Citi Double Cash Card review: A Simple Way to Earn Big Rewards

The Citi Double Cash Card is one of the most popular cash-back credit cards around. It gets a lot of positive reviews, but does it really live up to all the hype? Let’s break it down and see if this card could be a good choice for you.

Cash Back – The Double Delight

Catch-all card

Citi Double Cash

No Annual Fee

Intro Offer

  • $200 cashback (equivalent to 20,000 ThankYou® Points) – after spending $1,500 in the first 6 months after account opening.
  • 0% APR for the first 18 months on balance transfers. (variable APR and balance transfer fees apply after).

Earning Category

  • 2% Simple, Unlimited Cashback: Earn 1% back on every purchase, then another 1% back as you pay them off. No caps, no categories to track – just straightforward rewards.

Key Features

  • Zero Annual Fee: Enjoy great rewards without extra costs eating into your cashback.
  • Pairs Perfectly with Other Citi Cards: Have a travel-focused Citi card like the Premier®? Convert your Double Cash earnings into ThankYou® Points for maximum value when booking those dream trips.
  • Stress-Free Simplicity: No need to track categories or sign up for rotating bonuses. This card is perfect for folks who want great rewards without the hassle.

The “Double” in Double Cash:

The Citi Double Cash Card is one of the most popular cash-back credit cards around. It gets a lot of positive reviews for its simple and unlimited 2% cash-back reward structure.

The Citi Double Cash Card earns rewards in the form of ThankYou Points. These points are redeemable for cash back, but with a twist: you earn 1 ThankYou Point for every dollar spent on purchases, and then another 1 ThankYou Point for every dollar you pay towards your balance. That translates to earning 2% cash back on all your spending (1 point per dollar spent + 1 point per dollar paid on the balance).

Before diving in, check this article to understand Citi Thank you point:

Real-World Example:

Let’s say you spend $1000 on your Citi Double Cash card in a month. Here’s how your ThankYou Points add up, which are ultimately redeemable for cash back:

ActionCash Back EarnedThankYou Points Earned
You make $1,000 in purchases$10 (1%)1,000
You pay your bill$10 (1%)1,000

This translates to $20 in cash back since each ThankYou Point is worth 1 cent when redeemed for cash back.

Why It’s Great?

The beauty of this card is you don’t have to think about it. You earn cash back (in the form of ThankYou Points) on your groceries, your gas, online shopping – everything! No complicated categories to activate, no rotating bonuses to chase, just straightforward rewards.

Key feature-Beyond the Cash Back

While the double cash-back feature is the star of the show, the Citi Double Cash Card offers other valuable benefits too. Let’s take a look at some key features:

Annual Fee:

Great news! The Citi Double Cash Card doesn’t have an annual fee. This means you can enjoy those cash-back rewards without any extra cost.

Welcome Bonus:

the double cash-back welcome bonus

The Citi Double Cash Card sometimes has a sign-up bonus, but typically it’s not a huge one compared to some other cards. The focus is on long-term earning potential, not a quick cash-back boost right at the start.

Sometimes, it has an amazing welcome offer. For instance, it came with a $200 (20,000 Thank you points) welcome offer when I applied for the card. Check the offer before applying.

Intro APR and Balance Transfers:

This card offers an intro APR on balance transfers for a set period. This can be useful if you have high-interest debt on another card. You can transfer the balance and pay that debt down with lower interest for a while. Here’s the breakdown of fees:

  • Intro Balance Transfer Fee: 3% of each transfer ($5 minimum) for transfers within the first 4 months.
  • Regular Balance Transfer Fee: After the introductory period, the balance transfer fee rises to 5% of each transfer ($5 minimum).

Important Note: Balance transfers do not earn cash back, and you’ll want to ensure the savings from the lower intro APR outweigh the transfer fee. Also, this intro offer doesn’t cover the purchase.

Important Things to Keep in Mind

The Citi Double Cash Card is fantastic, but like any credit card, there are some situations where it might not be the ideal choice. Let’s cover a few important points to help you maximize this card’s potential:

Balance Transfers:

The Citi Double Cash can be useful for transferring high-interest debt thanks to its intro APR offer. However, remember that balance transfers come with fees and don’t earn cash back as I mentioned in the previous section. Before transferring a balance, crunch the numbers to ensure the savings from the lower interest rate outweigh the fee.

