Friday, January 19, 2007

My Dissapointment with Citibank Mastercard and search for another card

I am a one credit card guy. In fact, my parents were one credit card people too....and I suppose this is how I came to be as well. (Ok, I do have two cards....but the second one was never used and we had it just in case we had a problem with the first)

My primary card was a Citibank Mastercard. It was a Drivers Edge card which gives you dollars toward the purchase of a new or used car.

Well there are 4 drivers in the family, and even though Cheryl and I would drive our cars into the ground, we figured with four drivers and as many cars in the driveway, we would ALWAYS be in the market for a car every few years. (we have driven each of our last 4 cars for about 10 years and just about 200,000 miles each.....some a little more, some a tad less)

Well, my circumstances have changed quite a bit with my wife passing away and my two daughters being away at at college. I will not be needing to get another car for a few years. (and I also have a motor scooter in the garage)

So I got to looking at my Drivers-Edge card and I said, gee.....these credit dollars only last 3 years and having a new 2005 Civic already, there is little chance I will use the over $900 dollars in credits I have already...and I certainly don't want to accumulate new credits.

So I called Citibank and asked about my situation. I asked if I could change my current card to another card with a different sort of credit system...for some other commodity. They snapped back with an instant "Absolutely...what sort of card would you like?"

Well, I was talking to them about the many various cards they had to offer. I was just about ready to do the deed when I just happened to ask the magic question...."So what about those $985 dollars in credits I have on my current do they get transfered?"

The guy simply answered "well, nothing happens to them".

So I asked "Nothing, like they sit there forever, or they transfer somehow to the next card?" He said, "oh they will vanish"...and I said, "At what point in this discussion were you going to tell me that?"

He then says to me "Well this was clearly in your car agreement and there was no need to tell you about that because we expect that you are fully aware of your card agreement."

I was starting to come to a full boil inside....OK, maybe I should know every inch of my contract, but this type of attitude was not what I expected from a company I have used since about 1990. This guy seemed only interested in whatever SPIF he received for converting me over....heck, he probably gets the $985 I would lost when I changed cards!

So I am on the lookout for another card. I actually already have an American Express Gold card, and have been using it for the past 4 days or so, and everyone seems to take it and it has been just fine. I never thought of American Express as a "Generic Card", but I guess it has gotten to be a bit more so.

I'm not sure if I should be upset at Citicard or Mastercard. My first inkling was to scrap Mastercard and Citi all together. But having the AMEX, I wonder if perhaps a Visa or Discover card might be better?

Any thoughts or opinions?

Discover seems like they have very low rates...I always pay my card off, so I'm not really worried about interest rates, but I wonder if those sort of rates signal something "wrong" with the company?? me a comment and give me your card feedback.


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Blogger moonfever0 said...

I was doing some internet shopping and noticed that one vendor only accepted Visa or Mastercard, so Discover or AmEx will not do for them. If you are a one credit card person, you really need to stick with either Visa or Mastercard. My feeling with your debacle is with Citibank itself, where they are the ones offering the reward, and not Mastercard. My FIA Mastercard gives 2% to my Fidelity 529 plan and deposits the money promptly every quarter. You would be best off to find a 2% reward program which you can cash in on regularly.

12:08 PM EST  
Blogger Bigqueue said...

hmmm...I was afraid of this. In fact, I was surprised at how open people were to AMEX.

In the good old days, no one took it at all!

I will have to look at Visa I guess....Ok, maybe Mastercard as well....but I'll look at Visa next.

1:22 PM EST  
Blogger Janice said...

I think you should really consider 2 cards... trust me.. I was traveling in Europe and one card holder decided that some of the purchases seemed suspicious (I didn't realize I might want to let anyone other than my mother know where I was), and refused payment. Thank goodness for my back up card.

My only advice.. is to make sure your cards do not have a yearly fee. If they do, dump them (call them first and see if they will waive the fee).


10:40 AM EST  

Citi bank is finished.

3:02 PM EDT  

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