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Best way to use Citi Thank You Points

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3/29/06 2:01 PM
If this has been discussed already let me know, but I don't think it has.

I have read many threads on Citibank's thankyou reward system and different cards that are linked to it. I was wondering if people have any ideas on how to best use their points to get more value per point. So far it seems the best value is student loan rebate for students, and gift cards for purchases you were already going to buy. I was also thinking you might be able to get more value from your points by selling airplane tickets you redeem for a higher value, like during peak seasons since there are no black out dates. Currently Citi doesn't charge any additional fees for these tickets. What are your thoughts or strategies that you use?
3/29/06 2:01 PM

Depend on your relationship with Citi, you may enroll to different ThankYou point program even though they are all managed under ThankYou.com
Meaning you WILL get different reward offer if you have Citi Forward credit card or with ONLY Citi checking compare to other Citi ThankYou card!!!
But, (not working for all cases) if you know someone with a better rewards - you can send TYPs to them and redeem through their account. Doesn't work if the points you get is from banking products.

Some general ideas that have been discussed:
* Don't use the TY points for gas cards. You lose out on the possible 5% you get for buying gas with a PP card or other rewards card
* Same concept for gift certs and store cards, although with Target and Staples cards (and possibly others) you can buy online with FatCash and use Staples Rewards to sweeten the deal
* Some people do TYPoints>StaplesGiftCards>buyFARitems>sellOrUseFARitems to max the points/FatCash/Rewards
* There's some conversation about using TYPoints to buy flight GCs, then using the GCs to buy a ticket that is more expensive than the GC, and using the PP card or other reward card to pay for the diff. In many cases, this results in full mileage credit to the card that paid for the diff. Not sure I totally understand it, but some discussion here
* An option is to request a check against your 'student loan' from TYN. In most cases (apparently), the check comes in a format that can be simply deposited into your bank account or, at worst, used to pay off non-student loans. If you order multiple student loan checks, Citi will often combine them into one check for the total amount.

Tickets may require 14 day advance purchase and/or Saturday overnight stay.

Best way to use:

* redemption spreadsheet here
* travel booking (1pt=$0.01; at the risk of losing cc protections; no longer through Expedia and has no fees)
- with Citi Prestige each point buys an extra 33% in airfare (1pt =$0.0133), 10k points gets you $133 in airfare vs. the standard $100 gift card.
- with Citi Premier each point buys an extra 25% in airfare (1pt =$0.0125), 10k points gets you $125 in airfare vs. the standard $100 gift card.
- in both cases, Connections Loyalty embeds a fee into the ticket price (a couple %) that you might be successful getting refunded
* GC sold at a discount like $100 for 9000 points promotions (currently none available)
* $100 GC for 10000 pts like Home Depot, Staples, Macys, Sears, Gap, etc. See current full list below.
* Note that the Nike.com store sells iPods. Get a $100 GC for 10k TY points plus 10% CashBack via ShopDiscover and you have a decent deal.
* Note that you can use a Land's End card at Sears or Kmart

Archived - Thank You Network: List of GCs worth $100=10k points resale value
WalMart 100GC is $91 cash, $95.55 Amazon credit on PlasticJungle. Anything higher?

The following are items that can be redeemed for $0.01 per point:

This list is not accurate for ALL.  As stated earlier, depend on your relationship with Citi, you may enroll to different ThankYou point program even though they are all managed under ThankYou.com 
Meaning you WILL get different reward offer if you have Citi Forward credit card or with ONLY Citi checking compare to other Citi ThankYou card!!!

Travel Certificates	
Hyatt Check Certificates $100		         	10,000 pts
Marriott TravelCard® $100			         	10,000 pts
Ritz-Carlton Currency $100		         	10,000 pts
Carnival Cruise Life Gift Certificate $100			10,000 pts
Royal Carribean International Gift Certificate $100		10,000 pts

Retail Gift Cards	
babyGap giftcard $100					10,000 pts
Bath & Body Works® Gift Card $100		         	10,000 pts
Big City Chefs Gift Certificate $200			20,000 pts
Bloomingdale's Gift Card $100				10,000 pts
Brooks Brothers Gift Card $100				10,000 pts
Cabela's Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
Dillards Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
Foot Locker Gift Card $100				10,000 pts
Gap GiftCard $100 [Valid at Banana Republic/Old Navy*]  	10,000 pts
GapBody giftcard $100					10,000 pts
GapKids giftcard $100					10,000 pts
Hammacher Schlemmer Gift Certificate $100			10,000 pts
L. L. Bean Gift Certificate $100				10,000 pts
Lands' End® Gift Card $100 (good at Sears, Kmart)		10,000 pts
Macy's Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
Marshalls® Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
Motherhood Maternity Gift Card $100			10,000 pts
Nike Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
Old Navy GiftCard $100	     		  		10,000 pts
  - good at Gap, Banana Republic
Orvis® Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
PBTeen® Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
Pottery Barn Kids® Gift Card $100				10,000 pts
Pottery Barn® Gift Card $100				10,000 pts
Sephora® Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
ServiceMaster® Gift Cards $100				10,000 pts
SonyStyle gift Card $100					10,000 pts
Staples® Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
T.J. Maxx® Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
Timberland® Gift Card $100				10,000 pts
Tourneau Watches Gift Card $500				50,000 pts
west elm® Gift Card $100					10,000 pts
Williams-Sonoma Home® Gift Card $100			10,000 pts
Williams-Sonoma® Gift Card $100				10,000 pts
Wal-Mart Gift Card $100 (not for all)			10,000 pts
Restaurant Gift Cards	
Chili's Grill & Bar® Gift Card $100			10,000 pts
  - good at On The Border, Macaroni Grill, Maggiano's
Dean & Deluca Gift Card $100				10,000 pts
Legal Sea Foods Gourmet Gifts $100				10,000 pts
Omaha Steaks® Gift Certificate $100			10,000 pts
Romano's Macaroni Grill® $100				10,000 pts

Entertainment Gift Cards	
Red Door Spas Gift Card $250				25,000 pts
Red Door Spas Gift Card $100				10,000 pts

Sony Music Store (unencrypted mp3 downloads) 1 song		100 pts

Useful links:
Thank You Network
Earn with the Citi Premier Pass Credit Card
Earn with the Citi Simplicity Card
Earn with the Citi Diamond Rewards Card
Earn with the Citi Professional Card
Earn with the Citi mtvU Card
FlyerTalk thread discussing Citi TY flight redemptions
3/29/06 2:14 PM
probably gas card or HomeDepot since I know I will spend some $ there eventually.
3/29/06 2:16 PM
Home Depot cards. I spend them myself, give/sell to family and friends, or you can get pretty close to face value on eBay (~90%)
3/29/06 2:21 PM
Gas Cards.... You always need gas...
3/29/06 2:33 PM
I have around 52,000 points and I will be redeeming them for 2 free airline tickets to Las Vegas.
3/29/06 2:38 PM
One way or round trip? from where? just to get a feel....
3/29/06 2:58 PM
i always go for the Amazon gift certificates.
3/29/06 2:59 PM
25,000 pts earns you a free roundtrip to anywhere in the continental united states.
3/29/06 3:03 PM
i got like over 100K, but i will go to vegas during a convention and expense it all! including the hookers.
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