Who Is This Credit Card Best For?
Flies regularly and likes finding ways to score even more travel—for free See more cards
Diligently searches for the best products and delights in a good bargain See more cards
Hits the road often, whether for work or play See more cards
Loves to explore places and experience new things See more cards
If you’re an AT&T customer who wants to earn extra rewards from paying your cell phone bill or for online purchases, you might be interested in this card. You can get added value out of it if you frequently shop online, too. Also, if you’re not sure how you want to use your rewards and want redemption flexibility, the card offers multiple options for redeeming your points.
However, it’s not the greatest card if you want to earn a high rewards rate on all of your spending. For that, there are other cash-back cards we’d recommend with rewards rates of 1.5%-2% for all purchases.
Rewards for paying your cell phone bill
Narrow bonus categories
Underwhelming bonus for new cardholders
No 0% intro APR offer on purchases or balance transfers
- Rewards for paying your cell phone bill: It’s not always easy to find rewards cards for bills like cell phone service. The few that are out there often rely on complicated rotating-category bonuses, so you might not even qualify for the higher rate for the full year.
- Low APR: The card’s best APR is significantly lower than the averages for rewards cards and all cards, in general. If you can qualify for the lowest rate, you could save money on interest payments compared to cards with higher APRs.
- Narrow bonus categories: You’ll earn a higher rewards rate for “eligible” online retailers, which includes tricky categories like “specialty store websites.” Is a cookware website a “specialty” store, for example? It’ll be tough to tell in many cases, which might mean you’ll earn fewer rewards than you expect.
- Underwhelming bonus for new cardholders: You’ll earn 10,000 ThankYou Points for spending at least $1,000 within the first three months. Many other cards without an annual fee offer a better bonus for new cardholders.
- No 0% intro APR offer on purchases or balance transfers: It’s pretty common for cards like this to come with a defined 0% APR period for balance transfers or purchases to help you save money. Yet, this card doesn’t come with one, so it’s not a great option for paying down debt or making a large purchase.
AT&T Access Card From Citi’s Bonus for New Cardholders
Citi offers a meager welcome bonus of 10,000 ThankYou Points if you spend at least $1,000 on your card within the first three months. Your bonus points are worth $50 if you redeem for cash, or $100 if you redeem the bonus via another route, such as a travel booking or gift card through Citi’s ThankYou rewards portal. If you earn the bonus, Citi will deposit it into your account within two billing cycles.
Earning Points & Rewards
The rewards you earn with this card are called ThankYou Points, and they’re a pretty standard points currency across many of Citi’s cards. You’ll earn at least 1 ThankYou Point per dollar for every purchase you make with the card, and 2 ThankYou Points per dollar for purchases made at AT&T, including your monthly bill and even tech purchases from AT&T like a new phone or tablet.
You’ll also earn 2 ThankYou Points per dollar on purchases made with certain online retailers. According to Citi, that includes:
- Department store websites
- Specialty store websites
- Warehouse store websites
- Boutique websites
- Travel websites (online travel agencies and hotel and airline websites)
And, specifically, the 2% bonus for online retailers excludes from this list certain types of businesses:
- Real estate (including rentals)
- Medical services
- Prepaid cards (including reloadable gift cards)
- Taxes and government services
So even though you may make these purchases online, they don’t count for the bonus points and you’ll earn 1 ThankYou Point for every dollar you spend. This list of what counts and what doesn’t count for rewards is a little more complex than the typical rewards category but not uncommon.
Like most credit card issuers, Citi uses merchant codes to classify who you’re buying from. If you want to ensure you’ll earn bonus points, you’ll need to know two things: which merchant codes Citi uses for bonus categories, and which merchant code the store you want to buy from is classified as.
You can redeem your points through a ThankYou Points account Citi will create when you open your card, which you can log into and view alongside your credit card account.
You have a lot of options to choose from for getting the most value out of your points (1 cent per point):
- Statement credit
- Gift cards
- Purchases from popular online retailers like Amazon
- Travel through Citi’s travel booking portal
- Charitable donations
We advise against redeeming your points for cash since they’re worth half as much—0.5 cents each—with this option.
Many cash-back cards will give you 1 cent for every point you redeem for cash. If your primary goal is to earn cash rewards, other cards may be a better fit.
How to Get the Most Out of This Card
To get the most from this card, look at the highest value per point when choosing from the many options available in the ThankYou Point portal. Use your points to book travel, make charitable donations, purchase gift cards, or shop with online retailers to get the best value.
The gift-card redemptions available to you are pretty diverse, ranging from restaurants and theaters (AMC, Fandango) to clothing and more. Before applying for this card, take a look at the list of cards available to see if there are any merchants you regularly shop at.
AT&T Access Card From Citi’s Other Features
- Sports, music, and event ticket presales, plus VIP access at some events
Citi ranks slightly below the national average for credit card issuers, finishing sixth out of 11 issuers in J.D. Power’s 2019 Credit Card Satisfaction Study. However, the news is better for mobile app users: Citi ranked third out of 21 banks in a 2019 survey of mobile banking apps by J.D. Power.
Citi offers chat and phone support, as well as account management through its app and website.
Citi offers standard security features on the AT&T Access Card, such as fraud alerts and zero liability for fraudulent purchases. Also, Citi offers a card-lock feature so that you can prevent new purchases from happening (aside from normal, recurring ones like bills) if you lose your card or if it’s stolen.
Fees to Watch Out For
The AT&T Access Card from Citi’s fees are similar to other cards. Still, the card charges a 3% foreign transaction fee, so you’ll want to take a different card with you if you travel overseas. Also, the card has a steep 29.99% APR that may kick in if you’re more than 60 days with a payment.