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The Citi Travel portal is getting a complete makeover: Here's what to expect

Aug. 18, 2022
7 min read
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If you're sitting on a stash of Citi ThankYou points, you might have noticed that the bank's travel portal has been offline for some time now.

TPG staffers and readers noticed this problem and reached out to Citi to ask what was going on. We have an exclusive first look at what's changing with the Citi ThankYou Travel Center.

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Let's take a look at these upcoming changes and the promotion attached to the launch of Citi's new travel portal.

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A new travel portal is coming

(Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)

The most obvious change is that Citi's existing travel portal — the Citi ThankYou Travel Center — is going away. It will be replaced with a new travel portal.

The new Citi Travel portal is powered by Booking.com and will provide access to more than 1.4 million hotels worldwide, thanks to the Booking.com platform.

Citi promises that the new platform will be easier to use and accessible through Citi's website and mobile app. Cardmembers will be able to customize their payments, choosing which credit card(s) or points to pay with, or a combination of the two.

Another new aspect is 24/7 customer support. Cardmembers will be able to receive help with their bookings around the clock.

You'll earn points on all paid bookings through Citi Travel. You can also redeem your ThankYou Rewards points at a rate of 1 cent per point toward travel booked in the portal. This means a $150 flight would cost 15,000 Citi ThankYou points.

Related: How to redeem Citi ThankYou Rewards for maximum value

Bonus points promotion

For a limited time, Citi credit card holders can earn up to 10 points per dollar on Citi Travel bookings. This promotion starts when the new portal is live and runs through Dec. 31, 2023, and your bonus points multiplier will depend on which credit card you use for your booking:

  • 10 points per dollar on Citi Travel bookings for hotels, rental cars and eligible attractions:
  • Citi Prestige® Card (no longer open to new applicants).
  • Citi Premier® Card.
  • 5 points per dollar on these bookings:
  • Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card (no longer open to new applicants).
  • Citi Rewards+® Card.

The information for the Citi Prestige and ThankYou Preferred cards has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Related: The ultimate guide to Citi ThankYou Rewards

These elevated earning rates apply to hotels, rental cars and eligible attractions offered in the Citi Travel portal. Unfortunately, flights are not included in the bonus-earning rates. Once these limited-time earning rates end, Citi will unveil the standard earning rates for travel booked in the portal.

For comparison, several banks have elevated earning rates on travel booked through their respective portals. Here are the points you can earn on these bookings when using a travel rewards credit card:

CardEarning rates for portal bookingsEarning rates on other travel bookingsValue of each point*
The Platinum Card® from American Express
  • 5 points per dollar on hotels and flights booked with Amex Travel (on up to $500,000 of airfare purchases per calendar year).
  • 5 points per dollar on flights booked directly with airlines.
  • 1 point per dollar on all other travel.
2 cents each.
American Express® Gold Card
  • 3 points per dollar on flights booked with Amex Travel.
  • 3 points per dollar on flights booked directly with airlines.
  • 1 point per dollar on all other travel.
2 cents each.
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
  • 5 miles per dollar on flights, hotels and car rentals booked with Capital One Travel.
  • 2 miles per dollar.
1.85 cents each.
Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card
  • 10 miles per dollar on hotels and car rentals booked via Capital One Travel.
  • 5 miles per dollar on flights booked via Capital One Travel.
  • 2 miles per dollar.
1.85 cents each.
Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
  • 5 points per dollar.
  • 2 points per dollar.
2 cents each.
Chase Sapphire Reserve
  • 10 points per dollar on hotels and car rentals purchased through Chase Travel.
  • 5 points per dollar on flights purchased through Chase Travel.
2 cents each.

*Values are based on TPG's latest valuations.

It's interesting to note that Citi Travel's elevated earning rates include attractions, which we have not seen with other bank travel portals.

Related: 9 things to consider when choosing to book via a portal vs. booking directly

'Coming soon' landing page

You might have seen this when visiting thankyou.com recently:

(Screenshot from thankyou.com)

However, if you go here, you will see a "coming soon" page as of 4 p.m. Eastern Time today.

