Striking out on Citi Prestige and AMEX Platinum Retention Offers

Good morning everyone, I hope your weekend is off to a great start.  By the time you read this post, I should be in Washington, D.C. for the Boarding Area Conference (BACON for short).  I am a big fan of retention offers and have written about them several times in the past (1, 2, 3, etc).  My most recent retention offer attempts were met with mostly rejection, but I have some data points worth sharing.

I haven’t used my Citi Prestige Credit Card much over the last few months and only value the ability to book AA and AA codeshare flights with Citi Thank You Points at 1.6 CPP.  I decided to call Citi and see if there were any retention offers available.  My opening line was, “I am considering applying for the Chase Sapphire Reserve and can’t afford to pay $400 annual fees for both cards.  Is there any offer on my Citi Prestige to keep me as a customer?”  I was immediately transferred to the retention department and repeated my opening line.  The retention specialist was very nice and helpful, but she didn’t have any retention offers available.  She said that retention offers can only be accepted once per cardmember year and I already accepted an offer on my Citi Prestige in May.  While on the phone, I asked if she could check for retention offers on my other Citi credit cards.  We went through my Citi Forward, Citi Premier, Citi Double Cash, and Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve credit cards and struck out every time (I was only eligible for 0% balance transfer and 0% APR offers which don’t interest me at all).  Last but not least, I asked if there were any offers on my new(ish) Citi AT&T Access More Credit Card.  Jackpot!  There was an offer for 5,000 bonus Citi Thank You Points after spending $1,000 over the next 3 months.  I gladly accepted the offer and thanked the rep for all her help.


Up next, I called American Express regarding my American Express Platinum Charge Card.  I repeated my opening line and was immediately transferred to the retention department again.  This retention specialist was not as nice and he did not have any offers for me either.  I asked him to check a few other American Express cards (both which I barely use except for the occasional AMEX Offer), but he did not have any offers either.  I thanked him for his time and hung up.

Here is my general philosophy on retention offers.  Before I even call for a retention offer, I have already decided if…

  1. I plan to keep the credit card regardless of the offer and am only fishing for a bonus
  2. I plan to close the credit card unless I get a really good retention offer (rare)

I have heard that it is good to call for retention offers quarterly, at the start of the year, and right when your annual fee posts.  It only takes a few minutes of your time to call and the worst case scenario is that they have no offers available.  There is a no risk in calling and if you do not call, you have a 0% chance of getting a retention offer.  I have a few more annual fees that are posting soon (Chase Hyatt, Chase IHG, and US Bank Club Carlson), so I will do a similar post when I call for those retention offers.

If you have any questions about retention offers, please leave a comment below.  Have a great weekend everyone!

14 thoughts on “Striking out on Citi Prestige and AMEX Platinum Retention Offers

  1. mark o

    So you are going to keep both without using them much? What is your thinking on keeping the Prestige…I just don’t see the value in it anymore.

    1. Grant

      Hi Mark, my annual fee was billed in May, so I have until May 2017 to cancel before getting billed again. I am 99% sure I will cancel the card unless I get a great retention offer. I currently have a Citi Premier, so I will still be able to use Citi TYPs if I close my Citi Prestige.

      As for AMEX Platinum, I really should cancel my AMEX Plat Personal and get the AMEX Plat Ameriprise (no annual fee the first year) or AMEX Plat Business (for the sign up bonus). I go to the SFO Centurion Lounge a few times a month, so I can definitely get my money’s worth on free food and drinks.

      1. mark o

        Gotcha…yeah I canceled both of mine and signed up for the ameriprise and then will get it for my wife when my year is up and be a AU on hers….3 years, $1200 in SW gift cards, 100k in points for $450 – not too shabby in my book haha

  2. Dennis Singh

    Amex doesn’t care about existing customers anymore. I spend over 200k annually on business expenses, NO MS no gift cards. Didn’t have a single rentention offer. I said I want to close and they said go ahead. Asked if they’d miss my 200k and said new customers are always coming around.

  3. shaun

    I feel like all the banks are really tightening their belts as far as retention offers. I have a citi AA platinum card that has a $95 annual fee. I’ve had it waived every year for the last 10. This year they said i have to spend $1k to get it waived. Not a big deal, but this has been the trend I’ve noticed across pretty much all cards.

  4. Emily

    For those of us that have the card, it would be helpful to know the details of the Prestige offer you accepted in May. Thanks.

  5. Dave

    so you can get different AMEX Plat personal card product and also on business cards, and each one of them is a separate card with bonus? thans!

  6. james

    I opened a citigold account and downgraded, but it still shaved $100 off my annual fee (they replaced Citigold with Priority unless you have bookoo bucks, so this wont work anymore). In addition to your two offers, I also ended up taking a third offer of 5 ty pts/$ over 6 months for air, hotel and car up to 35,000 points max. Was going to keep the card anyway, and it’s better than nothing.


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