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Citibank Review

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by Lauren Perez Updated
Citibank

As one of the world’s biggest banks, Citibank offers a wide variety of financial products from savings accounts to credit cards to investments and more. When it comes to banking, Citibank doesn’t offer the highest-earning interest rates, especially when compared to many online banks we have reviewed.

However, it is worth noting that Citibank offers different tiers of fees and rates according to the Citibank Account Packages. These packages vary in their levels of benefits and perks, with the highest tier tailored toward customers with higher account balances. These account packages make Citi’s products and services more customizable so you can more likely find a product that fits your financial situation.

Products Offered

Product Key Features
Savings Account
  • $100 minimum deposit required
  • Must be opened with a Citibank Account Package
Certificates of Deposit
  • No monthly fees
  • Wide variety of term lengths from three months to five years
Checking Accounts
  • Interest-earning accounts available
  • Possible to earn cash bonus
IRAs
  • Money Market Account IRA or CD IRAs available 
  • $250 minimum for a CD IRA

Citibank Interest Rate Comparison

Citibank Overview

Citibank began in 1812 in New York City when merchants came together to create a bank to compete with the other big cities of the time. Throughout the years, the bank has gotten into a number of ventures like merging with a trust company and forging investment bank alliances. Today, the company has expanded to operate in over 117 countries and territories with over 4,000 branches worldwide. 

Citibank Account Features

From interest-earning checking accounts to basic savings accounts and certificates of deposit (CDs), Citibank has a lot to offer when it comes to saving. Not only do you have different products to choose from, but Citi also has various account packages to choose from. These packages help determine your interest rates, fees, minimums and more. This opens up Citi’s products and services to a wider number of customers. 

You also have the opportunity to earn Citi ThankYou® Points when banking with Citi. These points can be pooled together and used to “purchase” further rewards like merchandise, cash back, gift cards and more. 

Citi® Savings Account

Key Features Details
Minimum Deposit $100
Access to Your Savings Account Online, mobile and physical branches.
Security FDIC insurance up to the maximum amount allowed by law. 
Fees
  • Monthly service fee depends on your banking package 
  • Citigold®: n/a
  • Citi Priority: $30
  • The Citibank Account: $25 
  • Basic Banking: $12 ($4.50 when not linked to a checkless Regular Checking Account) - can be waived by maintaining an average monthly balance of at least $500
  • Access Account: $10 ($4.50 when not linked to a checkless Regular Checking Account) - can be waived by maintaining an average monthly balance of at least $500
Current Terms and Standard Rates: Citigold®
  • Account balances below $10,000: 0.04% APY
  • Account balances $10,000 - $24,999.99: 0.06% APY
  • Account balances $25,000 - $99,999.99: 0.10% APY
  • Account balances $100,000 - $499,999.99: 0.12% APY
  • Account balances $500,000 and over: 0.15% APY
Current Terms and Standard Rates: Citi Priority
  • Account balances below $10,000: 0.04% APY
  • Account balances $10,000 - $24,999.99: 0.06% APY
  • Account balances $25,000 - $99,999.99: 0.10% APY
  • Account balances $100,000 - $499,999.99: 0.12% APY
  • Account balances $500,000 and over: 0.15% APY
Current Terms and Standard Rates: The Citibank Account
  • Account balances below $25,000: 0.04% APY
  • Account balances $25,000 - $99,999.99: 0.08% APY
  • Account balances $100,000 - $499,999.99: 0.10% APY
  • Account balances $500,000 and over: 0.13% APY
Current Terms and Rates: Basic Banking
  • Account balances below $25,000: 0.04% APY
  • Account balances $25,000 and over: 0.06% APY
Current Terms and Rates: Access Account
  • Account balances below $25,000: 0.04% APY
  • Account balances $25,000 and over: 0.06% APY

When it comes to simple savings accounts alone, Citibank has a number of options. To start, you open a Citi® Savings account as part of a Citi banking package. Citibank has five tiers of banking packages: Citigold®, Citi Priority, The Citibank Account, Basic Banking and Access Account. Each package provides levels of banking perks and different interest rates and fees. Plus, when you link your Citi® Savings account to a Citibank Account, Citi Priority or Citigold® Checking Account, you can earn Citi ThankYou® Rewards Points. 

Regardless of your chosen Citibank Package, Citi® Savings accounts provide the ability to set up automatic transfers with Auto Save. You can even write out personal checks with a Citi® Savings account, unless you open an account with the Access Account Package.

To start depositing money into your Citi® Savings account, you can link it to your checking account. You will need at least $100 to start. You can also set up recurring payments to keep your savings growing without a second thought.

In terms of security, your money is always FDIC-insured up to the legal limits. You can also sign up for Citibank’s Safety Check, which uses your Citi® Savings account to help cover overdrafts on your checking accounts. All packages offer this feature for a $10 fee, except for the Access Account Package and Citigold® and Citi Priority Packages which waive the fee. 

Citibank Certificates of Deposit (CDs)

Key Features Details
Minimum Deposit
  • $500 in Connecticut, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, South Dakota and Texas
  • $1,000 in California and Nevada 
  • $2,500 in Florida, Maryland, Virginia and District of Columbia
Access to Your CD Online, mobile and physical branches.
Security FDIC insurance up to the maximum amount allowed by law. 
Fees None
Current Terms and Rates
  • 3 - 5 Month: 0.05% APY
  • 6 & 8 Month: 0.07% APY
  • 7 Month
    • Account balances below $10,000: 0.07% APY
    • Account balances of $10,000 and over: 1.00% APY
  • 9 - 10 Month: 0.10% APY
  • 12 Month: 0.25% APY
  • 13 Month
    • Account balances below $25,000: 0.20% APY
    • Account balances of $25,000 and over: 2.00% APY
  • 18 Month: 0.25% APY 
  • 2 Year: 0.50% APY
  • 30 Month: 0.25% APY
  • 3 Year: 0.70% APY
  • 4 Year: 0.75% APY
  • 5 Year: 0.80% APY

In addition to its many levels of basic savings accounts, Citibank offers certificates of deposit, or CDs. These types of savings accounts come in many term lengths, depending on the financial institution. Generally, you deposit a set amount into your CD and don’t touch it again until the end of its term, or its maturity date.

Citibank offers CDs with term lengths ranging from three months to five years. The longer the term, the higher the APY your money will earn. Luckily, Citibank will guarantee your CD keeps the rate you start with for the entire CD term length. If you have a CD with a term of one year or less, you’ll be paid interest either monthly or at maturity while CDs with terms greater than one year will be paid monthly. 

Once your Citibank CD reaches maturity, you have a grace period of seven calendar days to take action. This means you deposit more money into the account, withdraw the funds or change the term length. If you don’t take any action, the CD will be automatically renewed for the same term length. 

It’s important to remember that you cannot deposit more or withdraw funds from a CD before its maturity date. If you desperately need to withdraw you CD funds, you’ll be met with a penalty. If you withdraw early from a CD that has a term length of one year or less, you’ll have to give up 90 days’ worth of simple interest. If you withdraw early from a CD with a term of more than one year, you’ll pay 180 days’ worth of simple interest. 

Citibank Checking Accounts: Regular Checking and Citigold® Interest Checking

Key Features Details
Minimum Deposit None
Access to Your Checking Account Online, mobile and physical branches.
Security FDIC insurance up to the maximum amount allowed by law.
Fees Monthly service fee depends on your banking package 
  • Citigold®: n/a
  • Citi Priority: $30
  • The Citibank Account: $25 
  • Basic Banking: $12 
  • Access Account: $10 
Current Terms and Rates Citigold® Interest Checking: 0.03%

Similar to the basic Citi® Savings Account, you open a Citi checking account as part of a Citibank account package, each with its own level of perks and fees. So while there is no “checking account monthly fee,” you will still see a fee corresponding to the account package you sign up for. For example, should you open a checking account with the Citi Priority package, your monthly fee would be $25. Luckily, there is no minimum opening deposit for any Citibank checking account, so you can open up any account with however much you’d like. 

The standout account here is the Citigold® Interest Checking. With a 0.03% APY, this is the only Citibank interest-earning checking account. You can only open this account with a Citigold® Account Package, Citi Priority Package or The Citibank Account Package. 

You also have the opportunity to earn some extra cash when you open a checking account with either the Citi Priority Account Package or the Citibank® Account Package. If you fund a checking account in the Citi Priority Account Package with at least $50,000, you can earn $500. If you fund a checking account in the Citibank® Account Package with at least $15,000, you can earn $300. You must make this deposit within the first 20 days of opening the account, plus make at least one direct deposit into the account within 60 days. This offer ends December 31, 2017. 