When the new site — Citi Travel with Booking.com — is live, you will see this instead:

(Image courtesy of Citi)

The new Citi Travel website will go live in the first half of the fourth quarter of this year, meaning somewhere between Oct. 1 and Nov. 15. Once we know the exact date, we will provide updates.

No changes to Prestige and Premier card portal benefits

The Citi Prestige (no longer open to new applicants) and Citi Premier cards both offer valuable credits when booking with Citi Travel. These benefits are not changing.

Citi Premier cardholders receive a once-per-year $100 credit for hotel bookings of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, when booked at thankyou.com. This benefit will continue.

Also, note that this card currently offers 80,000 bonus points when new cardholders spend $4,000 in the first three months of account opening. This will be worth $800 in travel when the new portal launches, but you can also maximize by transferring points to one of Citi's transfer partners.

Those who have the Citi Prestige can continue to enjoy their "fourth night free" perk. This benefit is available twice per year and offers a fourth night free on hotel bookings made at thankyou.com.

Related: 4 reasons the Citi Premier Card should be on your shortlist

Bottom line

After we noticed that you couldn't make bookings with thankyou.com (Citi's travel portal website) into 2023, it became clear that something was changing. Luckily, we now know what it is: Citi is launching a new travel portal, known as Citi Travel with Booking.com.

Through Dec. 31, 2023, there are elevated earning rates available on travel booked through Citi Travel. Once the new portal is live, count on TPG to take it for a test drive to see how well it works and what features are available.

Featured image by CHRISTOPHER DILTS/BLOOMBERG VIA GETTY IMAGES
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

TPG featured card

Best starter travel card
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

1 - 3X points
3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
1XEarn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases

Intro offer

Earn 80,000 ThankYou® points60,000 points
For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

Annual Fee

$95

Recommended Credit

670-850
Excellent, Good
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

The Citi Premier’s 3 points per dollar spent across a wide range of popular categories is one of the more lucrative offerings in the world of points and miles. The Citi Premier comes with a $95 annual fee and is currently offering a solid sign up bonus of 80,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months. It also has some valuable transfer partners to make the most of your rewards. Add in access to Citi Entertainment plus a $100 hotel credit for any single-stay hotel booking that exceeds $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through the Citi travel website, there are few reasons why the Citi Premier should not be in every traveler’s wallet.

Pros

  • Earns 3x points on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel and hotels.
  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit (on single hotel stay bookings of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through thankyou.com)
  • Points transfer to 16 airline programs, from JetBlue to Virgin Atlantic.
  • World Elite Mastercard benefits, extended warranty, damage and theft protection.

Cons

  • $95 annual fee
  • Lacks travel protections that other travel rewards cards come with
  • For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 80,000 Points are redeemable for $800 in gift cards when redeemed at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases
Best starter travel card
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
1XEarn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Intro Offer
    For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

    Earn 80,000 ThankYou® points
    60,000 points
  • Annual Fee

    $95
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent, Good

Why We Chose It

The Citi Premier’s 3 points per dollar spent across a wide range of popular categories is one of the more lucrative offerings in the world of points and miles. The Citi Premier comes with a $95 annual fee and is currently offering a solid sign up bonus of 80,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months. It also has some valuable transfer partners to make the most of your rewards. Add in access to Citi Entertainment plus a $100 hotel credit for any single-stay hotel booking that exceeds $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through the Citi travel website, there are few reasons why the Citi Premier should not be in every traveler’s wallet.

Pros

  • Earns 3x points on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel and hotels.
  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit (on single hotel stay bookings of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through thankyou.com)
  • Points transfer to 16 airline programs, from JetBlue to Virgin Atlantic.
  • World Elite Mastercard benefits, extended warranty, damage and theft protection.

Cons

  • $95 annual fee
  • Lacks travel protections that other travel rewards cards come with
  • For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 80,000 Points are redeemable for $800 in gift cards when redeemed at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases