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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with new information.
“Do you know what’s happening with the Citi travel portal?” We’ve received numerous emails with this question over the past few months — ever since Citi cardholders lost the ability to make bookings into 2023 through Citi’s travel portal.
TPG staffers and readers noticed this problem in June 2022 and reached out to Citi to ask what was going on. Back in August, we got a first look at what’s changing with the Citi ThankYou Travel Center (which is detailed later in this post).
However, the new portal didn’t go live as originally expected. And since we originally published this article in August, we have received countless emails asking when bookings for 2023 will be possible or whether we had any updates. Here’s the latest from a Citi spokesperson on what’s happening.
Delays to the new portal, but a fix is coming
At present, Citi cardholders cannot make bookings into 2023. Since we’re approaching November and people want to make travel plans for next year, this has been an ongoing source of frustration for our readers.
However, on Nov. 13, 2022, there will be a solution, according to a Citi spokesperson. On that date, Citi cardholders will be able to book travel through the first half of 2023.
Obviously, this only alleviates part of the problem. The new travel portal still won’t be live on this date, and bookings will only be possible through the first half of next year. However, this will allow cardholders to use their points to book near-term travel and will eliminate some of the bottlenecks currently happening. It will also allow cardholders who have hotel perks that require booking through Citi’s travel portal to use these benefits.
So when will the new portal go live? That won’t happen until early 2023, according to Citi’s spokesperson. “We are committed to everything being seamless at launch, so we have pushed back the launch date to make sure it’s working correctly on day one.”
It’s also worth noting that Citi travel representatives have received this same information, according to the spokesperson for Citi. For phone and chat inquiries asking about bookings into 2023, these agents have been instructed to provide the Nov. 13, 2022 date for when bookings into the first half of 2023 will be possible.
A new Citi travel portal is coming
The most obvious change is that Citi’s existing travel portal — the Citi ThankYou Travel Center — is going away. It will be replaced with a new travel portal.
The new Citi Travel portal is powered by Booking.com and will provide access to more than 1.4 million hotels worldwide, thanks to the Booking.com platform.
Citi promises that the new platform will be easier to use and accessible through Citi’s website and mobile app. Cardmembers will be able to customize their payments, choosing which credit card(s) or points to pay with, or a combination of the two.
Another new aspect is 24/7 customer support. Cardmembers will be able to receive help with their bookings around the clock.
You’ll earn points on all paid bookings through Citi Travel. You can also redeem your ThankYou Rewards points at a rate of 1 cent per point toward travel booked in the portal. This means a $150 flight would cost 15,000 Citi ThankYou points.
Related: How to redeem Citi ThankYou Rewards for maximum value
Bonus points promotion
For a limited time, Citi credit card holders can earn up to 10 points per dollar on Citi Travel bookings. This promotion starts when the new portal is live and runs through Dec. 31, 2023, and your bonus points multiplier will depend on which credit card you use for your booking:
- 10 points per dollar on Citi Travel bookings for hotels, rental cars and eligible attractions:
- Citi Prestige® Card (no longer open to new applicants).
- Citi Premier® Card.
- 5 points per dollar on these bookings:
- Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card (no longer open to new applicants).
- Citi Rewards+® Card.
The information for the Citi Prestige and ThankYou Preferred cards has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
Related: The ultimate guide to Citi ThankYou Rewards
These elevated earning rates apply to hotels, rental cars and eligible attractions offered in the Citi Travel portal. Unfortunately, flights are not included in the bonus-earning rates. Once these limited-time earning rates end, Citi will unveil the standard earning rates for travel booked in the portal.
For comparison, several banks have elevated earning rates on travel booked through their respective portals. Here are the points you can earn on these bookings when using a travel rewards credit card:
|Card||Earning rates for portal bookings||Earning rates on other travel bookings||Value of each point*|
|The Platinum Card® from American Express||
||2 cents each.|
|American Express® Gold Card||
||2 cents each.|
|Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card||
||1.85 cents each.|
|Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card||
||1.85 cents each.|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred Card||
||2 cents each.|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve||
||2 cents each.|
*Values are based on TPG’s latest valuations.
It’s interesting to note that Citi Travel’s elevated earning rates include attractions, which we have not seen with other bank travel portals. With the delay in launching the new Citi travel portal, we have asked Citi whether the end date for bonus earnings will be extended. We will update this section whenever Citi provides an answer.
Related: 9 things to consider when choosing to book via a portal vs. booking directly
No changes to Prestige and Premier card portal benefits
The Citi Prestige (no longer open to new applicants) and Citi Premier cards both offer valuable credits when booking with Citi Travel. These benefits are not changing.
Citi Premier cardholders receive a once-per-year $100 credit for hotel bookings of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, when booked at thankyou.com. This benefit will continue.
Also, note that this card currently offers 80,000 bonus points when new cardholders spend $4,000 in the first three months of account opening. This will be worth $800 in travel when the new portal launches, but you can also maximize by transferring points to one of Citi’s transfer partners.
Those who have the Citi Prestige can continue to enjoy their “fourth night free” perk. This benefit is available twice per year and offers a fourth night free on hotel bookings made at thankyou.com.
Related: 4 reasons the Citi Premier Card should be on your shortlist
After we noticed that you couldn’t make bookings with thankyou.com (Citi’s travel portal website) into 2023, it became clear that something was changing. Luckily, we now know what it is: Citi is launching a new travel portal, known as Citi Travel with Booking.com.
Through Dec. 31, 2023, there are elevated earning rates available on travel booked through Citi Travel. Once the new portal is live, count on TPG to take it for a test drive to see how well it works and what features are available.
For those who have been inquiring about the delays, at least we know that there’s a temporary solution coming soon.