Citi Strata Premier℠ Card Review 2024 (2024)

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Citi Strata Premier℠ Card Review 2024 (1)

Citi Strata Premier℠ Card

Annual Fee

$95

Regular APR

21.24%- 29.24% Variable

Intro Bonus

Earn 70,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months of account opening, redeemable for $700 in gift cards or travel rewards at thankyou.com.

Credit Score

Credit ranges are derived from FICO® Score 8, which is one of many different types of credit scores. If you apply for a credit card, the lender may use a different credit score when considering your application for credit.

Good – Very Good

Expert take: The Citi Strata Premier℠ Card is Citi’s answer to the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. Not only does the card offer 3X points on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, EV charging, air travel and hotels, but points transfer to airline and hotel partners affiliated with the Citi ThankYou program. A $100 annual hotel savings benefit adds more value to the card, along with generous travel protections.

Citi Strata Premier℠ Card Review 2024 (2)

Pros

  • Earn 3X points in popular spending categories
  • Points transfer to Citi airline and hotel partners
  • Other flexible redemption options available
  • Comprehensive travel protections
  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit
Citi Strata Premier℠ Card Review 2024 (3)

Cons

  • Offers just 1X points on non-bonus purchases
  • Limited travel benefits
  • High APR can apply
  • $95 annual fee applies

Vault’s Viewpoint on the Citi Strata Premier Card

The Citi Strata Premier℠ Card is similar to the Chase Sapphire Preferred in several ways. Both travel rewards cards charge a $95 annual fee, feature similar rewards categories and offer the option to transfer points to airlines and hotels, redeem for travel through a portal, gift cards, merchandise and other flexible options.

That said, points earned with the Citi Strata Premier Card are slightly less valuable than Chase points. Citi ThankYou transfer partners aren’t quite as popular, and travel booked through the Citi portal gets a maximum redemption value of 1 cent per point.

The Citi Strata Premier also comes with fairly limited travel benefits. For example, cardholders get a $100 annual hotel credit benefit that applies to single hotel stays of $500 or more. However, the booking has to be made through CitiTravel.com, and the minimum spending requirement excludes taxes and fees. The Citi Strata Premier is now the only Citi card that offers comprehensive travel insurance, including trip delay protection, trip cancellation and interruption protection, lost or damaged luggage insurance, and MasterRental coverage.

Citi Strata Premier Card Highlights

Annual fee: $95

Sign-up bonus: Earn 70,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 in the first three months of account opening, redeemable for $700 in gift cards or travel rewards at thankyou.com

Earning Rewards With the Citi Strata Premier Card

The Citi Strata Premier stands out due to its lucrative earning rate that applies to a range of popular spending categories. Cardholders get the chance to earn:

  • 10X points on hotels and car rentals booked through ThankYou.com (through June 30, 2024)
  • 3X points on restaurant, supermarket, gas station, EV charging, air travel and hotel purchases
  • 1X points on other purchases

Redeeming Rewards

Citi ThankYou points can be redeemed for options like gift cards, merchandise and a statement credit. You can also redeem your Citi Strata Premier Card rewards for purchases at stores like Best Buy and Amazon and use points directly to book travel through CitiTravel.com.

Points earned with this card also transfer to 14 airline partners, four hotel partners and one retail partner at the following transfer ratios:

Transfer PartnerRatio (Citi Points:Points or Miles)
Aeromexico Rewards1,000:1,000
Accor Live Limitless1,000:500
Avianca LifeMiles1,000:1,000
Cathay Pacific1,000:1,000
Choice Privileges1,000:1,500
Emirates Skywards1,000:1,000
Etihad Guest1,000:1,000
EVA Air1,000:1,000
Flying Blue (Air France)1,000:1,000
JetBlue TrueBlue1,000:1,000
Leaders Club1,000:200
Qantas Frequent Flyer1,000:1,000
Qatar Airways Privilege Club1,000:1,000
Shop Your Way1:10
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer1,000:1,000
Thai Royal Orchid Plus1,000:1,000
Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles1,000:1,000
Wyndham Rewards1,000:1,000
Virgin Atlantic1,000:1,000

