Citi Rewards Credit Card Review 2021

Updated: Aug 31, 2021


On the face of it, it seems quite like an ordinary credit card. However, it has one benefit which makes it stand out. You can add balance to “paytm” without any charges with this card.


Eligibility

Minimum salary of Rs 25000 per month or Rs 3 lacs annual.


Fees

Citi Rewards Credit Card annual fee is Rs. 1000 + 186 (tax) which is charged at the end of the year.

However, if you spend more than Rs. 30000 in the year, there will be no fees. I will tell you how to easily meet this criterion.


Welcome Offer

  • 1,500 bonus points on your first spend made within 30 days of card issuance

  • 1,000 bonus points on your first spend of Rs.1000 made within 60 days of card issuance

  • ₹ 3000 cash back on spends of ₹ 5000 in 60 days of card issuance (you need to use code CITI3000 when applying for card)

The 2500 points are worth Rs. 875. The welcome offer itself is worth Rs. 3875. Quite a sweet deal and you haven’t even paid any fees!

In case the above coupon CITI3000 is expired or not working you may use my referral to apply. This will instead give you Rs 1000 cashback on spends of ₹ 5000 in 60 days of card issuance.


Lounge Access

None


Reward Program

This card has a relatively poor reward program as it is an entry level card.

· 1 Reward Point / Rs.125 on normal spends. Which is just 0.28%

· 10 Reward points / Rs.125 spent on apparel and department stores (online & in-store) which is a decent 2.8%.

· 300 bonus points on card purchase of INR 30,000 or more in a month. This gives you an extra 0.35%

· The reward points never expire

· You get points on adding to wallets. This is becoming a rare feature nowadays.


New offer

Recently, a new offer has been launched on which you will get 4 additional reward points when you transact on Amazon, Flipkart & Myntra. This is gives an additional value of 1.12% in terms of points.

  • For regular purchases on these web sites you will get 1.4% worth of reward points

  • For spends in the accelerated category of apparel, etc you will get reward points worth 3.92% of the transaction value.

When you compare with HDFC smart buy, SBI yono or Yescart which give 5-10% savings the savings provided by Citi Bank fall quite short. However, if you do not have access to these portals or you need to double dip with an ongoing Citi Bank offer the offer becomes useful.


The Paytm Benefit

Paytm has become my goto payment app mostly because of its options to use credit cards. However, from March paytm has started to charge commission on adding of wallet balance via credit cards.

Citi Bank has a tie up with paytm by which you can add wallet balance at no charge.

To add paytm balance you need to use Citibank netbanking or citi bank app. There you need to register your paytm phone number and you can start adding balance.

You can add Rs. 5000 max per transaction.

You can add Rs. 10000 max per day.

You can add Rs. 1lac max per month.

These are quite decent limits.

I use paytm for all my street, grocery shopping even including milk. Even if you just use this card for paytm wallet recharges, I think you should be able to reach your annual milestone of Rs 30000.


Reward Point redemption

You can go for statement redemption

1 reward point = Rs. 0.35

The fine print is that you need at least 10000 reward points to be able to use statement redemption. To get that into perspective, even if you do all the expenses in the 10X category, your spends will need to be Rs. 1.25 lacs; supposing it is in the normal category you will need to spend more than Rs 12 lacs!!

All in all we can say that the rewards are few, and quite difficult to use. But the points never expire, you at least have that.


Earnings Table

The spends per month is Rs 10000. Out of which Rs 3000 is in the accelerated category.

Also I have considered that twice you reach the monthly milestone of Rs 30000.



For the first year including the welcome offers you do get a decent reward rate of 4%.

However, from the second year on expect miniscule rewards. From the second year onwards the only reason to keep this card is the paytm offer. Lets hope this continues. As soon as this offer stops, I will be chucking this card out.


Citi Rewards Credit Card Savings Calculator

Use the below table to input your expected expenses and click on calculate to find out how much you will be saving with this credit card.

If the Calculator doesn't run, click here and run again :)



Rating

Good welcome offers, poor rewards and even poorer redemption terms, free wallet credit in paytm. All in all an average credit card.

2.5/5


Similar or Better cards

This card is a direct competitor to SBI Simply Save Credit Card as both cards are geared for offline spends.

You could go for lifetime free credit cards like ICICI Amazon credit card or HSBC Platinum Credit card.



70 views0 comments