Citi Premier® Review: 80K Bonus To Unlock Travel

Deals Points has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Deals Points and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions and recommendations are ours alone. Terms apply to the offers. See our Advertising Disclosure for more information.

The Citi Premier® Card is a versatile card that earns triple points on airfare, hotel stays, groceries, and gas stations – making it an outstanding earner on everyday purchases. 

Travel benefits like a $100 annual hotel credit and purchase protection plans also help you recoup the $95 annual fee. 

Let’s explore the earning capability of the Citi Premier card and what else it can offer to make it a keeper.

80,000 Points
Citi Premier® Card
  • Earn 80,000 Points After Spending $4,000 in the First 3 Months
  • 3x Points at Restaurants, Supermarkets, Gas Stations, Flights, and Hotels
  • $100 Off a Single $500 Hotel Stay Per Year
  • Extended Warranty and Purchase Protections
  • $95 Annual Fee
Learn More

Welcome Bonus of 80,000 ThankYou Points

New cardholders receive a signup bonus of 80,000 points after spending $4,000 in qualifying purchases within the first three months of account opening.

Earning Points

One of the best benefits of the Citi Premier is the ability to earn a lot of points on your spending.

Cardholders earn 3 points per dollar on purchases in the following categories, with no caps or annual limits:

The card earns 1 point per dollar on all other purchases.

Citi Premier Benefits

$100 Annual Hotel Savings Benefit

Cardholders get a $100 discount once per calendar year when booking a single hotel stay worth at least $500 (excluding taxes and fees) through the ThankYou Rewards site.

No Foreign Transaction Fees

This card has no foreign transaction fees on purchases outside the U.S., which is helpful if you travel internationally to help you avoid paying a 3% fee on those international purchases.

Purchase Protection

Purchase protection can save you a lot of money if you bought an eligible item that is damaged or stolen within 90-days.

For example, if accidentally dropped your new phone or laptop and broke the screen, you could file a claim to get it replaced if it was purchased within the last 90 days.

Coverage for this benefit is limited to $10,000 per claim and up to $50,000 per cardholder.

Extended Warranty Protection

Credit card extended warranty protection adds up to an additional 24 months of coverage for eligible purchases on manufacturer’s warranties of five years or less.

Coverage matches the protection provided by the original warranty so that damage or defect would have to be covered by the original warranty for extended warranty coverage.

The maximum coverage is $10,000 per item and $50,000 per cardholder.

For example, if you bought a TV with a manufacturer’s warranty of three years, then this card would extend the warranty for free to the fifth year.

World Elite Mastercard Benefits

The Citi Premier offers nice World Elite Mastercard travel perks, including complimentary breakfast and room upgrades at Mastercard luxury hotels and resorts. 

You’ll also get free ShopRunner membership, which provides free two-day shipping and free return shipping at over 100 stores.

Redeeming Points

The Citi Premier earns ThankYou Points, which can be transferred to the airline and hotel points programs below.

Citi Credit Card Logo Citi ThankYou Partners
AEROMEXICO LOGO AeroMexico LifeMiles Avianca LifeMiles
Air France Air France/KLM Flying Blue Cathay Pacific Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
Emirates logo Emirates Skywards Etihad Etihad Guest
EVA Air EVA Air JetBlue JetBlue TrueBlue
Malaysia Airlines logo Malyasia Airlines Qantas Logo Qantas
Qatar Airways logo Qatar Airways Singapore Airlines Singapore KrisFlyer
Thai Airways logo Thai Airways Turkish Airlines logo Turkish Airlines
Virgin Atlantic logo Virgin Atlantic Choice Logo Choice Privileges (1 to 2)
Wyndham Logo Wyndham Rewards shop-your-way-logo-featured Shop Your Way (1 to 10)

Pros and Cons of Citi Premier

Here’s a quick overview of this card’s advantages and disadvantages.

Pros

  • 3x points in several major categories (gas stations, restaurants, supermarkets)
  • Purchase protections like extended warranty and 90-day purchase protection.

