Why the Citi Premier is a Surprisingly Good Daily Driver

Citi Premier Credit Card

💳 Citi Premier:

👍 Pros:

  • Easy to earn on everyday spend
  • 80,000 mile signup bonus is decent
  • $100 annual hotel credit

👎 Cons:

  • $95 fee is close to other premium cards
  • Lacks perks of higher-tier cards (Priority Pass, PreCheck)
  • No CDW protection

Verdict: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

If you look at the marketing material for just about any premium credit card — an Amex Gold, Chase Sapphire Reserve, or Venture X — you’ll see pretty amazing earn rates. 2x on restaurants. 3x on travel. 5x on hotels. And so on! But realistically, most of us aren’t making travel or dining purchases every day. For most of us, we’re buying groceries, filling up the car, and paying the internet bill. Which is where the Citi Premier comes in.

If you’ve got a family, the Premier offers a pretty solid 3x back on gas and groceries. If you spend, say, $1,000/mo on groceries and $150/mo on gas, you’ll earn about $40/mo in cashback, which isn’t too shabby at all. Plus it comes with an 80,000 mile signup bonus for spending $4,000 within three months of account opening your account. These 80,000 miles are worth $800 redeemed as cash, but can also be transferred to partners.

You earn these miles as ThankYou points, which can then be transferred to airline partners, or simply redeemed as cash. Citi’s list of transfer partners includes most major airlines, including Air France/KLM’s Flying Blue. Interestingly, you can also transfer at 1:1 ratio to Turkish, which allows you to book space on United Airlines.

All of that said, if you’re not willing to play the points game, Citi’s portal lets you simply redeem the miles as a statement credit or cash deposit. While it’s not the super-travel-hack that it could be, it’s not a bad ROI, especially if you don’t have award travel coming up.

Overall, the Citi Premier is a good card to keep in your wallet for high-frequency, high dollar spending. It lacks the extras of higher tier cards like the Chase Sapphire Reserve and Capital One Venture X, but it’s a good card to use for everyday spend. Just remember, you’ll need to spend nearly $3,000 to pay the $95 annual fee!

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