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Citi Custom Cash® Card Review
Our City Custom Cash Card review is profiles a cash-back and rewards credit card for customers with good to exceptional credit that offers solid perks in a no-hassle format. The card automatically determines your highest spending category each month instead of having you choose which category might be the best or rotating your purchase strategies each month or quarter.
- The Citi Custom Cash Card offers up to 5% rewards by automatically determining your highest spend category and awarding points based on spending in that category
- Customers can’t choose their own rewards categories beforehand
- 1% rewards apply to all other qualified purchases
- No annual fee applies to the Citi Custom Cash credit card. However, foreign transaction fees of 3% apply.
- The card is best for applicants with good to exceptional credit scores of over 670.
Your best cash-back option chosen for you
No annual fee
Long, 15-month 0% interest intro APR
Broad 1% cash-back categories
Cash-back or several other reward redemption options
3% foreign transaction fees
Can’t choose your highest spending category
5% cash-back limited to $25 per month
Citi Custom Cash® Card Review: Features and Benefits
The Citi Custom Cash credit card works best for consumers looking for significant cash-back rewards that don’t require a spending strategy or an annual fee. The card provides up to $25 monthly or $300 per year in 5% rewards plus unlimited rewards earnings at 1% on all other qualified purchases. 5% rewards are earned on the first $500 in spending in your automatically calculated highest spending category each month.
- APR 19.24% – 29.24%
- 0% APR for 15 months
- No annual fee
- 5% cash-back on the highest monthly spending category
- 5% cash-back applies to the first $500 spent in the top category
- 1% cash-back rewards on all other qualified purchases
- Balance transfer fees of $5 or 5% of each transfer
- $200 cash-back after $1,500 spending in the first six months
- 3% foreign transaction fee
- $10 or 5% cash advance fee
- Cash advance interest rate equals 29.99%
- Late payment fees up to $41
- Highest spend category automatically determined
- Best for Good to Exceptional credit score above 670
- Points rewards as ThankYou® Points at one cent per point
- Robust mobile app
Citi Custom Cash® Card Review: Editorial Rating
Trusted Company Reviews Rating Score for Citi Custom Cash® Card: 8.7
The Citi Custom Cash card lands in our best credit cards for gas and groceries review for the year. The card is especially good for customers who spend at least $500 on either gas, groceries, or another common spending category each month but not much more than that in any one category.
The rewards for purchases in the highest spending category drop from 5% to 1% after the $500 cap. However, rewards still accrue at a 1% return for all other qualified purchases and those made over the cap.
|5% on highest spend category / 1% on all other qualified purchases
|$200 after $1,500 spending in first six months
|0% APR for the first 15 months
|Cash back, gift cards, Amazon.com or PayPal credits, statement credit, check
|19.24% – 29.24%
|Credit Score Requirements
About Citi Custom Cash® Card Rewards
Rewards for the Citi Custom Cash card are based on calculating your highest spending category. You can earn 5% up to $25 monthly in that category. You can also earn 1% rewards in all other eligible spending categories and purchases over the $25 monthly cap in your top category. Citi places no limit on the number of rewards points customers can earn.
The Citi Custom Cash card offers an introductory APR of 0% for the first 15 months and a $200 cash-back bonus after spending at least $1,500 total in the first six months of card ownership. Citi charges interest rates of between 19.24% and 29.24% for purchases and 29.99% on cash advances. Cash advance, balance transfer, and foreign transaction fees apply.
Citi Custom Cash® Card Eligible Categories
Citi allows rewards earnings of 1% on eligible purchases in the following categories over and above the 5% earnings to a monthly cap in customers’ highest spending category.
- Gas stations
- Grocery stores
- Travel and Transit
- Streaming services
- Home improvement stores
- Health and fitness clubs
- Live entertainment (with exceptions)
How to Use Citi Custom Cash® Card
Using the Citi Custom Cash card to gain the most potential rewards is straightforward. Simply use the card at the places you normally spend money, including gas stations, grocery stores, and places in any of several other categories.
