I was thinking more about the offer I got yesterday to upgrade my Citi Preferred card to a Premier with no fee for the first year, and I thought of a good reason why it might make sense for me to do it. Right now, my wife has no relationship with Citi, and so she’s eligible for both the Premier card with the 50k bonus and the Prestige card with 75k. Either one of these cards will generate a nice chunk of transferrable points for her, but getting them over to me could be an issue, since Citi point transfers work differently than Amex and Chase. Unlike those guys, who let you transfer your points to an authorized user’s frequent flyer account (although with Chase, they have to live at the same address that you do), Citi just has you transfer the points straight to the transferee’s Citi account.
This is both good and bad – and it’s definitely bad in my case, since I don’t have a premium Citi card right now. That means that I couldn’t transfer any of the points I received to my frequent flyer accounts unless I got a new card. Since the public offer on the Premier includes a waived annual fee, I could have done this for free anyway, but with the special upgrade offer, I can avoid a hard inquiry on my credit report, as well as the inevitable process of moving credit around with Citi, since I already have a bunch of cards. (Not that I’ll ever be back under 5/24, but this would help in that department too.)
So, now I’m leaning toward it, since a big chunk of Citi points could help take the pressure off my Chase and/or Amex balances the next time I want to redeem through FlyingBlue or Singapore. The only question is which card for my wife to get – Premier or Prestige? I’m not huge on the Prestige’s benefits, since we never stay in hotels for four nights in a row. If you do this routinely, the Prestige is the most rewarding card ever invented; otherwise, especially after its “enhancements” this month, it mostly duplicates the Sapphire Reserve’s benefits (with some differences regarding travel insurance and the Mastercard World Elite program that I’ll let you guys point out in the comments). The first year cost basically averages out, since Premier is free and the Prestige will net $500 in airline fee credits against a $450 annual fee. (I’m still hesitant to cough up $450 right away, though.)
I still have to think about this one, to be honest. The $7500 min spend on the Prestige is another knock against it, since that will require me to use it for all spending for a whole three months, thus increasing the opportunity cost by pulling the Freedom off of restaurants and the Everyday Preferred off of grocery stores.
Anyway, I’m getting kind of far afield here, since the basic point of this post is to note the utility of a fee-free Premier card if you’re doing two-player mode with Citi. Did anyone else get this offer, by the way? I haven’t seen it mentioned anywhere, although that comes with the standard disclaimer that I may just be lazy.