Finder experts pick Citi Simplicity® Card as a 2023 best product for credit cards.
Here’s how to apply for the Citi Simplicity® Card:
- Go to the provider's site to Learn more about how to apply for Citi Simplicity® Card.
- Complete the application form with information like your name, date of birth, Social Security number, total annual income and monthly mortgage or rent payment.
- Review your information. Then, select Agree and submit to complete your application.
- Introductory APR on balance transfers. Get 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 21 months after account opening, then 18.99% to 29.74% variable. Citi is consistently strong in balance transfer intro APRs, and the Citi Simplicity® Card is one reason why — the average good intro APR length is around 15 months. If you’re approved for the Citi Simplicity® Card, consider marking the last day to qualify for the balance transfer intro APR on your calendar: it’s four months after account opening. Allow for plenty of time for each transfer to process, keeping in mind this can easily take 14 days or more.
- Introductory APR on purchases. Get 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months after account opening, then 18.99% to 29.74% variable. While it’s a shame this doesn’t match the length of the balance transfer offer, this is still a solid deal consider the upper period limit on a purchase APR is typically 18 months. If you manage to pay off your balance transfer quickly enough, you can take advantage of this intro offer to continue to save on interest.
- No annual fee. You won’t pay an annual fee to use this card.
- No late fees. This is an uncommon benefit among card providers, and most providers are usually adamant about charging these fees — even Citi itself.
- No rewards. This card is strictly an intro APR credit card. You have no option to earn rewards like cash back, points or miles.
- You’ll still pay balance transfer fees. For each balance transfer, you’ll pay the greater of $5 or 5%.
The Citi Simplicity® Card has a $0 annual fee and a market-leading balance transfer intro APR. But there’s one thing you can’t get around: the balance transfer fee.
This will set you back the greater of $5 or 5% of each transfer. This percentage is on the high side, as some card providers charge just 3%.
Here are examples of the fees you’ll pay with the Citi Simplicity® Card versus other credit cards:
|Citi Simplicity® Card — 5% balance transfer fee||$50||$250||$500|
|A credit card with a 3% balance transfer fee||$30||$150||$300|
If you’re trying to figure out whether you’d be better served with a card with a long intro APR or one with no balance transfer fees, use our balance transfer calculator to see how much you’ll save.
The Citi Simplicity® Card‘s closest competition are cards that offer at least 18-month intro APRs. Here’s a look at the Citi Simplicity and two competitors side-by-side.
While the Citi Simplicity® Card is the winner for balance transfer intro APR, its competitors offer much better intro APRs on purchases.
If you’ve squeezed all you can out of your intro APR and you’re now thinking about closing your card, there may be another option available. Instead of closing your card and taking a hit to your average account age, consider asking Citi for a product change. Here’s what to request one.
- Take your time to browse Citi credit cards. Then pick the one that best aligns with your current needs.
- Call Citi support and request a product change to the card you’ve selected. You can ask the representative about annual fees and other features for the new card.
You won’t be able to transfer your existing Citi balance to your new Citi card. However, your new card can give you perks you couldn’t get with the Citi Simplicity® Card, such as rewards or travel credits. Importantly, while Citi is usually very accommodating with product changes, users have reported mixed results getting a product change from the Citi Simplicity® Card. Your mileage may vary.
Citi has the longest intro APR period on balance transfers and is the go-to pick for anyone that needs plenty of time to pay off a debt. Still, there are a few reasons you might want to go with a different card.
- You want rewards and an intro APR. The Citi® Double Cash Card offers a balance transfer intro APR that’s almost as good: 0% for 18 months, then 19.24% to 29.24% variable. The key difference is you’ll earn fantastic flat-rate rewards for a no-annual-fee card: 1% cash back on all purchases and another 1% as you pay them off. Also, consider cards like the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, which offer the formidable combo of flat-rate cash back as well as an intro APR on purchases.
- You don’t want to pay balance transfer fees. Some cards offer promotional $0 fees on balance transfers, along with intro APRs and $0 annual fees. Depending on how much you need to transfer, a balance transfer fee can carry a significant cost.
- You don’t need 21 months on the offer. If you think you can pay off your debt in less than 21 months, a card with a shorter intro offer but other perks or features might prove more valuable.
If you’re interested in how the Citi Simplicity stacks up to the competition, select up to four cards and choose Compare to see their features side-by-side.
Citi has been in business for more than 200 years, but it was not accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB). As of September 2021, more than 200 customer complaints on the BBB site give the bank a score of 1 out of 5. And because Citi failed to resolve customer complaints on the site, BBB has rated the bank with the lowest F rating. Citi is rated slightly higher at 1.4 out of 5 on Trustpilot, where customers mostly complain about poor customer service.
While Citi receives its share of negative reviews, the Citi Simplicity® Card generally earns positive sentiment online from consumers and experts alike. Customers consistently give the Citi Simplicity® Card high marks as a balance transfer card — and with the card’s excellent intro APR on transfers, it’s easy to see why.
Many customers say Citi constantly sends them balance transfer checks, which can be annoying if you’re done with transfers. If you experience this and don’t want to receive checks, call Citi support and ask to opt out.
Though the Citi Simplicity® Card is valuable for only one feature, it’s hands-down one of the best balance transfer credit cards on the market. The reason is simple: It consistently possesses one of the longest intro APR on transfers on the market.
If you’re looking for more than just a balance transfer offer, consider looking for a card that offers rewards. With the extensive options out there, you’re sure to find one with the right mix of intro length and rewards to fit your needs.
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