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Citi suspends USA Prestige card applications August 2018

Citi suspends USA Prestige card applications August 2018

Old Aug 6, 18, 6:36 pm
  #46  
 
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Originally Posted by mia View Post
Citi needs to have a product in this category for the same reason they do, to prevent JPM Chase from poaching their large depositors.

Citi designed Chairman and Prestige to compete with American Express Platinum, but now they see that Sapphire Reserve represents more of a danger to their core banking business. They need to refresh (or replace) Prestige with a product aimed at Chase rather than at American Express.
They could do what you suggested, or, the other thing they can do is give up entirely. Other large banks don't have $450 a year cards and seem just fine (BoA, Wells Fargo, who make up two of the big four).

It seems like Corbat's style is not longer focusing on premium perks, but instead, conservative lending and cutting corners everywhere they can to make a profit.

I think Citi should adopt something similar to what Bank of America offers with their Premium rewards program.... But I feel like Citi is too cheap to pay out rewards at that level.
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Old Aug 6, 18, 6:42 pm
  #47  
mia
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Bank of America and Wells Fargo both have (or have had) exclusive cards for their high end depositors. Citi might follow their lead and create a card that won't be available to the typical Flyertalk poster.
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Old Aug 6, 18, 8:42 pm
  #48  
 
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So let's say they stop offering the card altogether. What do you all think will happen to existing cards? Conversion to Premier?
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Old Aug 6, 18, 9:31 pm
  #49  
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Originally Posted by mia View Post
Evidence that it isn't necessary to withdraw a card before refreshing, is not the same as evidence that Citi will not do it.
The problem with Citi is each time, when a card stops accepting applications, it usually marks the beginning of the end. So when you have a point, again - it is unlikely a product refreshment.

Originally Posted by mia View Post
Even banks that are not players in the rewards card business now have a ~$400 card with a travel credit (e.g. HSBC, US Bank). Citi needs to have a product in this category for the same reason they do, to prevent JPM Chase from poaching their large depositors.
The HSBC card you mentioned is not available to the general public, but only HSBC Premier customers only.

Also - Citi has created Citi Priority and increased existing Citigold requirements. Chase needs not to poach Citi's clients as it was Citi who pushed them away. Also - when Citigold and CPC seem to be similar products, Citi's true competitor in this case is HSBC only.

Originally Posted by mia View Post
Citi designed Chairman and Prestige to compete with American Express Platinum, but now they see that Sapphire Reserve represents more of a danger to their core banking business. They need to refresh (or replace) Prestige with a product aimed at Chase rather than at American Express.
Actually, the problem is even worse than you can imagine.

Citi's recent credit card business strategy is to focus on Costco only. In exchange, Citi pissed off various partners. At the same time, while Costco has brought sizeable revenues to Citi, it is not as much as what AMEX got (Note - AMEX handled both the payment processing and credit card). If Citi does not realize how screw up they are, even AA will leave Citi as well (Note - allowing Barclays to re-issue AA cards with EQD waivers is a good indicator that how Citi screwed up the partner relationships).

Originally Posted by mikesyr18 View Post
I think Citi should adopt something similar to what Bank of America offers with their Premium rewards program.... But I feel like Citi is too cheap to pay out rewards at that level.
Citi is cheap. End of story.
Originally Posted by mia View Post
Bank of America and Wells Fargo both have (or have had) exclusive cards for their high end depositors. Citi might follow their lead and create a card that won't be available to the typical Flyertalk poster.
If Citi has to do it, it should have done it decades ago.

