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Citi Double Cash credit card review: Earn a solid return on spending

The Citi Double Cash credit card is one of the most popular cards on the market, and it isn't hard to see why.
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Written by Evan Zimmer, Finance Writer on

The Citi Double Cash credit card is a great card for consumers looking to earn a solid return on their spending. It's simple, rewarding, and has a good amount of versatility. And since March 28, 2022, the rewards are earned as ThankYou points, meaning cardholders can redeem their rewards in more ways than before.

There aren't any bonus categories to be aware of, nor is there an annual fee to be concerned about either.

You could even use it to avoid interest charges on another card by taking advantage of its long 0% APR balance transfer offer. But be aware that there is a balance transfer fee. However, that fee would likely pale in comparison to the money you'd save from interest charges accruing on another card, depending on the size of the balance.  

Citi® Double Cash Card

No annual fee cash back credit card

Card Highlights
Intro BonusN/A
APR14.74% - 24.74% (Variable)
Recommended CreditExcellent, Good
Reward Rates
  • Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
Annual Fee$0
Intro Purchase APRN/A
Additional Details
Rewards & Redemption Details

The Double Cash card has a lot going for it.

It's great for consumers who have varied spending, and it's a good choice to pair with another card that earns rewards in multiple bonus categories. It doesn't have an annual fee, and its 2% rate is hard to beat at that price point. Use it for a balance transfer to lessen interest charges accruing on another card.

Pros

  • 2% cash back for every purchase (1% when you swipe, 1% when it's paid off)
  • Cash back is earned as 2x ThankYou points per dollar
  • Long balance transfer offer
  • No annual fee

Cons

  • Balance Transfer fee
  • Foreign Transaction fee
  • No welcome bonus
  • Limited benefits

What makes this card a good choice?

Redeeming rewards

The card's rewards are earned as ThankYou points rather than cash rewards. However, cardholders can redeem ThankYou points for cash back and more. Your rewards will never expire, and there is no limit to how many you can earn.

ThankYou points can be redeemed for:

  • Travel with Citi's travel partners (learn more about Citi's partners here)
  • Cash rewards in the form of statement credits
  • Direct deposit
  • Gift cards
  • Merchandise

The easiest way to redeem rewards will be to utilize the direct deposit option. While redeeming for statement credits is still a good choice, using direct deposit will grant immediate access to your cash rewards rather than lowering the statement balance on your credit card account.

Keep in mind that redeeming for statement credits will not contribute to your monthly required payment if you carry a balance from month to month (something you should try to avoid in order to reduce interest charges).

Card benefits

The Double Cash doesn't have the most impressive perks, but that's to be expected for a card without an annual fee. That said, cardholders will still find some of them useful.

  • Citi Entertainment: Gain special access to purchase tickets for entertainment events including concerts, sports events, and dining events.
  • Free FICO score: Citi cardholders have free access to check their FICO Bankcard Score 8 credit score.
  • 24/7 customer service: Access Citi's customer service whenever you need.
  • Contactless Pay: No need to insert or swipe. Hover the card wherever you see the symbol to pay.
  • Virtual card numbers: Citi will randomly generate card numbers for you to use when shopping online to make your purchases more secure.
  • Fraud Protection: Citi will monitor your account for unusual activity, 24/7, and alert you should it find anything.
  • $0 Liability on Unauthorized Charges: You won't be held liable for any unauthorized charges on your account.
  • Citi Identity Theft Solutions: If you fall victim to identity theft, Citi can put you in touch with people who can help.
  • The Lost Wallet service: If you lose your card, Citi will replace it usually within 24 hours. Citi will also supply you with emergency cash, depending on your cash advance limit.

How to apply

You can securely apply on Citi's website. Fill out the application with the appropriate information, and Citi should get back to you instantly with its decision. In some cases, Citi may reach out for additional information.

The Citi Double Cash card is issued as a Mastercard, meaning it can be used anywhere Mastercard is accepted.

Does Citi offer credit card customer service?

Yes. You can call 1-(800)-950-5114 in the US to reach Citi's credit card customer service. A card benefit is 24/7 access to Citi's customer support.

Why use a balance transfer?

A balance transfer can be a great way to mitigate debt. If you have a balance on another credit card that's accruing interest, you can transfer it to the Double Cash and pay it down at 0% interest for 18 months (then 14.24%-24.24% Variable).

Just keep in mind that, if you continue to make purchases after transferring a balance, you'll be responsible for paying off the transferred balance plus any new purchases you make. So make sure you're budgeting appropriately in order to pay off the balance within the given timeframe.

What credit scores do you need to qualify?

The Citi Double Cash is recommended for consumers with good credit. To be considered as having good credit, your FICO scores would need to be at least 670-739, or your VantageScores would need to be at least 700-749.

Will my rewards expire?

You won't have to worry about your rewards expiring, and there is no limit to the number of rewards you can earn.

Is this the right card for you?

The Citi Double Cash card is a great choice for most consumers. It's a good option to pair with other credit cards that earn across a variety of different purchases to maximize the return on your spending.

It's also a solid choice for consumers looking for an uncomplicated, yet rewarding, credit card. If you don't have a dedicated gas or grocery credit card, use the Double Cash. It'll reward you for purchases you're likely already making.

It wouldn't be a bad choice for the occasional traveler, either. While it doesn't offer any travel protections, you can transfer ThankYou points to Citi's airline and hotel partners. That means the Double Cash earns 2x miles per dollar and could help save you money on your next vacation or business trip. But keep in mind if your travels take you abroad, there is a 3% foreign transaction fee.

What's the bottom line?

The Citi Double Cash card is a good choice. It's both easy to use and lucrative. Two per cent cash back is hard to beat for a card without an annual fee. The benefits aren't very impressive, but some of them could prove useful given the right circumstances.

While there's no annual fee, it does carry both a balance transfer fee and a foreign transaction fee. So if you plan to take advantage of the long balance transfer offer, just know you'll have to pay a percentage of the transferred balance. But again, that likely would be less than what you'd pay from interest charges accruing on another card.

And since March 28, 2022, the Double Cash has expanded redemption options. Using it as a basic travel card is now possible, as the card earns 2x miles per dollar so long as you redeem ThankYou points for travel with Citi's airline or hotel partners. However, it doesn't carry any travel protections like cards designed specifically for travel.

Are there any alternatives worth considering?

If the Double Cash card didn't check your boxes, take a look at these two alternative cards.

The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card: A natural competitor to the Double Cash, it earns 2% cash back for every purchase with no annual fee. However, the benefits are stronger, it comes with a welcome bonus and it has a 0% APR offer for new purchases and balance transfers. But Wells Fargo might not offer the best customer service experience.

Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards: While it earns 1.5% cash back compared to the Double Cash's 2%, it offers a welcome bonus, a long intro 0% APR offer for new purchases, and a larger selection of shopping and travel protections.

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