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Citi is in the process of sending out emails to select credit card holders offering them bonus points for spending in select categories. This is far from the first time Citi has done this in the past 8 months although the credit cards that have been targeted have varied.
Throughout this year, Citi has been the least proactive of the three major flexible currency issuers when it comes to tailoring its credit cards to the new world we find ourselves in (Chase and Amex have done far more), but it has been pretty consistent when it comes to targeting cardholders for limited bonus points in select spending categories. This time around I’ve been targeted for spending bonuses on my Citi ThankYou Preferred Card (no longer open to new applicants) but reports elsewhere suggest that similar targeted offers are appearing in the inboxes of other Citi credit card holders too.
This is the offer that I have been sent:
Use your card to earn 5 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent, up to 2,500 points, through 01/31/2021 on eligible purchases¹ you make at:
- Grocery Stores: including curbside pickup and online delivery
- Drugstores: including prescription orders made online
- Gas Stations
- Mass Transit & Commuter Transportation Vendors
To participate in the offer I need to activate my card (via the email I received) by 15 December 2020 – I’ve reproduced the full terms and conditions of the offer at the bottom of this post.
The math behind this offer is pretty simple: There is a maximum of 2,500 bonus points available through this offer so, assuming the categories now offering bonuses previously only earned 1 point/dollar (as is the case with my Citi ThankYou Preferred Card), there are 4 bonus points per dollar available in the new categories. This means that a maximum of $625 in spending will earn bonus points in this promotion.
A number of other credit cards already offer very good bonuses for grocery shopping right now (see here), so there’s a good chance that readers will already have a card that fulfills their needs in that category, but 5 points/dollar at gas stations, drugstores and on mass transit spending is hard to beat.
Ordinarily, I’d use my Chase Sapphire Reserve Card for all my non-air travel spending and my Citi Premier Card at Gas stations, but the 3 points/dollar these cards offer in those categories is outshone by the 5 points/dollar on offer in this promotion.
Sadly for me, my Citi ThankYou Preferred Card has just been converted to the excellent Citi Double Cash Card so, although Citi appears to be happy for me to register for this promotion, it’s not of much use to me 😁
Citi is sending out emails to cardholders inviting them to register to earn bonus points in select spending categories. If you haven’t received an email and hold a Citi credit card it may be worth checking your inbox(es) for an email with the subject line “[Your first name], Get More of What You Want. Get More Joy” in case you missed it.
Have you been targeted for an offer? If you have, is it the same as the above or something different?
Terms & Conditions per Citi:
¹This offer starts upon enrollment and will end on 01/31/2021. Earnings associated with this program will equal 4 bonus ThankYou® Point(s) per $1 spent on eligible purchases and may overlap with other special offers in which you are currently enrolled. Bonus points awarded with this offer are subject to a maximum of 2,500 additional points.
This offer excludes purchases made at discount stores.
Grocery Stores, including supermarkets, are classified as merchants that provide a complete line of food merchandise for home consumption. This offer includes convenience stores which are classified as merchants who sell a limited variety of food items. Gas Stations are classified as merchants that primarily sell vehicle fuel for consumer use. Drugstores are classified as merchants that sell prescription and proprietary drugs and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines. Mass Transit & Commuter Transportation Vendors are classified as merchants that provide mass passenger transportation including railways and buses, bridge and tunnel fees and temporary parking, but does not include the purchase of Amtrak tickets.
Merchants are assigned a merchant category code (“MCC”), which is determined in accordance with Visa/Mastercard/American Express procedures based on the kinds of products and services the merchants primarily sell. We don’t control the assignment of these codes and are not responsible for the codes used by merchants. When you use your card to make a purchase, we’re provided an MCC for that purchase. We group similar merchant codes into categories for purposes of making rewards offers. Sometimes you may expect a purchase to fit within a rewards category, but if the code assigned to the merchant wasn’t grouped into that category, your purchase will not qualify for additional rewards. Please also note – purchases made through mobile/wireless technology may not earn additional rewards depending on how the technology is set up to process the purchase. We reserve the exclusive right to determine which purchases qualify for additional rewards. All purchases must be made during the promotional period.
Balance transfers, cash advances, checks that access your Card Account, items returned for credit, unauthorized charges, interest and account fees, traveler’s checks, foreign currency purchases, money orders, wire transfers (and similar cash-like transactions), lottery tickets, gaming chips (and similar betting transactions), Citi Flex Loans and the creation of Citi Flex Pays, are not purchases.
ThankYou Points earned will be posted to the primary cardmember’s account in 1-2 billing cycles.
In order to qualify for this offer, the account must be open and current at all times. If your account is closed for any reason, including if you convert to another card product, you may no longer be eligible for this offer.
You may receive more than one communication regarding this bonus offer with a reply-by-date mentioned within; however, if you have already enrolled in this offer, no further action is required. This promotional offer is non-transferable and applies to the account ending in the last 4 digits referenced in this offer.