Rates and Fees

This Citi Strata Premier Card has a $95 annual fee, but most other fees are easy to avoid. Here’s a rundown of the rates and fees you may encounter with the Citi Strata Premier:

  • Annual fee: $95
  • Intro APR: None
  • Variable APR: 21.24% to 29.24%
  • Balance transfer fee: 5% (minimum $5)
  • Foreign transaction fee: None
  • Late payment fee: Up to $41
  • Penalty APR: Up to 29.99% variable
  • Cash advance fee: 5% (minimum $10)
  • Cash advance APR: 29.99% variable

Citi Strata Premier Benefits

The Citi Strata Premier comes with three notable benefits that can make it slightly more valuable for cardholders:

  • Annual $100 hotel benefit: This hotel benefit applies to single hotel bookings of $500 or more (excluding taxes and fees) made through CitiTravel.com.
  • Travel insurances: These include trip delay protection, trip cancellation and interruption protection, lost or damaged luggage insurance and MasterRental coverage.
  • Citi Entertainment: Cardholders also get Citi Entertainment access, which can help them buy tickets to presale events, sporting events, concerts and more.

Who Is the Citi Strata Premier Card Best For?

Because the Citi Strata Premier Card offers so many flexible redemption options and its 3X rewards categories are so versatile, the card can work for almost anyone. For example, someone who rarely travels can still use this card to earn 3X points at restaurants, gas stations, EV charging stations and supermarkets (on top of air travel and hotels), then redeem rewards for gift cards, merchandise and other flexible options.

That being said, individuals who can take advantage of Citi’s airline and hotel partners will do best with this card. That’s because transferring points to a partner for a premium travel redemption paves the way to getting a higher point value overall. Because this card doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees, it’s also a great card to use when traveling and making purchases overseas.

Who Should Consider an Alternative to the Citi Strata Premier Card?

There are several reasons to consider an alternative to the Citi Strata Premier Card, and they become very apparent when you start comparing this card to other similar travel credit cards. First off, the Citi Strata Premier Card doesn’t come with purchase protections like some competing cards do. Second, its transfer partners aren’t as popular as some competing programs offer, and the most you can get out of using points for travel through Citi’s portal is 1 cent per point in value.

Lastly, the Citi Strata Premier Card has a $95 and requires good to excellent credit. If you can’t qualify for the card or prefer to have no annual fee, you should consider other options.

How Does the Citi Strata Premier Card Stack Up to Its Competitors?

Before you sign up for the Citi Strata Premier Card, you’ll want to compare it to other rewards cards with similar rewards rates and fees. Here are a few that should be on your radar.

Citi Strata Premier Card vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred also charges a $95 annual fee and earns 5X points on travel booked through Chase Travel℠; 5X points on Lyft rides (through March 31, 2025); 3X points on dining, online groceries (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs) and select streaming services; 2X points on other travel purchases; and 1X points on all other spending.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred also comes with a $50 annual hotel benefit that applies to bookings made through Chase Travel. It earns Chase Ultimate Rewards points that can be used for gift cards, merchandise, travel through the Chase Travel portal or transfers to partners like British Airways, Southwest Rapid Rewards, Marriott Bonvoy and World of Hyatt.Cardholders also get 25% more value when they use points to book travel through Chase.

Another standout benefit of the Sapphire Preferred is its included travel benefits. Cardholders get primary auto rental coverage, trip cancellation and interruption insurance, baggage delay coverage, trip delay reimbursem*nt and several other perks automatically.

Citi Strata Premier Card vs. Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is another flexible travel credit card to consider that has a $95 annual fee. However, this card earns miles that can be redeemed for transfers to a separate set of Capital One airline and hotel partners or for travel through Capital One Travel, gift cards, merchandise and more.

Cardholders earn 5X miles on hotels and car rentals booked through Capital One and 2X miles on all other purchases. Major perks include an application fee credit toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck membership every four years, two complimentary Capital One airport lounge visits per year and Hertz Five Star status.

