Citi Simplicity Card Review 2021: Good For Paying Off Debt

Citi Simplicity card comes with no annual fee for cards, no late fees, and no additional fee for cardholders. This offer includes 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 6 months. 

Citi Simplicity® Card

The Citi Simplicity Card is a no-frills, no annual fee card that can be utilized for balance transfers and ultimately paying off debt. The card does not offer a rewards program, so consumers looking for ways to rack up points or miles should look elsewhere.

A major downside of this card is its balance transfer fee of Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

Other competitor cards, such as the Discover It Balance Transfer card, offer lower balance transfer rates and more rewards.


Some credit cards can be extremely lucrative, offering perks like rewards that can be redeemed for cash back or free trips, annual travel credits or airport lounge access.

But before you can get approved for any of these enticing credit cards, it’s important to make sure you have a healthy credit profile and aren’t carrying any credit card debt.

The first step to getting out of credit card debt is putting a halt to the exorbitant interest you’re currently paying on your accumulated debt. The best way to do this is with a credit card that has a long introductory balance transfer offer.

Enter the Citi Simplicity. This credit card doesn’t earn any rewards or offer a sign-up bonus, but it does come with a lengthy 21-month introductory period, during which you’ll pay 0% interest on any balance transfers made in the first four months you have the card.

However, it’s important to pay off those balance transfers in full during those 21 months, because when that introductory period ends, the rate jumps to a variable APR between 14.74% and 24.74%, depending on your creditworthiness.

Pros and Cons of Citi Simplicity® Card


  • No late fees and no penalty interest rates for late payments.
  • 0% interest for 21 months on balance transfers made in the first four months after you open the card (rises to a variable APR of 14.74%-24.74% afterwards).
  • 0% interest on all purchases for the first 12 months (rises to a variable APR of 14.74%-24.74% afterwards).
  • No annual fee.


  • There are no rewards on the card, including no sign-up bonus.
  • 3% foreign transaction fee.
  • 5% balance transfer fee with a $5 minimum.
  • No travel or luxury perks and minimal purchase protections.

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The Terms & Fees

Purchase APRBalance Transfer APRCash Advance APR
0% for 12 months, then 14.74% – 24.74% (Variable)0% for 21 months, then 14.74% – 24.74% (Variable)25.24% (Variable)
Annual FeeForeign Transaction Fee
Balance Transfer FeeCash Advance Fee
5%, $5 minimum5%; $10 minimum
Penalty APRLate FeeReturned Payment Fee
NoneNoneUp to $40

The Rewards

The Citi Simplicity doesn’t offer any rewards. The true value of the card comes from taking advantage of the long balance transfer period, and the shorter purchase APR term.

The lack of fees and the occasional promotion Citi offers, make it a bit more enticing.

The Benefits

With this card you’ll get access to a relatively minimal benefits package. While there may not be much, what the Citi Simplicity does have might help you out in some tight spots.

  • Free FICO ScoreCheck your FICO Bankcard Score 8, based on your Equifax credit report, whenever you’d like.
  • Citi Easy Deals: Find discounts and special offers at nearby merchants; the more you spend with the card, the better the offers.
  • Automatic account alerts: Get notifications (by email or text) about your balance, payments due, and other account details.
  • Zero liability: Citi’s got you covered. You won’t be responsible for any unauthorized charges on your card — just be sure to let customer support know as soon as you spot any.
  • Citi Identity Theft Solutions: Citi can show you how to help prevent your identity from being stolen, and will help you recover if it does happen to you.
  • Choose your due date: You’ll be able to set your billing due date for the most convenient time to pay your bill.
  • Contactless payments: Tap your card on eligible checkout terminals to check out quickly and securely.

How to Apply for the Citi Simplicity® Card

Here’s how to apply for the Citi Simplicity® Card:

  1. Click Apply now.
  2. Complete the application form with information like your name, date of birth, Social Security number, total annual income and monthly mortgage or rent payment.
    Review your information. Then, click Agree and submit to complete your application.

What Credit Score Do I Need?

For a balance transfer card, you typically need at least a good of 670 or higher. Consider applying for the Citi Simplicity® Card with a credit score in this range, which will increase your odds of approval.

Read Also: Visa Signature Credit Cards 2020: What Are The Benefits?

Citi Simplicity® Card Compared

The Citi Simplicity® Card‘s closest competition are cards that offer 18-month intro APRs. For example:

Wells Fargo Platinum Card:

0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 18 months, then 15.49% to 24.99% variable.

U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card:

0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 20 months, then 13.99% to 23.99% variable.

While the Citi Simplicity® Card is the winner for balance transfer intro APR, its competitors offer much better intro APRs on purchases.

Citi offers a very similar card to the Citi Simplicity® Card: the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card. It offers a 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 21 months from account opening and on purchases for 12 months after account opening, then 13.74% to 23.74% variable.

The former has the edge, though, as it charges no late fees.

Is Citi Simplicity® a Good Card?

If you like to keep your credit cards simple and don’t need fancy rewards programs, the Citi Simplicity® Card – No Late Fees Ever is right up your alley.

If you are carrying large balances on multiple credit cards and are drowning in interest payments, this card is an excellent way to consolidate debt and give yourself a 12-month respite from high-interest charges on purchases and a 21-month reprieve on interest for balance transfers.

Just be sure to make a plan to pay off that balance before the intro periods end to really make this card work to your benefit.

This card doesn’t earn rewards, and while it can save you money on interest and penalties, you can do better than its steep 5% balance transfer fee.

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