Citi Secured Mastercard Review: No Rewards, Helps Build Credit

A Citi secured credit card can help you build or rebuild credit.

The Citi Secured Mastercard allows you to establish, improve or rebuild your credit just by making everyday purchases and paying your bills on time. Plus, the card has no annual fee and includes complete protection against unauthorized charges.

Before you apply for a secured credit card with Citi, keep reading this review to find out if the Citi Secured Mastercard is the best secured credit card for you.

Citi Secured Mastercard at a Glance
APR  22.49%
Intro APR N/A
Annual Fee $0
Foreign Transaction Fee 3% of each purchase transaction in U.S. dollars
Rewards N/A
Sign-Up Bonus N/A


Citi Secured Mastercard Pros and Cons
Pros Cons
  • Helps establish or improve credit
  • Comes with identity theft protection
  • $0 liability on unauthorized charges
  • Accepted worldwide
  • 24/7 online access
  • $200 minimum deposit required
  • No rewards or perks

What You Need to Know About the Citi Secured Mastercard

Best for: People with bad or no credit

Earn More Perks From Your Credit Card

The Citi Secured Mastercard is a secured credit card option for those who might not be approved for a traditional credit card because of their credit history.

Best Features of the Citi Secured Mastercard

When you open a Citi Secured Mastercard, you get the peace of mind of knowing that you’re now a customer of one of the global leaders in credit cards, with over 100 million customers worldwide. This particular Citi Mastercard can help you to achieve your long-term financial goals by helping you to improve your credit score, whether you have poor credit or no credit at all. Features of this card include:

  • No annual fee
  • Citi Identity Theft Solutions
  • $0 liability on unauthorized charges
  • Worldwide acceptance
  • Free online and mobile banking

Although secured credit cards for bad credit accept people with low credit scores, you still need to be approved for this card. Your income and debt are taken into consideration, and you cannot have had any bankruptcy history within the past two years.

Earn More Perks From Your Credit Card

Let’s take a closer look at each of the card’s features.

Find Out: 10 Best Credit Cards to Build Credit

Citi Secured Mastercard Fees and Rates

Although there is no annual fee with this card, there is a security deposit required. The security deposit is equal to the amount of your credit limit and will range from $200 to $2,500. Your deposit will be held in a Collateral Holding Account for an initial term of up to 18 months and will not earn interest. This account must remain open for the full 18 months unless Citi determines that you are eligible to have your deposit returned. In the event that your credit card defaults or is not renewed, the deposit will be applied to your outstanding credit card balance.

The APR for purchases and balance transfers is 22.49%, and the APR for cash advances is 25.24%. When applicable, the penalty APR is 29.99%.

Other fees include a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater; a cash advance fee of either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater; and a foreign transaction fee of 3% of each purchase transaction in U.S. dollars. Late payment and returned payment fees can be as high as $40.

Earn More Perks From Your Credit Card

Related: What Type of Credit Card Should I Get?

Citi Secured Mastercard Protections

Cardholders will be protected through Citi Identity Theft Solutions, which helps to identify compromised accounts, file police reports and take the steps to ensure you will get your good credit back. You’ll also have zero liability for any unauthorized charges on your account.

Citi Secured Mastercard Online and Mobile Banking

You’ll have access to your account 24/7 through free online and mobile banking. Cardholders can check balances, view transactions and make a payment from their desktop or mobile device. You can also sign up to get free mobile account alerts. 

Check Out: 15 Best Mobile Banking Apps and Services

Should You Apply for a Citi Secured Mastercard?

If you are looking to improve your credit, the Citi Secured Mastercard can be a good option for you. The card has no annual fee, can be used around the world and comes with services to protect your finances and identity. However, it does not come with any rewards or perks, such as cash back, so if you are eligible for an unsecured credit card, that might be a better option to consider.

Up Next: This Easy Trick Will Improve Your Credit Score and Avoid Late Payments

More on Credit Cards

For the most up-to-date information on an institution or its accounts, visit its website.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by Citibank. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been endorsed by Citibank.

About the Author

Gabrielle Olya

Gabrielle joined GOBankingRates in 2017 and brings with her a decade of experience in the journalism industry. Before joining the team, she was a staff writer-reporter for People Magazine and Her work has also appeared on E! Online, Us Weekly, Patch, Sweety High and Discover Los Angeles, and she has been featured on “Good Morning America” as a celebrity news expert. 

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