Which Credit Cards Does Costco Accept?
If you've just moved here from another planet, you may not be aware that Costco is the largest membership warehouse club store chain in the United States. Costco is where you go if you are in the market for a gross of toilet paper, 14 gallons of cocktail sauce, and a new camera, and you just don't have the time to shop around. Add to that, a convenient, onsite gas station; and Costco is the dream location for anyone looking to shop bulk.
There is a small catch, however. Aside from the membership fee of $50 per year for a Gold Star or Business Membership ($100 for an Executive Membership which offers greater discounts and a 2% reward on most purchases), Costco has a strange policy regarding making purchases with credit cards. So... which credit cards does Costco accept? As unimaginable as it may seem, the giant national chain of stores only accepts American Express credit cards and most recently Visa credit cards. They accept checks (as long as the information is the same as on your Costco application), cash (there is generally an ATM machine handy) EBT cards, and in some locations, debit cards as well. But as far as credit cards go, it's American Express and Visa or nothing. This is fabulous for those who happen to have an AmEx or Visa in their wallet, but for the rest of the country, it can be quite the inconvenience.
If you have a Discover it® card, for instance, and count on the 5% cash back in rotating categories for spending; then losing out on some major cash back (who among us can get through Costco without spending at least $200?) is a serious setback. Instead of cash back on your tab, you have nothing at all but a glaring hole in your bank account. The good news for those who are not interested in getting a credit card from American Express and/or Visa, or who have had occasion in the past to apply for a credit card from AmEx or Visa and have been turned down, is that there are a few options.
One way to get around this, and make the most of your Costco expenditures and credit card rewards programs is to shop online at Costco.com. The website accepts both MasterCard and Visa. However, if you prefer to shop in-store, the best option for you is to purchase a Costco Cash Card. These cards can be purchased with no hidden transaction or sales fees (in other words, a $100 cash card costs exactly $100), and can be purchased online with the credit card of your choice. The Cash Cards work just like any other payment method in-store, giving you all the benefits of bulk warehouse shopping while still earning you all the rewards of your credit card.
One more note Citi® has partnered with Costco and offers a Visa card for Costco. Visit our Citi® credit card page for details.
About the Author:
Paul Basco Provides Expert opinions and reviews to help you Compare and Apply for a Credit Card Offers online. At GettintingaCreditCard.com, we offer gas credit cards
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