Cnbc Select Breaks Down The Rewards Benefits And Fees Associated With The Costco Anywhere Visa Card To Help You Decide If It’s The Right Card For You
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Costco has inspired a cult-like following with shoppers dedicated to the bulk discounts, Kirkland products and low-cost rotisserie chicken. If you count yourself as a loyal Costco consumer, you’ve probably been asked to apply for the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi at checkout.
While the card offers a robust rewards program, you may wonder if it’s really the best credit card for Costco purchases, offering 2% cash back on all eligible purchases from Costco and Costco.com.
When CNBC Select crunched the numbers and analyzed over 200 credit cards, we found that consumers can earn competitive rewards with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card over a five year period.
Below, we break down the rewards, benefits and fees associated with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card to help you decide if it’s the right card for you.
Costco Anywhere Visa Business Card By Citi Review
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The Costco Anywhere Visa Business card by Citi offers tiered cash back rewards on everyday and business purchases, including spending on gas, dining and travel. This card has no annual fee but requires a Costco Membership, which costs $60 and up.
How To Earn Costco Anywhere Visa Card Rewards
While Costco is in the name, you can earn rewards in many other places you spend money. The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card uses a tiered rewards program, so you earn a specific percentage back on every dollar depending on the category your purchase falls into.
Here are the rewards you can earn through the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi tiered rewards program:
4% back on eligible worldwide gas purchases, including at Costco, for the $7000 in purchases in year 1, then 1% back for future purchases
3% back on worldwide restaurant and eligible travel purchases
2% back on all Costco and Costco.com purchases
1% back on all other purchases
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Costco Anywhere Visa Card By Citi Drawbacks
- Redeeming Costco Cash Rewards. You cant redeem your rewards whenever youd like. Instead, youll receive a coupon every year with your Costco Cash Rewards.
- Penalty APR for late payments. Making a late or returned payment may result in a penalty APR being applied to your account. This APR may be as high as Up to 29.99% variable, applies to all of your balances and may last indefinitely.
- Balance transfer restrictions. If youd like to initiate any balance transfers, you need to complete them within 2 months of your account opening.
- Higher interest rate and fee for cash advances. Taking out cash advances comes with a 25.24% variable APR and a fee of $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater.
- No purchase protection. Citi recently removed the purchase protection perk from the Costco cards.
Here are the rewards youll earn with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi
How much cashback rewards can I earn with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi?
Heres the cash back you might earn if your family spends these amounts in different categories each year:
- $3,000 on gas x 4% = $120
- $5,000 on travel and restaurants x 3% = $150
- $5,000 at Costco x 2% = $100
- $7,000 on other purchases x 1% = $70
That would be $440 cash back for the year.
How much do I have to spend to make the annual fee worth it?
Auto Bill Of Costco Membership Fee
If you are not currently enrolled in auto renewal of your Costco Membership with Costco, you are the Primary Member on your Costco membership, your application is approved, and your card is activated, your Costco membership fee will automatically renew, and be charged to your Costco Anywhere Visa Card annually on the first day of your renewal month until you choose a different form of payment or cancel your Costco membership, and will qualify toward your annual credit card reward certificate. Membership fees will be charged based on your membership level and $60/yrsixty dollars per year for each Affiliate Business Member, if any, plus applicable taxes. If you wish to pay your Costco membership fee with a different form of payment or cancel your Costco membership, please visit the Costco Membership Counter or call Costco at 1-800-774-2678, at least 48 hours prior to the first day of your renewal month. Visit Costco.com for more information about Costco’s membership terms.
You authorize the Social Security Administration to verify and disclose to Citibank, N.A. through Experian for the purpose of this transaction whether the name, Social Security Number and date of birth you have submitted matches information in SSA records. Your consent is for a one-time validation within the next 90 days.
Your credit limit will be determined based on the following:
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As A Costco Executive Member Am I Eligible For Both The Credit Card Reward Certificate And The Executive Member Annual Reward
Yes, if you are a Costco Executive Member, you can earn the annual reward and the credit card reward certificate on your Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi. Both rewards are distributed annually, with the 2% Costco Executive Member reward certificate being distributed by mail two months before your annual renewal month.
