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I have written quite a bit about Citi’s retention offers this year. They have been fairly generous with offers on a number of cards, but specifically the ones that earn ThankYou points. For example, my wife was given 3X everywhere on ThankYou Preferred cards twice this year.
Yesterday I had to call Citi to discuss my AAdvantage Platinum Visa card. I have had this card open since 2012 and have managed to get the annual fee waived each of the past two years. On the call I discussed both the AAdvantage Visa card and my Citi Prestige which has been opened for only 4 months. Here is what happened.
Related: Full Guide to Citi Retention
AAdvantage Visa Retention
I called the number on the back of the card and thankfully the system recognized everything. When I said I wanted to cancel, I was transferred immediately to a retention specialist. This seems to be a huge improvement over the ways things worked before. Their automated system has definitely improved.
Once the specialist was on the phone, I told her I was thinking about cancelling because of the annual fee. She then placed me on a brief hold while she looked to see what offers were available. Unfortunately there weren’t any credits available, but there was an offer of 3,000 AAdvantage miles. I pushed to see if she could do better and she insisted that was the only offer.
I have a couple of more days to decide before the annual fee is due. This card has been open three years and I would like to keep it going. 3,000 AAdvantage miles do have some worth too, however I have a lot of miles. For me the most important consideration is Citi’s 18 month rule. If I close this card now I believe it will disqualify me from getting an AAdvantage Platinum MC for another 18 months. That is not something that I would like to have happen.
Citi Prestige Retention
When the AAdvantage card was settled, I asked if she would look at my Prestige card. It has only been open for 4 months, but I figured it couldn’t hurt to ask. Unfortunately I forgot that Prestige is handled by a different department and before I knew it she placed me on hold and had transferred me to another agent.
The first agent had told the second agent I was going to cancel which is not what I said. After straightening things out, I explained that I was thinking over which Citi cards to keep in the long term and wanted to know about offers on the Prestige. At first she was confused since the card is new (I never would have done this had I known I would have to talk to a second person), but we talked about the card’s earnings and she offered this:
- Earn 4X bonus points per dollar on air & hotel spend during the next 6 months. (35K cap.)
- Earn 10,000 bonus points after $3K spend in 6 months.
This was a tough decision, but I ultimately decided to take the offer for 10,000 points. I am not sure I will have $2,500 in direct hotel and air spending during the next 6 months (the breakeven) and I like the idea of hitting the $3,000 spend threshold and then moving on. The less long term tracking I have to do the better.
While I generally am not a huge fan of calling in to banks, sometimes it is unavoidable, so I try to make the most of each call. I am still on the fence about whether or not to keep the AAdvantage Visa card. While the 3,000 miles aren’t of huge interest to me, I don’t want to disqualify myself from picking up more miles from a future application. Either way, I am glad to have picked up a nice little bonus on the Prestige, which makes the call ultimately worth it.
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