2 points per dollar on cable and popular streaming services.

Earning structure for the Citi Preferred Card

Current rewards rateNew rewards rate
  • 2 points per dollar on dining and entertainment
  • 1 point per dollar on other purchases
  • 2 points per dollar on dining and entertainment
  • 2 points per dollar on popular streaming services
  • 1 point per dollar on other purchases

How will the changes affect cardholders?

Starting in August, new cardholders will be able to earn points on categories like groceries, takeout and streaming services, and some of the existing travel and entertainment rewards will be altered.

But for existing Premier cardholders, you’ll be able to take advantage of the new benefits plus continue earning 3 points per dollar on non-air travel and 2 points per dollar on entertainment through April 10, 2021.

The current rewards on the Citi Preferred Card will remain the same. With an addition of the new earning category for cable and popular streaming services in August, both new and existing cardholders will be getting a better offer compared to the current one.

Information about the Citi Premier Card and Citi ThankYou Preferred Card has been collected independently by CreditCards.com. The issuer did not provide the content, nor is it responsible for its accuracy. 

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The editorial content on this page is based solely on the objective assessment of our writers and is not driven by advertising dollars. It has not been provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products from our partners.

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