If you’re a Citi cardholder and struggling with credit card bills, the new offer may prove valuable to you.
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The COVID-19 pandemic has put a financial strain on businesses and individuals alike. According to a recent CreditCards.com poll, 62% of Americans with credit card debt are concerned they might miss payments within the next few months if the pandemic continues.
See related: What happens if you miss a credit card payment?
To help customers avoid that, credit card issuers have been offering various relief measures, such as new ways to use rewards. Following suit, Citi has announced cardholders can now use Citi ThankYou points towards their minimum payment.
How the new offer can help cardholders
The option to redeem points towards minimum payment is a part of Citi’s COVID-19 relief efforts. Typically, cardholders could redeem points as a statement credit but would still have to pay the minimum due.
With this new offer, cardholders struggling with credit card bills will have another way to meet their minimum payment obligations.
Should you redeem points towards your minimum payment?According to The Points Guy, your ThankYou points are worth under 1 cent each when redeemed towards your minimum payment.
The redemption value varies by card, but as is commonly the case with rewards credit cards, you get the best value out of ThankYou Points when redeeming for travel. For example, a travel redemption with the Citi Premier® Card will get you a value of 1.25 cents per point when you redeem via the ThankYou rewards center. This makes redeeming towards your credit card bill a less favorable option.
It’s also important to note that it’s always best to pay your credit card bill in full to avoid expensive interest charges and higher credit utilization.
At the same time, in such a challenging economic climate, making the most out of points or holding on to them until it’s possible to travel again might not be a priority for many consumers. If you’re struggling with cash flow and paying off your debt, this relief option can help you meet your financial obligations.
Note that there are other ways Citi can assist you as well. For instance, you might be eligible for waived payments and late fees for two consecutive billing cycles. Contact your issuer to see what kind of relief is available to you.
While consumers won’t get the best value by redeeming ThankYou points towards their minimum payment, the new offer can be valuable to cardholders struggling with debt amid the pandemic. In these difficult times, staying on top of your bills may be your priority, not getting the highest point value.
It’s nice to see that Citi is providing this option, and we hope card issuers will continue to come up with new ways to assist consumers.