My Citibank Credit Card Application Rejected

By | April 13, 2017

Its in my wish list for quite sometime to start a relationship with Citi and the Citibank Premier Miles Credit Card is indeed a decent credit card with Travel benefits to start with, except the renewal fee part. Also, there comes Rs.1000 cashback offer (still up) that was running for a while and so its the best time to apply for the Citibank Credit Card.

Hence i applied online for the same just to know that i was rejected due to internal policy criteria. This is infact after address verification and document collection, which is common with other banks as well.

Reason for Rejection of Citibank Credit Card Application:

I tried to email theΒ Nodal Officer to find more info on the so called internal policy but again got an email response stating the same reason. It’s obvious that they don’t disclose the actual reason, but well, it’s clear when it comes to my account.

Citibank Credit Card Application Rejected – Reason for Rejection by Nodal Officer

So what is the actual reason? All my documents were perfect and the sales guy was 100% sure that the application will go through if CIBIL is okay. Now this is where the problem comes. I checked CIBIL to see an inquiry by Citi and the CIBIL score was well above 800 without any over-dues or blackmarks, but hey there are hell a lot of credit card accounts on the report. Flags Raised!!

It’s obvious that some banks consider it to be risky when a person has too many active unsecured accounts like credit cards & personal loans as this exposes the customer to a very large credit line which is considered risky than those accounts having fewer cards.

Too Many Credit Cards are sometimes Bad:

Before all these, i visited the Citibank branch to see if they have any offline offers. And when i mentioned him in the conversation that i have about 5+ cards, his tone went down. He mentioned that he had seen many applicant’s cards getting rejected when they have many other cards with them.

Hence it’s obvious that CITI Bank has rejected my application for the same reason. However, I believe they’ll approve it if I apply for the second time, probably in 6 months or so. Though, they might expect a good repayment pattern and no other new cards added in meantime. Let’s see how it goes!

Have you ever been rejected for Citibank Credit Card? Share your experience in comments below

60 thoughts on “My Citibank Credit Card Application Rejected

  1. Vinod Kannan

    Well mine got rejected Thrice with citibank despite having a great cibil score of more than 800. The third time, i came to know that it was because of the number of enquiries with cibil in the past year (bankbazar and paisabazar screwed it) and the number of active credit cards i had. So i waited for 8 months and applied again. Finally got it approved on the fourth time. Also the interest free credit period was 48 days rather than 50-52 days as with other credit card companies. Other than that its a very good credit card with an Earn rate of 1.8%.

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Sounds good, did you apply both online?
      Sometimes, they are approving easily if applied via branch, have experienced with HDFC, unsure of Citi.

  2. Manu Kumar

    My application was rejected as it was on card to card basis and I was asked to submit proof of income. Then it was processed comfortably..

  3. Manu Kumar

    But coming to Rejection, SC and Yes are becoming notorious for this. There field executives who often physically verify do not send a favorable report. AND often multiple visits are made and they wish to meet the applicant during office hours..

  4. Prashant Gupta

    Probably this is the reason why my yes bank exclusive application was rejected. I have 7-8 credit cards.

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Not sure if Yesbank too has this criteria. Exclusive is getting tough for many, tried for Preferred?

      1. Prashant Gupta

        No i havent and dont want too. i have 8 credit cards…..will get difficult to manage :-). btw completed Rs.4L milestone on Amex platinum travel yesterday. Thanks to you i really have made some good money since i followed you.

  5. Majumdar

    Prashant/Sid et al,

    That is true. My guru, who got me interested in CCs also had his application rejected ‘cos he had too many cards. In his case more than a dozen. I sympathise with YBL in this case.


  6. Manu kumar

    @AllYesBank card users.. How good credit limit has been provided to you by Yesbank, coz in my case the limit provided is 1/3 of the limit I have on most cards

    Further, they expect High usage on low limit.. LOL

    1. vamsi

      Yes bank is very bad in giving the CC limits. I have received a limit of 1.2L where as the card using which I have applied for had a limit of 5L.

  7. Urluck

    My yes first preferred approved immediately, card on card.
    Against 2.70 lacs credit limit on Citibank rewards card, yes preferred gave me 80k credit limit only.