Pay attention to where you spend the most money each month to maximize your earnings potential. The company automatically calculates and rewards your monthly highest spending category at 5% up to $25 worth of ThankYou Points or $500 worth of purchases.
After accruing points, redeem them through Citi at a rate of $1 per 100 ThankYou Points or one cent per point. In return for points, customers can receive a statement credit, cash back in check form or direct deposit, gift cards, Amazon or PayPal credits, or travel rewards.
Upon opening a Citi Custom Cash Card account, customers have four months to complete any balance transfers to take advantage of Citi’s 0% introductory offer. Customers also have the first six months to earn the 20,000 ThankYou Points worth $200 for spending at least $1,500 during the intro period. Keep in mind that a balance transfer fee of the greater of $5 or 5% of each transaction applies.
Citi Custom Cash® Card Credit Score Requirements
While there are some reports of approvals for the Citi Custom Cash card for customers with credit scores as low as 640, the company states that most approvals only happen for those with good to exceptional credit. According to Experian, a good credit score equals a Vantage 3.0 score of 670 or above.
Expert Citi Custom Cash® Card Review
Our favorite aspect of the Citi Custom Cash card is its ease of use for earning rewards. Unlike some other cards that have you choose your highest earnings category or limit the highest rewards to monthly or quarterly category options, the Custom Cash card automatically determines the highest reward the customer is eligible for each month.
The unique approach means consumers earn their highest potential reward points each month without calculating the best option or making guesses for themselves to receive the best available benefits.
Citi Custom Cash® Card Reviews From Consumers
Consumers generally like the Citi Custom Cash card in reviews, averaging in the low 4 out of 5-star range, with some reports as low as 3.1 stars, while others reach 4.7 stars. Many reviews cite the card’s ease of use and generous 5% rewards. However, some negative reviews mention the company’s poor customer service when resolving misunderstandings, and some customers received a lower credit limit than expected when getting approved for the card.
Why Citi Custom Cash® Card Stands Out
The Citi Custom Cash card stands out from the crowd by automatically maximizing consumers’ rewards earnings potential each month. Although Citi caps the 5% earnings potential to a single category each month, customers can earn unlimited rewards at 1% on nearly any other purchases they make with the card. The long, 15-month, 0% introductory period is also a nice perk, along with the potential for $200 cash-back after $1,500 spending in the first six months.
Is the Citi Custom Cash® Card Worth It?
The Citi Custom Cash card may be worth it if you spend at least $500 monthly in a single spending category, such as gas, groceries, restaurants, fitness centers, or other common options. However, Citi caps the best reward returns to the first $500 of spending in a single category each month. Consumers who spend significantly more than $500 monthly on gas, groceries, or another category may be better off with another card option without a monthly cap.
Citi Custom Cash® Card Vs. Double Cash
The Citi Custom Cash card versus the Citi Double Cash® Card is a close call, depending on how you use your credit cards. For those looking to maximize rewards earnings on a moderate amount of spending primarily in a single category each month, the Custom Cash card is easy enough to use and provides the best benefits.
However, if you use your card more as a general spending tool, the Citi Double Cash card may be even simpler to use while still earning solid rewards. Also, if much of your spending is for travel that includes hotels and car rentals, the Double Cash card is likely your best bet of the two.
Both cards offer a potential $200 cash-back reward for spending at least $1,500 in any category in the first six months, and both offer a long 0% APR offer. Citi Custom Cash offers 15 months compared to the Double Cash Card’s 18. Interest rates among the two card offerings are similar at between 19.24% and 29.24%.
|Citi Custom Cash® Card
|Citi Double Cash Card
|1% everyday spending to 5% on top spending category
|2% everyday spending to 5% on hotels and car rentals
|$200 cash-back / 0% APR for 15 months
|$200 cash-back / 0% APR for 18 months
|19.24% – 29.24%
|19.24% – 29.24%
Frequently Asked Questions
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Image source: citi.com