Travel Abroad:

The Citi Double Cash Card isn’t the best travel companion due to its foreign transaction fees. If you travel internationally frequently, consider a different card that waives those fees to save you money.

Expanding Your Rewards:

While the focus is on simple cash back, the Citi Double Cash Card becomes part of a powerful rewards system when combined with other Citi ThankYou Rewards cards. This unlocks the option to transfer your points to airline and hotel partners for even more ways to redeem your rewards.

Comparing Other All-Catch Cards

The Citi Double Cash Card is fantastic for its simple cash-back structure, but it’s not the only ‘catch-all’ rewards card out there. Two popular alternatives worth considering are the Amex Blue Business Plus and the Capital One Venture X. These cards also offer compelling rewards on a wide variety of spending. Let’s see how they stack up against the Citi Double Cash Card:

Amex Blue Business Plus

Catch-all business card

Amex Blue Business Plus

No Annual Fee

Intro Bonus

  • 0% intro APR for 12 months from opening.
  • 15,000 Membership Rewards after spending $3,000 in purchases on your card in your first 3 months

Earning Categories

  • Earn 2X Membership Rewards points on everyday eligible purchases (*Up to $50,000 per calendar year. After that, earn 1X membership rewards points.)

Key Features

  • No annual fee.
  • Valuable transfer partners.
  • Employee card at no cost.

Features: Earns 2 Membership Rewards points on the first $50,000 in purchases each year, then 1 point per dollar thereafter.


  • Potential for a higher rewards rate (2x) on a significant amount of spending.
  • Membership Rewards points are flexible and can be transferred to travel partners.
  • Valuable for certain types of business spending.
  • No annual fee


  • Rewards cap at $50,000 annually, then drop to 1x.
  • Business card – not suitable for personal spending.

Citi Double Cash Advantage: Simplicity and unlimited 2% cash back. Great for those who don’t want to track spending categories or who primarily want cash rewards.

Capital One Venture X

Affordable Luxury Card

Capital One Venture X

Annual Fee $395

Intro Offer
  • 75,000 bonus miles – when you spend $4,000 within the first three months of opening your account.
Earning Category
  • 10X Mile on Hotel and Rental Cars booked through Capital One Travel.
  • 5X Mile on flight booked through Capital One Travel.
  • 2x Mile on All other purchases, unlimited.

Features: Earns 2 miles per dollar on all purchases. Offers travel perks like airport lounge access, travel statement credits, and more.


  • Travel miles can be very valuable for frequent flyers.
  • Excellent travel perks (lounge access, travel credits).
  • A potential sign-up bonus can be significant.
  • The annual fee can be offset by the benefits.


  • High annual fee.
  • Rewards system is more complex.
  • Best value comes from utilizing the travel benefits if you travel frequently.

Citi Double Cash Advantage: The lower barrier to entry (no annual fee), exceptionally straightforward rewards program. Appeals to those wanting a ‘set it and forget it’ card.

Which card is the best for you?

The Citi Double Cash Card shines in its absolute simplicity. If earning cash back with a consistent rate on all your spending is what matters most, and you want to avoid annual fees and complex points systems, it’s a clear winner.

Exploring the Citi Trifecta

Exploring the Citi Trifecta

The Citi Double Cash Card becomes even more powerful when paired with other Citi ThankYou Rewards cards, a setup known as the “Citi Trifecta”.

More Rewards Flexibility: While the Citi Double Cash Card focuses on straightforward cash back, combining it with other ThankYou Rewards cards, like the Citi Premier® Card and the Citi Custom Cash℠ Card, gives you multiple redemption options. You can redeem your points as cash back, transfer them to airline and hotel partners, or use them for travel, merchandise, and more through the Citi ThankYou Rewards portal.

Check the reviews of the Citi Premier® Card and the Citi Custom Cash℠:

Maximize Your Earnings: Think of the Citi Trifecta as a rewards powerhouse with this breakdown:

CardBest Spending CategoriesEarning Rate*
Citi Double Cash CardAll purchases2% cash back
Citi Premier® CardTravel, Gas Stations, Restaurants, Supermarkets, Hotels3x ThankYou Points
Citi Custom Cash℠ CardChoose your top eligible spending category each month (up to $500 spent)**5x ThankYou Points

Weighing Costs vs. Rewards with the Citi Trifecta

While combining multiple cards can significantly boost your rewards, it’s crucial to consider the annual fees involved. Before setting up the Citi Trifecta, do the math: make sure the potential rewards you’ll earn outweigh the associated costs based on how you typically spend money.

