Published On: Thu, Nov 16th, 2023

Citi ThankYou Rewards: The ultimate guide

Citi ThankYou Rewards: The ultimate guide
Citi ThankYou Rewards: The ultimate guide


Citi offers many different rewards credit cards. However, only some Citi credit cards provide access to the company’s valuable ThankYou Rewards program, and you’ll need to hold a premium Citi ThankYou card to gain full access to the Citi ThankYou transfer partners.

Whether you’re applying for your first credit card or are a seasoned pro looking for a new travel rewards card, one or more cards in Citi’s portfolio might be right for you.

Let’s take a closer look at the program, including analyzing some of the cards offering ThankYou Rewards points and how you can redeem ThankYou Rewards points.

Best Citi ThankYou Rewards cards

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

Comparing the best Citi ThankYou Rewards cards

Card Sign-up bonus Earning rates Annual fee Standout benefits
Citi Prestige® Card Not available to new applicants
  • 5 points per dollar at restaurants, airlines and travel agencies
  • 3 points per dollar at hotels and cruise lines
  • 1 point per dollar on other purchases
$495
Citi Premier® Card 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on your card within the first three months of account opening
  • 10 points per dollar on hotels, car rentals and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi travel portal through June 30, 2024
  • 3 points per dollar at restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, other hotels and on air travel
  • 1 point per dollar on all other purchases
$95 (see rates and fees)
  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit when you book a single hotel stay of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, through the Citi travel portal once per calendar year
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Provides access to all of the Citi ThankYou Rewards transfer partners
Citi Rewards+® Card 20,000 bonus points after you spend $1,500 in purchases with your card within three months of account opening
  • 5 points per dollar on hotels, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi travel portal through June 30, 2024
  • 2 points per dollar at supermarkets and gas stations for the first $6,000 in combined purchases each year, then 1 point per dollar
  • 1 point per dollar on all other purchases
  • Earnings are automatically rounded up to the nearest 10 points on each purchase
$0 (see rates and fees)
  • 10% points back for the first 100,000 ThankYou Points you redeem per year
  • Introductory 0% APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers (then 18.74% to 28.74% variable APR based on your creditworthiness)
Citi Double Cash® Card Earn $200 cash back after you spend $1,500 on purchases in the first six months of account opening.
  • 5 points per dollar on hotels, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi travel portal through Dec. 31, 2024
  • 2 points per dollar on all other purchases — 1 point when you purchase and 1 point when you pay your bill
$0 (see rates and fees)
  • Introductory 0% APR for 18 months on balance transfers (then 19.24% to 29.24% variable APR based on your creditworthiness)
Citi Custom Cash® Card $200 cash back (provided as 20,000 bonus points) after spending $1,500 on purchases in the first six months of account opening
  • 5% cash back (provided as 5 points per dollar) on your top eligible spend category (Restaurants, gas stations, grocery stores, select travel, select transit, select streaming services, drugstores, home improvement stores, fitness clubs or live entertainment) up to $500 spent each billing cycle
  • 1% cash back (provided as 1 point per dollar) on all other purchases
$0 (see rates and fees)
  • Introductory 0% APR for 15 months on balance transfers and purchases (then 19.24% to 29.24% variable APR based on your creditworthiness)

Related: Why the Citi Premier is 1 of my favorite cards in my wallet

Earning Citi ThankYou Rewards points

As you can see, many cards earn Citi ThankYou points. But not all ThankYou points are created equal.

TPG values Citi ThankYou Points at 1.8 cents each, but this is based on the potential value you can get by transferring your Citi ThankYou points to one of the program’s airline or hotel partners. However, to transfer points to most Citi ThankYou transfer partners, you must hold a premium Citi ThankYou Rewards card like the Citi Prestige® Card (which is no longer accepting new applications) or the Citi Premier® Card.

If you only have the Citi Rewards+® Card, Citi Double Cash® Card or Citi Custom Cash® Card (or another non-premium Citi ThankYou card), you’ll earn what we’ll call “basic” ThankYou points. They’re worth a flat one cent each when redeemed toward gift cards and many other cash-like rewards available through Citi ThankYou.

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You can also transfer “basic” ThankYou points to three loyalty programs — Choice Privileges, JetBlue TrueBlue and Wyndham Rewards — but these transfers will occur at a lower rate than if you had a premium Citi ThankYou card.

Example of the different transfer ratio based on Citi ThankYou card. THANKYOU.COM

However, if you also hold the Citi Prestige or Citi Premier, you can combine the “basic” ThankYou points into your Citi Prestige or Citi Premier account and then transfer your rewards to any of the 18 Citi ThankYou travel partners at the best transfer ratios.

If you want to add a new Citi ThankYou card to your wallet, read the fine print for the sign-up bonus and check our page on credit card application rules to ensure you’re eligible for the bonus before clicking the “Apply” button.

Related: The best time to apply for these popular Citi credit cards, based on offer history

Redeeming Citi ThankYou points

All of the Citi ThankYou Rewards cards let you redeem ThankYou points for statement credits, cash rewards, third-party gift cards, travel booked through the Citi travel portal (now powered by Rocket Travel) and more at a flat rate of one cent per point. Sometimes, you’ll even find gift cards on sale that could give you a slightly higher redemption rate.

I could buy a gift card on sale at a rate of 1.11 cents per point. THANKYOU.COM

Be careful, though, as some redemption options (such as Shop With Points) provide less than 1 cent per point. Ensure you are getting at least 1 cent per ThankYou point before you redeem.

Related: You can redeem your Citi points at Walmart, but you probably shouldn’t

However, you may get significantly more value when you redeem your ThankYou points by transferring them to airline or hotel partners. Check out the following table for the transfer ratios and how long transfers from Citi ThankYou usually take. If you don’t have a premium ThankYou Rewards card like the Citi Prestige or Citi Premier, you can only transfer to Choice Privileges, JetBlue TrueBlue and Wyndham Rewards (and your transfer ratio won’t be as lucrative, as noted below).

Program Ratio Transfer time
Aeromexico Club Premier 1:1 Instant
Accor Live Limitless (ALL) 2:1 Less than 24 hours
Air France-KLM Flying Blue 1:1 Instant
Avianca LifeMiles 1:1 Instant
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles 1:1 Instant
Choice Privileges 1:2 (2:3 for non-premium cards) Instant
Emirates Skywards 1:1 Instant
Etihad Guest 1:1 Instant
EVA Air Infinity MileageLands 1:1 3 days
JetBlue TrueBlue 1:1 (5:4 for non-premium cards) Instant
Leading Hotels of the World Leaders Club 5:1 Unknown
Qantas Frequent Flyer 1:1 Instant
Qatar Airways Privilege Club 1:1 2 days
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer 1:1 Less than 24 hours
Thai Royal Orchid Plus 1:1 7 days
Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles 1:1 1 day
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club 1:1 Instant
Wyndham Rewards 1:1 (5:4 for non-premium cards) Instant

With so many transfer partners, your options are plentiful when redeeming Citi ThankYou points. Here are some Citi ThankYou sweet spots you could use in some of the programs that tend to provide the most value:

Related: Great ways to maximize Citi ThankYou points

Bottom line

Citi ThankYou Rewards points are perhaps the most underrated of the major points and miles currencies. Despite some negatives, Citi ThankYou points remain valuable, especially for those looking to book award flights on international carriers.

If you want to maximize the Citi ThankYou Rewards program, having a premium Citi ThankYou card like the Citi Prestige or Citi Premier is important. These cards unlock transfers to all the Citi ThankYou partners at the best rate, which can provide many high-value award booking options.


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