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Citi launches no-annual-fee card with 5% cash back in your top eligible spending category

The Citi Custom Cash Card automatically rewards you for what you spend the most on.

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Citi launched a no-annual-fee cash-back credit card in June to help consumers put more money back in their pocket on the things they spend the most on.

With the Citi Custom Cash℠ Card, cardholders can get 5% cash back on purchases in their top eligible spend category each billing cycle, up to the first $500 spent (then 1%). This card rivals Citi's other cash-back credit card with no annual fee, the Citi® Double Cash Card, which is offering new members a sign-up bonus for a limited time: earn $200 cash back after spending $1,500 on purchases in the first 6 months of account opening..

Citi Custom Cash℠ Card

On Citi's secure site
  • Rewards

    5% cash back on purchases in top eligible spend category each billing cycle, up to the first $500 spent (then 1%); unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases

  • Welcome bonus

    Earn $200 cash back after spending $750 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening. The bonus offer will be fulfilled as 20,000 ThankYou® Points, which can be redeemed for $200 cash back.

  • Annual fee

    $0

  • Intro APR

    0% APR on balance transfers and purchases for first 15 months

  • Regular APR

    16.24% - 26.24% variable

  • Balance transfer fee

    5% of each balance transfer ($5 minimum)

  • Foreign transaction fee

    3%

  • Credit needed

    Excellent, Good

Terms apply.

Here is what makes the Citi Custom Cash Card stand out.

Welcome bonus

The welcome bonus on the Citi Custom Cash Card has a pretty low spending threshold: Earn $200 cash back after spending $750 on purchases in the first three months of account opening (fulfilled as 20,000 ThankYou® Points, which can be redeemed for $200 cash back).

You can either spread out the $750 of spend over three months or, if you have a big purchase you've been planning to make, you can knock out the spending requirement quickly. You'll even have a longer time to pay off your balance with the Citi Custom Cash Card's introductory 0% APR period offered on purchases (and balance transfers) for the first 15 months (after, 16.24% - 26.24% variable APR).

Though we recommend getting in the habit of paying off your credit card balance in full every month to avoid paying interest, this interest-free period gives you more time should you need it. Just make sure you have a plan for paying off your balance before the 15 months is up.

Rewards program

Citi Custom Cash Card members earn the following rewards:

  • 5% cash back on purchases in the top eligible spend category each billing cycle, up to the first $500 spent (then 1%)
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases

Eligible spending categories include everything from restaurants and grocery stores, to gas stations, select travel, select transit, select streaming services, drugstores, home improvement stores, fitness clubs and live entertainment.

Popular cash-back credit cards, such as the Discover it® Cash Back and Chase Freedom Flex℠, have rotating bonus categories (chosen by the bank) that cardholders have to enroll in each quarter. But with the Citi Custom Cash Card, as your spending changes each billing cycle, you'll be able to automatically choose your bonus categories (from the list above) and earn 5% back on whatever you spend the most.

If you were to maximize the 5% back on up to $500 in spending each billing cycle, you could end up with $25 in cash back per month, or $300 a year.

Bottom line

With its customized cash-back rewards program and easily attainable welcome bonus, the Citi Custom Cash Card is a good fit for just about any new cardholder. Plus, you don't have to commit to paying an annual fee for the card.

Those looking for 5% cash back on a higher limit than just up to the first $500 spent in their top eligible spend category each billing cycle should consider the U.S. Bank Cash+® Visa Signature® Card (also with no annual fee). It is a flexible 5% cash-back card that lets you choose two categories each quarter to earn 5% cash back on up to your first $2,000 in combined eligible purchases, then 1%.

Unlike with the Citi Custom Cash Card, however, activation is required to earn 5% cash back on the U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature Card. Cardholders also get 2% cash back on one everyday category and 1% cash back on everything else.

U.S. Bank Cash+® Visa Signature® Card

On U.S. Bank's secure site
  • Rewards

    5% cash back on your first $2,000 in combined eligible purchases each quarter on two categories you choose; 5% cash back on prepaid air, hotel, and car reservations booked directly in the Rewards Travel Center; 2% cash back on one everyday category; 1% cash back on all other eligible purchases

  • Welcome bonus

    $200 bonus after spending $1,000 in eligible purchases within the first 120 days of account opening

  • Annual fee

    $0

  • Intro APR

    0% for the first 15 billing cycles on purchases and balance transfers

  • Regular APR

    16.74% - 26.74% (Variable)

  • Balance transfer fee

    3%, minimum $5

  • Foreign transaction fee

    2% to 3%

  • Credit needed

    Good/Excellent

See rates and fees, terms apply.

For rates and fees of the Discover it® Cash Back, click here.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Select editorial staff’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any third party.
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