|by Mr Credit Card|
One of our readers sent us the following email. The main point was that his citi card has been changed to the ThankYou Premier Card and he is asking if he should hold on or cancel it. Below is our email discussion and hopefully, you will learn something from this.
Hello, I was informed yesterday that my Citibank American Express Platinum card (which I received about a year ago) will soon be cancelled and automatically replaced with Citibanks ThankYou Premier Rewards Card, serviced by Mastercard. The $99 annual fee will remain unchanged. Meanwhile, the membership in
Citi’s Identity Monitoring Service, the whole reason I got the card in the first place and was able to justify the fee, will be cancelled.
I want to cancel this card because I no longer feel the fee is worth it. I would replace the card with either the Chase Sapphire or the AmEx SPG card. This card is 1 of 3 cards I have, but is the newest card and also serves as my primary card. I have a $0 balance on the card. Would cancelling it significantly hurt my credit score if I replaced it with one of the cards mentioned above, or both?
Also, do you think it is necessary/worthwhile to have at least 1 AmEx card these days? I wasn’t sure if the luster has worn off over the past few years.
Thank you for all of your help!!!
Mr Credit Card – need to know
how much you charge to your card a month?
what rewards are you looking for?
My average monthly bill is around $2,000. I’ve accumulated about 75,000 ThankYou points in the past year (which I would redeem if I closed this card) by purchasing things online and maximizing the rewards points. What I like about the card they are cancelling is that I can get more points by purchasing through certain online retailers, and I get 3 points for every dollar I spend on gas and groceries. I don’t travel too much but I’d like to have the option to accumulate more points that way if I end up traveling more in the future. Ideally, I’d like a card where points don’t expire so I can use them to redeem travel-related rewards (e.g. for international vacations). My amateur search has led me to the Chase Sapphire card, but the AmEx SPG card always seemed like a good way to go as well. I am going off of the assumption that Chase and AmEx offer good services/features for cardholders…
Mr Credit Card – For international travel – Starwood is probably the better way to go although you will need a couple of years to get the necessary points.
The Chase Sapphire card (no annual fee) version is ok as well.
But since you would like to earn more points by purchasing stuff online, I suggest you consider the Chase Freedom (which I have). Their online shopping portal has over 400 merchants. You can earn extra points with them. They have quarterly rotating categories which allow you to earn 5% rebates (gas and groceries included). They also allow you to redeem points for travel (their online booking site or you can call their agent). You can also exchange points for continental gift certs (and Continental has some decent international routes).
The problem with Citi now is that you cannot book american airlines through their travel site online because it is powered by expedia (and southwest is not on it as well). So, getting away from citi is probably the right move anyway.
But I think for you, the Chase Freedom might be a good card to get for earning points the way you want and also for travel. If you think you are more likely to use an international airline, then Starwood is probably the better card to get.
This is great insight. Thank you again. Would you expect my credit score to drop much if I cancelled my citigroup amex? That’s the only thing I’m stuck on now..
Mr Credit Card – probably not a lot cos it will be “terminated by you and not the card company”. But you never know FICO – depends on your credit line, length of history etc…But I would not be too fussed about it since you will save $99 if you go for the no annual fee options. Any drop (if there is any) should be temporary.