Earn 60,000 ThankYou Rewards Points with the Citi Premier Card

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Taking the top spot in our review of the best rewards cards for gas & fuel, the Citi Premier® Card offers some of the best earning rates of any rewards card with an annual fee under $100.

Cardholders earn 3X points per $1 spent on airfare and hotels and at gas stations, restaurants, and supermarkets, plus you can take advantage of a new $100 annual hotel credit every year.

Citi Premier® Card
Citi Premier® Card
Annual Fee$95
Welcome Offer Earn 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.
The Citi Premier card offers some of the top earning rates of any rewards card with an annual fee under $100. This card is best-in-class for rewards on air travel and hotel spending, and it tops our list of the best cards for gas & fuel purchases with a generous 3X ThankYou® Points.
  • 60,000 point signup bonus worth $750 towards airfare through the ThankYou Travel Center, or potentially much more when transferred to airline partners
  • 3X points per $1 on airfare and hotels and at gas stations, restaurants, and supermarkets
  • Annual Hotel Benefit: Save $100 off a single hotel stay of $500 or more (excluding taxes and fees) when you book through ThankYou.com
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $95 annual fee
  • 3X points per $1 spent on airfare, hotels, and at gas stations
  • 3X points per $1 spent on dining at restaurants, including cafes, bars and lounges
  • 3X points per $1 spent at supermarkets
  • 1X points per $1 spent on all other purchases

Cardmembers who opened their Citi Premier account before April 10, 2020 will also earn 2X points on entertainment and 3X points on a broader range of travel purchases through April 9, 2021.

Citi Premier® Card Signup Bonus

In addition to the stellar points-earning potential of the Citi Premier, the signup bonus is currently sitting at 60,000 ThankYou Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. That is 10,000 points higher than the previous offer on this card!

Redeem ThankYou Points for a Fixed-Value or Transfer to Airline Partners

As a Citi Premier cardholder, ThankYou Points are worth 1¢ per point towards travel when redeemed through the ThankYou Travel Center. You can redeem points for airfare, hotels, rental cars, cruises, and more. There are no blackout dates, and airline tickets are treated as revenue fares—meaning you'll earn both elite and redeemable miles. This gives the signup bonus a base value of $600 towards travel when redeemed through the Citi travel portal for a fixed-value.

The most valuable way to redeem your ThankYou Points, however, is transferring them to Citi's airline partners.

Citi Transfer PartnerTransfer RatioTransfer Times
Aeromexico Club Premier1:1Instant
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles1:1Instant
Avianca LifeMiles1:1Instant
Emirates Skywards1:1Unknown
EVA Air Infinity MileageLands1:1Instant
Etihad Guest1:13 days - 7 days
Air France/KLM Flying Blue
1:1Instant
Jet Airways InterMiles (formerly JetPrivilege)1:1Instant
JetBlue TrueBlue1:1Instant
Malaysia Airlines Enrich1:11 day - 2 days
Qantas Frequent Flyer1:1Instant
Qatar Airways Privilege Club1:11 day - 2 days
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer1:12 days
Thai Airways Royal Orchid Plus1:13 days - 7 days
Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles1:11 day
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club1:1Instant
Sears Shop Your Way®1:12Unknown

Citi ThankYou transfer partners don't receive quite the same attention as rival programs Chase Ultimate Rewards or American Express Membership Rewards, but the program has some fantastic partners offering top value for your points.

For example, one of the best ways to book flights on United Airlines (and many Star Alliance airlines) is using Singapore KrisFlyer miles. You can book a round-trip, business-class ticket within the continental U.S. for 40,000 miles and a round trip to Hawaii for only 35,000 miles in economy or 60,000 in business class.

When thinking about booking United flights, many people assume Chase points are better since they transfer directly to United's MileagePlus program, but all three of these tickets cost fewer points if you transfer points to Singapore KrisFlyer than if you booked the same itinerary with United MileagePlus.

Points Earning Potential and Category Bonuses

The Citi Premier features a lucrative set of bonus categories, arguably the best earning structure of any mid-tier rewards card, including the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.

Citi Premier bonus categories include:

  • 3X points per $1 spent on airfare, hotels, and at gas stations
  • 3X points per $1 spent on dining at restaurants, including cafes, bars and lounges
  • 3X points per $1 spent at supermarkets
  • 1X points per $1 spent on all other purchases

When paired with the Citi® Double Cash Card, possibly the best rewards card available for non-bonus spending, these cards become the backbone of a high-earning travel rewards strategy.

$100 Annual Hotel Savings Benefit

Outside of the huge earning potential of this card, it also offers an annual $100 hotel savings benefit. Once per calendar year, you can get $100 off a single hotel stay of $500 or more (excluding fees and taxes), through ThankYou.com. You're effectively getting ~20% off a cash hotel stay of $500.

Citi Premier Retail and Travel Protection Benefits

Unfortunately, Citi announced dramatic changes to retail and travel benefits in 2019, including the removal of almost all travel and purchase protections across almost all Citi cards.

The Citi Premier retained extended warranty cover and purchase protection but lost many of its benefits including:

  • Car Rental Insurance
  • Trip Cancellation & Interruption Protection
  • Travel Accident Insurance
  • Trip Delay Protection
  • Baggage Delay Protection
  • Lost Baggage Protection
  • Citi® Price Rewind
  • Return Protection
  • Missed Event Ticket Protection
  • Roadside Assistance Dispatch Service
  • Travel & Emergency Assistance

Application Restrictions

Citi dishes up a somewhat complex set of application restrictions that can have a significant impact on your ability to get ThankYou Rewards earning cards. Rules include:

  • Maximum of one (1) personal card per eight days
  • Maximum two (2) total cards per 65 days
  • Maximum one (1) business card per 95 days
  • You can only receive the signup bonus if you haven't opened or closed a ThankYou Rewards earning card in the previous 24 months.

Bonus ThankYou® Points are not available if you received a new cardmember bonus for Citi Rewards+℠, Citi ThankYou® Preferred, Citi ThankYou®Premier/Citi Premier℠ or Citi Prestige®, or if you have closed any of these accounts, in the past 24 months.

Final Thoughts

The Citi Premier® Card is a reward-focused card that will help you earn the maximum number of points possible from your spending. While it's light on big-ticket feature benefits, the high points earning rate still makes it a great standalone travel card with a modest annual fee.

The welcome bonus alone provides enough points for a round-trip business class flight to Hawaii, plus you can take advantage of great category bonuses and earn valuable points that transfer to a variety of airline partners.

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Comments

  • Avatar

    For the Hotel Credit, do you have to book through thankyou.com, or can you book directly through the hotel and just use the credit card?

    • Avatar

      I believe the terms state that the booking needs to be made through Thankyou.com. Not ideal for big chain hotels if you care about status, but Thankyou.com does have quite a few small/independent hotels in many places. That’s how I’m planning to use my credit.

  • Avatar

    Can Citi points be transferred to hotel chains??

    • Avatar

      Unfortunately not. There are no Citi ThankYou Point transfer partners. You can use your points to book hotels through the Citi Travel portal, but redeeming through Citi’s unique airline partners can provide the best value.

  • Avatar

    Citi card offer is compatible with Chase cards offers.

  • Avatar
    Michael C Vincent says:

    I will never own a CRED CARD again!!!!!!!!