A reader informs us that the $250 Citi Prestige travel credit (which happens to temporarily include supermarkets and restaurants) no longer runs based on the December statement closing date, and now uses the simpler December 31 / January 1 as the cutoff.
Reader Nick tells us of being able to get the $250 travel credit for 2020 from spend after his December 2020 statement closed, and to get additional credit for 2021 from spend which occurred in January 2021. That would imply a December 31 cutoff date for the travel credit versus the old December-statement cutoff system.
I combed the fine print, and did discover in Way Back Machine a change in the wording. The current wording (which has been there at least since September 2020) states:
Your Card Account is eligible to receive statement credits of up to $250 per calendar year for Travel Purchases made by the Primary cardmember or Authorized Users and which appear on your billing statement during that calendar year (“Travel Credit”)
The best I could get on Way Back Machine for the old terms is from March 2017Â which stated:
This statement credit is an annual benefit available for purchases appearing on your billing statements from December through the following December. Pending transactions that do not post in your December billing cycle will count towards the next year’s Air Travel Credit.
I don’t know at which point between March 2017 and September 2020 the wording changed. The old wording clearly puts the cutoff at the December statement close. The new terms are apparently switching that to a December 31 cutoff system, though the wording remains somewhat ambiguous.
Combining Nick’s data point along with the wording change in the terms, I’m reasonably confident that they have indeed changed this from statement close to December 31 cutoff. Multiple readers in the comments below confirm this as well.
All this matters especially this year when the credit can be used on supermarkets and restaurants through December 31. In a previous post I pointed out that this would make it possible to get both 2021 and 2022 travel credits at the expanded travel category, but apparently that’s not correct. Bummer.