When you have a Citibank checking account, you gain access to easy mobile and online banking functions. This includes paying your bills online and depositing checks from your smartphone. You can also easily transfer funds between yourself and family and friends. Online banking also allows you to set balance and payment alerts so you know whenever you go over a withdrawal, for example. 

You will of course receive a Citi debit card with your Citibank checking account. This gives you access to thousands of fee-free ATMs, mobile pay and Citi® Private Pass. Citi® Private Pass works to give you special access to music, sports, and entertainment events and more. All you have to do to snag this feature is use your Citibank debit card (or a Citi® credit card). 

Citibank IRAs: Insured Money Market Account IRA or Certificates of Deposit (CDs) IRA

Key Features Details
Minimum Deposit
  • CD IRA: $250
  • Money Market Account IRA: None
Access to Your IRA Online, mobile and physical branches.
Security FDIC insurance up to the maximum amount allowed by law.
Fees None
Current Terms and Rates
  • Insured Money Market Account IRA: 0.20% APY
  • 18-Month Variable CD IRA: 2.42% APY
  • CD IRA:
    • 3 - 5 Month: 0.05% APY
    • 6 & 8 Month: 0.10% APY
    • 7 Month: 1.01% APY
    • 9 - 10 Month: 0.15% APY
    • 12 Month: 0.25% APY
    • 13 Month: 2.25% APY
    • 18 Month: 0.25% APY
    • 2 Year: 0.50% APY
    • 30 Month: 0.25% APY
    • 3 Year: 0.70% APY
    • 4 Year: 0.75% APY
    • 5 Year: 0.80% APY

If you would like to open an IRA, or individual retirement account, with Citibank, you have two types of product options. First, you can choose to open an Insured Money Market Account as an IRA. Generally, a money market account is like a mix between a standard savings account and a checking account. You can deposit money into your money market account at any time and you can make withdrawals from the account, too. Some money market accounts may even offer a debit card to use with the account. 

You will have to call Citibank to determine the exact rates you will get when you open a Citibank IRA as they are not listed online and are subject to change. 

To open a Citibank IRA, you will have to either send in a printed application, visit a branch or call 1-800-695-5911. You cannot apply online. You do have the opportunity to open your IRA as either a traditional or Roth IRA

Where Can I Find Citibank?

Citibank provides access to thousands of ATMs across the country for you to access your money. You can also find Citibank online and through its mobile app. The website does take some time to navigate, though, to find what you’re looking for. The bank has branches throughout the country, although they are most easily found in big cities like New York and Los Angeles. 

What Can You Do Online With Citibank?

You can perform most necessary tasks online with Citibank. To start, you can apply for most banking accounts online, except for a CD you’re funding with more than $100,000 and any IRAs. The homepage, shown here, offers easy navigation between its Credit Card, Banking, Lending and Investing products. 

Once you have a Citibank account, you can log into your account whether online or on your Citi Mobile® app. There, you can manage and access your various accounts like make transfers, deposit money or simply check on your balance. 

It is worth noting that the Citibank website is not the best for browsing accounts. It may be easy to access once you have an account, but before that, the website may hold many twists and turns before you find out the exact information you need. In that case, it might be easier to give the bank a call. 

How Do I Access My Money?

Luckily, Citibank provides its customers with a few different ways to access their money. The easiest method may be online, where you can sign into your account and manage your money there. You will also have access to your money while on the go with Citi Mobile®. This app is available for your smartphone and offers most of the same functionality as online. You can deposit checks on your mobile app, though, which you cannot do online.

You may also choose to visit a Citibank branch if there is one close to you.

How Can I Save More Money With a Citibank Account?

You can save more money with a Citibank account thanks to its decent interest rates. The bank’s rates won’t earn you the highest returns, especially when compared to other banks we’ve reviewed. However, it does perform better than other big banks. 

You can earn the most as a Citibank customer when you are a Citigold® client. This is the highest level account package that Citi offers, meaning you gain access to the highest interest rates and you can waive more fees. However, this account package does have high minimum balance requirements. 

What’s the Process for Opening an Account With Citibank?

The process of opening an account with Citibank will depend on the account you plan to open. Most accounts can be opened online. There are a couple exceptions. One exception is if you want to open a CD with more than $100,000 as your original deposit. In that case, you will have to visit a Citibank branch to open the account. The other exception is a Citibank IRA. You must apply by calling the bank, visiting a branch or sending in a paper application. You can find the application on the bank’s IRA webpage. 

To open a basic savings or checking account, you will need to open it as a part of a Citi banking package. The package you choose will help determine your rates, fees, balance requirements and more. 

