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Surprisingly, after combing through,
we could find only one negative change in the lot, and a handful of really positive changes.
Update: Citi has informed us that there was a misprint in its initial benefits guide. Job loss and jury duty / court subpoenas remain covered reasons for Trip Cancellation coverage for both the Citi Premier and Prestige, which is good news.
First, the negative… If you have the Citi Premier card job loss is no longer a covered reason for trip cancellation coverage, though the Citi Prestige still lists that as a valid reason. That was a pretty unique benefit, as trip cancellation coverage from Chase cards for example, don’t include job loss either.
But the rest of the changes we spotted are positive…from adding sick pets as a valid reason to cancel a trip, to the most generous extended warranty coverage we have seen yet.
Always double check by calling the number on the back of your card before relying on coverage, as protection benefits can vary and change.
Citi will now extend a manufacturer’s warranty by 24 months, and you can add the 24 months on top of extended warranties you buy, getting a maximum total warranty period of up to 84 months.
This is a completely new protection that Citi is now offering. You can now return items 90 days after purchase and be covered up to $500 per item and $2,500 per year.
Previously, the entire cost of the trip must have been paid for with your Citi card in order to be eligible for this insurance, meaning that award tickets would not be covered. Now, only a portion of your trip must be paid for with your Citi card. But if only a partial charge was made on your Citi card, that is your maximum coverage, so it’s not quite as generous as coverage we see with some Chase cards in this situation.
Previously, only the card member, authorized users, and family members were covered under this protection. Now, unrelated traveling companions are also covered.
Coverage reasons now include a pet becoming sick or having a serious injury and needing care from a vet – something we haven’t seen with other card issuers.
Like with Trip Cancellation and Interruption Protection above, now, only a portion of your cost must have been purchased with your Citi card in order to receive this benefit. Whether you paid for part or the full cost with your Citi card you will be covered up to $500 for trip delays.
Traveling companions are now covered in addition to the card member, authorized users, and family members.
Only a portion of your trip cost must have been paid for with a Citi card in order to be eligible for baggage delay protection.
Like for the protections above, traveling companions that are not family members are now also eligible for this protection.
Maximum coverage per item used to be only $1,000, now it is the lesser of the purchase price of the item (for purchases made partially with Citi cards) and $10,000.
Maximum coverage has been increased from $300 per item and $1,200 per calendar year to $500 per item (or the amount charged to the Citi card for partial purchases) and $2,500 per calendar year.
While this is all good news, and in many cases the changes put Citi’s benefits ahead of other cards, a missed opportunity comes on the car rental collision damage front, where the Citi coverage is still secondary for rentals in the United States.
With some Chase cards like the Sapphire Preferred and United MileagePlus Explorer, that coverage is primary, meaning you won’t have to file a claim with your own insurance provider if you use the credit card coverage. With Citi’s coverage, you’ll have to file a claim with your own insurance if you have it first, and Citi’s benefits administrator will cover any deductible or other out of pocket expenses.
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