Point Hacks Credit Card Guide

120,000 Citi Rewards points and reduced first year fee of $199 with Citi Signature Visa

Citi Signature Visa - 120,000 Citi Rewards points (60,000 Velocity points / 48,000 Krisflyer miles if transferred)

120,000 Citi Rewards Points are on offer with the Citi Signature Visa. The card includes two Priority Pass lounge access each year, plus a reduced annual fee of $199 for the first year and the ability to transfer points from Citi Rewards to a number of partners.

  • 120,000 Citibank Rewards points
  • 0% interest p.a. for 15 months on balance transfers
  • Priority Pass lounge access and some other premium card benefits
  • Ability to earn Citi Rewards points where you can transfer points to Velocity & Krisflyer, or swap the card to Qantas Points down the track
  • 2 Rewards Points per $1 for selected purchases made and booked directly from a range of major restaurants and restaurant chains, major hotel chains and flights directly booked with major airlines and international spend
  • 1.5 Rewards points per $1 for selected purchases made at major petrol outlets, major supermarkets and major national retailers
  • 1 Reward Point per $1 spent everywhere else on Eligible Transactions
  • Spend $3,000 on everyday purchases within the first 90 days of card approval to receive bonus points
  • A Balance Transfer fee of 1% of the amount applies
  • Annual fee: $199 p.a. for the first year, $395 ongoing
  • Offer expires: 31 January 2018

Find out more or apply →

Point Hacks earn a maximum of $160 per applicant for this card. More about this →

Citi have increased their bonus offer for the Citi Signature Visa – with a 120,000 Citi Rewards point bonus for new cardholders, equivalent to 60,00 Velocity Points or 48,000 KrisFlyer Miles if transferred out of Citi Rewards.

The annual fee is also reduced to $199 in the first year. The bonus is subject to spending $3,000 in the first 90 days after approval for the card.

Citi Signature Visa – The Basics

When you sign up for the Citi Signature you’re either choosing to do so with Qantas or Citi Rewards (for the purposes of the bonus this can’t be changed, but you can swap rewards options later as a cardholder). We explain this a little later in the guide.

Using the card for overseas spend incurs a 3.4% fee, with earn rate similar to the highest bonus category at 1 Qantas point or 2 Citi Rewards points per $1 uncapped.

The Citi Signature Visa can also be linked to Qantas Frequent Flyer, with points earned from new cardholder bonuses or from spend earned into one program or the other.


Card Details

CardCiti Signature Visa
Loyalty programCiti Rewards or Citi Qantas Rewards (+$49)
Citi Rewards earn rate1 Qantas point or 2 Rewards Points per $1 for selected purchases made and booked directly from a range of major restaurants and restaurant chains, major hotel chains and flights directly booked with major airlines and international spend

0.75 Qantas point or 1.5 Rewards points per $1 for selected purchases made at major petrol outlets, major supermarkets and major national retailers

0.5 Qantas point or 1 Reward Point per $1 spent everywhere else on Eligible Transactions
Points capCiti Rewards points are uncapped, OR

Qantas Points regular spend capped at $20,000 per statement period
Earns points at ATONo
Travel benefitsPriority Pass lounge access and two included lounge visits
Annual fee$395 p.a.
Overseas transaction fee3.40% of the converted amount
Minimum income requirement$75,000 p.a.

Effective Frequent Flyer Program Point Earn Rates

Frequent Flyer ProgramMajor restaurants,
hotels and major
airlines
Major petrol stations,
supermarkets and
national retailers
All other eligible spendInternational Spend
Qantas Points*1 point / $0.75 point / $0.5 point / $1 point / $
Velocity Points1 point / $0.75 point / $0.5 point / $1 point / $
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Miles0.8 mile / $0.6 point / $0.4 point / $0.8 point / $
Emirates Skyward0.8 mile / $0.6 point / $0.4 point / $0.8 point / $
* Qantas Points are only earned through the Citi Signature Qantas Visa card

Digging into the benefits of the Citi Rewards Signature Visa

You’ll earn 2 Citi Rewards points per $1 on eligible spend at major restaurants, restaurant chains, hotel chains, flights directly booked with major airlines and international spend. 1.5 Citi Rewards points per $1 at major petrol outlets, supermarkets and national retailers and 1 point everywhere else uncapped.

If you opt-in to Citi Qantas Rewards, similar bonus points categories are in place but earn rate is halved to 1 Qantas point per $1 on eligible spend at major restaurants, restaurant chains, hotel chains and flights directly booked with major airlines. 0.75 Qantas point per $ at major petrol, supermarkets and national retailers and 0.5 point everywhere else. Bonus categories are uncapped but regular spend is capped at $20,000 per statement period. There’s a minimum income requirement of $75,000.

It’s worth noting that the Qantas signup bonus can be more valuable to some cardholders than the Citi Rewards bonus (when the advertised bonus points are equal) depending on how you use your points – given you can switch rewards programs for your card down the track, picking the Citi Qantas card and then changing to Citi Rewards later could be worth considering to get the most value from the points on offer.

If you decide to use the card to earn Citi Rewards points, have a read of the full guide to the Citi Rewards program here.

Citi Rewards transfer partners for the Signature Visa are low in number, but high in quality:

  • Virgin Australia Velocity
  • Singapore Airlines Krisflyer
  • Emirates Skywards
  • and as a standalone option – Qantas Frequent Flyer with monthly direct sweep if opted in to Citi Qantas Rewards

For Citi Signature cardholders, points transfer out to Virgin Australia‘s Velocity at 2 Citi Rewards point to 1 Velocity point and on Singapore Airlines’ Krisflyer program at 2.5 Citi Rewards points to 1 Krisflyer Miles.

There is a minimum transfer requirement of 20,000 Citi Rewards points, which means you need to be strategic about how you transfer your points to ensure you don’t have any orphaned points in the Citi Rewards program (a balance of under 20,000) which wouldn’t be transferrable to frequent flyer programs.

You can swap the card between Citi Rewards points and Qantas Point earn once per year, so do this only when you need to.

Citi Rewards Bonus Point Partners

Citi has a wide range of bonus partners – many of which are quite niche. There are a few mainstream retailers though, and it largely depends on where you spend your money as to whether you’ll get the most out of their bonus partner program.

The earn rates for bonus partners depends on the category they’re in + 3 bonus points per $1 spent. This means you can potentially earn 5 points per dollar if you stay at bonus partner hotels.

Bonus points are not available to those who earn points into Qantas Frequent Flyer. This is a downside of earning Qantas Points with the card.

Priority Pass Benefit

The card also comes with Priority Pass lounge membership, valued at $99 per year, and two included lounge visits valued at $27 each. In reality, you’ll get better use out of this membership if you travel internationally, as there are only a couple of Priority Pass partner lounges in Australia.

Citi Signature Priority Pass pack

The way this works in practice is that you’ll receive a promotional pack from Citi with a Priority Pass access code soon after receiving your card in the mail. The code then lets you sign up for the relevant membership from Priority Pass.

Finally, you’ll also get a range of insurances, including extended warranty, purchase cover and international travel insurance. As per usual, you’ll need to read the PDS and assess if these insurances meet your individual needs and offer you substantial value.

This guide references some of the benefits of insurance policies provided with this card.

You should read the PDS and obtain independent professional advice before obtaining this product.

Summing up – the Citi Signature Visa

The Citi Signature Visa remains to be considered for high volumes of points earn outside of Qantas Frequent Flyer on a Visa or MasterCard, however the annual fee is higher than many others on the market, so you’ll need to be using the card a lot to make the the fee worthwhile.

The flexibility of points transfer to Velocity or KrisFlyer is really useful, as well as the possibility of swapping the card (infrequently) between Qantas or Citi Rewards point earn.

The bonus points categories plus the points earn on spend should be considered alongside the cards benefits to ensure it’s going to work well for you.

120,000 Citi Rewards points and reduced first year fee of $199 with Citi Signature Visa was last modified: September 21st, 2017 by Keith

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Comments Expand Comments

  1. Hi Keith.

    Thanks for a great article about citi rewards.
    I just want to ask about the increased bonus of 120k. How much is it equal to Qantas points ? Also the same Q for citi infinite card ?

    Cheers.
    Hassan.

  2. CJ

    I had applied for Citi Signature Qantas card a month or so ago, after continual phone calls and supplying all of my information as in tax returns, accountant details etc they have today knocked me back and said to reapply in 3 months as I am a risk to them. I’m staggered as I have an excellent credit history, have never been late on a payment for anything, earn good money, own my house and I am able to travel regularly to overseas destinations. I just don’t get it. Admittedly I only wanted the 50000 Qantas points on offer, so will go elsewhere I guess. I have never had an issue with any other credit card providers. I often churn cards after two or so years as a safety thing as well as sign on bonuses.

  3. Let me get this straight, 150,000 points over 15 months at 10,000 Citi Rewards p/m and all you have to do is spend $1 a month min?!

    There has to be a catch… correct me if I’m wrong?

  4. Keith – I think this transfer option might have been here for some time, but I don’t think anyone has reported it. Citi Signature Rewards seem to let me transfer to Emirates Skyward Miles: “2.5 Rewards points for 1 Skywards Miles”. Not a great transfer rate, and not the best FFP, but another option nonetheless.

  5. Jeff

    Shame they are devaluing the program, but I suppose with a large number of the cards not bringing in any annual fee revenue, and the RBA cutting down on the merchant fees, it was inevitable this was going to happen.

    I think the cut in the FOREX earn rate will hurt more the cut in domestic spend.

    Still, it’s hard to find a Visa card that has a better earn rate than 0.75/$1, especially when factoring in the card is free.

    From the sounds of it bpay will also no longer earn points, so that’s something to be careful of. Best to set up direct debit or go to the service providers page and use their payment system.

  6. Andrew

    Hi Keith, did you notice the transfer rate to velocity and KrisFlyer decrease in March 2016 as well in the fine print? Dropping to 2:1 from the current 1.5:1

  7. charlie

    I called citi before I applied this card and been told that i can only choose either 60k points or $299 fee waive for life can only been ( YES, You can’t have both).

    I end up just take the fee waived.

    Or maybe I just got cheated by their representatives?

    • Is this for Qantas Points or for Citi Rewards points that you’re looking for? The annual fee waiver on the Qantas Point offer is for first year only, if you were asking for waived for live then they may have been trying to get you in at that level, but with no points.

  8. SS

    Hi Keith, the $49 Qantas opt-in fee is annoying on this offer. Do you know if you have to call and request the opt-in like you do wit CBA? And is there any charge for additional cardholders?

    TIA

    • I believe it’s applied as part of the signup process – you need to submit your QFF # I think to get this offer for the 60k points so given that, you’d then get charged the fee.

      AFAIK there’s no fee for additional cardholders on this account.

  9. Note that you do NOT earn any points when you pay your ATO bills with the Citibank card. I was about to sign up for them and found this important thing out prior. I went for the St George / Bank of Melbourne Altitude card instead for my non-Amex spend.

  10. Joel

    Hi Keith,

    I am looking for a non Amex card (for when Amex isn’t accepted) that I can transfer points to Krisflyer account, from what I can tell the Citibank cards are the only ones you can do that with is this correct?

    • There’s no specified timing on the offer page, but from experience Citi Rewards points credit to the account instantly as soon as they are earned, so I would hope that would be at the end of the month that you meet the min spend criteria with the earn ‘x’ points every month offer, or with Qantas points they will sweep over mid month, so points from previous month should credit then. But check with Citi on the phone if this is really important to you.

  11. Dave

    Hi Keith
    I have the Virgin Money velocity flyer visa, which is issued by citibank, so would I be eligible for this introductory offer for the bonus points? As I noticed on the citibank website that it states that existing citibank credit card holders are not eligible to apply for this offer.

    • Keith Author

      In my experience, you’re not eligible for a new product with Citibank if you previously were approved for any other Citibank credit product in the previous 6 months. However, not sure if they block you from applying altogether with Virgin Money / CB product crossovers so best to give them a call to check.

  12. lissthree

    Can anyone with this card tell me how long after the first spend the points will take to be credited to an account? This card may come in handy towards the end of the year when Im about to purchase seats if I find Im a bit short but don’t want to leave it too close: if they came within 2-3 mths that would be ok .

    • Ben

      I’ve had this card for 3 months and I was always suss about the rewards points system not being in effect. Earlier enquiries to customer service instructed me to be patient, but today I phoned up again and sure enough, I’m not registered. So it’s being investigated with an answer in 5 days or so. The guy (pretty sure he was offshore) was efficient and figured there was a problem straight away, so no point in grilling him. If I’m not rewarded with the sign up bonus and points that should have been accredited, I’ll be letting rip. I’ll give the onshore number (in a comment below) a call if need be.

      Also had an issue with the additional card holder having the wrong home address so wasn’t issued. Didn’t resolve that after a few calls. Just couldn’t be bothered to keep trying. Will try again if/when the rewards issue is resolved. The infamous Citibank customer service at work again…

      • Ben

        Finally got my points up and running, but had to call a few times to get the 60K points, which only came through today.

      • Geoff

        I’m glad you got your points. Citibank stiffed my wife for her 60,000 points and as a consolation credited her with 2,000 Citibank reward points. Card is about to be cancelled. Would not recommend Citibank credit cards.

  13. James

    I’ve had similar issues with Citibank customer service early last year. I believe this was because they had all their customer service representatives offshore. Fortunately they had someone locally contact me and resolved my issue and offered me either 5k or 10k (I cant remember exactly) in points for the trouble. They also said in future if I had any issues to contact Onshore Services on 02 8225 0000 or 02 8288 2291. They are open from 8am to 8pm EST. Hope this helps people with issues with Citibank customer service.

  14. Chris

    Hi all –

    I’d stay away from this card. I signed up online, and there was no option to credit the points to Qantas instead of Citibank rewards. I was a little suspect, so I rang them as my application was in process, and I was clearly told the 60k points would be credited to my qantas account (agreed to the extra fee and reiterated my qantas details). Two months later, over 8k spent on the card, repeat communication, and I receive an online message on the Citibank website saying I’m not eligible for the 60k qantas points, as they were credited to the Citibank rewards program. I’m still arguing with Citibank to get the points credited to my qantas FF, but it’s been a major hassle, and their representative has made no guarantee that they will credit the points to qantas.

    Keith – This Citibank deal is not as advertised. As you said in another reply above, the deal clearly states that the points can be credited to Citibank rewards or qantas. I wouldn’t be recommending Citibank products if they’re not holding up their end of the deal.

    • Keith Author

      Sorry I missed this comment. Hope you get a resolution out of Citibank, it should be pretty clear cut but their customer service does leave a fair bit to be desired.

  15. Karl

    Just to let everyone know the 60K bonus points is only for their Citibank rewards and not transferable to Qantas points. I was about to sign up until they online chat lady told me this was the case.

    • Keith

      Hey Karl – you should argue this. The current offer page states:
      You have the choice of earning 60,000 Citibank reward points or 60,000 Qantas Frequent Flyer points (if you enrol in the Citibank Qantas Rewards Program for an additional annual fee of $49 at the time of application)

  16. Nelson

    Hi Keith,
    Still reading your Citibank card guide 🙂 so thanks!

    Just to let you know, I just received an email from Qantas, sign up to Commonwealth Bank Awards Card and get 40,000 QF points, and 50% off the annual fee for the first year.

    First Citibank, then ANZ, then Bankwest and now CBA, seems like QF is selling their points like hot cakes!

    • Thanks for the tip on the CBA card, I’ll look it into it more detail. It is the season for sign up bonuses it seems… beginning of new financial year I can only assume means the bank’s marketing $$ have been topped up.

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