    1. Saurabh

      I got 1 lacs on yes first preferred C2C basis on HDFC having CL of more than 6lacs

  8. Urluck

    Siddharth, what is the Rs 1000 cashback offer on Citibank premier miles card ? Its annual and renewal fees are Rs 3000 ?

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Renewal Fees remains same but Rs.1000 Cashback is for first year alone. Check their website, its flashing almost everywhere πŸ™‚

      Here’s a quick look:
      Special offer: Rs. 1000 cash back on online credit card applications
      – The Offer is valid for online applications between 31st Dec 2016 to 31st July 2017.
      – The customer should have spent a total at least Rs 5000 on all transactions put together within 60 days of the receipt of a credit card to be eligible for the offer; Cash back of Rs 1000 would be credited within 120 days of receipt of the credit card for such customers on best effort basis. The time line provided for effecting credit is only indicative of expected period and may vary from the actual date of credit.

      1. Biby

        I got the 1000Rs cashback for taking Citi Rewards card. I took the card in December & I got the cashback 5 days back. It took nearly 5 months to get the cashback . 1000Rs for taking the card was a good deal.
        In Amex Gold also I got 1000Rs as welcome bonus(neither welcome reward points nor joining fee). Also got it reduced annual fee: 2250 per annum.
        Yes First preferred I got 1 month back as LTF on C2C basis on Regalia. But it took almost a a month to get processed.

        Now I use Diners Premium for almost all transactions. Then sometimes Regalia. Very rarely Citi/Yes bank. Amex for fuel purchase & 4x 1000Rs transactions.

        Thanks for your wonderful blog. Before coming to the blog I had no idea about the credit card games & i was just holding hdfc platinum edge

  9. Manu Kumar

    @siddarth and others.
    Many of my Friends have got citi cards by going a different way, they opted for Citi Shoppers Stop card, which is easily approved and then swapped it for any card of their choice..
    It may help someone..

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Sounds interesting but i don’t really think a card type can override the internal criteria in a bank that has Global standards.

      Any idea how it actually differs going this way, like, was it instantly approved or kind of?

      1. MANU KUMAR

        Yes it was approved in a week after submitting the docs, which was done at shopper’s stop itself

  10. vamsi

    I am using CITI card from 2008. And its a really interesting story on how banks used to issue CC very liberally those days. They don’t have any documents of mine with them, not even my photo!. All I did was filled the application on their website and I receive the card in 15-20 days to my address. I was like WOOW, how come they have processed it. BTW all the banks are very strict on their internal rules these days. Now I hold 13 credit cards!

  11. Deepak Paul

    I used the same thing , first applied for Indian oil card then asked customer care to give a primer miles card . And it worked

  12. Abhishek Roy

    Getting a Citi Card is really very difficult initially. They have a few policies. They’ll almost NEVER issue you a credit card if you don’t have a credit card from some other bank already. The only Exception to this is IF you have a salary bank account with Citibank. I have a LifeTime Free Citi Rewards Card. I got rejected twice. On the third occasion I din’t want to apply but somehow I got an email from them that told me that my application had been rejected (This is almost 2-3 months after the actual previous rejection) as I did not meet their internal policy criteria. However, if I want my application to be reviewed then click here and there was a link. When I clicked there it asked me a few details. After about 1 week I got a call, documents were collected and they delivered the card within 7 days of picking my documents. That was simply unexpected. Their criteria is very tricky.

    1. Siddharth Post author

      That’s strange, now it looks like i should be prepared to be rejected after 6 months πŸ˜€

      1. Abhishek Roy

        Naah. It’s very difficult to say. Even, they have separate criteria (This is from the Document Collection and Verification Team) based on the region from where you are applying. I applied for this card when I was in Mumbai. I was told that I won’t be give the card. The reason they gave was pretty wierd- That I don’t have a company email address. I told them I work in a govt. setup and the govt doesn’t provide corporate email addresses but they didn’t budge. This happened on one occasion out of the 3 rejections. They didn’t even process my credit card application because of this deficit. Pretty strange right? Some might think that I am making this up but no, this is what I was told. Next time they gave me a different reason.
        My wife applied for the Card when she was in Kolkata. She got the card within 7 days. No rejections at all. I was just shocked. And when my application was finally approved, that time even I wasn’t asked for any corporate email or anything. I got my card within 7 days. So, God knows what they do and how they approve your application. Until you get the card, you cannot be sure if they’ll accept your application or not. Pretty weird.

