Citizens Bank Cash Back Plus World Mastercard review

Citizens Bank Cash Back Plus World Mastercard review

Published: August 6, 2019
Published: August 6, 2019
Ratings Policy
Balance Transfer Rating:
3.1 rating
3.1 rating
3.1 / 5
Introductory Offer: 2.9
Net Value: 3.4
Features: 3.0
Customer Experience 2.4

In a Nutshell:

The Citizens Bank Cash Back Plus World MasterCard offers an outstanding rewards rate on everyday purchases and a lengthy 0 percent balance transfer offer; but its standard APR is on the high side for a balance transfer card.

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0% Introductory Period
15 billing cycles

Transfer Fee
$10 or 4% (whichever is higher)

Introductory Purchase APR
0% for 15 billing cycles

Regular APR
16.99-24.99%

Annual Fee
$0

Customer Experience

  • Consumer Reports rating: 86 (67% of issuers ranked higher)
  • 24/7 customer service?: Yes
  • Online chat available?: No
  • Google Play Store mobile app rating: 4.1/5
  • Apple Store mobile app rating: 2.7/5

Other Notable Features: No foreign transaction fees, concierge service, auto rental insurance, baggage insurance, extended warranty, price protection, trip cancellation and interruption protection

Cash Back Rating:
2.7 rating
2.7 rating
2.7 / 5
Rewards Value: 1.6
Annual Percentage Rate: 3.5
Rewards Flexibility: 3.8
Features: 3.0
Customer Experience 2.4

In a Nutshell:

The Citizens Bank Cash Back Plus World MasterCard offers straightforward earnings and above-average cash rewards, making it a good choice for the casual rewards card user.

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Rewards Rate
1.8% cash back on every purchase

Sign-up Bonus
None

Annual Bonus
None

Annual Fee
$0

Average Yearly Rewards Value ($1,325 monthly spend)
$286

APR
16.99-24.99% (variable)

Rewards Redemption
Pros

  • Cash back doesn’t expire
  • No limit to how much cash back you can earn
  • Minimum redemption amount is low ($25)
  • No rotating categories or enrollment required
  • Redeem cash back as a bank deposit or statement credit

Cons

  • Must submit a request online to redeem your cash back
  • No automatic redemption options
  • Can’t transfer rewards or combine them from other cards

Customer Experience

  • Consumer Reports rating: 86 (67% of issuers ranked higher)
  • 24/7 customer service?: Yes
  • Online chat available?: No
  • Google Play Store mobile app rating: 4.1/5
  • Apple Store mobile app rating: 2.7/5

Other Notable Features: No foreign transaction fees, concierge service, auto rental insurance, baggage insurance, extended warranty, price protection, trip cancellation and interruption protection

Unless you’re willing to put in the time, it can be tough to earn a high rewards rate on most rewards credit cards. The Citizens Bank Cash Back Plus World Mastercard makes it easy by offering up to 1.8 percent cash back on every purchase. With this straightforward rewards card, you won’t have to bother keeping track of rotating bonus categories or specific rewards-funded purchases. But you may miss out on higher rewards earnings, since more complicated cards tend to come with higher rewards rates. 

Above-average cash back

Most cash-back credit cards that don’t charge an annual fee offer just 1 percent back on general purchases. The Citizens Bank Cash Plus World Mastercard nearly doubles that by rewarding 1.8 percent cash back on every purchase, without having to keep track of bonus categories. If you prefer to use one card for every purchase, the Citizens Bank Cash Plus card is a good way to go.

No limits on earnings

Cardholders also aren’t limited by how much they can earn, making the Cash Plus World Mastercard an especially good deal for a card that also doesn’t charge an annual fee. According to our calculations, cardholders who spend at least $1,325 a month could earn up to $286 or more in cash back by the end of the card’s first year. Citizens Bank doesn’t offer a sign-up bonus, though, so cardholders may have to wait awhile before they can redeem a significant amount back.

Simple redemption

Redeeming cash back on the Cash Plus World Mastercard is relatively simple, since all you need to do is put in a request online or call your local bank branch, or redeem your rewards a credit to your statement. However, Citizens Bank only allows you to redeem your cash in increments of $25, which can be annoying to cardholders who want to spend their cash at any time. For example, if you have $180 worth of cash rewards saved up, you’ll have to wait until you reach $200 before you can redeem the full amount.

Promotional APR

The Citizens Bank card is a good option for cardholders looking to transfer a balance to or finance a large purchase with the card. Cardholders are offered 0 percent on both balance transfers and new purchases for up to 15 months, which is above average for an introductory promotion.

Why get the Citizens Bank Cash Back Plus World Mastercard?

  • You prefer to earn cash back instead of points or miles.
  • You have a checking or savings account with Citizens Bank.
  • You want a low-maintenance rewards card.
  • You regularly use your credit card for purchases and want more value from your spending.

How to use the Citizens Bank Cash Back Plus World Mastercard:

  • Use your card for every purchase to earn a high rate of cash back.
  • Make a large purchase with the card in the first 15 months to take advantage of the card’s 0-percent introductory offer.
  • If you carry other credit cards that offer more lucrative bonus points on certain types of purchases, use this card to pay for any expenses not covered by the cards’ rewards programs.

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