New Costco Anywhere Visa Card By Citi Offers Cash
Issaquah, Wash., New York, San Francisco Starting today, the Costco Anywhere VisaÂ® Card by Citi and Costco Anywhere VisaÂ® Business Card by Citi are available exclusively to Costco members. With generous cash-back opportunities and benefits, the new cards enable cardmembers to earn cash-back rewards on all purchases. Today also marks the first day that Costco begins accepting only Visa -branded credit cards in its warehouse and gas locations across the U.S. and in Puerto Rico.
With either the new consumer or business card, cardmembers will earn:
- 4% cash-back rewards on eligible gas worldwide for the first $7,000 and then 1% thereafter
- 3% cash-back rewards on restaurant and eligible travel purchases worldwide
- 2% cash-back rewards on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com
- 1% cash-back rewards on all other purchases, with no limit on earnings potential
“We have a strong relationship with our members, and it’s important that we’re rewarding their loyalty to us,” said Craig Jelinek, CEO and President, Costco. “Our new co-brand credit card agreement with Citi on the Visa network enables us to offer significant value and benefits for our members across 494 locations in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.”
In addition to offering cash back and doubling as a Costco membership card, the cards also provide a broad range of built-in, comprehensive benefits including:
- Damage & Theft Protection
- Worldwide Travel Accident Insurance
- Trip Cancellation and Interruption Protection
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Alternatives To The Costco Anywhere Visa
Even though youre earning a solid return across multiple categories with the Costco Anywhere Visa, that doesnt make it the right card for everyone. If you arent shopping at Costco regularly, or if you are looking for a card that earns rewards you can use throughout the year, you may want to look at other credit card options.
If youre looking for one of the best cash back cards that earns on gas in the U.S. and groceries at U.S. supermarkets, the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is another excellent option. Youll earn 6% back at U.S. supermarkets and on select U.S. streaming services , and 3% on transit and on gas at U.S. gas stations with a $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95 after . Cash back is received in the form of reward dollars that can be redeemed for statement credits.
Many cards have added additional earning opportunities for grocery store purchases for those who also spend outside of popular categories, such as travel and dining. For example, Amex added a supermarkets category to a number of its cobranded travel cards and Chase added a grocery bonus category to many of its cards. While Costco specifically wont earn bonus rewards with either the Amex or Chase cards, these are potential alternatives if you arent loyal to Costco.
Understanding The Fine Print
The Citi Costco Anywhere Visa Card does not have an annual fee, but there are other standard charges you need to be aware of before signing up.
- Card Feature
- Rewards Rate on Online Shopping1x
- Rewards Rate on TV, Phone, Internet Services1x
- Rewards Rate on Air Travel3x
You can always verify your credit card information details by checking the card issuer’s website or using authority sites like MoneyGeek. You will also find that your latest billing statement carries the latest information on your card. Checking the Citi mobile app or any other card issuers website or app will also help you keep up with the latest offers, deals and other important details. You can even get useful information from the maintained by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
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Perks And Benefits Of The Costco Credit Card
The Costco Anywhere Visa Card offers solid cash back options for cardholders:
- 4% on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year, then 1%
- 3% on restaurants and eligible travel purchases worldwide
- 2% on purchases from Costco and Costco.com
- 1% on all other purchases
Unlike some retail cards, you can use the Costco Anywhere Visa wherever Visa cards are accepted, and earn rewards across categories not limited to the retailer.
The top-earning rewards category is gas, so if you dont drive frequently this may not be the best option for you. Three percent cash back at restaurants and on travel is pretty good, but if youre looking for a card purely for dining and travel rewards, you can find higher rewards percentages elsewhere.
You must be a Costco member to qualify for this card. And if you already pay for Costco membership, its likely you save enough money buying in bulk at the retailer to make your membership fee worth it. If thats the case, then just the 2% rewards at Costco alone for no added price beyond your existing membership can make this card worth it.
Theres no annual fee , no foreign transaction fees, and a variable 15.24% APR.
Costco Anywhere Visa Credit Card By Citi
Shop with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi and earn 4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year, 3% cash back on restaurants and eligible travel, 2% cash back on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi gives you the tools to earn more and save moreespecially when you visit Costco.
Earn cash rewards with a card designed exclusively for Costco members.