        1. Siddharth Post author

          Why would someone apply for a personal card from a corporate email ID.
          That’s really weird!

          Looks like getting US Visa is easier than getting approved for Citibank credit card πŸ˜›

  13. vinod kannan

    How about the Redemption options available with Yesbank credit cards? I think its very very limited right?

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Yes its limited. Redeeming for Flight tickets would be the best option.

      1. Praveen Perumalla

        They have increased the options now. I redeemed the points for amazon vouchers last month.

  14. Abhishek Reddy

    Hi Siddharth,
    I had an Jet Airways Citi card and when they cancelled that association sometime in 2011 i think, i was given an offer for PremierMiles from Citi with annual fees of 1k instead of 3k for lifetime. At that time, i had all LTF cards only, so i thought for a while and accepted. So they gave me another card- rewards as LTF which i recently closed.

    When i applied for Yes Preferred, i gave citi as card on card basis and i had 6 CC’s already and when i recently applied for Amex Membership rewards i had 7 CC’s (7th was yes cc).

    I like the rewards on the citi PM card, since as a welcome gift, they gave all JP miles i earned till date as rewards and that was approx 14k worth which covered 14 years of fees. And also redeemed all my JP miles for free flights.

    But now the redemption is 40 % instead of 50% when they started. Booking on their websites always gives 10x points, and fares are reasonable (sometimes lesser than other websites).

    Hope this helps, and citi accepts your application next time around. Maybe have yourself referred from someone via citi referral?

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Hopefully, lets see.
      Referral doesn’t make any difference in this approval process though.

  15. Saurabh

    Citi bank has very weird criteria, I had Hutch citi credit card for a long time, since the product was discontinued I was offered rewards card LTF during renewal process in 2011 everything was going great and one day I got a sms stating due to change in internal policy my card has been deactivated and asked for full payment to be cleared in a month as per conversation with nodal officer was informed that my residence area is blacklisted.
    I had using the card since 2007 without any late payment; don’t understand how the bank can just cancel the card without any prior information. Again after a year or so I got a call from citi offering me the same card LTF without any documents based on my past record which I agreed but my bad luck in 2015 again citi cancel my card for the reason residence area is blacklisted and again had offered me the card last year in December but this time I was completely fed up.
    I leave in Mumbai suburbs works for MNC all other credit cards providers have no issue with my residence area but only citi.

    1. Prashant Gupta

      Blacklisting area is also used by amex. Some of my relatives lives in an area in jaipur which somehow is blacklisted by amex and its in main city.

  16. Akshay Sapar

    Hi Sid,
    First of all Kudos! for this superb blog, the way you have maintained this place with so much knowledge for credits cards is really awesome, this has helped a novice like me a lot, who is new to the world of Credit Cards

    Apparently after reading all the rejections stories for Citi CC, I feel lucky enough that my card was approved in the first try itself, even though it is my first credit card. (Neither I hold a salary ac with them)

    I just filled the application online, the documents were collected in next 3 days and I got the card in 10 days.

    I think so Citi’s criteria for CC approval differs from city to city (I’m based in Pune), as I didn’t face any problem in getting the card.

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Glad that i was able to help.
      and Congrats on your first card!

      yes, it seems Citi approval process is as mysterious as Gal’s mind πŸ˜‰

    2. Rahul

      Can you please tell me which credit card you applied?
      is it CITY Reward or CITY Cash Back.

      I want my first credit card too…

      Please someone suggest.

  17. Bio

    Being a Citibank customer for about 10 years now, I can confirm the following:

    1) Holding too many cards isn’t seen as a positive. It shows too much depence on credit.

    2) If you put in enquires for credit cards very often (online or through the bank branch), it’s counted as a ‘hard enquiry’. Too many of those and it negatively impacts your credit score.

    3) The trick that someone mentioned about swapping a lower card to a higher one is TRUE. Apply for a lower tier card and make sure it comes with a credit limit of 2L or more. Then wait for a few months and then ask them to ‘swap’ the card for the premier miles card.

