Home Comparing Benefits Citi Prestige® Card Releases New, More Restrictive Guide to Benefits

Citi Prestige® Card Releases New, More Restrictive Guide to Benefits

Citi Prestige Card overhauls its card benefits program with more explicit and less generous terms and conditions.

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We’ve often cited Citi Prestige Card as “Best in Class” for several cardholder benefits. However, back in May, we got wind of upcoming changes that could potentially strip the card of its top-tier status.  And, now, that time has come.

As rumors circulate in the blogosphere of a possible end to the Citi Prestige Card later this year—Doctor of Credit reported on this rumor last week—the card has still released a new version of “[Cardholders’] Guide to Protection Benefits.” This guide, posted July 29, 2018, details the T&Cs of the many travel and shopping benefits the Citi Prestige Card is known for.

Though the card never excelled in valuable airfare redemptions or cash back redemptions, its competitive advantage laid in prolific and generous travel and shopping benefits. Below, some of the changes you should know as a present (or possible future?) Citi Prestige Card holder.

TRAVEL BENEFITS

Worldwide Car Rental Insurance

What’s changed? The card has lowered Rental Collision Damage protectioncoverage from up to $100,000 to $75,000. T&Cs now also specify what coverage will be provided—“The cost to repair the rental car or the actual cash value of the rental car, whichever is less; and Reasonable towing expenses to the nearest collision repair facility.” In addition, coverage is specifically not covered if “the car is rented through a car sharing company that allows individuals to rent out their own vehicle.”

Medical Evacuation

What’s changed?This “Best in Class” benefit remains with one caveat: “Any costs for medical evacuation not authorized and arranged through AXA Assistance USA are solely the responsibility of the Covered Traveler and such costs will not be reimbursed.”

Trip Cancellation & Interruption Protection

What’s changed? Travel companions are no longer eligible for implicit Trip Cancellation and Interruption insurance policies, which compensate for loss due to certain sickness, injury, death, airline bankruptcy, or weather-related issues.  Coverage is exclusively for the cardholder and the cardholder’s family members. Sadly, pet injury or illness has also been eliminated as a covered reason for trip cancellation or interruption.

Trip Delay Protection

What’s changed? Trip Delay Protectionnow kicks in after six hours versus three hours of delay.  Travel companions are no longer eligible for this coverage. In addition, coverage will not be provided if “[t]he Covered Traveler(s) is delayed due to a missed connection of their Common Carrier, but the delay that caused the missed connection does not meet the required time period of 6 hours.”

Baggage Delay Protection

What’s changed?Similar to Trip Delay Protection, this protection now kicks in after six hours versus three hours of delay. Travel companions are no longer eligible for this coverage. Moreover, there is now no coverage when the baggage is delayed while returning to the covered traveler’s primary residence.

Lost Baggage Protection

What’s changed?Travel companions are no longer eligible for the card’s Lost Luggage Protection.

Worldwide Accident Insurance

What’s changed?The policy remains the same with one extra clause. It now explicitly states that “[d]eath or injury due to natural causes, disease, illness or self-inflicted injuries” is not covered.

SHOPPING BENEFITS

Purchase Protection

What’s changed? Citi Prestige Card will no longer offers Purchase Protection (aka Damage & Theft Protection) as primary coverage. This means you will need to go through your regular insurance first. Protection now extends 90 days from purchases versus 120 days. Watches or jewelry (including loose gems, precious stones, metals, and pearls), firearms, and ammunition are now excluded from coverage. And if “[t]he item was under the care and control of a third-party including, but not limited to, the U.S. Postal Service, airlines, or delivery services,” coverage no longer applies.

Price Protection

What’s changed? The maximum coverage per item for Price Protection(known as Citi Price Rewind for Citi Card holders) has plummeted from from $500 to $200. And the amount of coverage provided annually has dropped from $2,500 to $1,000. Watches are no longer covered by Price Protection. Nor are travel arrangements of any kind (e.g., hotels, vacations rentals, or car rentals), firearms, or ammunition. Also, Price Protection will not be honored when “[t]he lower-priced item is offered through a warehouse club where the merchant requires a customer to pay a membership fee.” So don’t even bother comparing with prices at Costco or Sam’s Club.

Extended Warranty

What’s changed? Nothing has changed with this “Best in Class” benefit. Hooray!

Return Protection

What’s changed? The maximum coverage per year has dropped from $2,500 to $1,500. Also, the list of excluded items has expanded to include watches or jewelry (including loose gems, precious stones, metals, and pearls), furniture, appliances, firearms, ammunition, and tires.

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Award-winning travel writer and economist Paul Rubio is a credit card enthusiast, whose sophisticated use of points and rewards has helped him travel to 125 countries for free. Paul is a Harvard graduate with a master’s degree in public administration and a master’s degree in economics. He also holds a bachelor’s degree from Boston University with a double major in economics and environmental policy and a minor in conservation biology. He attended both undergraduate and graduate schools on full scholarships. Paul worked in the field of wildlife conservation before embracing his writing talents full-time in 2008. Since then, he has won more than two dozen national awards for his exemplary work in travel journalism. The prolific writer contributes to a number of top-tier international, national, and regional publications including Condé Nast Traveler, Fodors.com, Palm Beach Illustrated, Private Clubs, and Robb Report.