The Citi Prestige Card pays for itself

  I have earned $669 in statement credits with the Citi Prestige Card thus far in 2017.  (click to enlarge)

I have earned $669 in statement credits with the Citi Prestige Card thus far in 2017. (click to enlarge)

Last week, in my review of the Sheraton Suites Key West, I discussed how I took advantage of the Citi Prestige Card's 4th Night Free benefit. Today, I want to highlight how, after receiving the free night, the card has more than paid for itself for 2017.

Citi Prestige Card benefits

As a quick refresher, here is a summary of the benefits of this card:

  • $250 annual air travel credit
  • Complimentary fourth night
  • Access to Priority Pass Select lounges
  • $100 Global Entry application fee credit (every five years)
  • 3x points on air travel and hotels
  • 2x points on dining and entertainment
  • No foreign transaction fees

The card carries a $450 annual fee, but, only halfway through 2017, I have more than covered this year's fee.

Value of my Citi Prestige benefits in 2017

Because I will certainly spend more than $250 on airfare each year, the annual air travel credit effectively reduces my annual fee to $200. This year, I received the credit in February after I booked award travel on Air France for our trip last month to Italy. As I wrote in my Sheraton Suites review, later in February I saved $419.18 from the free fourth night on my wedding trip. This brought my total statement credits this year to $669.18, putting me in the black by $219.18!

In addition to the statement credits, I have received additional value from the Priority Pass Select membership. The value of this is harder to quantify since, though I much prefer spending time in an airport lounge rather than at the gate, I would not generally pay the admissions charge for non-members. I suppose I can chalk up $20 in tangible savings. Last month, while changing planes at Washington-Dulles, we visited the Turkish Airlines lounge via Priority Pass. The lounge buffet was a more than acceptable option for dinner for my wife and I. I would guess we would have spent at least $20 in an airport cafe.

Summary

The Citi Prestige Card is not an cheap card in terms of annual fee. However, you have an excellent opportunity to recover the fee and more. If you regularly have hotel stays of four or more nights more, the card could literally save you thousands of dollars annually. Also, while hard to put a number on, the soft benefits like Priority Pass Select make time spent at the airport far more enjoyable. If you are looking for a card with a nice signup bonus point offer - currently 40,000 ThankYou Points after spending $4,000 in the first three months of card membership - with excellent ongoing benefits, I highly recommend the Citi Prestige Card.