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Compare the Features and Benefits of Citi Custom Cash℠ Card and
Citi® Double Cash Card

Detailed Comparison Overview

Key Facts
Annual Fee
Avg. Min. Credit Score
APR on purchases
APR on balance transfers
Ongoing APR
Balance transfers fees
Best Multiplier
Avg. Point Value
(Learn More)
Bonus Offer
Rating
Review
Key features
Unique Card Benefits
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers
No Fees for Authorized Users
0% Intro APR on Purchases
Concierge Services
Free Access to Credit Score
Annual Fee
$0
Avg. Min. Credit Score
580-850 *
APR on purchases
0% Intro APR (on purchases for 15 months, 19.24%-29.24% thereafter)
APR on balance transfers
0% Intro APR (on balance transfers for 15 months, 19.24%-29.24% thereafter)
Ongoing APR
19.24%-29.24% (Variable)
Balance transfers fees
Balance transfer fee applies with this offer 5% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum.
Best Multiplier
5x Airfare
5x Transit
5x Car Rentals
5x Gas Stations
5x Dining Out / Food Delivery
5x Hotels
5x Gym Memberships
5x Streaming Services
5x Drugstores
5x Entertainment (Concerts / Shows / Movies)
5x Groceries
1x Everything Else
Avg. Point Value
(Learn More)
$0.01 - $0.016
Bonus Offer

$200 in the form of 20,000 bonus ThankYou® points when you spend $1,500 within 6 months

Rating
YBCC Card Rate Stars Filled
YBCC Card Rate Stars Empty
(3.93) Our Review

Our ratings are determined by the authors and editors on our team. Each individual card feature is compared against all other cards we offer and the total score is an average of those 4 ratings.

Review

You will earn 5% cash back (as ThankYou® Points) on eligible purchases in your top spending category each billing cycle, up to the first $500 spent, with 1% cash back thereafter on all of your other eligible purchases made with your Citi Custom Cash card. You do not have to select anything at any time. It’s automatic. And these are not rotating bonus categories – it’s the same choice each month.
The eligible bonus spend categories are:

  • Restaurants
  • Gas Stations
  • Grocery Stores
  • Select Travel
  • Select Transit
  • Select Streaming Services
  • Drugstores
  • Home Improvement Stores
  • Fitness Clubs
  • Live Entertainment

restaurants-citi-custom-cash

You’ll earn an unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.

The 5X applies to your top category each month. So it’s kind of like a rotating bonus category except you choose – and you don’t even have to technically choose or register, the 5% is automatically applied to your highest spend category each billing cycle.

As a comparison, the Chase Freedom Flex offers a 5X rotating quarterly bonus category, but with a limit of $1,500 per quarter and on whatever categories they choose. This works out to the same $1,500 per quarter, but divided evenly each month such that you can utilize different categories each month.

This is the first and only card that I can think of that offers 5% at home improvement stores and at drugstores.

While a heavy spender may not be super impressed with the $500 a month cap, I think many spenders would be very happy to earn 5% on restaurants, grocery stores, gas, etc. on a card with no annual fee.

And heck, you could buy $500 worth of show or concert tickets one month and get 5% on that!

The Citi Custom Cash card is a perfect companion card to a Citi Premier® and a Citi® Double Cash card, creating a Citi Trifecta. If you have all three cards, you would use the Citi Premier for 3X Citi ThankYou points® on air travel & hotels, gas stations, restaurants and supermarkets, the Double Cash card for everything else at 2X, except for one category out of the Custom Cash’s options for 5X up to $500 a month. Personally, I think that most people would want to make this their go-to card for gas stations, as that is an easy one to spend roughly $500 a month on. But, of course, what category you pick will depend on your own spending patterns.

You might be thinking about getting multiple Citi Custom Cash cards – a Custom Cash card for each category, but you cannot. Acknowledging that someone might want to hold many of these to get everything at 5X, they have capped this card at one per person.

Bonus Eligibility Rules for the Citi Custom Cash card

The bonus offer is not available if you received one for opening a new Citi Custom Cash℠ Card account in the past 48 months.

However, this is GOOD news! You see, with all of the other Citi credit cards that earn ThankYou points you can only get one bonus, in total, every 24 months. Meaning that getting a Citi Premier precludes you from, for example, a Citi Rewards+.

But the Custom Cash card is not subject to that rule. So, you can get another Citi ThankYou® card bonus and a Custom Cash card bonus within the same 24 month period.

Bonus Category Definitions

It’s important to know what counts and what doesn’t, especially for bonus categories that start with the word “Select.”

