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I Just Opened a New Citi Credit Card … To Get Presale Tickets to the Beyoncé Tour

Victoria M. Walker's image
Victoria M. Walker
Victoria M. Walker's image

Victoria M. Walker

Senior Content Contributor

546 Published Articles 1 Edited Article

Countries Visited: 26U.S. States Visited: 27

Victoria holds a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism from the Howard University School of Communications and is an award-winning journalist, travel reporter, and the founder of the “Carrying On with Victoria...

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“Beyoncé just released dates for the tour!”

This is the message I received from multiple friend groups as dates for the Beyoncé Renaissance World Tour dropped on February 1, 2023. You’re probably wondering why it matters, especially in the points and miles world — but it does. That’s because there’s a fan presale, and certain credit cardholders have access to it.

I last saw Beyoncé during her stop in Baltimore during the Lemonade tour in 2016 with a group of friends. I waited too long to get tickets and ended up having to buy them through a scalper at a considerable markup. There was no guarantee the tickets would even be valid (they ended up being OK), but I wasn’t eager to repeat that experience.

This time, I wanted to ensure I stood the best chance at getting tickets in New York (where I’m based), Washington, D.C., or Bey’s hometown of Houston. This led me to research how I could seamlessly get tickets to the tour, and I quickly learned that eligible Citi ThankYou cardholders have access to an exclusive presale.

Here’s why I opened a new credit card with Citi — solely to try to get presale tickets to Beyoncé’s tour.

Citi Cardholders Have Presale Access to Beyoncé Tickets

Beyoncé has teamed up with Citi Entertainment for the release of her Renaissance World Tour.

The presale is dubbed “Citi Verified Fan Sale” and, as you might expect, is available to Citi cardholders. The way Verified Fan works, according to Ticketmaster, is you’ll first register your interest in the tour. This does not guarantee you’ll be invited to the presale.

Ticketmaster’s Verified Fan tool requires registration to help filter out bots and buyers solely looking to resell tickets.

When demand exceeds availability, which is practically guaranteed to happen, a lottery-style process will determine which registered Verified Fans will receive a unique access code and which will be put on the waitlist. Ticketmaster says fans will receive an email the day before the ticket sale letting them know which group they’re in.

If invited to the sale, you’ll receive an access code the night before the Citi presale inviting you to shop for tickets, then you’ll search for and purchase tickets with a valid Citi credit card or Citibank debit card.

Tickets are expected to sell out nearly instantly on Ticketmaster, which was embroiled in scandal late last year as fans of Taylor Swift struggled to get tickets to The Eras Tour as the site was overwhelmed with traffic. That fiasco led to an apology from Ticketmaster and a U.S. Senate hearing on what went wrong.

It appears Beyoncé and Ticketmaster are hoping to combat bots and avoid a site meltdown, as registration for tour locations has been divided into 3 groups:

GroupConcert LocationsRegistration Open Through
Group A

  • Atlanta, GA
  • Chicago, IL
  • East Rutherford, NJ
  • Houston, TX
  • Inglewood, CA
  • Las Vegas, NV
  • Toronto, ON
  • Washington, D.C.

Thursday, February 2, at 11:59 p.m. ET
Group B

  • Boston, MA
  • Dallas, TX
  • Miami, FL
  • Minneapolis, MN
  • San Francisco, CA
  • Seattle, WA
  • Tampa, FL

Thursday, February 9, at 11:59 p.m. ET
Group C

  • Charlotte, NC
  • Detroit, MI
  • Kansas City, MO
  • Louisville, KY
  • Nashville, TN
  • New Orleans, LA
  • Philadelphia, PA
  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Pittsburgh, PA
  • St. Louis, MO

Thursday, February 16, at 11:59 p.m. ET

The BeyHive Presale is also through Ticketmaster Verified Fan for registered BeyHive members of Beyoncé’s fan group. If you are not a current member, you will not be able to participate. Then, there’s the Citi sale and then the general sale, and you are able to submit a registration for each sale to increase your chances. Verizon Up members also have access to their own presale.

Hot Tip: Note that Capital One Entertainment, powered by Vivid Seats, is also showing inventory for these shows, but these are tickets being sold on the resale market at elevated prices.

