Citi Price Reward: Too Good To Be True?
The new Citi Price Rewards program claims to eliminate many of the pain points that come with price-matching guarantees. Does it live up to the promise?
In the estimation of a new TIME report: kind of.
Citi Price Rewards presents itself as a simple service: if you’re a Citi cardholder, Citi will track purchases that qualify for price-matching for you. If a cheaper price pops up within 30 days, Citi will reimburse you the difference, without forcing you to keep your eyes out for deals 24/7.
It’s easy to see the appeal to Citi’s promises. As the TIME piece notes, price-matching deals are very popular in today’s market, and are especially prominent among major retailers. Walmart offers price-matching on a year-round basis, although it reserves its guarantee for prices found in in-store locations. This holiday season, Best Buy and Target are offering price-matching for deals that can be found online as well as in-store. And PayPal has perhaps the most attractive price-match deal of all, offering to match online deals not only when the purchase is made, but up to 30 days after as well.
Having a card company keep track of deals for you sounds like something that could save consumers a tremendous amount of time and money.
But, as with most deals that sound too good to be true, there are a few catches with Citi’s program. First, you won’t be reimbursed unless the sale in question can be found for at least $25 cheaper elsewhere. Second, the customer has to register the item they want price checked on Citi’s site – just buying with a Citi card doesn’t automatically enter the item. And finally, while Citi will notify consumers if they find a lower deal within 30 days, it’s up to the consumer to then file a claim with Citi for a refund.
The TIME article also points out that Citi may not be particularly inclined to search very hard for lower deals for obvious reasons.
The final verdict seems to be that Citi Price Rewards has the potential to save consumers money on major purchases, but a good amount of effort will still be required to receive any refunds.
Does the Citi Price Rewards offer appeal to you? Would you be willing to register items and enter claims? Let us know in the comments below.
To read more about Citi Price Reward’s strength and weaknesses, read the TIME story here.
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