This card earns miles that can be redeemed for transfers to Capital One airline and hotel partners or for travel through Capital One Travel, gift cards, merchandise and more. Capital One has 14 transfer partners in common with Citi, including:

  • AeroMexico Club Premier
  • Avianca Lifemiles
  • Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
  • Choice Privileges
  • Emirates Skywards
  • Etihad Guest
  • Eva Air
  • Flying Blue
  • Qantas Frequent Flyer
  • Singapore KrisFlyer
  • Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles
  • Virgin Atlantic
  • Wyndham Rewards

Citi Strata Premier Card vs. American Express® Gold Card

The American Express® Gold Card charges a $250 annual fee (see rates and fees) and earns points that fall within the flexible American Express Membership Rewards program. This means points can be transferred to Amex airline or hotel partners, used to book travel through AmexTravel.com or redeemed for flexible options like gift cards or merchandise.

Cardholders who choose the American Express Gold Card earn 4X points on up to $25,000 spent at U.S. supermarkets per year (then 1X points), 4X points at restaurants worldwide (plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.), 3X points on flights booked with airlines or AmexTravel.com and 1X points on other purchases. The card also comes with up to $120 in annual dining credits for use at participating partners and up to $120 in Uber Cash per year for use in the U.S., both doled out in monthly increments of $10. For the Uber benefit, you’ll have to add your card as method of payment on your Uber account in the latest downloaded version of the Uber App.

Citi Strata Premier Card vs. Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card

The Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card is a good alternative if you want bonus categories similar to those of the Citi Strata Premier without an annual fee. The Autograph Card earns 3X points on broader spending categories, including restaurants (dining, takeout and delivery), travel, gas and EV charging stations, transit (public, rideshares, parking, tolls, etc.), popular streaming services and phone plans. The card also earns 1X points on all other spending.

Wells Fargo Autograph cardholders receive useful perks like annual cellphone protection (subject to a $25 deductible), secondary rental car insurance and no foreign transaction fees.

You can redeem points for travel at 1 cent each or transfer them to six transfer partners, some of which are also part of the Citi ThankYou program:

  • Aer Lingus AerClub
  • Air France-KLM Flying Blue
  • Avianca LifeMiles
  • British Airways Executive Club
  • Choice Privileges
  • Iberia Plus

Is the Citi Strata Premier Card Worth It?

The Citi Strata Premier Card is definitely worth it for most people, even those who don’t travel much. The card’s generous rewards rates can benefit almost anyone, especially since most people spend money on groceries, gas and restaurants throughout the year.

Then again, it still makes sense to compare the Citi Strata Premier to other flexible rewards cards so you can choose a credit card that best fits your needs.

Valuations by Vault: Our Thoughts on the Citi Strata Premier Card’s Value

Points earned with the Citi Strata Premier Card are worth an average of 1.28 cents each based on Newsweek’s valuations. This is determined using the average value of various redemption options, including travel through Citi’s portal, and it’s somewhat boosted by the better redemptions cardholders can get when they transfer points to Citi airline and hotel partners.

Compare this to the average value of Chase Sapphire Preferred points (1.38 cents each by our valuation), and you can see where the Citi Strata Premier may fall short. Then again, Newsweek’s valuations show that Capital One miles are worth an average of 1.21 cents each, and American Membership Rewards points are worth an average of 1.19 cents each.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the Citi Strata Premier Card Charge Foreign Transaction Fees?

The Citi Strata Premier doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees when you use it for purchases abroad. This makes it an excellent credit card for international travel.

Do Citi ThankYou Points Expire?

Points earned with the Citi Strata Premier Card do not expire as long as your account is open and in good standing. There is no limit to the number of points you can earn with the card.

Can You Combine ThankYou Points With Another Person?

Citi lets you transfer up to 100,000 Citi ThankYou points to another person each year, and each program member can receive up to 100,000 points per year from another member. However, combined or transferred points expire within 90 days after you move them, so you should have a redemption in mind before taking this step.

Citi Strata Premier℠ Card Review 2024 (2024)
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