The Big Review: Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card
Providing an excellent uncapped earn rate and the opportunity to earn 300,000 bonus Points, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card is a rewards card designed to entice. Cardholders can also enjoy a host of features and extras, including complimentary travel insurance and exclusive Citi perks and privileges, all for a discounted annual of $195 in the first year.
- Earn up to 300,000 bonus Points
- Earn up to 2 Points per $1
- Earn an additional 10,000 bonus Points plus 2 Points per $1 with a Linked Diners Club Card
- No points cap
- Discounted $195 annual fee in the first year
- Complimentary insurance covering travel and retail purchases
- Free bottle of wine with the Citibank Dining Program
- Complimentary Priority Pass membership and two airport lounge visits per year
- Personal concierge
- 0% p.a. interest on balance transfers for 12 months with no balance transfer fee.
- Access to Citi World Privileges and Visa Front Line Access
- Earn 15,000 bonus Points every month for 20 months from card approval when you spend $1,000 or more in each statement period.
- After the first year, cardholders can benefit from a 50% annual fee discount (currently $197.50) each year when they spend $48,000 in the previous year. Otherwise, the annual fee reverts to the full annual fee, currently $395.
- Any unpaid transferred balances revert to the cash advance rate after 12 months. Interest free days don’t apply to retail purchases while you have a balance transfer.
- Purchase rate: 20.99% p.a. (variable)
- Cash advance rate: 21.74% p.a. (variable)
- Interest Free Period: Up to 55 days
This Card: The Lowdown
An appealing option for cardholders who want to earn high volumes of points on a Visa or Mastercard – outside the Qantas Frequent Flyer program – the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card offers uncapped points and a great earn rate. Best for big spenders, the card provides a 50% discount on its annual fee after the first year for those who spend $48,000 in the previous year (averaging $4,000 per month).
While the card earns Points on the Citi Rewards program, cardholders may choose to transfer the points they earn to any of the card’s three airline partner programs, Virgin Australia Velocity, Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer and Emirates Skywards. Providing plenty of flexibility, cardholders can also choose to redeem Points for gift cards or travel, or to cover purchases with Select and Credit.
As for extras, this card is packed with them. Cardholders can take advantage of a number of Citi perks, including the Citibank Dining Program and Citi World Privileges, as well as a personal concierge service, Priority Pass membership and two airport lounge visits per year. In terms of complimentary insurances, the card offers the following:
- International Travel Insurance
- Transit Accident Insurance
- Purchase Cover Insurance
- Extended Warranty Insurance
- Guaranteed Pricing Scheme
With the basics covered, it’s time to dig a little deeper into what’s on offer with the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card, so you can decide whether this card is right for you.
This Card: As a Rewards Card
One thing that stands out on the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card is its bonus Points offer. Providing cardholders with the opportunity to earn up to 300,000 bonus Points in total, this is an intro offer that could really take you places. As Citi puts it, 300,000 Points could get you two flights to London – or alternatively, $1,440 in gift cards.
However, to earn the full 300,000 Points, you must be in it for the long run. You will receive 15,000 bonus Points each month for the first 20 months, for each month you spend at least $1,000 on the card. If you don’t meet the minimum spend one payment cycle, you may still be eligible the following cycles as long at you hit that $1,000 spend.
Take note, cash advances, balance transfers, refunds, chargebacks and special promotions do not contribute to the spend threshold. After you meet the minimum spend each month, the bonus Points will be credited to your account within six to eight weeks. Given the length of time needed to gather up the full 300,000, it’s nice to know Points don’t expire as long as the card remains open and in good standing.
An easy everyday earner, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card offers the following earn rate:
- Earn 2 Points per $1 for selected domestic purchases made on flights, hotels and restaurants
- Earn 2 Points per $1 for eligible international spending
- Earn 1.5 Points per $1 for selected domestic purchases at major petrol outlets, supermarkets and national retailers
- Earn 1 Point per $1 for all other eligible domestic spending
- Earn 2 Points per $1 for eligible transactions with Linked Diners Club Card
As this card works best for big spenders, its uncapped earning definitely works in the cardholder’s favour. You can also add up to four additional cardholders at no extra cost, which may work to boost points earning, helping you to get your money’s worth by balancing out the standard primary cardholder annual fee.
Note, Citi has to rely on the information provided by the restaurant or its financial institution to determine whether the purchase deserves the higher earn rate for spending at restaurants. So, if the restaurant is not classified as a ‘restaurant’ by the card scheme, the purchase won’t accrue the higher points rate. The same applies on restaurant orders made through delivery services.
Points Redemption Options
Allowing cardholders to earn Points on the flexible Citi Rewards program, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card provides a number of Points redemption options. You could redeem Points for digital gift cards for retailers such as Myer, David Jones, JB Hi-Fi and Bunnings. Alternatively, Select and Credit could let you choose which card purchases you want to use Points to cover.
