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Citi Diamond Preferred Card Vs. Citi Rewards+ Card

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If you’re looking to either finance a large purchase or pay off higher interest rate credit cards, your best bet is to find a card that has a promotional offer. In the market right now, you’ll find cards that offer as low as 0% interest on purchases or 0% interest on balance transfers for a limited amount of time after you open the card.

And Citi has not one, but two cards that offer BOTH. In this Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card Vs. Citi Rewards+℠ Card review, I will compare both cards, including their rewards, welcome offers, additional features, and fees. This way, you can determine which, if either, is the right option for you.

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card vs. Citi Rewards+℠ Card summary

Both Citi cards have some nice features to offer, but neither will have everything you need. That said, for the right person, these cards can be a considerable time and money-saver. 

Let’s look at a quick comparison between the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card and the Citi Rewards+℠ Card.

Feature Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card Citi Rewards+℠ Card
Intro APR 0% for 18 months on Purchases and 0% for 18 months on Balance Transfers 0% intro for 15 months on Purchases and 0% intro for 15 months on Balance Transfers
Intro points offer N/A 15,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 in the first three months
Rewards N/A Earn 2x points at supermarkets and gas stations on up to $6,000 per year, then 1 point per $1 spent after that; and on all other purchases
Annual fee $0 $0
Foreign transaction fee 3% 3%
Late payment fee Up to $40 Up to $40
Credit needed Excellent Excellent

About the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card

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The Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card is a no annual fee credit card that features an intro APR of 0% for 18 months on Purchases and 0% for 18 months on Balance Transfers. After that, you’ll pay an interest rate of 14.74% – 24.74% (Variable), making it one of the longest promotions out there right now. 

So for someone who is either looking to finance a large purchase and pay it off over a more extended time or someone who needs to pay down existing debt, this could be a handy credit card in your arsenal.

About the Citi Rewards+℠ Card

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The Citi Rewards+℠ Card is another card by Citi that also offers an introductory promotional offer. There is a 0% intro for 15 months on Purchases and 0% intro for 15 months on Balance Transfers. After that, you’ll pay an interest rate of 13.49% – 23.49% (Variable). Plus, the card has a $0 annual fee. 

You can also earn 15,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 in purchases on the card within the first 90 days of account opening. One of this credit card’s unique features is that it rounds your points up to the nearest 10 points, which I will explain in more detail below.

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card vs. Citi Rewards+℠ Card rewards

This one isn’t really a competition since the Citi Rewards+℠ Card earns points and the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card does not. But there are still pros and cons to each, So let’s unpack this one a little bit more.

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card rewards

As I said before, the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card does not offer rewards. However, it does come with one of the longest promotional offers on purchases out there right now. So while you may not be earning rewards on your purchases, you can finance larger purchases at 0% for 18 months on Purchases.

Citi Rewards+℠ Card rewards

The Citi Rewards+℠ Card has an interesting reward structure. You get 2x points at supermarkets and gas stations for the first $6,000 per year, and one point per $1 spent after that.

What makes this card unique, though, is that it rounds up your points to the nearest 10 points on every purchase. For example, if you buy a $3 coffee, instead of getting three points, you would get 10 points.

You can redeem your points, called ThankYou® Points, for things like gift cards and travel rewards, or you can shop with your points at places like Amazon or BestBuy.com. Also, you get 10% points back for the first 100,000 ThankYou® Points redeemed every year. So, if you redeem 15,000 points, you will get 1,500 points back.

Rewards summary

There is really no competition here when it comes to rewards since one card earns them, and the other one does not. If your primary focus is getting rewards, the Citi Rewards+℠ Card wins by a mile.

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card vs. Citi Rewards+℠ Card welcome offer

This is where things start to get interesting. Both cards have intriguing welcome offers, so it just depends on how you want to use your credit card. 

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card welcome offer

The Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card has an extremely enticing welcome offer. You will get an intro APR of 0% for 18 months on Purchases and 0% for 18 months on Balance Transfers. After that, you’ll get an APR of 14.74% – 24.74% (Variable), based on your creditworthiness. Also, any balance transfers must be completed within the first four months of your account opening to take advantage of the offer.

When it comes to promotional offers, this is one of the best I have seen recently. Balance transfer fee applies with this offer 3% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum., but outside of that, you will get the full 0% for 18 months on Balance Transfers. So if you have high-interest credit card debt somewhere else, you can transfer it over to this card and pay it off over 18 months. 

