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Citibank's Checking, Money Market and Credit Card Promotion

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Citibank
Citibank is advertising a new promotion for its checking, Ultimate Money Account and credit card. It's not a great deal, but I wanted to at least make note of it. Citibank's bonuses in the last several months haven't been that good. You have to watch out for fees, and as usual several readers have experienced poor customer service. Many might have an extra reason to resent Citi as it was just reported that it took pressure from President Obama for Citigroup to cancel its purchase of a new corporate jet which just adds to the concerns about how Citigroup is spending their government bailout money (it received $45 billion).

This new promotion is listed on Citibank's home page. Here's the direct link to the promotion. Instead of cash, you are rewarded with ThankYou points which can be redeemed through the ThankYou Network. Apparently, 10,000 points can be redeemed for a $100 gift card. Here's a quick summary of the promotion. Refer to the promotion page for all of the official details and the small print.
  • 10,000 ThankYou Points for opening a regular checking account (the best choice is probably the Citibank Account) and make $1,000 in deposits by 3/31/09 (4/30/09 for accounts opened remotely). Within 60 days of account opening, you must (1) enroll your new checking account in ThankYou Network and (2) complete one direct deposit, two eligible electronic bill payments or five signature-based debit card purchase transactions per month for 3 consecutive months.
  • 3,500 ThankYou Points for meeting the checking account offer requirements and opening a new Citibank Ultimate Money Account by 3/31/09 with a $100 minimum opening deposit and link it to the new checking account.
  • 10,000 ThankYou Points for the credit card offer requires making at least $100 in purchases for the first 3 months of account opening. Bonus points can only be earned by new Citi Diamond Preferred Rewards cardmembers.

The Citibank Account package requires a minimum combined balance of $6,000 to avoid a monthly fee, a $0.50 per check fee and a $1.50 fee for each withdrawal from non-Citibank ATMs. The combined balance can include balances in the savings accounts, and it also can include credit lines and loans.

The Ultimate Money Account has a top rate of only 1.50% APY as of 1/28/09, and this requires you to make at least two online bill payments each month from the linked checking account. If this isn't done, the rate falls to only 0.77%.

It would have been better if this deal was for Citibank's Ultimate Savings Account. This has a higher interest rate (2.40% APY as of 1/28/09. It had just recently had been 2.50%.), and it doesn't require monthly bill payments. There are still a few days left for this $25 Ultimate Savings bonus.

There's also a few days left for a Citibank's $100 (in cash) checking account promotion (see post).

One other little tidbit about Citibank credit cards, this Consumerist post just mentioned how you can increase your Citibank grace period by 5 days. Apparently, every customer service representative has the power to change your grace period from 20 to 25 days.
  Tags: Citibank

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Comments
4 comments.
Comment #1 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Careful anyone who thinks that your full credit line counts towards the $6,000 combined balance. I recall reading somewhere in the Citi fine print that only your current credit balance counts, not your full approved credit line.

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Comment #2 by gaelicwench (anonymous) posted on
gaelicwench
I'll take the 2.4%, but at ING, and without restrictions. As for the $25 Bonus, CitiBank can keep it to put towards their private jets, just for the execs themselves.

So what would have happened had they been approved for take over of Wachovia?

You really don't want to know what was truly going through my thoughts as I was typing this comment. I would have been banned from posting here for a while. :-P

1
Comment #3 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
No matter what, this deal is just opening up a can of problems. Citi CSR in India and will most likely not answer your questions; they're useless. Plus, you have to do all these stipulations to get the promotions; have money sitting in Ultimate Momey acct at low interest; and need at least 6k to have monthly and other fees waived. Raw deal; not worth it.

1
Comment #4 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Citibank's DEAL STINKS.

2nds: "Citi CSR in India and will most likely not answer your questions; they're useless."

1