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The best Citi credit cards in 2021:
The best credit card for you might not be a good fit for others, and some consumers are better off pursuing offers with a specific credit card issuer. Citi tends to work well for certain types of spenders, including people who want to earn a high rate of cash back and those who like the redemption options in the Citi ThankYou Rewards program.
If you’re looking for a new credit card and you’re a Citi customer already or want to become one, you should know about the top credit cards Citi offers available now. Here are our picks for 2021.
We’re focused here on the rewards and perks that come with each card. These cards won’t be worth it if you’re paying interest or late fees. When using a credit card, it’s important to pay your balance in full each month, make payments on time, and only spend what you can afford to pay.
The Citi Premier Card is our top Citi credit card for 2021 based on the fact the rewards you earn are so versatile, yet you don’t have to pay a pricey annual fee. With an annual cost of just $95 per year, this card lets you earn a very sizable initial bonus of 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first three months of account opening. You also earn 3x points at restaurants, gas stations, supermarkets, air travel, and hotels — which makes the card worth considering for common pandemic expenses, as well as for travel down the road.
In terms of earning rewards, you can rack up 5x points on air travel and dining, 3x points on hotels and cruise lines, and 1 point per dollar on other purchases. A $495 annual fee applies, but you can more than make up for this fee if you earn the big initial sign-up bonus and take advantage of all the ongoing travel benefits.
13.99% – 23.99% (Variable)
2% cash back on all purchases
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
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Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
To earn cash back, pay at least the minimum due on time.
Balance Transfer Offer: 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 13.99% – 23.99%, based on your creditworthiness.
Balance Transfers do not earn cash back.
If you transfer a balance, interest will be charged on your purchases unless you pay your entire balance (including balance transfers) by the due date each month.
There is a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 13.99% – 23.99% based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi’s discretion.
No annual fee
Simple earning structure
Some cards earn higher rates of cash back on rotating categories
The Citi® Double Cash Card allows cardholders to earn 2% cash back on everything they spend — 1% when they make a purchase and another 1% when they pay it off. This card doesn’t charge an annual fee, and you can choose from redemption options like a check in the mail or a statement credit on your credit card account.
This card also has a generous introductory 0% APR offer, which lets you pay 0% interest on balance transfers for 18 months, followed by a variable APR of 13.99% to 23.99%. That makes the Citi® Double Cash Card a good option for debt consolidation, although you only earn rewards on purchases, and not on balances you transfer from other credit cards.
14.74% – 24.74% Variable APR
0% Intro APR for 18 months on purchases from date of account opening and 0% Intro APR for 18 months on balance transfers from date of first transfer. After that the variable APR will be 14.74% – 24.74%, based on your creditworthiness. Balance transfers must be completed within 4 months of account opening.
There is a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
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The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 14.74% – 24.74%, based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi’s discretion.
Very long intro APR period for balance transfers
No annual fee
Charges a balance transfer fee
No rewards (but that’s not the point of this card)
There’s no annual fee, but you’ll pay a 3% balance transfer fee (minimum $5). While the card doesn’t earn rewards, it offers an excellent opportunity to pay off debt without any interest. During this time, every cent you pay on your bill will go directly toward the principal of your balance, which will expedite the process of paying down your debt.
$99, waived for first 12 months
15.99% – 24.99% variable
50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
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Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent at gas stations and restaurants
Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
Earn a $125 American Airlines Flight Discount after you spend $20,000 or more in purchases during your cardmembership year and renew your card
No Foreign Transaction Fees
First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to four companions traveling with you on the same reservation
Enjoy preferred boarding on American Airlines flights
The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 15.99% – 24.99%, based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi’s discretion.
Bonus categories help you earn miles on everyday purchases
Fee checked bag on domestic American Airlines flights
$125 American Airlines flight discount is nice, but you need to spend $20,000 in a cardmember year to earn it
The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard® is a winner for frequent flyers who like to fly with American Airlines and partners like British Airways, Finnair, and Cathay Pacific. Not only can you earn an initial bonus of 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening, but you’ll earn 2x miles on eligible American purchases, restaurant, and gas station spending, and 1 mile per dollar for all other purchases you make.
Cardholder benefits include preferred boarding, 25% off in-flight food and beverage purchases when you pay with your credit card, and a free checked bag for you and up to four companions on domestic itineraries when you fly American. This card comes with an annual fee of $99, waived for first 12 months.
Discover one of Citi’s best cash back rewards cards designed exclusively for Costco members
4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter
3% cash back on restaurants and eligible travel purchases
2% cash back on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com
1% cash back on all other purchases
No annual fee with your paid Costco membership and enjoy no foreign transaction fees on purchases
Receive an annual credit card reward certificate, which is redeemable for cash or merchandise at U.S. Costco warehouses, including Puerto Rico
The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 15.24%. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi’s discretion.
Generous cash-back categories, especially for gas purchases
No foreign transaction fee
You can only receive rewards once per year
You need to visit a Costco location to redeem rewards for cash back instead of merchandise
The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi could be a great choice if you’re a Costco member and you like earning cash back good for more Costco purchases. This card lets you earn 4% back on eligible gas purchases on up to $7,000 in spending each year (then 1%), but you’ll also earn 3% back on dining and eligible travel. In addition to 1% back on regular purchases, you’ll also earn 2% back when you shop in the store at Costco or make purchases on Costco.com.
This card lets you cash in your rewards after your February statement credit each year, and there’s no annual fee with a paid Costco membership. You also won’t pay any foreign transaction fees, and this card comes with extended warranties on eligible purchases that come with a manufacturer’s warranty.
Don’t forget about Citi’s sign-up bonus rules
Before you sign up for a Citi credit card, it can help to understand the bank’s application rules. Depending on the card, you might not be eligible if you’ve earned a sign-up bonus, or closed a particular card or one within the same “rewards family” within the past 24 to 48 months.
With this in mind, you’ll want to make sure you know when you last closed a Citi credit card before you apply. If you sign up too early, you won’t receive the bonus on these cards — even if you’re approved and you meet the minimum spending requirement.
Other Citi credit cards
Citi has some other great credit cards that missed the cut for our list, but depending on your needs and spending habits, they could be a great fit for you.
Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® : This is the premium American Airlines credit card, with a $450 annual fee and membership to the airline’s Admirals Club airport lounge program. If you fly American all the time, this could be worth it — especially because purchasing an Admirals Club membership can cost $550 or more, so it’s cheaper to get the card.
American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card : On the other end of the spectrum, there’s the AAdvantage MileUp card with no annual fee. If you want to earn American Airlines miles but you don’t fly frequently enough to warrant an annual fee, this is a good option.
Costco Anywhere Visa® Business Card by Citi : If you’re a small business owner, the business version of Citi’s Costco card is worth considering.
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