Update: Citibank has a new checking account promotion for new customers. You can get up 40,000 ThankYou points if you can maintain a $50,000 balance, but the more accessible option can still get you a nice 20,000 ThankYou points. I’ll only focus on how to get the 20k offer below. This would combine well with the 30,000 ThankYou point bonus from the Citi ThankYou Preferred card. Don’t forget to maximize the value of your Thank You points.
First, you must open a Basic Banking package either through the link above or by calling 1-866-583-6706 and using promo code CZC2. As long as you make 1 direct deposit and 1 bill payment each monthly statement period, you’ll pay no monthly service fee. Alternatively, keeping $1,500 in the account by itself will waive the $10 monthly service fee.
Next, within 60 days after account opening, you must enroll the new checking account in Citi ThankYou® Rewards and; 1 qualifying direct deposit must be credited, and 1 qualifying bill payment must be posted, to the new checking account and such activities must also occur during a calendar month and the following calendar month. Given that the Basic Package already waives the monthly fee with these actions, this is two birds with one stone and will get you 10,000 ThankYou points.
Finally, for another 10,000 ThankYou points you must do one of the following things within 60 days of account openings: (1) download the Citi MobileSM App and use the app to sign on with the same User ID and Password you use to access your new checking account online, or (2) enroll your new checking account in paperless statements.
Citibank even states that “Qualifying direct deposits are Automated Clearing House (ACH) credits, which may include payroll, pension, or government payments (such as Social Security) by your employer or an outside agency.” I read this to mean that an ACH transfer from an outside bank, like say Ally Bank, would also count as a direct deposit. Offer expires 10/31/13.
Citibank says it will send you a 1099-MISC for the value of the ThankYou points if you earn more than $600 from them in a year. However, if this is your only bank bonus from Citi (credit cards don’t get 1099s), you should be under that $600 threshold. Regarding their definition of a “new” customer: “If you have received a bonus reward for opening a new Citibank consumer checking account within the past two years you will not be eligible to receive a bonus associated with this offer.”