    Good luck.

  18. Rahul

    I applied for citybank but, still no revert from them…

    how they revert back ? what is procedure ?
    I applied through online and its been 3 days.

  19. Suhas

    Hi Siddharth,

    First up, excellent site, there’s a lot of helpful information here. I would like to know your views on applying for multiple credit cards within a short span of time. I currently hold Regalia First, which is my regular card. I’m a regular traveller on Jet Airways and want to collect JPMiles quickly, so I recently applied for the ICICI Sapphiro Card (to make use of their double miles offer), and have just got it approved.

    I also see that the Jet Airways Amex Card is offering a double JP Miles joining bonus to those who apply on the JetPrivilege website. I’m tempted to apply for this card too, but I’m not sure whether doing so will adversely effect my credit rating/CIBIL score. What are your thoughts on this?

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Its okay to apply for approx 3 cards in 6-9 months time.

  20. Pratik

    My HDFC Diners Premium Credit Card application got rejected today. I had submitted all docs on 3rd June itself. Salary and other credentials were meeting HDFC criteria. I have no loan and credit card history. Field executives were insisting on verifying local address during office hours. I had raised this concern to nodal officer. It is still pending. Don’t know if it was rejected due to address verification or no credit score or any other reason. HDFC mail mentions generic reason (not meeting internal criteria) for rejection.

    Is there any way to get specific reason for rejection ? Please help

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Escalations to Nodal officers might help sometimes.

  21. Akash

    Open a bank account with Citi to get your card approved next time.

  22. Mohit

    Does anyone got renewal fee waiver for citi miles? If yes let me know.

  23. ashu

    Mine Citi Credit card application was also rejected this year in Feb-March….

    Dont know exact reason… Only had 2 Credit cards at that time… Plus, good Cibil score >800

    I assume Citi se ekk rejection to zaroori hai ….

    Don’t know but if Citi allows Card-on-Card basis, may try next year against my HDFC regalia

  24. Sing Chun Wah

    I have no loan, credit card on my hand. My annual income is complied to the minimum requirements. Therefore, I applied citibank clear visa credit card, but at the end my application is unsuccessful. I have no idea why my application rejected. It is because i am working under contract with one year so they reject my application? I hope to get an answer from banker.

  25. Mickey

    I have a cibil score of 810 and a great payment history for my 2 credit cards with Citi and ICICI. No late or over due payments. No loans record. Limit is 1 Lac only on each card

    Yet my application for HDFC card is rejected twice now in 2 years. Applied online both times, documents collected, field executive was certain it will be approved.

    I got an SMS from HDFC within 3 days that my card has been approved ” in-principle”.

    And then after 4 days an email came saying your application is rejected because you don’t meet bank’s internal criteria!!!

    Not sure how this works. Anyone know the trick to get a HDFC card?? I have No a/c with them.

  26. K Ghosh

    Recently I enquired citi for credit cards. The sales team said that currently they are not requiring any kind of income proofs, no salary slips or ITR or other bank card statement. They are only taking id and address proof. I guess they are currently issuing card solely on the basis of CIBIL history

  27. Citi Fan

    Siddharth, I have recently started following your card reviews – appreciate the wonderful analysis and discussions from you & your team!

    I have been interested about Citi PremierMiles card for quite some time and called up their customer care for swapping my existing rewards card only to be told that sign up bonus of 10K miles wont be applicable while doing this. Has anyone done a card swap earlier and did you face such a situation. If yes, I believe we may have to apply for a new card to get this offer

  28. Adithya

    I recently swapped from Citibank cashback card to premier miles card. I had to pay the card joining fees on a proreta basis(MEMBERSHIP FEE – NOV-17 TO SEP-18
    ANNUAL FEE REV – SWAP(reversal of existing card charges)
    458.33 CR)
    After my first transaction of Rs 10k, my account was credited 10k points.

    1. Citi Fan

      Thanks for the reply, looks like the CC executive may have provided wrong info. It happens sometimes, but let me try giving a call once again and hopefully they will give correct info this time. Keeping my fingers crossed…..

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Might apply sometime in 2018. Will keep the article updated if i do.


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