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By Jason Steele
April 28, 2021
Costco Anywhere Visa Credit Card by Citi Bank on a colored background
Courtesy of Citi Bank

Over 100 million Americans are members of Costco, giving them access to big potential savings (and big tubs when they shop at their warehouse stores). But it can be difficult to use a credit card to earn competitive rewards at Costco since many popular credit cards exclude warehouse purchases from earning bonus cash back. Costco stores only accept cards that are part of the Visa payment network, which excludes all Mastercard, American Express and Discover cards. Thankfully, Citi offers the Costco Anywhere Visa® card that reliably returns strong rates of cash back at Costco stores, at Costco.com and for many common purchases from other merchants.

Key Terms

  • Welcome Bonus: None.
  • Cash Back: 4% cash back on eligible gas, including gas at Costco for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% after; 3% back on restaurants and eligible travel purchases worldwide; 2% back on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com, and; 1% on all other purchases.
  • Annual Fee: $0 with your paid Costco membership.
  • APR: 15.24% Variable APR.
  • Promotional Financing Offer: None.
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How This Card Works

If you're a Costco member then you can apply for this card, which has no annual fee. Once approved you'll enjoy a very strong 4% cash back on up to $7,000 a year on eligible gas purchases from Costco or other eligible gas retailers. You can earn 3% cash back at restaurants and on eligible travel purchases worldwide, plus Costco and Costco.com purchases earn 2% cash back. All other purchases earn just 1% cash back.

Keep in mind that this card doesn't distribute your cash back every month. Instead, you'll receive your cash back once a year in the form of a credit card reward certificate that's issued with your February billing statement. This certificate can be used for Costco purchases or redeemed for cash back at U.S. Costco stores (including Puerto Rico).

Other benefits include Damage and Theft Purchase Protection that covers you if qualifying purchases are damaged or stolen within 120 days of purchase (90 days for New York residents). You also receive Extended Warranty that extends the manufacturer's warranty on qualifying purchases made with the card.

This card doesn't have a new account bonus or promotional financing offer, but there's no foreign transaction fees and no annual fee with your paid Costco membership.

Advantages

Earning 4% cash back at gas stations can be very valuable, especially considering that Costco sells the lowest price gas in many areas. Earning 3% cash back at restaurants and on travel is also very strong since it's worldwide and not excluded to just the U.S. Costco fans will love earning 2% cash back at Costco stores and online at Costco.com. This card features a few valuable cardholder benefits like WorldWide Car Rental Insurance and access to Citi Entertainment. And it's always nice when a competitive rewards card has no annual fee.

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Disadvantages

For all of it's strengths, some people may want to earn their rewards more than once a year and prefer to receive their rewards every month. It's unfortunate this card doesn't feature any new account bonus or promotional financing as nearly all top cash back cards offer one or both features.

Alternatives

Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card. This credit card offers Amazon Prime members the chance to earn 5% back at Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market, 2% back at restaurants, gas stations and drugstores, and 1% back on all other purchases. It's accepted anywhere that accepts Visa cards and there's no annual fee.

Target REDcard. This card offers a 5% discount on most in-store and online purchases, and cardholders enjoy free two-day shipping on qualifying items, plus a longer return window. There's no annual fee for this card, and it's not part of any other payment network. That means you can only use it at Target stores and at Target.com.

Capital One Walmart Rewards® Card. This card offers you 5% cash back for purchases at Walmart.com, including pickup and delivery. You also receive 2% cash back at Walmart stores, at restaurants and on travel, and 1% cash back elsewhere. As an introductory offer, new cardholders can earn 5% cash back in Walmart stores for the first 12 months after approval when you use your card with Walmart Pay. There's no annual fee for this card.

Bottom Line

Costco shoppers can be extremely loyal to the brand and there's no reason why members shouldn't at least consider this card. By calculating all of the ways you can earn cash back, and by keeping in mind its drawbacks as well, you can decide if this card makes sense for you.

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