The following definitions apply to the Citi Custom Cash card categories:

Restaurants

Includes purchases at cafes, bars, lounges and fast food restaurants. Excludes purchases at bakeries, caterers, restaurants located inside another business (such as hotels, stores, stadiums, grocery stores, or warehouse clubs) and third party dining delivery services.

Gas Stations

Excludes gasoline purchases at warehouse clubs, discount stores, convenience stores or other merchants that do not use the gas station merchant category code.

Grocery Stores

Includes purchases at supermarkets, meat/seafood stores, dairy stores, bakeries, and miscellaneous food/convenience stores. Excludes purchases at general merchandise/discount superstores; wholesale/warehouse clubs; candy, nut and confectionery stores. Purchases made at online supermarkets or with grocery delivery services also do not qualify if the merchant does not classify itself as a supermarket by using the supermarket merchant category code.

Select Travel

Includes airline, hotel, cruise line and travel agency purchases. Excludes timeshares, boat leases and rentals, campgrounds and trailer parks, and real estate agencies.

Select Transit

Includes car rentals, ferries, commuter railways, subways, taxis/limousines/car services, passenger railways, bridge and road tolls, parking lots/garages, bus lines, and motor home and recreational vehicle rentals. Excludes bike/scooter rentals, auto clubs and insurance companies.

Select Streaming Services

Includes the following cable, satellite, and streaming providers: Amazon Prime Video, Amazon Music, Apple Music, CBS All Access, Disney+, AT&T TV NOW, ESPN+, fuboTV, HBO Max, NBA League Pass, Netflix, Pandora, Showtime, Sling TV, Spotify, Starz, SiriusXM, Vudu, YouTube Red, YouTube TV, and Tidal.

Drugstores

Includes purchases made at pharmacies in grocery stores, general merchandise/discount superstores, and wholesale/warehouse clubs if those merchants submit purchases made in their pharmacy with the drug store and pharmacy merchant category code.

Home Improvement Stores

Includes purchases at home supply warehouse stores, lumber and building materials stores, paint and wallpaper stores, hardware stores, nurseries – lawn and garden supply stores and paints, varnishes and supplies stores. Excludes florists and florists’ supply stores; nursery stock; wholesale construction stores; and glass stores.

Fitness Clubs

Includes membership fee and other purchases at athletic, sports and recreation facilities requiring membership such as health, tennis, and swimming clubs. Excludes fees associated with virtual services for home exercise equipment, personal monitoring devices, or fitness streaming classes.

Live Entertainment

Includes ticket purchases for live entertainment, including: concerts, live sporting events, live theatrical productions, amusement parks, and orchestras. Excludes: charitable organizations that provide live entertainment (benefits), sporting camps, sports complexes where you participate in the sport, public and private golf courses, country clubs (including membership fees), bowling alleys, movie theaters, tourist attractions, museums and art galleries.

concerts-citi-custom-cash-credit-card

Read more
Unique Card Benefits
yes
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers
yes
No Fees for Authorized Users
yes
0% Intro APR on Purchases
yes
Concierge Services
no
Free Access to Credit Score
no
Annual Fee
$0
Avg. Min. Credit Score
580-850 *
APR on purchases
-
APR on balance transfers
0% Intro APR (on balance transfers for 18 months, 19.24%-29.24% thereafter)
Ongoing APR
19.24%-29.24% (Variable)
Balance transfers fees
Intro fee 3% of each transfer ($5 min) completed within the first 4 months of account opening. After that, 5% of each transfer ($5 min).
Best Multiplier
2x Everything Else
Avg. Point Value
(Learn More)
$0.01 - $0.016
Bonus Offer
There is no bonus offer at this time
Rating
YBCC Card Rate Stars Filled
YBCC Card Rate Stars Empty
(3.83) Our Review

Our ratings are determined by the authors and editors on our team. Each individual card feature is compared against all other cards we offer and the total score is an average of those 4 ratings.

Review

The Citi Double Cash® Card isn’t a card loaded with features and benefits.

But it has one killer feature that makes the card a must-have for nearly everyone and that’s the simple fact that it earns 2% cash back on all of your everyday purchases. Technically, you earn 1% when you spend and 1% when you pay, but semantics aside, you’re earning 2% cash back on absolutely all eligible purchases.

everyday-purchases-citi-double-cash

And before we forget, it also comes with a pretty amazing intro offer for balance transfers, as outlined in the Key Facts at the top of the page.

You don’t have to think about bonus categories with this credit card. The answer to “what will I earn here” is always 2%.