Cons

  • Lack of travel protections minimizes the benefit of 3x points on flights.
  • $100 travel credit requires a $500 hotel stay

Alternatives to the Citi Premier

Now that you know about the pros and cons of this card and its benefits, it’s time to review the alternatives.

Or, if you are like me, who loves to maximize my rewards, here are other cards you should add to your wallet: 

Chase Sapphire Preferred®

Great Starter Travel Card
Chase Sapphire Preferred®
  • Earn 60,000 Ultimate Rewards Bonus Points for Spending $4,000 in the First 3 Months
  • 5x Points on Travel Booked Via Chase
  • 3x Points on Dining and Eligible Delivery Services
  • 3x Points on Select Streaming and Online Grocery (excluding Walmart, Target, and Wholesale Clubs)
  • 2x Points on Travel
  • 10% Anniversary Points Boost
  • Trip Delay and Trip Cancellation Insurance
  • Primary Rental Car Insurance
  • $95 Annual Fee

Click Here to Learn How to Apply

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of the best rewards cards for travelers who want solid earning rates for travel and dining expenses. 

For only $95 per year, this card earns 5x Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel booked through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and 3x points on dining, online groceries, and streaming services. 

The Chase Sapphire Preferred offers a 10% anniversary points bonus, 12-month DoorDash DashPass subscription, and a $50 anniversary hotel statement credit. 

Plus, it provides extensive travel protections, including trip delay, primary rental car, baggage, and purchase protection plans. 

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

75,000 Miles
Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card
  • Earn 75,000 Bonus Miles for Spending $4,000 in the First 3 Months
  • $300 Travel Credit for Bookings via Capital One Travel
  • 10,000 Points for Each Account Anniversary
  • Hertz President’s Circle Elite Status
  • Airport Lounge Access (Priority Pass, Capital One, & Plaza Premium)
  • 10X Miles on Hotels and Rental Cars, and 5x Points on Flights Booked with Capital One Travel
  • Trip Delay and Trip Cancellation Insurance
  • $395 Annual Fee
Learn More Our Review

The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card is a premium travel rewards card that’s perfect for travelers who want outstanding travel perks like annual travel credits, worldwide airport lounge access, and travel and purchase protections. 

The Venture X earns 2x miles on all purchases helping you maximize every dollar of your spending. Plus, you can earn 10x miles on hotels and rental cars, and 5x miles on flights booked through Capital One.

The card has a $395 annual fee, it is completely offset by an easy-to-use $300 annual travel credit for bookings via Capital One Travel and 10,000 points (worth at least $100) each account anniversary.

Plus you get airport lounge access at Priority Pass, Capital One, and Plaza Premium Lounges, Hertz President’s Circle elite status, Global Entry or TSA PreCheck credit, rental car insurance, trip and luggage insurance, cell phone insurance, and purchase protection.

American Express® Gold Card

The American Express® Gold Card is one of my favorite cards because it earns:

  • 4x points at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery in the U.S.,
  • 4x points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1x). 
  • 3x points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com

Plus, card members get a $120 dining credit plus $120 in Uber Cash for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders can offset the card’s $250 yearly fee. (Enrollment is required for credit.)

Is the Citi Premier Worth It?

I keep the Citi Premier in my wallet to take advantage of 3x points on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, and hotels, which allow me to rack up a lot of points that I can transfer to airlines.

But I never use the Citi Premier card to pay for flights because I value protections like trip delay insurance.

The Citi Premier is also a great combo with the Citi® Double Cash Card, which offers 2% cash back in the form of ThankYou points (1% cash back when you make a purchase and 1% cash back when you pay for that purchase). 

With this combination, you can earn 3x points at restaurants, gas stations, and hotels with the Citi Premier and 2x points on all of your other purchases with the Double Cash. 

80,000 Points
Citi Premier® Card
  • Earn 80,000 Points After Spending $4,000 in the First 3 Months
  • 3x Points at Restaurants, Supermarkets, Gas Stations, Flights, and Hotels
  • $100 Off a Single $500 Hotel Stay Per Year
  • Extended Warranty and Purchase Protections
  • $95 Annual Fee
Learn More