There are a few credit cards that I keep, even if it has an annual fee.  One such card is the Citi Prestige card. It comes with a hefty annual fee of $450, but I’ve been holding on to it for the last few years.  Since I travel often enough, the benefits (i.e. $250 travel reimbursement, 4th night free benefit, and priority pass) outweigh the annual fee.

Keep Citi’s Premier Card?

Before I had Citi Prestige, I had the Citi Premier card.  It didn’t come with all the bells and whistles of the Prestige card, but it comes with a much lower $95 annual fee.  It is also part of the ThankYou rewards program.  However, since I have every intention of keeping the Prestige card, it no longer made sense for me to keep the Premier card.

The only issue is figuring out what to do with the existing ThankYou points associated with my premier account.  I could transfer it and combine it with my Prestige’s ThankYou account,  but they would expire within 90 days of transfer.  If I cancel my account, they would also expire in 60 days.   I also don’t want to transfer them to an specific airline or hotel because part of the value of ThankYou points is in its flexibility, and I don’t have an immediate need.  Still, this is not reason enough to continue to pay the annual fee.

Retention Offers

I called and got a very nice representative who asked me why I want to cancel.  I explained to her matter-of- fact that I am a Prestige cardholder (which comes with a high annual fee) and that I don’t want to pay two annual fees. She acknowledged my concern but asked me to hold while she transfer me to another representative to help me with the request.  She transferred me to a very friendly retention specialist, who also thanked me for my business.  He reviewed my account and said, “I see a lot of offers for you to consider”.

Frankly, this was slightly surprising and unexpected.  I had hardly used the Premier card ever since getting the Prestige card.  Given my lack of usage, I simply expect the rep to just close out the account.

The rep gave me at least 5 offers to choose from, which include extra ThankYou points for purchases up to a cap and a partial statement credit ($50 statement credit for 5 purchases over $10).  After considering some of the options, I ended up accepting an offer for a $95 statement credit (which would cover the full annual fee) if I spend $500 each month for 3 months.

I had every intention of cancelling the Citi Premier card, but I am glad that Citi’s rep was able to change my mind.  I no longer have to rush to figure out what to do with the ThankYou points.  My annual fee is covered and Citi’s got me to put the card back in my wallet.  It’s a win-win.  That is, at least for another year.


Have you gotten a very good retention offer from a credit card company?