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When someone is having trouble getting their own credit card approved, they may not know how to start building up their credit score. One way to build a credit history is to add as an authorized user to someone’s existing card, which can help both people.
The primary cardholder is rewarded for their purchases, and the authorized user can use the credit card as if it were their own. In addition, the authorized user benefits from using the card to build their credit score. Here’s how to add an authorized user to a Citi credit card in five easy steps.
How to add an authorized user to your Citi account
Citibank allows cardholders to add authorized users to their credit cards online, over the phone or through the Citi mobile app. Also, if there is a Citi branch nearby, you can stop by and ask a member of staff to add one for you. The following steps will explain how to add an authorized user to a Citi credit card through the bank’s online portal:
1. Sign in to your Citi.com account.
Open an internet browser and go to Citi.com. Enter your user ID and password, then click the “Login” button.
2. Go to “Services”.
Hover over “Services” in the menu bar at the top of the screen. A drop-down menu will appear where you can click “Credit Card Services”.
3. Select Authorized Users.
Click “Authorized Users” to add an authorized user.
4. Enter the personal information and permissions of the authorized user.
Enter the personal information of the authorized user. You will need to provide their first and last name, date of birth and address. Their middle initial and phone number are optional. If you have multiple Citi credit cards, choose which one to add the authorized user to.
A new credit card will be mailed to your home address. You can choose whether an authorized user can have online access to your account.
5. Add an authorized user
Once you have provided all the information required to add an authorized user to your Citi credit card, click “Add” to complete the process.
Is there a fee to add an authorized user to your Citi credit card account?
There is no charge for adding an authorized user to a Citi card. In fact, you can add up to 10 authorized users for free. This includes the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® with a $450 annual fee and free admission to the Admirals Club Lounges for all cardholders.
Should I add an authorized user to a Citi card?
Before adding someone as an authorized user, it’s important to understand the pros and cons. If you are not careful, the negative effects can significantly affect your credit for many years.
Pros of adding authorized users
- Minimum credit requirements. In most cases, issuers will approve the addition of an authorized user because the account is based on the primary cardholder’s credit.
- Avoid additional annual fees. Instead of two people each applying for the same card for benefits, one can be an authorized user at no additional annual fee.
- Share the benefits of the cards. Citi extends the benefits of the primary cardholder to all authorized users. This includes perks such as category bonuses on purchases, free first bag check-in, airport lounge access and other perks, depending on which card they are added to.
- Increased reward earnings. With a bonus card, any purchases made by an authorized user will also be added to the bonus balance of the main cardholder.
- Build a credit history. Card information is shared with credit bureaus for all cardholders, including the primary cardholder and all authorized users.
Cons of adding authorized users
- Mistakes can affect everyone’s reputation. If a payment is missed or there is a default on the account, this negative information will affect the credit report of all cardholders.
- Authorized users have access to card information. Citi allows authorized users to view the authorized user’s transaction history, card account balance, and minimum payment amount. They can also report lost or stolen cards, initiate billing disputes, and request refund checks.
- It is not possible to set a credit limit for authorized users. Citi does not allow the Master Cardholder to set individual credit limits for authorized users. Authorized users have access to the entire credit limit. They can spend up to your limit and you are responsible for their purchases if they don’t pay.
Adding an authorized user to your Citi credit card is quick and easy. This provides access to credit and card benefits for an authorized user. In addition, all rewards from their purchases go to the primary cardholder.
While the benefits are attractive, you must be mindful of the risks. Authorized users have access to your entire credit limit and you are responsible for all their purchases. In addition, they have access to personal information such as card balance and monthly payment that you may not want to disclose. For this reason, some people limit the amount of time someone is an authorized user or remove them as soon as they can qualify for their own credit card.