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Citi Simplicity® Card Review

Credit cards aren’t simple. Nothing having to do with money or banks is simple but the new Citi Simplicity® Card [3] aims to change that.

Maybe this sounds familiar to you: One of the reasons that consumers end up paying a bunch of fees is because they don’t understand the rules. They aren’t going to read all of that fine print that comes with a credit card because not only is it so small that it makes their eyes cross trying to read it but the wording is so confusing that even if they could or wanted to read it, they don’t understand it.

You’re going to be amazed at how un-credit-card-like this credit actually is and for once, the rules work in your favor. If you’re rebuilding your credit, you’re tired all of the fees, or you want a card that allows you to pay down your debt for two years without charging you interest, the Citi Simplicity® Card offered by Citigroup may be worth a second look.

No Fees Fee Structure

A credit card with no fees is like those days long ago when a bank was happy to have your business and they weren’t charging you money to use your money. With the Citi Simplicity® Card a late payment does not equal a late fee and you aren’t going to get a letter in the mail saying that your interest rate went up. If you charge too much on the card, you won’t be hit with a $40 over the limit fee either. When they say no fees, they mean no fees.

Although Citi may forgive your financial transgressions the credit bureaus will not. Paying late is still reported to the credit reporting agencies and if you are late too many times, you can be sure that you will get a cancellation letter in the mail.

Low Introductory Rate

The 0% balance transfer [4] introductory rate for the Citi Advantage credit card is ultra low for the first 18 months. This is extremely helpful to someone who wants to pay down their credit card debt and believes they can make significant headway over that time. After the introductory period, the rate jumps to a higher, less customer friendly rate. If this is higher than your existing credit card and you’re not absolutely sure that you can make a significant dent in your debt in 18 months, transfer your balance with caution. Many have tried to save money by transferring to a lower balance card only to find that in the end, they pay more. Be realistic and conservative with your debt plans.

No Rewards

Rewards points are essentially useless for those who are paying monthly interest. Regardless of how you crunch the numbers, monthly interest payments far exceed the value of the points you receive so the low interest rate may outweigh the lack of rewards points.

If you’re somebody with a spotless credit history and you always pay your balance at the end of the month, there are cards with better terms that offer rewards points so in the case of this card, the lack of rewards points shouldn’t be a defining factor in your decision.

Is it for you?

If you’re trying to rebuild your credit, have a short term plan for paying down debt, or don’t usually carry a balance and like the idea of a no fees card, the Citi Simplicity® Card may be the perfect choice for you. However, if you have excellent credit, there are cards with better terms and a rewards program that may be a better fit.