One Mile at A Time reported earlier this week that Citibank has finally fixed their magstripe problem on these cards. Both cards feature a similar design - the Citi Prestige is black and the Citi ThankYou Premier is gray - that is very sleek and modern. The problem is that the magnetic stripe is on the front of the card. I cannot begin to count the number of times I have needed to tell a cashier - someone who handles all kinds of credit and debit cards all day long - how to swipe the card. "The stripe is on the front. Yes, it's a terrible design."
The continual need to give guidance when using the card really made me not want to even bother if I could not swipe it myself. That is a shame because both cards offer great category bonuses: 3x points on travel plus 2x points on dining and entertainment. I really like the entertainment bonus because none of my other cards offer that; I make a point to use one of these two cards at movie theaters and stadiums. The ThankYou Premier even includes gas stations as part of travel, so that card is my default card when filling up my car even now that my initial spend requirement has been met.
The good news is that Citi has redesigned the cards and placed the magstripe in its natural place - on the back! The new ThankYou Premier design can be seen on Citi's web page for the card. According to Doctor of Credit, the new designs went live on October 19. You should be able to call Citi and request new cards by now. One Mile at a Time's Ben Schlappig had some minor difficulties but was ultimately successful in getting the new design. I have yet to try but I plan to call by this weekend. I definitely want to take advantage of these cards - despite the $450 annual fee on the Prestige, the benefits make it worth keeping - but I was sick of actually using them. I will post my results once I speak to the bank.