Citibank Comes Up With Elaborate Cash Back Offer That Reduces Credit Limit And Temporarily Suspends Card

Compared to what some other banks and card companies are doing to reduce their exposure to debt, we guess Citibank’s cash back offer isn’t that bad—it’s sort of a “let us help you help yourself get rid of your debt” scheme. It’s funny, however, if only because it’s such an elaborate way to get customers to self-select for a reduction in credit.

Here’s the offer Craig received today:

Now you can earn cash back in the form of a statement credit simply by paying above the minimum amount due on your account.

Paying above the minimum amount due on any of your next 4 monthly billing statements can earn you a statement credit equal to 20% of the amount you paid over the minimum amount due. You can earn up to $550 in the program.

How it works:

  • The ability to charge on your account will be temporarily suspended until your statement credit is posted.
  • Upon receiving your statement credit, your credit line will be decreased by the total amount paid over the minimum amount due, plus the amount of your statement credit.
  • Timely payment of at least the minimum amount due is required on all billing statements before earnings are credited.
  • Earnings will be credited to your account in one lump sum within 3 billing statements after successful completion of the program.

We get the part about putting the card on hold during the program; otherwise the entire plan could be rendered moot by a single charge. But the part about reducing your credit limit by the amount you paid extra seems like a random way to penalize customers for taking advantage of the offer. At least you’ll get paid something for it, though?

(Photo: boboroshi)