Citi Secured Mastercard® Credit Card Review

Secured Mastercard® from Citi — all information about the credit card.

By Hanna Volkava
Updated October 20, 2023

Good Choose for First time applicants

Secured Mastercard® Citi
Learn more
Our Rating:
2.74 out of 5
Recommended credit score
No Credit History to Fair (0-669)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • This card doesn't offer cash back, miles or points.
  • Intro Offer:
    • No current offer.
  • Annual Fee:
  • Purchase Intro APR:
  • Regular APR:
    27.74% Variable
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    27.74% Variable
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We recommend more cards

Rate and fee information

  • Purchase Intro APR
    • None
  • Purchase APR
    • 27.74% Variable
  • Intro Balance Transfer APR
    • None
  • Balance Transfers APR
    • 27.74% Variable
  • APR for Cash Advances
    • 29.99% Variable
  • How to Avoid Paying Interest
    • Your due date is at least 23 days after the close of each billing cycle. You will not be charged interest on purchases if you pay your monthly Citi Flex Plan Payment Amount plus your entire balance, excluding any Citi Flex Plan balances, by the due date each month. You will be charged interest on cash advances and balance transfers on the transaction date.


  • Annual Fee
    • $0
  • Fees for Balance Transfer
    • Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
  • Fees for Cash Advances
    • Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Penalty Fees
    • 29.99%
  • Return Payment
    • Up to $41
  • Late Payment
    • Up to $41
View all Rates & Fees

Pros & Cons

  • No annual fee
  • ID theft protection
  • Reports to three major credit bureaus
  • High Penalty APR
  • Bankruptcy restriction
  • Foreign transaction fee
  • No rewards system


  • No Annual Fee
  • Payment Flexibility
  • Fraud Protection
  • Free Credit Score
  • Purchase Protection
  • Poor Credit
  • Fair Credit

About the issuer

Citi has several card types depending on your needs.
Manage your Account & Pay your Bill
You can usually pay your bill online on your

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Recommended credit score
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    Annual Fee
  • 29.99%
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  • This card doesn't offer cash back, miles or points.
  • None
    Purchase Intro APR
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  • None
    Purchase Intro APR
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  • This card doesn't offer cash back, miles or points.
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    Purchase Intro APR
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Citi Secured Mastercard Review

The Citi Secured Mastercard is an ideal beginner credit card for customers looking to responsibly build credit or improve their limited credit history. There’s no annual fee for having the card, and card usage is reported monthly to the three major credit bureaus. Regardless of credit score and after a review of income and current debt, the Citi Secured Mastercard credit limit falls between $200 - $2,500, and requires a security deposit of the same amount. With the addition of fraud alert protection, identity theft protection, auto pay, and no liability for unauthorized charges, this card is an easy method to build strong credit.

Citi Secured Mastercard: pros and cons

Pros: Cons:
No annual fee. There’s no annual fee assessed for having the card. High Penalty APR. Up to 29.99% APR may be applied following a late payment or returned payment for an indefinite period of time.
ID theft protection. 24/7 support and ongoing monitoring to provide added account alerts and security. Bankruptcy restriction. The card isn’t available to individuals who filed for bankruptcy within the last 2 years.
Reports to three major credit bureaus. Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion receive monthly reports of payment and card usage history. Foreign transaction fee. There’s a fee of 3% of the U.S. dollar amount of each purchase made.
No rewards system. This card doesn’t have any rewards options.

Citi Secured Mastercard rewards system in a nutshell

The Citi Secured Mastercard doesn’t have a rewards system.

Who can benefit from getting the Citi Secured Mastercard?

For individuals with poor credit or no credit history, a secured credit card can help build credit and enable them to get an unsecured card later. Autopay is included with this card and is helpful for users who may not be familiar with the ins and outs of using a credit card, or for those with bad credit management skills.

The APR on the Citi Secured Mastercard is average, compared to other similar secured credit cards. The purchase and balance transfer APR is 27.74%, while the cash advance APR is 29.99% Variable.

It is necessary to secure the Citi Secured Mastercard with what could be a significant security deposit, and this could be uncomfortable for some cardholders.


The good news is that it’s possible for the Citi Secured Mastercard to upgrade to an unsecured credit card over time.

The security deposit must be held for an initial term of 18 months, but after that, it is possible to get back the security deposit and upgrade the secured credit card to an unsecured card at their discretion.

With monthly reporting to the credit bureaus, regular charging, and on-time payments it is the key to building strong credit.

Are there any other benefits?

There are some additional benefits available with the Citi Secured Mastercard:

  • Accepted worldwide. As part of the Mastercard network this secured credit card can be used around the world. But don’t forget about the foreign transaction fee.
  • Account Alerts. Automatic alerts can remind you about balance levels, payments due, or when going over the credit limit.
  • Flexible payment due dates. You can elect to pay the bill on your terms by using flexible payment due dates at the beginning, middle, or end of the month.
  • FICO score. Free access monthly to your credit score as reported to the credit bureaus to keep an eye on credit development.
  • Tap to Pay. The card is contactless with chip-enabled tap-to-pay included.
  • Easy to reach support. Customer service representatives are available 24/7.


In terms of a no-annual fee secured credit card, this one is pretty average. The Citi Secured Mastercard is good for those interested in building or growing their credit with no annual fee but doesn’t have much more to offer beyond that. The lack of rewards, cash back, or bonus options is disappointing, and the other benefits are offered by many other secured cards. Since usage is reported to the major credit bureaus, it will allow you to build your credit if used properly and with the right intentions. There’s also the benefit of it being a Citi card, and being tied to a large and well-known credit card company could make it easier to get an unsecured card with them later.

As with all other secured credit cards, a security deposit is required and that may be difficult for some potential cardholders to manage. But with the minimum being $200, individuals serious about building strong credit may not have a problem seeing the value in this security deposit.

The fees with this card are average and the lack of an annual fee is nice, although the penalty APR is quite high. The fact the penalty APR can be applied indefinitely is also something to watch out for. For younger card users or those who may struggle with managing their credit history perfectly from the start, this could be a major issue.

Overall this secured credit card doesn’t offer much more than credit-building potential, but, if that’s the goal and you can handle the security deposit, the Citi Secured Mastercard will certainly meet those needs and set you up for a future unsecured card.


What is the customer service phone number for the Citi Secured Mastercard credit card?

For customer service or other information regarding the Citi Secured Mastercard, call Citibank at 1-877-625-6382.

How to check my application status for a Citi Secured Mastercard credit card?

You'll be notified by mail approximately 7-10 days after submitting an application for the Citi Secured Mastercard, but can call 1-800-745-1534 to inquire. You’ll need to have the application’s reference number available.

How much of my credit limit can I use for cash advances?

This is determined based on your credit terms, and cash advances with the Citi Secured Mastercard will be capped at a portion of the secured credit limit. There is a cash advance fee of $10 or 5% of the amount (whichever is greater) and the APR is applied on the day of the transaction with no grace period.
Hanna VolkavaHanna Volkava

Financial and product expert
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