Best of

Best Citi Credit Cards of 2019

NerdWalletJuly 8, 2019

At NerdWallet, we strive to help you make financial decisions with confidence. To do this, many or all of the products featured here are from our partners. However, this doesn’t influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

NerdWallet's Best Citi Credit Cards of 2019

Our pick for

Cash-back rewards

Citi® Double Cash Card

on Citibank's application

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

15.99% - 25.99% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Balance Transfers for 18 months

Recommended Credit Score

Pros

The Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer stands out for both for its simplicity and relative generosity. You don’t have to worry about keeping track of rotating rewards categories or opting into quarterly offers. You can get a high ongoing rewards rate on all purchases. Another upside? The $0 annual fee.

Cons

The card has no sign-up bonus. The 0% introductory APR offer applies only to balance transfers, so it's not ideal for financing a purchase — nor is it ideal for using abroad, thanks to its foreign transaction fee. Plus, there's a $25 minimum redemption threshold for rewards.
  • Earn cash back TWICE. 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 15.99% – 25.99% based on your creditworthiness.
  • Click 'Apply Now' to see the applicable balance transfer fee and how making a balance transfer impacts interest on purchases
  • Balance Transfers do not earn cash back
  • The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 15.99% – 25.99% based on your creditworthiness.*

Our pick for

0% APR period for transfers

Citibank Simplicity Credit Card

on Citibank's application

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

16.74% - 26.74%* Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Purchases for 12 months and 0% on Balance Transfers for 21 months

Recommended Credit Score

Pros

If you're looking to consolidate debt, or even if you just need short-term financing, this card can fit the bill. Aside from its lack of late fees, it has an annual fee of $0. The card also allows you to select your own payment due date, which can be helpful if your bank account tends to run low at times.

Cons

The card offers no rewards, and its balance transfer fee — the greater of either $5 or 5% of each transfer amount — is on the high side. If you're primarily looking to finance a purchase rather than transfer debt, you can get a longer 0% purchase APR period on other cards, including many that offer rewards.
  • No Late Fees, No Penalty Rate, and No Annual Fee... Ever
  • 0% Intro APR on balance transfers for 21 months from date of first transfer. All transfers must be completed in first 4 months. After that, the variable APR will be 16.74% - 26.74%, based on your creditworthiness
  • 0% Intro APR on purchases for 12 months from date of account opening. After that, the variable APR will be 16.74% - 26.74%, based on your creditworthiness
  • If you transfer a balance with this offer, after your 0% Intro purchase APR expires, both new purchases and unpaid purchase balances will automatically accrue interest until all balances, including your transferred balances, are paid in full
  • There is a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
  • The same great rate for all balances, after the introductory period
  • Save time when you call with fast, personal help, 24 hours a day – just say “representative”
  • Enjoy the convenience of setting up your own bill payment schedule on any available due date throughout the month

Our pick for

Wholesale shoppers

Citibank Costco-Anywhere Visa Card Credit Card

on Citibank's application

on Citibank's application

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

17.24%* Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score

Pros

The ongoing rewards are rich: 4% cash back on eligible gas purchases on up to $7,000 in spending a year (1% after that); 3% cash back on restaurants and eligible travel purchases; 2% cash back at Costco and Costco.com; and 1% back on all other purchases. The annual fee is $0 (though you do have to be a Costco member, which requires a yearly membership fee). The card charges no foreign transaction fee, so it's a good travel companion.

Cons

The card offers no sign-up bonus, and cardholders are limited in how and when they can redeem their rewards. You receive a rewards certificate once a year in your February billing statement. That certificate can then be taken to a Costco store before the end of the year; it can’t be used elsewhere. Also, for a store card, 2% back at Costco and Costco.com is a surprisingly low rate. Other store cards can offer better incentives for shopping specifically with that retailer.
  • 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*
  • No matter where life takes you, experience 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

Our pick for

College students

Citi Rewards+℠ Student Card

on Citibank's application

on Citibank's application

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

16.49% - 26.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Purchases for 7 months

Recommended Credit Score

Pros

You earn 2 ThankYou points per $1 spent at supermarkets and gas stations (for the first $6,000 spent per year), and 1 ThankYou point per dollar on all other purchases. Rewards on every purchase are rounded up to the nearest 10 points — so a $2 cup of coffee earns you 10 points instead of 2. There's a modest sign-up bonus and a 0% intro APR period, too.

Cons

Other student cards offer richer cash-back rates in categories that students may find more enticing. You need good credit to qualify for this card, which can be an obstacle to those just starting out.
  • The Citi Rewards+ Student Card – the only credit card that automatically rounds up to the nearest 10 points on every purchase – with no cap
  • Earn 2,500 bonus points after you spend $500 in purchases with your card within 3 months of account opening; redeemable for a $25 gift card at thankyou.com
  • 0% Intro APR on purchases for 7 months. After that, the variable APR will be 16.49% - 26.49%, based on your creditworthiness
  • 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.
  • Get 10% Points Back for the first 100,000 ThankYou® Points you redeem per year
  • No annual fee

Our pick for

Newcomers to credit

Citibank Citi® Secured Mastercard® Credit Card

on Citibank's application

on Citibank's application

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

24.49%* Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score

Pros

With an annual fee of $0 and a minimum deposit of $200, this is a low-cost, low-maintenance, no-fuss option for someone looking to build credit. When your credit improves, you may be able to graduate to one of the issuer's regular cards.

Cons

This is a secured card, meaning you must put down a cash security deposit. But unlike many secured cards, it's not available to people with damaged or "bad" credit. It's for those building credit for the first time rather than rebuilding their standing after past mistakes.
  • The Citi® Secured Mastercard® is a no annual fee credit card that helps you build your credit when used responsibly.
  • Unlike a debit card, it helps build your credit history with monthly reporting to all 3 major credit bureaus. Once available, you will also have free access to your FICO score online.
  • Use your card anywhere Mastercard® is accepted — worldwide.
  • A security deposit is required. Once approved, your credit limit will be equal to your security deposit (minimum of $200).
  • Get help staying on track with Auto Pay and account alerts.
  • With Flexible Payment Due Dates, you can choose any available due date in the beginning, middle or end of the month.
  • Manage your account 24/7 online, by phone, or in our mobile app.

Last updated on July 8, 2019

Methodology

NerdWallet's credit cards team selects the best cards in each category based on overall consumer value. Factors in our evaluation include fees, promotional and ongoing APRs, and sign-up bonuses; for rewards cards, we consider earning and redemption rates, redemption options and redemption difficulty. A single card is eligible to be chosen in multiple categories.