Just one caveat: the Double Cash does not come with many expected benefits, like extended warranty or purchase protection. For those reasons, you may want to use another card for high value merchandise purchases.

That said, why is it a must have credit card for nearly everyone? Three reasons:

1) There is no consumer credit card issued by a major bank that earns a higher % of cash back with no annual fee. None.

2) You can use this as your one credit card if you are completely averse to using multiple credit cards (although you’ll need to be aware of the foreign transaction fees charged if you travel internationally). But even better is to use this as your “default” card. What I mean by that is you may have a card that earns 4X on dining and groceries and another that earns 3% on drugstores, but that’s it. What about an insurance payment? What about daycare?

On most other credit cards, if you aren’t spending in a bonus category, you only earn 1X or 1% back. For example, the Citi Premier Card pays 3X in certain categories (Air/Hotel, Gas, Restaurants and Supermarkets) and 1X in everything else. So you can “Double Up” by having both cards.

The Citi Double Cash card earns 2X Thank You® points on everything. If your purchase is in a Citi Premier card bonus category, go ahead and make the purchase with your Citi Premier card. If it’s in any other category, make the purchase with your Double Cash card. That way, you’ll get one percent when you make the purchase and another percent when you pay it. With a Double Cash card in your pocket, you can always take it out when you have no bonus category available, ensuring that you never, ever earn less than 2% back on any purchases.

3) While you’ll earn cash back rewards with this card, it earns it as ThankYou® points. If you only have the Double Cash alone, that keeps things simple. It’s cash! You can cash out as a statement credit, via direct deposit to your bank account, or by check.

Pair with a Citi Premier® card – a great credit card strategy

In that case, once again, you simply pair this card with a Citi Premier credit card. That would allow you to pool all of your ThankYou® points together and, because of the Premier, you’ll unlock access to all of the transfer options listed below, the best kind of credit card rewards:

Citi ThankYou Transfer PartnersTransfer RatioApproximate Transfer Time *
AeroMexico1:1Generally instant
Air France Flying Blue1:1Instant
Avianca LifeMiles1:1Instant.
Cathay Pacific AsiaMiles1:1Instant
Etihad Guest1:1Instant
Emirates1:!Instant
Eva Air1:1~1-3 days
Jet Airways InterMiles1:1Instant
JetBlue TrueBlue1:1Instant
Malaysia Airlines Enrich1:1~1-7 days
Qantas1:1Instant to 1 day
Qatar Privilege Club1:1~2 days
Singapore Airlines1:1~1-2 days
Thai Orchid Plus1:1~3-7 days
Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles1:11-2 days
Virgin Atlantic1:1Instant to 2 days
Hotels
Choice Hotels1:2 (Citi Prestige / Premier / Chairman cards)

1:1.5 (No fee Citi ThankYou cards)
Instant
Wyndham Rewards1:1 (Citi Prestige / Premier / Chairman cards)

1:0.8 (No fee Citi ThankYou cards)
TBD
Accor Live Limitless1:0.5TBD

What are some of the ways you can use Citi ThankYou® points for outsized value with a Citi Premier?

We outline all of that on the Citi Premier card page, since that is the card that unlocks these features. Please take a look at the Citi Premier review for everything you need to know about using Citi ThankYou® points.

The Citi Trifecta: Add the Citi Premier and then a Citi Rewards+ Card for a 10% Points Rebate

You can make your Citi Premier and Citi Double Cash rewards combo even more rewarding if you add in a no-annual fee Citi Rewards+ card.

Each calendar year, Citi will rebate back 10% of the first 100,000 ThankYou® Points that you spend, so you can get back up to 10,000 points per year Best of all, it isn’t tied in any way to your spending on the card. Just having it in your profile and linked to the same ThankYou account will ensure that you get the rebate.

Citi Application Rules

Citi won’t approve more than 2 cards in a 60-day period, although we recommend 65 days, just to be safe. This means that if you decide to apply for the Double Cash and combo with a Citi Premier and Citi Rewards+ card, you’ll have to pick one to wait and apply for on Day 66. We’d recommend getting the Rewards+ last, since the benefits are when you redeem.

Bottom Line

The Citi Double Cash is quite simply a card that should be in 99% of wallets. The 2% cash back on everything (1% when you buy and 1% when you pay your bill), with no annual fee, is too good to pass up, even if you are using it in conjunction with other credit cards to maximize your bonus categories – as you should be!

Read more
Unique Card Benefits
yes
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers
yes
No Fees for Authorized Users
yes
0% Intro APR on Purchases
no
Concierge Services
yes
Free Access to Credit Score
yes

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