Travel benefits are one of the best ways to offset the annual fees on credit cards. It can be complicated keeping track of them, what the benefits are, and whether or not we’ve used them. And in the case of the airline travel benefit that comes with the Citi Prestige card, even downright tricky. And I don’t want you to make the mistake I almost made. Let me explain.
One of the benefits of the Citi Prestige card is the $250 airline credit. Citi ThankYou defines what counts for the airline credit like this:
“Airline Fees are defined as purchases made with airlines including Air fares, baggage fees, lounge access and some in-flight purchases.”
It’s a great benefit and relatively easy to put to use if you fly as much as most of us do. With this calendar year coming to a close, I noticed something on my Citi Prestige statement that surprised me. This year so far I’ve only used $163 of my potential airline credit.
It’s great that Citi puts this on my statement so I can easily spot it. Why I hadn’t noticed the $163 before this month I have no idea. Ok, no sweat right? I’ve got 6 more weeks until the end of the year and travel coming up. But not so fast, because here’s the catch.
The Citi Prestige airline credit is based on the date your STATEMENT closes, not the date your purchases are made. Oops. I remembered that this not-so-little piece of information had tripped up another blogger. And here I was with NO idea what that date was for my card. After checking and seeing it was the beginning of December I knew I had to act fast and couldn’t wait until my December travels. Whew, spend and full airline credit done.
Towards the end of the year, make sure to check if your Citi Prestige airline credit is used before your statement closing date. Looking back over the year there will inevitably be plenty of mistakes I’ve made in this miles/points hobby, but I’m glad not using my credit card benefits won’t be one of them!