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Is The Citi Premier Card A Keeper Past Year One?

- Sep 6, 2022 Credit Card Info0 comments

Many people have recently signed up for the Citi Premier card in order to take advantage of the mega signup bonus. . Many people are wondering if they should keep the card open even past the first year and pay the $95 annual fee or rather downgrade it to a $0 annual fee card, such as the Citi Double Cash.

In this post, we will crunch some numbers to see if the Citi Premier card is a keeper or a downgrader.

The benefits

The strong point of the Citi Premier card is definitely not its benefits. When it comes to benefits, the Citi Premier card is like a bald man sitting in a barbershop.

Check out the benefits of the Citi Premier card compared to the Chase Sapphire Preferred (which has the same $95 annual fee).

  Citi Premier  Chase Sapphire Preferred 
No foreign transaction fee Yes Yes 
Credits Get a $100 credit when you book a single hotel stay of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, through thankyou.com once per calendar year. – Get a $50 annual hotel credit each cardmember year. The hotel booking must be made through the Chase Travel Portal. Existing Chase cardholders will get the $50 credit on their upcoming anniversary year.
– G
et a $15 Instacard statement credit each quarter plus a free Instacart+ membership for 6 months.
Extra Redemption Value No Points are worth 25% more when redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
Anniversary Bonus Points No Get 10% anniversary bonus points when you renew your card. Chase will give you an extra 10% in points of what you spend; for spending $25,000 you’d get 2,500 in bonus points.
Trip Cancellation Insurance No Coverage for canceled or interrupted travel due to an unforeseen medical emergency etc. Max $10,000 per person for non-refundable travel expenses including flight tickets, hotels, and more.
Auto Rental Collision Insurance No Worldwide primary coverage on rentals. Coverage is for rentals up to 31 days.
Travel Accident Insurance No Get coverage if you, G-d forbid, die in an accident while traveling or lose a limb, sight, speech, or hearing (on common carriers). Receive up to $500,000 in compensation.
Lost Luggage Reimbursement No Get up to $3,000 per person for lost or damaged luggage.
Trip Delay Reimbursement No If your flight is delayed for 12+ hours, you can claim up to $500 per trip to cover expenses like meals, lodging, toiletries, medication, and other personal use items.
Baggage Delay Insurance No If your baggage is delayed for 6+ hours, you can claim up to $100 per day to cover expenses like toiletries & clothing, for up to 5 days.
Extended Warranty Protection Get two additional years to your original manufacturer’s warranty time. (Will only cover if the original warranty is for 5 years or less). Max $10,000 per item. Get your original manufacturer’s warranty time-matched (up to a year). (Will only cover if the original warranty is for 3 years or less). Max $10,000 per claim, $50,000 per account.
Purchase Protection Get refunded if your purchase is damaged or stolen, up to 90 days from the date of purchase. Max $10,000 per claim, $50,000 per year. Get refunded if your purchase is damaged, or stolen for up to 120 days from the date of purchase. Max $10,000 per claim $50,000 per year.
Roadside Assistance No Get roadside service assistance for $59.95 per call.

As you see for yourself, the Citi Premier card is missing many of the key benefits.

So what is the Citi Premiers strong point?

The place where the Citi Premier can bring a lot of value to the table is when it comes to rewards. The Citi Premier has great reward accelerators, offering unlimited 3X rewards on great household categories, including:

  • Grocery
  • Gas
  • Dining
  • Hotels 
  • Airfare

Just for illustration purposes, let’s use the following example. 

Monthly spend
Grocery $2,000
Gas  $300
Restaurants  $100
Airfare (annually)  $1,000
Hotels (annually) $500
Total points earned annually 90,900 (valued at approx. $990 -$1,300)

I believe this example is pretty conservative. Most of my readers probably spend way more per month in many of these categories. So as far as rewards, Citi Premier definitely brings great (very great) value to the table. 

Conclusion

Depending on your monthly spend on grocery, gas, dining, hotels, and airfare, the Citi Premier card can definitely be worth way more than the $95 annual fee. So if you got the card, try it for a year, see for yourself how many points you were able to accumulate in year 1 and based on that, you can make a decision for year 2. 

Frequently asked questions
I'm trying to reach the minimum spend to get the welcome bonus for the Citi Premier but my credit limit is low and they are not clearing my payments.
Pay the bill by phone using a debit card. That will clear it immediately
The Citi 1/8 rule - is that 8 calendar days or 8 business days?
8 calendar days
Can I transfer points from my Citi Rewards to my wife's Citi Premier?
Yes. Up to 100k points per year. Just keep in mind that the points expire 90 days after being shared

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Sam Sam has nearly a decade's worth of experience educating his many readers on everything credit. Sam spends his days checking out credit cards for a full report, from the minute benefit details to the shebang of welcome bonuses. Plus studying the ins and outs of building proper credit. It’s his favorite pastime and he loves sharing it with others.

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