Travel is another popular Points redemption option. As we mentioned previously, the card allows for points transfer to three incredibly popular airline partners, Virgin Australia Velocity, Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer and Emirates Skywards. Points transfer out to Velocity at 2 Citi Rewards Points to 1 Velocity point, and at 2.5 Citi Rewards Points to 1 KrisFlyer mile or 1 Emirates Skywards mile.
After reducing the minimum number of Points that can be transferred to its airline partner programs, Citibank now allows for the transfer of Points as follows:
- Velocity Frequent Flyer: Minimum 2,000 points in 1 point increments
- Singapore KrisFlyer: Minimum 20,000 points in 1 point increments
- Emirates Skywards: Minimum 15,000 points in 1 point increments
Earn More with a Linked Diners Club Card
If you apply and are approved for a Linked Diners Club Card, you can pick up an extra 10,000 bonus Points. All you have to do is spend on the card within 90 days of approval to earn those extra bonus Points.
You can also earn Points faster when you use this card, with an uncapped earn rate of 2 Points per $1 spent on all eligible transactions, with no international transaction fees on overseas spending. The Points you earn will be automatically added to your Rewards Points balance, and you will have one PIN for both cards, one monthly payment and the same online banking login details.
This Card: As a Travel Rewards Card
Offering a few select travel perks, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card makes a handy companion for frequent travellers.
Priority Pass and Lounge Access
As a cardholder, you will receive complimentary Priority Pass membership, with two airport lounge visits to enjoy every year. These visits will be issued at the beginning of each membership year, and cannot be carried forward year-to-year. Within Australia, Priority Pass is currently available at Cairns, Darwin and Brisbane International Airports and Sydney Kingsford Smith. For a full list and more info on the feature, check out the Priority Pass website.
Providing you peace of mind as you travel, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card offers cover for you and your family, should you experience unexpected mishaps including illness or injury, flight delays, lost or stolen luggage and more – as long as you purchase your flights or holiday with your card. Cover includes:
- International Travel Insurance: When you purchase your overseas travel tickets with your card, you and your family may be covered for medical expenses, trip cancellation due to unexpected circumstances, loss or theft of personal items and more.
- Transit Accident Insurance: When you purchase your overseas travel tickets with your card, you and your family may receive up to $500,000 should you sustain a fatal injury as a passenger while travelling.
This Card: Extras on Offer
Aside from its plentiful rewards and travel perks, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card also provides cardholders an abundance of functional extras.
Discounted Annual Fee
Working well for cardholders who use the card regularly, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card provides a 50% discounted annual fee (currently $197.50) when they spend $48,000 in the previous year (averaging out at $4,000 per month). All new cardholders benefit from the discounted $195 in the first year, however, the standard annual fee is currently $395.
Balance Transfer Offer
Helping cardholders save money on interest when they transfer a balance from an existing credit card, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card is currently offering 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months. You may transfer up to 80% of your credit limit. If any transferred balance remains unpaid after 12 months, it will revert to the card’s cash advance rate.
A handy feature if you’re stretched for time, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card provides a personal concierge to act as your personal assistant. Available 24/7, this concierge service can assist with travel bookings, restaurant reservations, ticket sales and recommendations on what to do and where to go wherever you are in the world.
Citi World Privileges
Providing access to special offers exclusive to Citi cardholders, Citi World Privileges offers everything from upgraded hotel rooms and car rentals, to online shopping discounts and money off your restaurant bill, at home and overseas.
Citibank Dining Program
If you love dining out, the Citibank Dining Program could make your experience all the more enjoyable with a free bottle of wine when you dine at hundreds of partner restaurants across the country.
Visa Front Line Access
With Visa Front Line Access, you could get your hands on some of the hottest tickets in town before they’re released to the general public.
Alongside its travel cover, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card also provides retail cover, with its Extended Warranty Insurance, Purchase Cover Insurance on items lost, stolen or damaged anywhere in the world within 90 days of purchase, and its Guaranteed Pricing Scheme.
This Card: The Essentials
When deciding whether the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card is right for you, it’s worth taking into account how you will use the card. If you will spend at least $4,000 on the card each month, you will not only benefit from the 15,000 bonus Points available each month for the first 20 months, you will also reduce the standard annual fee by half after the first year.
To get the most out of the card, you should also be in the habit of clearing the balance month-to-month and avoiding cash advances. This is not a low rate credit card, and carrying a balance that accrues interest could easily negate the value of any features, extras and rewards you get in return. As for eligibility, the card requires cardholders to be 18 years or older and an Australian resident, and earn more than $75,000 per year.
A fantastic option for anyone who wants to earn uncapped points on the Citi Rewards program, the Citi Rewards Signature Credit Card works best for those who don’t mind spending larger amounts on their card. With 300,000 bonus Points and a host of useful features, this card certainly has a lot going for it.