Citi Sees Double with New Cash Back Card

February 5, 2015
Double

Citi's turning up the pressure on the competition with its latest cash back card, offering cash back not just at the time of purchase, but also when you pay it off.

Citi's new Double Cash Card gives one percent cash back on all eligible transactions--what you spend on purchases you make with the card, but not on a number of transactions and fees including balance transfers, cash advances and convenience checks. There's no cap on the amount of money you can earn or spending category restrictions.

Once you make a purchase, you'll receive one percent back. This amount shows up on your billing statement as "cash back on purchases." The statement will also have a section called the "Purchase Tracker," which will track not just the amount of your purchase transactions, it will also track how much of those purchases you've paid off. As long as you make the minimum monthly payment as noted on your statement, you'll earn another one percent back on the payments you make. This amount is tracked as "cash back on payments." When the Purchase Tracker amount reaches zero--or if you pay off your balance in full every month--you won't earn that extra one percent until you make another eligible purchase.

Once you accumulate at least $25 in cash rewards, you can redeem them in a few different ways. You can request a check, put the amount toward your statement as a credit, redeem them for a gift card, or link to a Citi checking or savings account and have the money transferred to that account. You may also link to a non-Citi checking account, but you must have paid at least two Citi credit card bills with that account.

The card has no annual fee and currently comes with a 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers that's good for the first 15 months you have the card. After that, the APR will vary between 12.99 and 22.99 percent, depending on your creditworthiness.

The card comes with a host of other benefits, including one free late payment pass, which allows you to make one late payment without getting socked with a late fee. Any further late payments will be assessed a fee up to $35.

Another benefit is accelerated helpline service. Cardholders who call the card's helpline for service may also bypass the menu system by saying "representative" in order to get personalized help more quickly.

The card itself has an EMV chip, which allows you to use it globally and offers more security for transactions when the chip feature is used for payment. You may also use this card with Apple Pay for mobile payments.

Other features of the card include Citi Private Pass, which offers the opportunity to purchase from special blocks of tickets to entertainment events, as well as purchasing one-of-a-kind experiences like lunches or clinics with pro athletes or unique culinary experiences. The card also comes with Citi's Price Rewind feature, which refunds the difference if it finds an item you've purchased has a lower price within 60 days of when you bought it. Other features include damage and theft purchase protection, extended warranties on items, zero liability for unauthorized charges, fraud protection, car rental insurance, trip cancellation and interruption protection, travel accident insurance and a concierge service.

The card does charge fees for balance transfers and cash advances. For foreign purchases, it levies a three percent charge in US dollars per transaction. The card also charges fees for returned payments. While there are no interest charges if you pay your balance in full, interest does start being calculated on the date of purchase.

You can apply for the card online through Citi's website or over the phone.

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