The Costco Anywhere Visa Earns Cash Back In Bulk, Including From Travel Purchases
Whether you do all of your grocery shopping at Costco, or just stop by occasionally to stock up on bulk goods, the store's co-branded Citi credit card is a sneaky great option for all kinds of purchases, with no annual fee (if you're a paid Costco member).
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The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi requires you to have a Costco membership, but otherwise doesn't have an annual fee. But unfortunately, like many other store-branded credit cards, it also doesn't have a welcome bonus.
But if you're going to pay for a Costco membership regardless, the card offers some of the best cash-back bonus categories of any no-annual-fee card out there. You'll earn 4% cash back on eligible gas purchases (including but not limited to Costco gas), up to your first $7,000 per year, after which you'll earn 1% cash back. You can also get 3% cash back on eligible travel and dining purchases worldwide, 2% cash back on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com, and 1% cash back everywhere else.
To put a fine point on it, getting 3%-4% back on such broad purchase categories is a tremendous return for a card with no annual fee.
Unlike most cash back cards, which let you redeem your rewards for statement credits at any time, the Costco Anywhere Visa sends an annual awards certificate every year after your February statement closes.
You can take that certificate to any Costco location to apply the cash towards purchases, or even just turn it into cash, a check, or an electronic transfer into your bank account. The process isn't as seamless as most cash back cards, but if you have this card, presumably you visit Costco fairly often anyway.
Unsurprisingly, the card is light on perks beyond its bonus earning categories, but still has a few benefits which are nice to see in a no-annual-fee card.
For example, you can use it anywhere in the world without foreign transaction fees, which lets you take full advantage of the 3% cash back on eligible dining and travel. The card also includes extended warranty protection and purchase protection for eligible purchases. The former extends the manufacturer’s warranty by two years, while the latter will cover repairs or a refund for devices that are damaged or stolen within 120 days or purchase (or 90 days for New York residents).
It's probably not worth paying for a Costco membership (which start at $60 per year) just to apply for the Costco Anywhere card, but if you have one anyway, it's a great addition to your wallet if you don't like paying annual fees.
Some travel rewards cards may ultimately be more lucrative, but the cash back earning categories that the Costco Anywhere card offers are as good as you're likely to find in any no-annual fee card.
Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.
Photo credit: Tony Webster from Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States / CC BY-SA 2.0
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