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Citi® Double Cash Card

Citi Double Cash: The Best Cash Back Credit Card for No Fuss Cash Back

Can you believe that in a world where Samuel L Jackson tells you you can earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all of your purchases with the Quicksilver card, there is actually a card that allows you to earn 2% cash back on everyday purchases with no annual fee?  Well friends, it is true. Enter the Double Cash card from Citi. It's 2% earn rate is made up of two parts: earn 1% cash back on purchases when you buy, and earn an additional 1% cash back when you pay. We are advocated of paying your credit card bill, so this seems like a win-win to us. Wrap this up in a card that has no annual fee and you have yourself a solid cash back card for people that don't want to worry about remembering what card to use for specific purchases. 

Counting Your Pennies - How To Earn Cash Back with the Citi Double Cash

1% +1% = 2%, or that's what math class would have you believe. On its surface, the Double Cash seems pretty simple. Earn 1% cash back every time you swipe. Earn an additional 1% cash back when you pay. The industry standard for cash back is 1.5%, so this is a pretty decent deal.

You have to redeem rewards in $25 increments, which is kind of a bummer. It means you need to spend $1,250 before you get to enjoy any rewards. Many other cards, like the Amazon Visa, let you redeem rewards in any amount. A few things things to keep in mind when it comes to redeeming your Double Cash cash back:

  • Rewards expire if you don't earn any new rewards in a 12 month period. Whomp.
  • If you redeem rewards for a statement credit, you don't earn the additional 1% cash back for paying your bill. Boo Citi. 
  • You can redeem cash back for a paper check, gift card, or statement credit. We'd go the check/ACH route if you can, even if it is just to pay your Citi Double Cash bill. Even if it is a small amount, you'll earn your 1% cash back for paying your bill this way. Those are your rewards, don't let Citi keep them form you!

Citi Double Cash Benefits and Bonuses 

The buck doesn't stop at your 2% cash back. The Citi Double Cash has a few additional perks up its sleeve. 

  • If you're in need of a balance transfer, the Citi Double Cash offers 0% intro APR for balance transfers for 18 months. Keep in mind that the fee for transferring a balance is 3%, which works out to be $30 for every $1,000 transferred. The regular APR will be 15.74% - 25.74% variable after that.
  • If you're looking for a new customer bonus, look elsewhere. Citi says no to that. 
  • Citi Price Rewind allows you to register a purchase with Citi, and earn a refund if the item goes on sale within 60 days of purchase. This perk requires some registration, but you can save up-to $200 per item purchased, up-to $1,000 per year.

Who is the Citi Double Cash Best for?

Double Cash is best for someone with good to excellent credit, which generally means a score of at least 680, and a credit report that is free of late payments.The Double Cash is really best for you if you're not interested in tracking rotating categories and love cash back. We recommend this card for users that are spending less than $400 a month on their credit card.

The other use case for the Double Cash is users looking to transfer a balance. the 18 month 0% interest rate is generous, and the 3% balance transfer fee isn't the worst in the industry. 3-5% is common. To make use of the 0% rate, you must transfer your balance within the first 4 months of account opening. This is also a bit more generous than most competitors - the industry standard here is 3 months. The nice thing about using the Double Cash for a balance transfer is that it is a good credit card to keep around long term, unlike some other balance transfer products like the Chase Slate. Slate offers a good balance transfer option, but doesn't offer any cash back rewards.

Who Should Not Apply for the Double Cash

If you're spending more than $425 a month on your credit card and want to optimize your cash back with a single card, we're going to recommend the Uber Visa. On the flip side, if you have credit that is in the average range we're going to push you over to Samuel L Jackson's pick, the Quicksilver One.

We also don't recommend this card for international travelers. The Double Cash has a 3% fee for international purchases. This is another area where the Uber cards takes the prize, with its $0 foreign transaction fee. 


Other Considerations: The Mess that is Citi's Online Interface

As a Citi customer, we can honestly say that the mobile app is spectacularly horrendous on Android devices (don't judge). We get asked to add our fingerprints on every login, even after setting fingerprinting up. There are also multiple consumer complaints about the mobile experience on ConsumerAffairs. We don't think mobile displays should sway your decision, but if you rely heavily on mobile banking, then you may want to take this into consideration. The potential headaches may not be worth an additional .5% cash back in the long run. 

Common Cents:

The Citi Double Cash is a good card if you're a casual spender looking to optimize cash back, or if you are in need of a balance transfer offer.  For heavy spenders, you can likely do better with another no annual fee credit card that earns cash back. The Double Cash is a good credit card in the sense that it offers simplicity, which is what most people will be looking for in a credit card. With that being said, outside of the 2% cash back it's not the most exciting product out there. 

Citi Double Cash Card Highlights

  • $0 Annual Fee
  • Earn 2% cash back on purchases: 1% when you buy plus 1% as you pay
  • Low Introductory APRs for 18 months on balance transfers
  • No bonus for new customers. :( 
  • 3% foreign transaction fee

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