Credit Cards Deals

Citi offering Prestige cardholders 61,000 miles for S$700

Big spenders can earn 61,000 bonus miles with the Citi Prestige card for a S$700 fee between now and the end of June. Buy miles at 1.15 cents each.

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If you hold the Citi Prestige Mastercard in Singapore you should have received an email over the last few days inviting you to take part in a bonus miles offer, with up to 61,000 additional miles awarded if you have a (not insignificant) S$30,000 to spend between now and the end of the year.

If S$30k sounds a bit rich, there’s an alternative deal for 24,400 miles if you manage to spend S$12,000 in the same period.

There’s only one snag. You’ll have to pay a fee for the bonus miles, so they’re not “free”. That doesn’t mean it can’t work out as a good deal for you, but it certainly won’t be for everyone.

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Who is eligible?

To be eligible you must have received an invitation directly from Citi by SMS or email. The promotion does seem to be widely offered as we have both been targeted, despite only occasionally using our Citi Prestige cards these days.

Assuming you have been invited, you must also enrol for the promotion by sending an SMS to Citi as follows, and receiving the automated acknowledgement.

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If you are currently overseas (unlikely right now) and wish to enrol, you’ll need to send the same SMS to +65 9657 2484 instead.

Eddie enrolled for the offer earlier this week and, like last time, the acknowledgement from Citi was instant.

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The offer

If you successfully enrol and then spend S$30,000 between now and 30th June 2020 on your Citi Prestige card, you’ll be awarded 152,500 Citi ThankYou bonus points (equivalent to 61,000 miles in a range of frequent flyer programs), but you’ll also be charged a “programme fee” of S$700 for the privilege.

That’s equivalent to ‘buying’ miles at 1.15 cents each, certainly well below our upper limit to buy of 1.9 cents per mile.

You’ll continue to earn your regular 1.3 miles per dollar on local transactions and 2 miles per dollar on overseas spend, in addition to the bonus miles.

Citi therefore advertises this as a 100,000 miles offer, combining the two miles totals together to make the deal look even better.

61k Promo

In fact you would earn 39,000 of those miles (97,500 ThankYou Points) anyway for spending S$30,000 on the card locally, without any such promotion running.

The true bonus, which is what you’re paying the fee for in this case, is therefore 61,000 miles (152,500 ThankYou Points).

If S$30,000 sounds a lot to spend in just under three months (and it is!), there is an offer for a reduced spend of S$12,000 over the same period. In this case you’ll earn a bonus of 24,400 miles bonus, for a “programme fee” of S$280.

That’s also equivalent to ‘buying’ miles at the same rate of 1.15 cents each.

24k Promo

Again remember what the true bonus is here (24,400 miles / 61,000 ThankYou Points), over and above your usual miles accrual (15,600 miles / 39,000 ThankYou Points).

Full terms and conditions for these offers are available at the Citi website here.

There’s no need to pick an offer

You can’t actually choose one of the two offers, provided you register successfully you’ll receive one of the following bonus levels based on your spend during the promo period:

Spend Bonus Miles Fee
< S$12,000 None None
S$12,000 – S$29,999 24,400 S$280
S$30,000+ 61,000 S$700
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Excluded transactions

Your S$30,000 (or S$12,000) spend includes eligible retail transactions charged in Singapore dollars, or its equivalent in foreign currency.

Exclusion categories are as follows:

  • Equal Payment Plan (EPP) purchases
  • Refunded / disputed / unauthorised or fraudulent retail purchases
  • Quick Cash / Ready Credit PayLite and other instalment loans
  • PayLite / FlexiBill / cash advance / quasi-cash transactions / balance transfers / annual card membership fees / interest / goods and services taxes
  • Bill payments made using the Eligible Card as a source of funds
  • Late payment fees
  • Any other form of service / miscellaneous fees

Citi PayAll is included, but not CardUp or ipaymy

Last time Citi ran this promotion for the Prestige card, we had to ask Citi whether transactions made using its PayAll service were included in the eligible spend.

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The answer was yes, but this time they have gone one step further and are actively promoting it.

“Plus, be rewarded as you pay your big bills such as rent, condominium fees and taxes through Citi PayAll”. Citi

That means you can potentially channel a large amount of this spend requirement on rental payments, tax payments, education and other bills.

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Citi PayAll includes a number of bill payment categories

Most private landlords in Singapore will also accept rent payments in advance if you wish to overpay, for example you could arrange to pay two or three months’ rent upfront using PayAll if it helps you meet the spend threshold.

Do note that other credit card payment methods like CardUp and ipaymy are not eligible for the minimum spend under this offer. Citi advised us that they regard these as third-party bill payment facilities (see exclusions above).

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Opportunity cost

Depending which credit card you are currently using for general spend in Singapore, there may be an ‘opportunity cost’ associated with taking part in this promotion.

For example we both use the BOC Elite Miles card for general spend, earning 1.5 miles per dollar locally and 3 miles per dollar overseas. Assuming we had S$30,000 of local spend to make between now and the end of June 2020 we would be taking a hit of 0.2 miles per dollar by diverting this spend to the Citi Prestige card (6,000 miles).

This reduces the true bonus for us from 61,000 miles to 55,000 miles. With a cost of S$700 still charged, that makes it $700/55,000 = 1.27 cents per mile in our case.

That becomes a bit worse if we suppose some of the transactions are made in foreign currency. Let’s say S$10,000 of our S$30,000 spend is in currencies other than SGD, earning 2 miles per dollar with Citi Prestige, with the remaining S$20,000 in SGD at 1.3 miles per dollar.

For the foreign currency transactions we’re losing out on 1 mile per dollar compared with using our BOC Elite Miles card (1 x 10,000 = 10,000 miles), plus still falling short of 0.2 miles per dollar on the local spend (0.2 x 20,000 = 4,000 miles).

That reduces our true effective bonus by 14,000 miles (from 61,000 miles to 47,000 miles). With a cost of S$700 still charged, we’re now looking at 1.49 cents per mile ($700/47,000), which is starting to look like a much less attractive deal given the sheer volume of spending required.

Those are just a couple of examples, so do check your own personal cost per mile calculation, based on the rates you would be diverting your spend away from.

Citi ThankYou Points are very flexible

Citi has one of the widest range of frequent flyer programmes for you to transfer your points into, including British Airways, Etihad Guest, Turkish Airlines and Qantas, making these very flexible points to accrue.

Citi ThankYou Points earned on the Citi Prestige card never expire while they remain in your Citi rewards account.

See our full review of the Citi Prestige card for more details, including a full list of transfer partners.

Citi Prestige Mastercard
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APPLY

Sign-up Bonus: 25,000 miles
Annual Fee: S$535.00
Cost per mile: 2.14¢
Min Spend: None
Min Income: S$120,000/yr
Citi ThankYou Points credit to the following programmes:
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