Our Favorite Citi Credit Cards for Access

There are several ways Citi cardholders can get presale access — all you need is a valid Citi credit card or Citibank debit card. Luckily, you have several options. Here are a few of our favorite Citi credit cards here at Upgraded Points:

Citi Premier® Card

New applicants to the Citi Premier card can earn the following welcome bonus:

  • Earn 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. Plus, for a limited time, earn a total of 10 points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi Travel portal through June 30, 2024.

The card earns 3x ThankYou Points at restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel, and hotels and 1x points on all other purchases. Other perks include an annual hotel savings benefit, no limit to the number of points you can earn with this card, and no foreign transaction fees on purchases.

Finally, the Citi Premier card has a reasonable annual fee of just $95.

Citi®/AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®

The AAdvantage Executive World Elite card offers:

  • Earn 70,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $7,000 within the first 3 months of account opening.

This card packs a pretty big punch, especially if you’re an American loyalist as you’ll earn 4x AAdvantage miles on eligible American Airlines purchases.

Cardholders will gain Admirals Club membership (for you and access for up to 2 guests or immediate family members traveling with you). This is a great benefit as membership for regular AAdvantage members (without elite status) costs $850 per year. You can find Admiral Clubs in nearly 50 destinations worldwide, such as New York (JFK), London (LHR), and São Paulo (GRU).

Other perks include no foreign transaction fees on purchases, the ability to earn 1 Loyalty Point for every 1 eligible AAdvantage mile earned from purchases, plus the first checked bag free on domestic American tickets for you and up to 8 companions traveling with you on the same reservation.

This card has a $595 annual fee.

Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard®

With the AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite card you can:

  • Earn 50,000 miles after spending $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months.

Additionally, you’ll earn 2x AAdvantage miles at gas stations, restaurants, and on eligible American Airlines purchases, as well as 1 Loyalty Point for every 1 eligible AAdvantage mile earned from purchases.

Other benefits include a $125 American Airlines flight discount after you spend $20,000 or more in purchases during your card membership year and renew your card, your first checked bag free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to 4 companions traveling with you on the same reservation, and preferred boarding on American Airlines flights.

This card has an annual fee of $99, waived for first 12 months.

Citi Double Cash® Card

With the no-annual-fee Double Cash card, you’ll earn 2% cash-back on every purchase with an unlimited 1% cash-back when you buy, plus an additional 1% cash-back as you pay for those purchases. To earn cash-back, pay at least the minimum due on time.

This card also has a 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 19.24% - 29.24%.

Applying for a New Citi Card for Beyoncé Tickets

Knowing that Citi cardholders could get access to the Renaissance Tour tickets ahead of time, I asked a few friends in the points and miles community which card I should apply for.

This would be my first Citi card, and there was a multitude of choices, from cash-back cards to cards that earned Citi ThankYou Points to co-branded cards that earned American Airlines AAdvantage miles.

Ultimately, I decided on a card that would give me a virtual card number immediately after approval. In fact, if you’re trying to get tickets yourself, it’s important to note that you’ll need a Citi card number to even register for the presale event. Your card number must also be linked to your Ticketmaster account to have access to the Citi presale.

Citi Custom Cash® Card

A few friends told me that the Citi Custom Cash card was one that offered a virtual card number upon approval, and because I was preapproved, I decided to keep it simple and go with this card.

Citi Custom Cash
The page I saw right after being approved. Image Credit: Citi

After a quick application, I was pleased to find myself immediately approved for the card.

With this card, you’ll earn 5% cash-back on purchases in your top eligible spend category each billing cycle, up to the first $500 spent, and 1% cash-back thereafter. Also, earn unlimited 1% cash-back on all other purchases — allowing you to earn up to $25 in cash back each billing cycle at this rate.

Citi gives you 10 options for eligible spending categories:

  • Drugstores
  • Fitness clubs
  • Gas stations
  • Grocery stores
  • Home improvement stores
  • Live entertainment (like the Beyoncé concert!)
  • Restaurants (excluding delivery services)
  • Select streaming services (includes Disney+, HBO Max, Netflix, and Spotify)
  • Select transit (includes taxis, rideshares, subways, and car rentals)
  • Select travel (includes airlines, hotels, cruise lines, and travel agencies)

One of the best benefits of the Citi Custom Cash card is that cash-back is earned in the form of Citi ThankYou Points. The welcome offer is:

  • Earn $200 cash-back after you spend $1,500 on purchases in the first 6 months of account opening. This bonus will be fulfilled as 20,000 ThankYou Points.

