I don’t care what anybody says or how much money affiliate bloggers are making from it, I think the new Citi Double Cash is great for credit card consumers.
Recently Drew at Travel Is Free lambasted this card as well as some others. I love Travel Is Free, I think it’s one of the best blogs out there, but Drew was (and remains) completely wrong about this card. Let’s go through the virtues:
- It’s 2% cash back
- There is no annual fee
And that’s it! Do you know how many major issuers (JCB Marukai doesn’t count) have 2% cash back cards with no annual fee? One! I’m talking about the Fidelity Amex, of course, but you know that already. It’s been praised by many bloggers, myself included, as one of the best cards out there.
But there’s no pleasing everybody. Travel Is Free writes, “This card sucks. Why are we even discussing it?” Let’s go through TIF’s points one by one and explain why this is a good card:
It doesn’t even have a sign up bonus.
So what? You know what other card didn’t have a sign-up bonus? The Best Buy credit card, and that thing was freakin’ awesome for a while.
The Barclay Arrival Plus comes with $400 via 40,000 points and you earn more value per dollar.
It also has an annual fee, and you have to use the money on travel. Some of us value 2% cash more than 2.2% that has to be used on travel.
I can’t imagine a universe where I would get this card, and I can’t even imagine a scenario where I would ever use it.
How about a universe where the Fido Amex and Arrival Plus are discontinued and where retailers tighten up on letting you buy stuff with a 5% bonus card?
And no other blogger is getting it (unless they are doing very very highe dollars with, no cat bonus, and don’t already have a 2% back card)
Lots of bloggers are getting it, myself included. Citi informs me I’ll be able to convert an existing card on September 7. And I’m not doing very high dollars with no category bonus, and I already do have a 2% cash back card.
This is the Cap1 Venture card with no bonus.
Wrong on two counts. The Venture card has a $59 annual fee, and the rewards are not cash, they are “miles”.
Here’s why it really sucks: If I’m MSing, I’ll 5x that sucker at any grocery, office, gas station, etc… If I’m buying travel, I could at least 3x it and maybe more with that airline or hotel’s particular card.
Yes, that’s why it really sucks… for Drew. But there are plenty of us who don’t do the 5X everywhere game. Drew is committing what’s known as the Christopher Elliott fallacy, where one falsely concludes that because something is wrong for him, it is wrong for everybody else.
Doctor of Credit has a pretty good write-up on the card, where he points out that it may be worth waiting to see if a bonus is offered. Good point! I’ll be doing a conversion from an existing Citi card since I doubt that there will be much of a sign-up bonus, but to each his own.
If you have an unused Citi card in your sock drawer, you might want to think about converting it to the Double Cash. 2% cards don’t grow on trees and they tend to get discontinued periodically (e.g. the Priceline Visa), so it’s good to get in before the plug gets pulled. I don’t think Citi would pull the plug on this any time soon, so there’s no rush.
BOARDINGAREA.COM WORD CLOUDS: Recently Travel Blogger Buzz linked to a Flyertalk kerfuffle between him and Wandering Aramean. The friendly, cordial discussion is more of an inside baseball type of thing, but what was interesting was Seth posted article titles from the past three months for both View From The Wing and One Mile At A Time. I decided to create word clouds from the results just for the heck of it. Here’s VFTW: