In reading blog posts from around the Internet for our week in review around the web post (which publishes later tonight), I came across a post from Milelion (a Singapore-based blog) saying that Citibank had lost Garuda Indonesia as a transfer partner. It isn’t uncommon for banks with a presence in multiple countries to have different transfer partners, so I wasn’t immediately sure whether this would affect US-issued cards. However, after logging in to ThankYou.com, I can confirm that I no longer see Garuda Indonesia under the options for points transfer.
Milelion reports receiving a tip on this a few days ago and confirming it with Citibank today. Again, while I initially expected this to only affect Singapore-issued cards, the fact that I don’t see them listed any longer at ThankYou.com tells me that it’s at least fairly likely that Citi has cut ties with Garuda for US-issued cards as well.
This isn’t a huge loss for Citi ThankYou rewards as Garuda neither has a compelling award chart nor is it easy to redeem miles (as many will remember from the huge 90%-off fiasco a few years back). In fact, Garuda is not found at all in our list of Citi ThankYou points sweet spots. That said, this leaves Flying Blue as Citi’s lone SkyTeam partner. Further, I don’t love to see an obscure foreign program removed as those are often the source of unexpected value.