Category Archives: Credit Cards

Earn 10X on all your payments with Citi Pay

If you’re looking for a way to max out your Citibank Rewards 10X cap in 2017 in the wake of the sad demise of AXS payments, you might be interested in getting Citi Pay.

Citi Pay is an Android app that lets you use your Citibank cards and NFC enabled phone to pay at merchants. It’s conceptually similar to Android Pay (and indeed one of the big complaints about is why Citibank doesn’t just go with Android and save everyone the need for another app).

The great news is that you earn 10X rewards points  (4 mpd) when you use your Citibank Rewards card (Visa or Mastercard) with Citi Pay.

Citi Pay can be used at any merchant with a tap and pay/contactless/ NFC terminal. It can be used overseas as well, so long as you have mobile data.

Surprisingly, the app has rather crappy reviews on the Google Play store.

It seems that most of the criticisms are that the app doesn’t work on a lot of people’s devices.

It worked absolutely fine on my Blackberry Priv running Android 6.0.1 though.

This promotion is available until 6 April 2017 and the T&C can be found here.  It’s a great opportunity to earn 10X at merchants that normally would not qualify for it.

Remember that your Citibank Rewards card allows you to earn 10X points on a maximum of $12,000 spending per year, after which you earn 1X (0.4 mpd).

A potential MS opportunity for new Citibank cardholders?

Citibank is running a promotion for first time Citibank credit cardholders where you can earn S$20 cashback a month for 6 months after the date of approval, with a minimum spend of S$200 a month.

There is some discrepancy between what’s on the website and what’s stated in the T&C. The T&C say that the sign up period is until 30 June 2017, but the website says 31 March 2017.

Either way, if you’re a first-time Citibank credit cardholder this might be of interest to you because something just dawned on me. I think I might have thought up a way to get some free money/points.

Suppose you apply for a Citibank card and buy a USD Amazon gift card with S$200 equivalent value (I recommend the Rewards card, given the 8mpd promotion that just got extended to 31 March 2017).

You then go to liquidate the gift card on a site like Carousell/Gift Card Granny/Raise/Gift Card Bin/Gift Card Spread or one of the many other gift card liquidation sites.

Because you can buy virtually anything on Amazon, Amazon gift cards liquidate on secondary exchanges at values very close to face. This screenshot from Gift Card Granny shows that it’s possible to liquidate Amazon gift cards at about 98%+ of their face value.

Of course, you need to factor in platform fees. Raise, for example, charges 12% commission on the selling price of the gift card (!). You might be better off trying eBay or another platform. Shop around and see which site lets you keep the most value.

Assuming you manage to sell you Amazon gift card at 98% face value, you will now have

  • S$20 cashback
  • 1,600 miles

Basically, you could take anything up to a 10% haircut on value (through forex fees charged by Citibank and selling fees when liquidating the gift card) and still end up on top, thanks to the 1,600 miles you’ll generate by buying the gift card.

Now repeat this each month for 6 months. Remember that buying gift cards on Amazon codes as any other Amazon purchase. Furthermore, I see nothing on Citibank’s T&C that excludes buying gift cards

5 “Qualifying Spend” refers to any retail transactions (including internet purchases) which do not arise from (i) any Equal Payment Plan (EPP) purchases, (ii) refunded/ disputed/ unauthorised/ fraudulent retail purchases, (iii) Quick Cash transactions and monthly instalments, (iv) Paywise/cash advance/quasi-cash transactions/balance transfers/annual card membership fees/interest/goods and services taxes, (v) bill payments made via Citibank Online/CitiMobile, (vi) late payment fees and (vii) any other form of service/ miscellaneous fees.

You can sign up for pretty much any Citibank card but obviously the Rewards card makes the most sense given the promotion with Amazon

“Eligible Card” refers to Citi PremierMiles Visa, Citi PremierMiles American Express Card, Citi Cash Back Visa Signature (previously known as Citi DIVIDEND Visa Signature), Citi Cash Back World MasterCard (previously known as Citi DIVIDEND World MasterCard), Citi Rewards Visa, Citi Rewards World MasterCard, Citi SMRT Platinum Visa Card and Citi M1 Platinum Visa Card only.

This promotion actually started back in August 2016, apparently, but I’ve only thought of this now. I’m sure I can’t have been the only one. I think the potential monkey wrench in the works is liquidating the Amazon gift card, but worse come to worse you can always use it for yourself. You can even use your Amazon gift card to buy an AirBnB gift card, or some Playstation credit or otherwise convert it into a currency that you’ll find useful.

8 Miles per $1 with Citibank Rewards and Amazon (edit: extended to March 2017)

From now till 31 October, Citibank Rewards cardholders can get 8 miles per S$1 spent on Amazon.com. (EDIT: Extended to 31 March 2017. The T&C have been updated to reflect this)

No registration is required for this. The maximum bonus you can earn is 8,000 miles or S$1,000 spend per statement period (which may or may not be calendar month).

I know everyone is holding out for the Black Friday sales on Amazon in November. No worries, you can prepay your Black Friday balance by buying an Amazon Gift Card now.

The cap applies per card, not per account. What this means is that if you have both the Citibank Rewards Visa and MC you can get up to 16,000 miles per statement period (spending $1,000 each on the Visa and MC).

The downside of Citibank is that they make it difficult to pool your points for redemptions. I understand that if you dial in you can ask the CSO to pool your points so that you only pay one conversion fee but I’ve not tried this before.

If you need someone to mule your Amazon purchases back home, try AirFrov.