Citi Rewards+℠ Card Review: Rewards for Routine Expenses

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer.

Editor's Rating

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Good choice for low spenders with gas and grocery expenses. Others can find better value elsewhere.
Citi Rewards+℠ Card
This product is not available through ValuePenguin.
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Editor's Rating

?
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers.","showIcon":false,"tooltipLabel":"?"}

Good choice for low spenders with gas and grocery expenses. Others can find better value elsewhere.
Citi Rewards+℠ Card
This product is not available through ValuePenguin.
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Citi is an advertising partner.

The Citi Rewards+℠ Card is a unique offering that provides decent rewards for routine purchases. Cardholders earn 2X ThankYou® Points at Supermarkets and Gas Stations for the first $6,000 per year and then 1X Points thereafter. Plus, earn 1X Points on All Other Purchases. And, you'll earn a minimum of 10 points per purchase — which makes this card a solid everyday option for people who make a lot of small purchases.

Citi Rewards+℠ Card Review: Decent Value for Moderate Spenders

The Citi Rewards+℠ Card is a great choice for people who have a moderate budget and spend mainly on gas and groceries. Cardholders have a $0 annual fee and earn 2X ThankYou® Points at Supermarkets and Gas Stations for the first $6,000 per year and then 1X Points thereafter. Plus, earn 1X Points on All Other Purchases. You could get a better rewards rate in the "gas and groceries" category elsewhere, but it's solid for a card with a $0 annual fee.

Minimum of 10 Points Per Purchase

The most unique feature of the Citi Rewards+℠ Card is that you'll earn a minimum of 10 Citi ThankYou points on each purchase, plus your points will be rounded up to the nearest 10. For nonbonus-category spending, this means a transaction of $4 would earn you 10 points and a transaction of $21 would earn you 30 points. This feature is particularly useful for people who often make purchases under $10, like buying coffee.

Average Welcome Bonus for a No Annual Fee Annual Fee

If you're looking for a welcome bonus to pay for your next vacation, the Citi Rewards+℠ Card isn't the card for you. Earn 15,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in purchases with your card within 3 months of account opening; redeemable for $150 in gift cards at thankyou.com This is significantly lower than what the best no-fee cards offer—e.g., the No Annual Fee Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card has a 30,000-point welcome bonus.

10% Points Rebate

With the Citi Rewards+℠ Card, you'll earn 10% of redeemed points back at the end of each year on the first 100,000 redeemed points. This represents a maximum potential benefit of $100 per year (10% of 100,000 = 10,000 points = $100). However, moderate spenders can expect a significantly lower annual rebate. For example, if you earn and redeem 20,000 points per year with this card, you'll get a $20 rebate.

Redeem Points for Travel, Gift Cards or Statement Credit

Points earned on the Citi Rewards+℠ Card are basic Citi ThankYou points, which means they can be redeemed for travel on the Citi portal, statement credit toward your balance or gift cards. In each case, your points are worth 1 cent apiece. You can also transfer your points to JetBlue's TrueBlue rewards program at a 5:4 ratio, meaning you'll likely retain only 80% of the value of the points. In most cases, it's best to use your points toward one of the other redemption options.

ValuePenguin's Verdict: Good Card for Moderate Spenders

The Citi Rewards+℠ Card is a solid card for people who spend a few hundred dollars per month on gas and groceries or who frequently make transactions under $10. For most people, the 10-point-per-purchase minimum is more gimmick than substantial benefit, as each point is worth just 1 cent. There are better options, outlined below, for bigger spenders and people who don't have many gas and grocery expenses.

Alternatives to the Citi Rewards+℠ Card

Below, we've outlined alternatives to the Citi Rewards+℠ Card that have the potential to earn you higher rewards. For moderate spenders who don't make many grocery and gas purchases, the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer and Discover it® Cash Back are great options. If you're a high spender and have major dining and supermarket expenses, the American Express® Gold Card is also an excellent choice.

2% Cash Back on Every Purchase

Our Thoughts

With a $0 annual fee, the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer lets you Earn 2% cash back on purchases: 1% when you buy plus 1% as you pay. This is a stronger offering than what's provided by the Citi Rewards+℠ Card, which only gives 1% on all purchases that aren't at supermarkets or gas stations. The one downside to the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer is that it doesn't have a sign-up bonus, but the card is still worth it for the long-term value.

5% Cash Back on Rotating Categories

Our Thoughts

The Discover it® Cash Back is another excellent card because you'll earn 5% back on categories that rotate each quarter, up to $1,500 in spending or up to the quarterly maximum (activation required). For 2020, the categories include grocery stores, Walgreens and CVS (January-March), gas stations, Uber, Lyft and wholesale clubs (April-June), restaurants and PayPal (July-September), Amazon.com, Target and Walmart.com (October-December). The card also comes with a great welcome bonus for new cardmembers — at the end of your first year, Discover will match and reward all of the cash back you've earned, effectively doubling your year one earnings.

For a Fee, 4% on Supermarkets and Dining Out

American Express® Gold Card

$250

See Rates & Fees

Good/Excellent

  • Earn 35,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points when you dine at restaurants worldwide. Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X). Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • Earn up to a total of $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations. This can be an annual savings of up to $120. Enrollment required.
  • $100 Airline Fee Credit: up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year for incidental fees at one selected qualifying airline.
  • Choose to carry a balance with interest on eligible charges of $100 or more.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
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Our Thoughts

The American Express® Gold Card has a $250 annual fee (See Rates & Fees), but it also comes with rewards and credits to offset that cost. For starters, cardholders earn an industry-leading 3X Membership Rewards® points for flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com and 4X points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X). It also comes with $120 in annual dining credits ($10 for each monthly statement period) that can be used at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations, plus $100 in annual airline fee credits. If you max out the annual credits, you'll only need to spend $750 a year on supermarket and gas purchases to break even on the card's fee.

For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, please click here

Compare Other Cash-Back and Rewards Cards

Use our credit card comparison tool if you'd like to see how each card performs for you. You can enter different amounts to reflect your monthly spending and see your potential earnings over a two-year period.

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The information related to the cards Citi® Double Cash Card and the Citi Rewards+℠ Card have been independently collected by ValuePenguin and have not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

Yowana is a former product analyst at ValuePenguin, specializing in credit cards, rewards programs and travel. He previously covered mortgages, banking and insurance for the website. Yowana graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in Political Science.

These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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How We Calculate Rewards: ValuePenguin calculates the value of rewards by estimating the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using the card less any associated annual fees. These estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone, not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Example of how we calculate the rewards rates: When redeemed for travel through Ultimate Rewards, Chase Sapphire Preferred points are worth $0.0125 each. The card awards 2 points on travel and dining and 1 point on everything else. Therefore, we say the card has a 2.5% rewards rate on dining and travel (2 x $0.0125) and a 1.25% rewards rate on everything else (1 x $0.0125).

Citi Rewards+℠ Card
This product is not available through ValuePenguin.
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