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Citi Trip Protection Really Works!

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Citi Trip Protection Really Works!

Million Mile SecretsCiti Trip Protection Really Works!Million Mile Secrets Team

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No matter how well you plan, sometimes things go wrong!

If you’re like me, you probably have a moment of hesitation at the final mouse-click before purchasing a flight (the point of no return!).  But Citi is helping to ease our worries with Citibank Travel Insurance.

A MyFICO user shared his success story of using the Citi Prestige trip cancellation protection benefit.  He cancelled a ~$1,650 non-refundable ticket due to illness.  And he received every penny back!

Citi Trip Protection Really Works
Reduce the Stress of Reserving a Non-Refundable Ticket When You Use Certain Citi Cards at Checkout

I’ll show you how he was refunded for his ticket.  And how you can be refunded too!

A Cancellation Success Story Using Citibank Travel Insurance!

Link:   Citi Prestige® Card

Link:   My Review of the Citi Prestige

Link:   My Review of the Citi ThankYou Premier

Link:   New and Improved Protection Benefits With Citi Cards

Link:   Guide to Citi Protection Benefits

If you pay for your flight with select Citi cards, like the Citi Prestige, Citi ThankYou Premier Card, or Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard® , you will be eligible for Trip Cancellation & Interruption Protection.

According to a MyFICO user, Citi gave him a full refund on his airfare after filing a claim.  He cancelled his flight 9 days before his departure date, and received his refund ~15 days after filing his claim!

The trip was originally scheduled for May 27th.  I cancelled the flight directly with American Airlines on May 18th.

I initiated the claim process with Citi on June 1st, and submitted the requested documents June 9th.  I got the approval email June 13th.  That’s pretty much it.

Citi Trip Protection Really Works
Citi to the Rescue!

Citi requested the following documents to process the refund:

  • Original flight itinerary
  • Copy of the credit card statement
  • Proof of the cancelled itinerary
  • Physician’s note proving an illness

A tolerable inconvenience for ~$1,650!

What Are Valid Reasons for Cancelling My Trip?

There are lots of reasons folks might need to cancel their trip.  And Citi’s trip cancellation benefit will cover up to $5,000 per person, per trip of non-refundable expenses.

And these trip protection benefits apply to more people than just yourself!  You can use this benefit for all covered travelers, including:

  • Children
  • Spouse
  • Fiancée
  • Domestic partner and their children
  • Adopted children and step-children
  • Legal guardians
  • Siblings or siblings-in-law
  • Son-in-law or daughter-in-law
  • Parents or parents-in-law
  • Grandparents or grandchildren
  • Aunts or uncles
  • Nieces or nephews
  • All traveling companions for whom you have paid to travel on your trip

Note:   You will have to pay for your covered travelers’ trip with your Citi card in order for them to be eligible for coverage.

Citi will NOT reimburse you for merely changing your mind about a trip.  But there are plenty of other reasons Citi WILL accept.  You can read the full list here.

Illness or Personal Matters

Citi will reimburse your non-refundable ticket for medical or personal emergencies.  Some examples of these are:

  • You become sick or injured, and a doctor confirms in writing that it’s severe enough to interrupt or cancel your trip.
  • A family member has an injury or illness that’s either life-threatening or requires your care.
  • You are called to jury duty or receive a subpoena from the court, neither of which can be postponed.

Travel or Weather Issues

There are lots of other reasons to refund your travel, too.  Like mistakes made by the airline, or weather issues.

Citi Trip Protection Really Works
Sometimes You Just Can’t Make Your Flight. See If Your Circumstances Qualify for a Refund!

Some examples are:

  • You can’t travel because severe weather, a natural disaster, or a labor dispute causes all travel to or from your destination to stop for at least 24 hours.
  • You can’t travel due to a quarantine or a hijacking.
  • You miss more than half of your trip because of missed connections, delayed departures, denied boarding, traffic accidents on your way to a departure, or lost or stolen passports.

Note:   This benefit also applies to award flights, but only for the portion of your ticket paid with cash, (airport taxes, fuel surcharges, etc.), or Citi ThankYou points.  You will NOT be refunded airline miles.

How Do I File a Claim With Citibank Travel Insurance?

Filing a claim is quick and easy, especially if you keep your itineraries and receipts handy.

Step 1 – Navigate to CardBenefits.Citi.Com

Go to the Citi Card Benefits website and sign-on to view your credit cards.  From here you will be able to see all the benefits that come with each card.

Citi Trip Protection Really Works
Step 1 – Sign-on to the Citi Card Benefits Website

Step 2 – Click on Trip Cancellation & Interruption Protection

Scroll towards the bottom of the page until you find your card’s benefits.  Find the Trip Cancellation benefit and click on it.