The account application process typically won’t take more than 10 minutes. The start of the online process is shown in the accompanying image. You will need to provide personal information for each application, like your Social Security number, address, date of birth and more.

Citibank Account Packages 

Usually when you bank with Citibank, you must open your new account within a certain Citibank Account Package. Each package has its own page on the bank's website, outlining its perks and requirements. The Citigold® Package page is shown here. Below are the five account packages and their offerings. 

Citigold® Package

As the highest tier package, Citigold® provides you with a team of advisors, including a Citigold Relationship Manager and a Citi Personal Wealth Financial Advisor. This team will help you manage and optimize your funds. You gain access to Citi Clarity® One-on-One, which is Citi’s proprietary financial planning process. This package also includes access to market insights and investments including Online/Mobile $4.95 equity trades through your Personal Wealth Management.

When it comes to banking, the Citigold® Package gets preferred pricing, rates and Citi ThankYou® Rewards Points. Citibank will refund Citigold® clients for an unlimited amount of non-Citi ATM fees. Plus, Citigold® clients can waive fees for overdraft protection, checkbook orders, stop payments, wire transfers and money orders. 

To become a Citigold® client, you must maintain a combined average monthly balance of at least $200,000 in linked accounts. These accounts include deposit, retirement and investment accounts. Other than this requirement, there are no fees to be a Citigold® client. 

Citi Priority Package

The Citi Priority Package provides professional guidance from a Citi Personal Wealth Management Financial Advisor by phone in addition to investment resources to help your investment decisions. This package offers $9.95 Online/Mobile equity trades with Citi Personal Wealth Management. 

Being a Citi Priority client also earns you preferred pricing and rates for certain Citi products and services like Citi ThankYou® Rewards. Clients can also waive fees for overdraft protection, checkbook orders, stop payments, wire transfers, money orders and select products. 

There is a $30 monthly fee to be a Citi Priority client. However, you can avoid this fee by maintaining a combined average monthly balance of at least $50,000 in eligible linked deposit, retirement and investment accounts. 

Citibank Account

Labeled as “full-feature relationship checking,” the Citibank Account Package is the last tier that can earn interest on your checking account. This package can also earn higher interest rates on select savings accounts and preferred Citi ThankYou® Rewards Points. 

A Citibank Account Package comes with a monthly service fee of $25. You can waive this fee, though, by maintaining a combined average monthly balance of at least $10,000 in eligible linked deposit, retirement and investment accounts. Maintaining this balance will also allow you to avoid a Citi fee for using non-Citi ATMs. 

Basic Banking Package

Offering “Simple Checking,” the Basic Banking Package provides special perks for clients aged 62 years and older. Perks for these clients include no Citi fees when using a non-Citi ATM, unlimited check-writing abilities and the package’s monthly fee waived. All Basic Banking clients also have access to easy Online Bill Pay and online money transfer services.

The Basic Banking Package does carry a monthly service fee of $12. You can avoid this fee in a couple ways. First, you can make one qualifying direct deposit per month and one qualifying bill payment per month. Second, you can maintain a combined average monthly balance of at least $1,500 in eligible linked accounts.  

Access Account Package

Last comes the Access Account Package. With this package, you get to avoid overdraft fees. You also don’t have to use paper checks, which can be a pro or con depending on your own preferences. To be an Access Account client requires a $10 monthly fee. You can waive this fee by making one qualifying direct deposit per month or one qualifying bill payment per month. You can also waive the fee by maintaining a combined average monthly balance of at least $1,500 in eligible linked accounts. 

What’s the Catch? 

For starters, it can be difficult to determine what your exact rates and fees might be when you open an account. This is due to the many levels of account packages that Citi offers. So despite Citi’s claim of “Saving Made Simple,” it may require a few phone calls and some digging to find your exact costs and rates. 

There is also the catch of Citibank offering interest rates that are not the most competitive. Even though rates do rank higher than other big banks, they don’t come close to many other banks, especially online banks. Typically, Citibank’s highest interest rates are only available to those who can maintain membership in the top tier account packages, Citigold® and Citi Priority.

Bottom Line

With a variety of financial products and account package offerings, there’s a high chance that you can find a product for you with Citibank. Whether you want a simple savings account or a long-term CD, Citibank can offer that. You will just have to make sure you explore all the offerings, especially the account packages. These packages determine the perks and rates you get, so you’ll want to sign up for the one that’s right for you.

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