Citi Premier will soon reward you for groceries and dining as part of upcoming changes

Apr 8, 2020

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Credit card issuers are constantly looking at how to adjust their credit card lineups in order to accommodate an always-evolving market filled with customers looking for the best rewards card for them. In that vein, Citi is announcing upcoming changes to its mid-tier Citi Premier℠ Card—including a new rewards structure and an added annual hotel credit.

The information for the Citi Premier Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

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Right now, cardholders earn 3x on travel (which includes most gas stations and other purchases like cruises, parking, tolls and more) and 2x on dining out and entertainment. But come Aug. 23, 2020, that rewards structure is changing to 3x on air travel, hotels, gas stations, supermarkets and restaurants (including takeout).

Related reading: Best credit cards for groceries 

Generic card, groceries, supermarket, cashier
You’ll soon be able to earn 3x on your supermarket purchases with the Citi Premier℠ Card. (Photo by GeorgeRudy/Getty Images)

While the addition of two new 3x categories (supermarkets and restaurants) is great, this change is also eliminating some bonus categories. You’ll no longer earn 3x on other travel such as cruises, tolls and parking, nor will you get 2x on entertainment. However, this change is delayed for existing cardholders — which Citi is defining as anyone who applies before April 10, 2020. If you fall into this group, you’ll get to hold onto the 3x on other travel and 2x on entertainment purchases through April 10, 2021. At that point, your earning rates for these other travel purchases and entertainment will drop to 1x.

In addition to the new rewards structure, cardholders will also enjoy a new annual $100 credit on any $500 or more hotel stay booked through Thankyou.com. This is a once-per-calendar-year perk and will become available as of Aug. 23, 2020.

Unfortunately, the Citi Premier℠ Card will also be eliminating a valuable perk alongside these other changes. Starting April 10, 2021, you will no longer be able to redeem ThankYou points with a 25% bonus compared to gift cards through the ThankYou Travel Center. While Citi’s transfer partners still have the potential to provide great value on the redemption front, the elimination of the 25% portal redemption bonus is definitely a devaluation of the overall ThankYou program for Citi Premier cardholders — especially since flights booked in this fashion typically code as revenue tickets and thus earn miles and count toward elite status qualification.

According to Citi, these changes have been long-planned.

“As our cardmembers’ needs evolve, we want to ensure we’re evolving with them and offering products that best meet their spending habits and deliver exceptional value,” said Lora Monfared, Citi’s General Manager of Proprietary Rewards Products. “As such, we’re excited to be launching a new rewards structure on our Citi Premier Card, offering an enhanced 3X point accelerator on restaurants, including takeout, and supermarkets, to provide additional earning potential within the categories that matter most to our cardmembers.”

Bottom line

Supermarkets and restaurants are great additions to the rewards structure of the Citi Premier, but the timing of implementation is a bit of a disappointment. Cardholders won’t be able to take advantage of those new categories during the months most of us are spending more on groceries and takeout while staying home — since the added categories won’t go into effect until late August.

Note that the annual fee on the card is not increasing, and eligible new cardholders will still get the chance to earn 60,000 ThankYou points after spending $4,000 in the first three months. And if you apply before April 10, 2020, you’ll get the best of both worlds: You’ll keep earning 3x on other travel and 2x on entertainment through April 10, 2021, on top of being able to take advantage of the new bonus categories in August.

Featured image by Eric Helgas for The Points Guy

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More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

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