Citi Rewards+ Card Review [2020]

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If you are interested in a no annual fee credit card, you might want to give the Citi Rewards+ Card a good look. It doesn’t offer the strongest welcome bonus or even the best bonus categories but it does have a couple of unique perks that make it an interesting value proposition, especially for people who make a lot of small purchases.

Citi Rewards+ Card overview

  • Welcome bonus
  • 1x on other purchases
  • 2X at Supermarkets and 2X Gas Stations for the first $6,000 per year
  • 10% Points Back for the first 100,000 ThankYou Points you redeem per year
  • Automatically round up to the nearest 10 points on every purchase
  • Foreign transaction fees
  • No annual fee

Welcome bonus

The Citi Rewards+ Card is not known for having a very high welcome bonus but it does offer you a little something. Typically, you will run into an offer for something like 15,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in purchases with your card within the first 3 months.

15,000 points comes out to $150 worth of value for certain types of redemptions, such as gift cards. Just note that other redemptions will get you less value. For example, if you use your points at Amazon.com, they’re worth 0.8 cent each.

If you redeem your points for cash back you’ll only get half a cent per point so that is generally not recommended.

If you have a premium card such as the Citi Premier Card or the Citi Prestige, you can transfer your points out to various travel partners. This is definitely the best way to get optimal value for your points and below you can find a full breakdown of all of the transfer partners.

Travel partnerRatioTransfer Time
AeroMexico ClubPremier1:1Instant
Air France KLM Flying Blue1:1Instant
Avianca LifeMiles1:1Instant
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles1:1Instant
Emirates Skywards1:1Instant
Etihad Guest1:1~7 Days
EVA Air Infinity MileageLands1:1~2 Days
Jet Airways JetPrivilege1:1Instant
JetBlue1:1Instant
Malaysia Enrich1:1~2 Days
Qantas Frequent Flyer1:1~2 Days
Qatar Privilege Club1:1~2 Days
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer1:1~2 Days
Thai Airways International Royal Orchid Plus1:1~7 Days
Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles1:1~2 Days
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club1:1Instant
Citi ThankYou Transfer Partners

Eligibility

In order to receive the bonus, make sure that you are abiding by the eligibility rules which state:

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

In addition to those, Citi has some other complicated application rules. If you want to automate your eligibility for credit cards like this then I would consider opening up a free account on WalletFlo. You’ll also be able to do things like manage your credit cards, keep track of credits and annual fees, etc. 

Bonus earning

  • 2X at Supermarkets and 2X Gas Stations for the first $6,000 per year
  • Rounding up to 10 points
  • 1X on all purchases

2X at supermarkets

When trying to earn points on supermarkets, be on the lookout for certain exclusions. For example, the following will not earn 2X:

general merchandise/discount superstores, freezer/meat locker provisioners, dairy product stores, miscellaneous food/convenience stores, markets, drugstores, warehouse clubs, wholesale clubs, specialty vendors, bakeries, candy stores, nut stores, confectionery stores, and meal kit delivery services.

2X at gas stations

And when trying to earn 2X on fuel purchases, some additional exclusions to consider are:

warehouse clubs, wholesale clubs, superstores, discount stores, department stores, and convenience stores.

Earning two extra points on supermarkets and gas stations for the first $6,000 per year is an okay earning rate. I’m not a huge fan of bonus categories that have spending limits of around $1,500 per quarter so I’m not in love with these bonus categories.

Also, I would much rather prefer to earn something like 4X on supermarkets with a card like the American Express Gold Card. But considering there is no annual fee for this card these bonus categories are okay.

Rounding up to 10 points

Something unique about this card is that for every point that you earn, Citibank will automatically round up to the nearest 10 points on every purchase.

So let’s say that you spend three dollars on a small purchase that does not earn special bonus points. That purchase will earn you three points based on the 1X earning rate. However, Citi will round those three points up to 10 points.

This means that this is a great card to use for a lot of your small purchases since it can turn the card into essentially a 5X earning machine for cheap purchases.

The rounding up for bonus points also applies to bonus categories and that can make the earnings interesting.

Let’s say that you fill up your gas tank and spend $41. Because that is a 2X category, you will earn 82 points on that purchase. Then those points will be rounded up to 90 points.

Tip: Check out the free app WalletFlo so that you can optimize your credit card spend by seeing the best card to use! You can also track credits, annual fees, and get notifications when you’re eligible for the best cards!

Exterior of gas station with pumps.
Earn double points on gas purchases.

10% rebate

With this card you’ll get 10% points back for the first 100,000 ThankYou Points you redeem per year. That means if you redeem 15,000 points, you get 1,500 back. This is a great way to stretch the earnings of your spend.

If you are regularly making $3 purchases, then you would effectively be earning 3.3X on all those purchases when you factor in the rounding up the points. If you factor in a 10% bonus then those earnings jump up to about 3.7X. So you could be walking around earning around 3.7% on small purchases with these perks which is actually very good.

It can get even better for cheap purchases that fall within bonus categories.

For example, let’s say you buy an $11 grocery store item. That will then earn 22 points based on the 2X multiplier. It will then be rounded up to 30 points. And if you factor in a 10% rebate, that’s 33 points for an $11 purchase so you are effectively earning 3X with a no annual fee card. Not bad.

0% introductory APR

  • 0% introductory APR for 15 months from date of account opening
  • 0% introductory APR for 15 months from date of first transfer

If you are in need of a 0% APR intro period for purchases or for balance transfers, this can be a good option. Just note that you have to deal with either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater, for each transfer.

Final word

The Citi Rewards+ Card is an interesting card for somebody who does not want to pay an annual fee but still wants to earn some okay rewards on their spend. In particular, if you have a high volume of cheap purchases that you make on a regular basis the rounding up on your rewards combined with the 10% rebate can actually offer you some pretty competitive rewards.

UponArriving has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. UponArriving and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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