Beside - WF simply sucks on credit cards. BofA is not as competitive as other issuers.
Originally Posted by moe8555 View Post
So let's say they stop offering the card altogether. What do you all think will happen to existing cards? Conversion to Premier?
It should be Citi TY Preferred. The AF with Premier is an obstacle for the conversion.
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Old Aug 7, 18, 5:58 am
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I find it interesting that the major bloggers (TPG, MMS, et al) have been silent on this. Normally they are happy to seize these kinds of rumors. Whatever is happening on August 18, they appear to have a gag order from Citi.
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Old Aug 7, 18, 7:31 am
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Originally Posted by pallhedge View Post
I find it interesting that the major bloggers (TPG, MMS, et al) have been silent on this. Normally they are happy to seize these kinds of rumors. Whatever is happening on August 18, they appear to have a gag order from Citi.
Good observation. They seem to be heavily promoting the Citi Premier.
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Old Aug 7, 18, 9:08 am
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Originally Posted by iluvdoco View Post
Good observation. They seem to be heavily promoting the Citi Premier.
TPG doesn't even have an affiliate link for Prestige on their site right now (at least I couldn't find it). That fact, plus their silence, indicates to me that this isn't a discontinuation of the card. More likely a big push by Citi with a higher bonus offer and/or higher affiliate fees coming soon. Again, this is pure speculation based observable unusual actions by entities that should be in the know.
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Old Aug 7, 18, 12:50 pm
  #53  
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Originally Posted by pallhedge View Post
I find it interesting that the major bloggers (TPG, MMS, et al) have been silent on this. Normally they are happy to seize these kinds of rumors. Whatever is happening on August 18, they appear to have a gag order from Citi.
They are not bloggers, but advertisers. Once they start receiving money for promoting, their blogs become platforms for commercial speech. And their speech will be subject to the limitation of the contract they have signed with the credit card issuers (or whoever give them the money).

I am not surprised that the contract has included a non-disparagement clause prohibiting them saying something bad. AFAICT - they usually do not report anything negative until the news is public (i.e. the issuer has made the announcement).

Originally Posted by pallhedge View Post
TPG doesn't even have an affiliate link for Prestige on their site right now (at least I couldn't find it). That fact, plus their silence, indicates to me that this isn't a discontinuation of the card. More likely a big push by Citi with a higher bonus offer and/or higher affiliate fees coming soon. Again, this is pure speculation based observable unusual actions by entities that should be in the know.
Think simple, not complicated.

As I have said again - a non-disparagement clause can be quite powerful against affiliated advertisers.
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Old Aug 7, 18, 1:17 pm
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Data point. Had card for almost a year, about $15K in spend. Annual fee is due in a couple of weeks.

Called and told automated system that I wanted to close card. Placed on hold for a representative - on hold for over 30 minutes before a rep answered. Not sure if it was a regular rep or a retention expert.

Said I wanted to cancel. Rep asked why and I said combination of the fee plus duplicate benefits on other cards. Rep asked one question: Do understand that once you cancel, you may not be able to get this card again? I said yes and she cancelled effective immediately.

I was a bit taken aback by that response. Was halfway expecting her to try to talk me out of it, maybe get a retention offer, or at least an offer to downgrade or product change. There was none of that. Just quickly closed card - and that was that.


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Old Aug 7, 18, 3:08 pm
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Not sure if this was mentioned yet, but doesn't even appear that this card has sign-up bonus on Citi's website.
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Old Aug 7, 18, 4:49 pm
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Originally Posted by garykung View Post
I am not surprised that the contract has included a non-disparagement clause prohibiting them saying something bad.
To be clear, when I wrote "gag order" in my OP, i wasn't referring to a non-disparagement clause. I meant news that they have received from Citi that has been embargoed until a certain date. This happens all the time (TPG, MMS, etc., announce the news--not the issuer). That's what this feels like to me.
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Old Aug 7, 18, 4:50 pm
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Originally Posted by canesfan View Post
Not sure if this was mentioned yet, but doesn't even appear that this card has sign-up bonus on Citi's website.
It hasn't for quite some time.
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Old Aug 7, 18, 5:22 pm
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Bankrate owned TPG, NextAdvisor, MMS, Interest.com, Quizzle, Walla.by, and Senior Homes (see SEC filing: Bankrate annual report) Then Red Ventures bought Bankrate.

Those "blogs" are part of a marketing company that Wikipedia says has 3,600 employees.
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Old Aug 8, 18, 10:10 am
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Theyve effectively ruined the Prestige brand by making so many cuts.

Lets say they announce a refresh. People Google the card name and come across a graveyard of benefits that are no longer available. That doesnt scream "apply now!'
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Old Aug 8, 18, 10:49 am
  #60  
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Originally Posted by jamesinclair View Post
Theyve effectively ruined the Prestige brand....
They could invent a new brand, just as they did when they replaced Chairman with Prestige.
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