Alternatively, if you have a large purchase that you need to make and you want to take your time in paying it back, you can use this card for that as well.

Citi Rewards+℠ Card welcome offer

The Citi Rewards+℠ Card also has a generous welcome offer. You will get a 0% intro for 15 months on Purchases and 0% intro for 15 months on Balance Transfers. After that, you’ll pay an interest rate of 13.49% – 23.49% (Variable). While it isn’t as long as the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card, it’s just three months shorter, and you get rewards with the card.

You will also get 15,000 bonus points once you spend at least $1,000 in purchases on the card within the first three months of opening the account. Just to give you a sense of what this is worth, if you were to exchange those points at thankyou.com, you could get $150 in gift cards.

Welcome offer summary

This one is a close call because both credit cards offer excellent promotional offers. It comes down to how you want to use the card. 

If you don’t care about earning rewards, take the extra three months and go with the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card to either finance a large purchase or pay off high-interest debt. 

But if you want to use the card beyond the promotional offer, there is some value (more on this below) in getting the Citi Rewards+℠ Card with a shorter promotional period because it earns rewards. I’m going to call this one a tie.

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card vs. Citi Rewards+℠ Card additional features

Regarding additional features, I’m not sure either of these cards will knock your socks off, and both of them are similar since they are both offered by Citi. That being said, it’s worth looking at the additional benefits each card will give you before you make a final decision.

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card additional features

The Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card gives you free access to your FICO score online. After you open the account, you will get an email telling you how to get that set up. This is a nice feature if you want to monitor your credit as you pay off high-interest debt with the promotional offer.

You also get access to Citi Entertainment®, which gives you access to purchase tickets to all types of events, such as sporting events, concerts, dining experiences, and others.

You may also have access to the Citi Flex Plan, which is a loan offered to you at Citi’s discretion. The benefit here is that you don’t have to apply for new credit, and if you need a short-term loan, you can get one just by having this card and being eligible for that offer.

Finally, the card has a $0 liability on unauthorized purchases and Citi Identity Theft Solutions. So you won’t be responsible for any unauthorized charges, and Citi will help you in the event your identity is stolen.

Citi Rewards+℠ Card additional features

The Citi Rewards+℠ Card also gives you access to the Citi Flex Plan, But again this is at Citi’s discretion. If you need a personal loan at any point, this becomes a nice feature because you do not have to apply for new credit.

The other “additional benefit” is the double points you earn at supermarkets and gas stations. This is only for the first $6,000 and spending per year, and then it goes to one point per dollar. All other purchases are at one point per dollar.

You will also get the same benefits of the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card, including Citi Entertainment® and $0 liability fraud protection.

Additional features summary

Like I said, this one is kind of a wash. Neither card blows me away with additional perks, which isn’t surprising because they are designed for particular purposes – the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card for balance transfers and the Citi Rewards+℠ Card for rewards.

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card vs. Citi Rewards+℠ Card fees

While neither card has an annual fee, there are some fees to be aware of. 

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card fees

The Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card does not have an annual fee, making it a nice card to hold because it doesn’t cost you anything. There are some other fees to be aware of, though. 

Balance transfer fee applies with this offer 3% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum.. So if you transfer $10,000, your fee will be $300. That fee gets added to your balance, so in the example I just used, your total balance would be $10,300. This isn’t uncommon, but something to be aware of.

This card also charges late fees of up to $40 and based on your creditworthiness, you can get a penalty APR up to 29.99% if and when it applies. So obviously, make sure you make your payments on time.

I don’t recommend getting cash from your credit card, but there is a minimum fee of $10 or 5% of the total I’m out you withdraw for each cash advance if you do. There is also a 3% foreign transaction fee on the card, making it less than ideal for traveling.

Citi Rewards+℠ Card fees

Like the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card, the Citi Rewards+℠ Card charges late fees of up to $40 and may hit you with a penalty APR up to 29.99% based on your creditworthiness if you are frequently late.

You’ll have the same balance transfer fee of 3% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum.. All other fees are the same as the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card noted above – including the cash advance fee and the foreign transaction fee.

Fees summary

The only real benefit with these cards regarding fees is that there is no annual fee. And for most responsible credit card holders, that is more than enough. However, if you are someone who needs to withdraw cash, is late on your payments, or has poor credit, neither of these cards is probably going to be the right fit for you. On the flip side, if you have good credit and you make your payments on time, you should have no issues with any of these fees.