Other perks include a 0% Intro APR on balance transfers and purchases for 15 months. After that, the variable APR will be 19.24% - 29.24%

Even better, this card has no annual fee, making it a budget-friendly option if you’ve been considering adding a new card to your wallet.

Registering for the Renaissance World Tour Presale

With my temporary card number and PIN in hand, I was ready to register for my spot in the presale queue. I had earlier registered my interest through the BeyHive option, but I figured I had a better chance with my Citi card.

I headed back over to the Citi Entertainment website and began to select cities I was interested in, such as East Rutherford, outside of New York City.

Citi Entertainment Page
Registration page. Image Credit: Citi

After clicking Register Now, you’re shown a pop-up window reminding cardholders to use the first 6 numbers of their Citi credit or debit card, which will double as a passcode for access.

Beyonce Citi passcode page
Remember to have your card number handy! Image Credit: Citi

You’ll then be taken to Beyoncé’s Live Nation page, where you’ll see 3 separate presale options:

  • BeyHive Verified Fan Presale (For Registered BeyHive fans) — BeyHive members can register for the BeyHive Presale powered by Verified Fan
  • Citi Verified Fan Registration — Citi Cardmembers can register for the Citi Presale powered by Verified Fan
  • Verified Fan On-sale Registration — Available to guests who don’t have a Citi card or aren’t signed up for the BeyHive

If your Citi card number isn’t linked to your Ticketmaster account, you’ll see an error message prompt, as seen below:

Citi error message
Image Credit: Live Nation

After correcting that error, I registered my interest in the Citi presale. Those who successfully register should see this page:

Beyonce Citi
Image Credit: Live Nation

It appears Citi cardholders have earlier access to presale tickets than regular Verified Fan members, giving more incentive to have a Citi card in your wallet.

For instance, for the East Rutherford show cardholders who are verified and receive a unique access code, the Citi Presale powered by Verified Fan will begin on Tuesday, February 7. Access to this presale is limited to Citi cardmembers only.

This is just 1 day after the BeyHive presale, which will begin on Monday, February 6. Fans in the Verified Onsale Registration will receive an email confirming next steps on Friday, February 10. Those who are verified and receive a unique access code can begin purchasing tickets on Saturday, February 11 — 4 days after the Citi presale.

Final Thoughts

It’s important to note that registration for the tour won’t guarantee you’ll actually get tickets. Ticketmaster says it expects there will be more demand than there are tickets available.

The site is operating a “lottery-style process,” determining which registered Verified Fans will receive a unique access code and which will be put on the waitlist.

Still, I feel confident in my chances at getting tickets to the Renaissance World Tour in at least 1 of my top 4 city choices — and that’s primarily thanks to my new Citi card!

The information regarding the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard® was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information for the Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card has been collected independently by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Citi Entertainment?

Citi Entertainment is a platform where eligible Citi cardholders can use their card to access presale tickets and exclusive experiences to music, sports, arts and cultural events.

Which Citi cards are eligible for the Beyoncé tour presale?

Valid Citi credit card or Citibank debit card holders are invited to register for the presale. Eligible Citi cards include Citi Premier card, AAdvantage Executive World Elite card, Citi Custom Cash card, and Double Cash card.

Can you earn ThankYou Points or cash-back on entertainment purchases?

On some cards, yes. For instance, the Citi Custom Cash card earns 5% cash-back on your highest spend category each billing cycle (up to $500 and 1% back thereafter). One of the categories includes live entertainment.

The Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card (which is no longer available to new applicants) earns 2x points on entertainment.

Do you need to be a Citi cardholder to access tickets on Citi Entertainment?

You must use an eligible Citi credit or debit card to make your purchase, though anyone may view the website.

Victoria M. Walker's image

About Victoria M. Walker

Victoria holds a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism from the Howard University School of Communications and is an award-winning journalist, travel reporter, and the founder of the “Carrying On with Victoria M. Walker” newsletter.


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