Here’s the cost breakdown of the Citi Trifecta:

  • Total Annual Fee: $95 (This assumes you only have the Citi Premier® Card from the trifecta, as the Double Cash and Custom Cash have no annual fees)
  • Potential Savings: The Citi Premier® Card offers a $100 Annual Hotel Savings Benefit, effectively offsetting its annual fee.

Compared to Other Trifectas

The Citi Trifecta shines in its affordability and simplicity. It’s generally less expensive and easier to manage than the popular Amex trifecta or Chase trifectas, making it a strong contender if its features and earning potential align with your spending habits.

Is the Citi Double Cash Card Right for You?

Is the Citi Double Cash Card Right for You?

This is our thought who is the right person to the Citi double cash or not.

Perfect If…

  • You want a simple, no-nonsense way to earn cash back on every purchase.
  • You don’t want to worry about tracking bonus categories or rotating rewards.
  • You prioritize consistency and ease of use in a rewards card.
  • You want to build or improve your credit score and develop solid spending habits.

Not Ideal If…

  • You travel abroad frequently (due to the foreign transaction fee).
  • You want a huge sign-up bonus to kick-start your rewards.
  • You prefer earning airline miles or hotel points for travel.
  • You enjoy the challenge of maximizing rewards with cards that have rotating bonus categories.

Understanding Citi’s Application Rules

Understanding Citi's Application Rules

Citi has some specific rules in place to prevent people from applying for too many cards in a short period. Here’s the breakdown:

The 8/65 Rule:

  • You can only apply for one Citi card every 8 days.
  • You can apply for a maximum of two Citi cards every 65 days.
  • This applies to both personal and business cards.

Business Card Rule:

  • Citi limits you to one business card application every 95 days.

Why These Rules Exist:

  • These rules help Citi manage risk by ensuring applicants don’t take on too much credit at once, potentially impacting their ability to repay.

Credit Inquiries:

  • When you apply, Citi pulls your credit report, which includes recent “hard inquiries” from any bank. Too many inquiries in a short period can suggest higher credit risk and might affect your approval odds.

Remember, Citi considers your overall credit profile: credit score, income, existing debt, and other factors. Even if you follow these rules, approval isn’t guaranteed.


The Citi Double Cash Card lives up to its reputation for being a simple and rewarding cash-back credit card. Its earning structure eliminates all the guesswork – you get cash back on every single purchase with no need to think about categories. If you prioritize straightforward rewards, hate annual fees, and want a card that helps you establish good credit habits, the Citi Double Cash Card is a great choice.

However, if you travel frequently outside the U.S., crave a big sign-up bonus, or seek the flexibility of travel miles, other cards might be a better fit.

Ultimately, the best credit card is the one that aligns with your spending habits and your rewards goals. If you do like super simple and less complicated, or The Citi trifecta is the perfect match with your lifestyle, the Citi Double Cash Card definitely deserves serious consideration.

Frequently Asked Questions

You earn 1 ThankYou Point for every $1 spent on purchases and an additional 1 ThankYou Point when you pay your credit card bill. Each ThankYou Point is worth 1 cent when redeemed as cash back.

No! The Citi Double Cash Card offers unlimited 2% cash back on all your spending.

You have several options:

  • Statement credits to offset your credit card bill
  • Direct deposits to your bank account
  • Paper checks
  • Shop through the Citi ThankYou Rewards portal for merchandise or gift cards

Essentially, they represent the same value. ThankYou Points are the reward currency, and they can be redeemed as cash back at a rate of 1 point per cent.

While the card focuses on cash rewards, Citi ThankYou Points can potentially unlock more value by transferring them to airline and hotel partners if you have other eligible Citi cards. You also often have access to presale tickets for certain events and other Citi cardholder perks.

Yes, it does have a foreign transaction fee, so it might not be the best choice if you travel internationally often.

Yes, you can use it for balance transfers and enjoy an introductory APR period. However, keep in mind there is a balance transfer fee, and balance transfers won’t earn you any rewards.

Citi doesn’t disclose a specific minimum credit score. However, generally, you’ll likely need good to excellent credit to be approved.

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