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Citi Preferred: Big Bonuses With No Fee

You could earn a $100 or $250 gift card after three months of spendingIf you’re looking for a credit card that gives you generous spending rewards points, a hefty introductory bonus and an anniversary bonus — all for no annual fee — the Citi ThankYou Preferred Card might be the right card for you.

Citi has three similar-sounding credit cards that reward you with points in its ThankYou program.

The Preferred card is the no-annual-fee version, but in some ways it’s the best of the three, depending on what you want to earn and how much you’re willing to spend on an annual fee — if anything.

In addition to earning one point per dollar on all your spending, you earn five points on purchases at supermarkets, drugstores and gas stations for the first 12 months, then one point per dollar after that.

The best part about the card is the generous introductory bonus. I’ve seen two different versions on the web.

In one variation, you get 10,000 bonus points after you make $500 in purchases within the first three months.

That’s good for a $100 gift card.

In another offer, you get 25,000 bonus points — enough for $250 in gift cards — if you make $2,000 in purchases within the first three months.

You can also earn an additional 100 bonus points by signing up for Account Online, and another 100 points by signing up for paperless statements.

In addition, you get an anniversary bonus based on the length of your card membership, ranging from an additional 1% after one year to a maximum 3% after the second year.

ThankYou points are redeemable for cash, gift cards, merchandise and travel. There’s no limit on the points you can earn, and your points won’t expire as long as you make at least one purchase on your card every year.

APRs range from 12.99% to 22.99% variable, depending on your credit history.

Citi has two other cards in its ThankYou family of credit cards, but both carry high annual fees and are aimed at frequent travelers.

The Premier card costs $125, waived the first year. That card gives you a 20% points bonus on purchases at supermarkets, drug stores and gas stations. You also earn a point per mile on airline flights charged to the card and other travel perks.

The Prestige card, which is aimed at travelers who want first-class perks, costs $500 from day one.

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