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How does the Citi Prestige’s travel credit work?

The travel credit on the Citi Prestige is incredible flexible – thanks to recent updates to the card

Summary

The Citi Prestige card’s travel credit recently become more flexible – here’s how to make the most of it.

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The Citi Prestige is a fan-favorite among luxury cardholders, due primarily to its lauded fourth night free perk – which allows cardholders a fourth night free on any hotel stay up to twice per year. But that’s far from all the recently revamped card has to offer.

At the beginning of 2019, the Citi Prestige card relaunched to the public with several changes, including a higher annual fee and new cellphone insurance. To the dismay of many cardholders, a two-use-per-year limit was instated on the fourth night free perk (effective Sept. 1, 2019), limiting the benefit’s potential value.

Not all changes were negative, however, as the card’s $250 annual travel credit became much more flexible than it was before. Now, Prestige cardholders can use the credit to easily cover $250 per year of air travel, taxi rides, parking fees and more.

With the travel credit now covering a wide variety of purchases, it is easier than ever to use the benefit to offset some of the Prestige card’s high $495 annual fee.

A rewarding choice for frequent travelers and foodies

Citi Prestige® Card

Citi Prestige Card

Why should you get this card?

Luxury travelers should enjoy the Citi Prestige card’s solid list of benefits, including its robust set of travel protections and a fourth night free on hotel stays up to twice per year.

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Other things to know

  • 5 points per dollar on air travel and restaurants, 3 points per dollar on hotels and cruise lines and 1 point per dollar on other purchases
  • 50,000 points if you spend $4,000 in first 3 months
  • $250 annual travel credit
  • 4th night free at any hotel up to 2 times per year
  • Priority Pass lounge access
  • Up to $100 credit for Global Entry/TSA Precheck

What purchases qualify for the travel credit?

Recent changes to the Citi Prestige travel credit rank the perk as one of the most flexible among luxury cards. Beyond purchases like airfare and hotel stays, the credit can cover you for things like toll charges and Uber rides. Here’s a look at some of the qualifying purchases:

  • Airfare
  • Hotel stays
  • Car rentals
  • Tours
  • Public transportation
  • Taxi rides
  • Cruises
  • Tolls
  • Parking garages

To determine which purchases are travel purchases, Citi utilizes merchant category codes. These signal to the issuer what kind of purchase you made and whether or not that purchase should qualify for bonus points or a credit like this one. It can be hard to know how a merchant will code on your card statement, but you can make a small purchase and check your next statement to test it.

How do you receive your travel credit?

The Citi Prestige travel credit is certainly flexible, and it’s incredibly easy to use. In fact, your travel credit is automatically applied as you make qualifying travel purchases – until you meet the full $250.

To utilize your travel credit, simply put travel purchases on your Citi Prestige card. We recommend making it your go-to for booking airfare and hotel stays or paying for public transportation until you’ve used up the credit.

Tips for maximizing the Citi Prestige travel credit

  • Put all travel purchases – including taxi or ride-shares, parking garage fees and public transportation – on your Citi Prestige.
  • Keep an eye on how much of your travel credit you have used to budget accordingly.
  • Learn how to find a business’s merchant category code to get a better idea of what purchases will count toward your travel credit.
  • After you’ve used your travel credit, continue to put airfare, cruises and hotel stays on your Prestige card to take advantage of bonus points.

Final thoughts

The Citi Prestige card can be a great pick for travelers, as it offers a high rewards rate on dining and airfare purchases in addition to a generous fourth night free perk on hotel stays (up to twice per year). Plus, cardholders get $250 in travel credits every year, which can be used to offset almost any travel purchase you can think of – from toll booths to taxi rides. By putting all major travel purchases on your card, you can use perks like the travel credit to make up for the Prestige card’s high annual fee.

Editorial Disclaimer

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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