In May 2020, Citi expanded the $250 General Travel credit from the Citi Prestige Card. The credit has been available to be used towards groceries and dining, as well as general travel. However, Doctor of Credit (H/T) has reported yesterday that Citi has extended this credit for the rest of 2021.
I am glad to see Citi continuing to help their cardholders and not devaluing their premium credit card even more than they already have. But is this credit extension enough to keep the Citi Prestige for another year?
The Citi Prestige has a $495 annual fee (NOT waived the first year). About half of it can easily be justified with the expanded $250 travel credit. This leaves most cardholders with a “net” annual fee of $245. Unfortunately, Citi dropped most of their cards’ benefits in September 2019. This also included a significant devaluation of the Fourth Night Free perk, which is the only other Citi Prestige perk left.
Therefore, the only way to truly justify the $245 “net” annual fee is through heavy spend. And many people not spending as much as they used to in general.
The Citi Prestige’s value proposition is still improved with this promotion, which has now become more long-term. However, its still not a useful card after cardholders have used the credit in full. This remains true after the promotion is over unless Citi makes some positive changes.
I wrote a post about why Citi Should Discontinue the Prestige Card in September 2019. This was in wake of the heavy devaluation. Part of the post discussed why the Citi Premier remains a better and less expensive alternative to the Prestige. And this holds true even with the Premier’s upcoming changes.
2021 might be a good time to acquire the Citi Prestige because of the expanded travel credit. But be sure that you will have enough upcoming expenses to justify a $245 “net” annual fee.