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card vs. Citi Rewards+℠ Card pros

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card pros:

  • Excellent promotional offer – The Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card has one of the longest introductory promotional offers I have seen. Granted, there is a balance transfer fee, but this is still an excellent deal for those looking to pay off higher interest rate debt.
  • No annual fee – The card will cost you nothing to hold. Sometimes, cards with annual fees can eat into the rewards that you earn or the money you saved from the promotional offer. You don’t have to worry about that with the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card.
  • Choose your due date – A small, but nice, benefit is that you can choose your payment due date. For someone who gets paid infrequently or at unusual times during the month, this can be a huge blessing and help you make your payments on time.

Citi Rewards+℠ Card pros:

  • Excellent promotional offer – You’ll get 0% intro for 15 months on Purchases and 0% intro for 15 months on Balance Transfers. After that, you’ll pay an interest rate of 13.49% – 23.49% (Variable). While it isn’t as long as the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card, it’s still an excellent promotional offer.
  • No annual fee – The card has a $0 annual fee, so it costs you nothing to keep in your wallet. This card also has some long-term value, as it offers rewards.
  • Rewards points – You’ll get 15,000 bonus points once you spend $1,000 in the first three months of having your card open. You will earn double points at supermarkets and gas stations, and one point per dollar after that. While the redemption options are somewhat limited, this is a pretty good deal for a card with no annual fee.

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card vs. Citi Rewards+℠ Card cons

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card cons:

  • No rewards – This is my biggest gripe with the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card. The promotional offer and the fact that there is no annual fee are great, but the card offers little value after that promotional period. You won’t earn rewards, and you will no longer have valuable APR to take advantage of.
  • Foreign transaction fees – If there were no foreign transaction fees, I could see this card being valuable even after the promotional period. You could travel with it and not have to worry about foreign transaction fees. But they charge 3% in foreign transaction fees.
  • Few additional perks – There aren’t many other benefits to speak up with this credit card. So it leaves me questioning what I would do with it after my promotion ends.

Citi Rewards+℠ Card cons:

  • Rewards points – Yes, this is both a pro and a con. While you earn rewards points, there are cards out there that are far superior for earning points—even some with no annual fee. The significant benefit here obviously is the promotional offer. So you have to consider what is better for you long-term.
  • Few additional perks – Like the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card, the Citi Rewards+℠ Card doesn’t have any exciting other extras to it. So if you want unique additional benefits, look elsewhere.
  • Foreign transaction fees – This card does have long-term value because it offers rewards, but you shouldn’t travel with it because you’ll get hit with a foreign transaction fee. I could have been much higher on this card if they’d waived these fees.

Why choose the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card?

It’s relatively straightforward as to why you would choose the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card. It’s the intro APR that you get on both balance transfers and purchases. Financing a large purchase at no interest over a year and a half is extremely attractive to many people. 

But I think the bigger draw is the promotional offer on balance transfers. This allows you to move a balance from a higher interest rate credit card to your Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card at 0% for 18 months on Balance Transfers. After that, the variable APR will be 14.74% – 24.74% (Variable).

Why choose the Citi Rewards+℠ Card?

The Citi Rewards+℠ Card gets a little more complicated as to why you would choose it over something else. It does have an excellent promotional offer on purchases and balance transfers. 

You will get a 0% intro for 15 months on Purchases and 0% intro for 15 months on Balance Transfers, which is longer than many other credit cards offer. After that, the variable APR will be 13.49% – 23.49% (Variable). You also earn rewards on the card. However, the rewards are not as good as other cards on our best rewards credit cards list.

This is where the problem comes in.

If your primary goal is to take advantage of a promotional offer, you’re probably better off going with the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card. And if your primary goal is to earn rewards, You’re probably better off going with a better rewards card that also has no annual fee

The Citi Rewards+℠ Card sort of lands in the middle between those two, making it a mediocre choice at best, in my opinion.

Summary

While I appreciate the lengthy promotional offers, I’m not sure there is enough additional benefit to either of these cards to blow me away completely. 

That being said, if you’re someone who is looking to pay off high-interest debt or finance a large purchase, I do recommend the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card

But as I said above, if you want rewards, check out our list of rewards credit cards or even our best travel credit cards.

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