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Enrollment In Credit Card Paperless Statements And E
We send cardholders various types of legal notices, including notices of increases or decreases in credit lines, privacy notices, account updates and statements. Currently, we can provide some of these legal notices, including statements, electronically. We are working towards being able to provide all of these legal notices electronically. When we are able to provide all legal notices electronically, we will notify you by email. In the meantime, if you choose to receive legal notices electronically, you will need to monitor both your U.S. postal mailbox and your email inbox for legal notices.To receive your legal notices electronically, your computer must be capable of printing or storing email, web pages and documents in PDF format and your browser must meet minimum system requirements.
You Must Be A Costco Member To Apply
Before you can apply for the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card, you must be a current member of Costco warehouse. When you apply for the store card, the first piece of information you must enter is your Costco membership number.
The annual cost is $60 for a Gold Star membership or $120 for a Gold Star Executive membership, plus sales tax, where applicable. Gold Star members get more discounts and perks on Costco services and a 2% annual reward up to $1,000 on eligible purchases at Costco and Costco Travel. These perks are in addition to any cashback rewards you earn by making purchases using the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card.
With no annual fee outside the cost of Costco membership, the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card could be a great option. But if you are already a warehouse member at BJ’s or Sam’s Club, you have to decide if the additional membership cost is worth it.
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Expert Thoughts On Costco Credit Card
To help consumers better understand the pros and cons of a wholesale club credit card such as the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi, WalletHub posed the following questions to a panel of experts. You can see who they are and what they had to say below.
Small Businesses Deserve Big Rewards
No annual feeno foreign transaction feesCASH BACK REWARDS, EVERY TIME
Wherever Visa® is accepted, with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Business Card by Citi and the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card.
Not a Costco Member Yet?Join to Apply
Boost the bottom line withthe business card.
Earn cash back rewards withthe personal card, too.
Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi
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Pros & Cons Explained
It is important to understand the pros and cons of the Citi Costco Anywhere Visa Card and how they will affect the value of the card in addition to your user experience. Before you sign up for this card, here are some of the pros and cons you need to consider.
- High rewards ratesThe 4% rewards rate for gas purchases worldwide is one of the best in the market, making the Citi Costco Anywhere Visa Card ideal for people who spend a lot on gas. This card also has generous rewards rates of 3% for travel and dining, which rivals some of the most popular travel cards in the market.
- No foreign transaction feesYou can use this card to pay for international purchases or when traveling outside the U.S. at no extra charge. This card is also widely accepted, making it a great option if you travel and want a cost-effective card.
- No annual feeIf you are a Costco member, you do not need to pay any fee for the Citi Costco Anywhere Visa card. This means you get great value because there are no annual costs eating into your rewards.
Consider comparing the Citi Costco Anywhere Visa Card with the best rewards credit cards. This can help you find out which cards offer the most value for different spending categories.
How To Earn Rewards
The earning structure is where this card really stands out. Youll earn 4% cash back on eligible gas purchases , 3% back at restaurants and on eligible travel purchases, 2% back on in-store and online Costco purchases and 1% on everything else.
If youre maximizing gas purchases alone, thats $280 in rewards each year just for that bonus category alone.
Costco offers two levels of consumer membership Gold Star and Gold Star Executive . If you shop at Costco frequently throughout the year, combining this card with an Executive membership will earn even more in rewards. Executive members earn 2% back on the first $50,000 spent each year at Costco , Costco.com, and Costco Travel. Those rewards are stackable with the Costco Anywhere Visa. That means you can earn up to 5% on Costco Travel and 4% on other Costco in-store and online purchases .
If you arent shopping at Costco enough throughout the year to justify an Executive membership, the additional 2% back likely wont make it worth it to buy the higher level. But if you are someone who already shops at Costco enough to have the Executive membership, this no-annual-fee card is an excellent addition to your wallet.
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How To Redeem Rewards
Costco cash back is redeemed once per year in the form of a reward certificate. Youll receive your reward after your February billing statement closes. Once you have the reward certificate, you can redeem it for merchandise or cash at a Costco location. Depending on the award amount and which Costco you redeem at, you might receive your redeemed cash back in the form of a check or electronic transfer instead.
This redemption method is a bit more restrictive than your typical cash-back card, but its rare for a store card to offer rewards that can be used on anything besides merchandise. While it can be inconvenient to have to wait for an entire year to get your cash-back rewards, you are able to redeem them for cash that can be used on anything you want.