So, it seems like both Chase cards and now Citi cards are more restrictive in their interpretation of the waived fees under the Servicemember’s Civil Relief Act (SCRA), compared to the other major credit card companies. Since I’ve started posting on SCRA benefits of credit cards, it seems as though no one (that I’ve talked to) has had trouble getting annual fees and other fees waived from companies such as American Express, Barclaycard cards, Capital One cards, and US Bank cards.
However, many people emailed me and commented following the Chase cards post, saying that Chase denied them if they were not a cardmember before starting active duty. Well, it seems as though Citi has been following the same policy.
I received the following letter from Citi, and indeed got separate letters for each of my Citi cards, which include the Citi Exec AA, for which I got 100k AA miles, and the Citi AA Platinum personal and Citibusiness AA, both of which gave me 50k AA miles.
So, unfortunately, Citi does not give you SCRA benefits if you’ve not had one before you started active duty, along the same lines as Chase cards. This is curious to me, since I had neither before I started, but Chase gave me SCRA benefits and Citi did not. I’ve asked multiple card companies multiple times what database they’re using to determine eligibility, but haven’t yet received an answer; the phone reps genuinely do not know, and eligibility is determined by a separate department.
Fortunately, according to Milenomics (an excellent blog if I do say so myself), Citi is one of the most willing to waive your annual fee to retain customers. The Points Guy has a similar experience. So, come May, I’ll be calling for both my Platinum personal card and my Citibusiness card to ask for an annual fee waiver, a retention offer, or a downgrade to the Bronze card. I don’t really want to cancel outright, because I want to boost my length of credit, but I will if they’re inflexible.
Anyone yet had success getting SCRA benefits from Citi?