Citi Trip Protection Really Works
Step 2 – Select Trip Cancellation

Step 3 – Download a Claim Form

Scroll towards the bottom of the page until you find the “How To File a Claim” box.  Click “Download a Claim Form.”

Citi Trip Protection Really Works
Step 3 – Download the Form

Step 4 – Send the Claim Form

The form is 3 pages long and tells you which documents you should attach to support your claim (flight itinerary, doctor’s note, proof of cancellation, etc.).

You can send your form and the supporting documents by mail, fax, or email.  You’ll need to submit your claim to Citi within 180 days of your cancelled trip.

Citi Trip Protection Really Works
Step 5 – Send Your Claim Form to Citi

I’m very happy to see an example of a smooth trip reimbursement experience from Citi!  This is a VERY helpful benefit that adds a lot of value to their cards!  You can read my reviews of the Citi Prestige and Citi ThankYou Premier Card.

There are other cards with similar trip cancellation benefits, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.  With the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you will get up to $10,000 per incident when you need to cancel your trip (Citi cards offer $5,000).

The Chase Sapphire Preferred also covers travel that is paid for with points!

This means you’re covered if you use points that you’ve earned through Chase Ultimate Rewards or its affiliate programs.  This includes airline and hotel transfer partners like United Airlines, Singapore Airlines, and Hyatt.

It’s up to the claims administrator to decide if you’ll be reimbursed for the monetary value of the award, or at 1 cent per point.  Both choices have a $10,000 maximum possible refund.

You can read more in Chase’s benefits guide, and you can read my full review of the card here.

Bottom Line About Citibank Travel Insurance

It’s reassuring to see Citi’s trip cancellation benefits in action!  The process sounds quick and painless.

If you pay for your flight with any Citi card, you are eligible for Citi’s trip cancellation benefit.  This will cover up to $5,000 per person, per trip of non-refundable expenses.  But you’ll have to fall into one of the categories listed in the benefits guide.

And don’t forget, there are other cards with similar coverage, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

Trip cancellation & interruption is a valuable perk I hope none of us will ever need!  But let me know in the comments if you’ve had similar success!

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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I charged our vacation rental on my citi Costco card do I need to by insurance Incase illness stops us from going or does my card cover it

Hi Jane,

Sounds like you might be referring to trip cancellation/trip interruption coverage. I think it might depend on when you made the purchase. As I recall, there was some recent news about Citi removing many travel-related benefits/protections on their cards effective September 22. So depending on when you made your purchase, there’s a chance that you may not be covered for the scenario you’re referring to.

Here is one of our recent articles about the Citi cards losing perks:

I got a first ticket (NYC to ATH) using Citi points, and now I want to get a second ticket (ATH to some island) with my Citi card. These are separate tickets. My connection in ATH would be 1.5 hrs but I will have 3 children with me! If I miss my connection in ATH (again, these will be separate tickets), will I be able to use my Trip Cancellation insurance?

Hi Doomx! It would depend on the reason you miss the fight.

Citi has a full list of the valid reasons here on starting on page 14 (note that the effective date is May 2016 which appears to be the most recent copy for now). So any of these reasons would be covered by trip cancellation insurance:

Bought ticket on Sprint air with my citi world elite card ( thank you) flight was delayed 6 hours and eventually cancelled due to bad weather at destination, no other flight available that evening, and since Spirit air does not have delay flight to that destination , the next available flight was to be 3 days later. We rented a car and drove 12 hours to get home. Filed a claim with Citi card for the rental car/meals along the way, my delay benefit and claim was denied stating that my flight was not delayed for more than 12 hours. was advised if I stayed at the airport and waited 3 days, they would have paid for my 3 nites hotel because it will then fall within the 12 hours rule. My god!!!! my flight was delayed 6 hours, but then it was cancelled!!!! Why would I want to stay 3 extra nites just to wait for their flight? Called back to ask for customer relations dept and before my call was transferred, operator suggested to re file my claim under cancellation protection, and 24 hours later, my claim was approved…..What incompentent claim adjuster Citi card has……

Great post, its one of those benefits you hope you never have to use, but nice to see it is there. I might of missed it, but can you confirm that the Citi Costco card would also have this same benefit?

I bought an one way ticket from India to US for my Wife and Daughter using Thank you points (Thank-you Travel Center) and Mother in law using Prestige Card (3rd party travel website) .

All three were traveling in the same flight under 2 reservations. Their final leg of AA flight was delayed at ORD by 10 hours.

AA provided Hotel, Dinner, Breakfast and shuttled the to and from the Airport. Except for the inconvenience of delay my family did not spend anything.

Filed a claim with Prestige travel claims and received $100 as a final settlement without even providing (neither did they request for) any receipts.

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