What’s the Best Costco Credit Card for Rewards on Purchases?

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Updated on Saturday, October 1, 2016

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As of June 20 2017, Costco now allows you to use any Visa credit card for purchases, and no longer accepts American Express cards.

This also marks the end for the Costco True Earnings Card from American Express, which is replaced by the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi.

You can now apply for the card even if you didn’t have a Costco Amex.

The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi is still a $0 annual fee card if you have an active Costco membership, and the rewards are much better than the old Costco True Earnings Amex.

It offers: 4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter, 3% on restaurants & travel, 2% at Costco & Costco.com, 1% on all other purchases

That’s great news for Costco True Earnings cardholders who haven’t seen a change in rewards for many years.

But if those rewards aren’t good enough, you can use any Visa card you’d like at Costco. You don’t have to only use the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi, which opens up a lot of options.

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So, can you do better than the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi?

 

If you have a Navy Federal Credit Union Visa, you can get an extra 2% cash back on all warehouse club purchases until December 31. That’s on top of the rewards you’re already earning, and there’s no limit to the extra cash back, so this could get you up to 4% in reward value with cards like the Flagship Rewards card.

The Visa Rewards Card from InFirst Credit Union has the exact same earning as the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi, including 4% gas, 3% travel / dining, and 2% at warehouse clubs. The difference is it has no cap on 4% gas earning, and even if you aren’t a Costco member you can get this card. There’s no annual fee, but you need to join the NARFE for $40 to be eligible to be a member of the credit union unless you have another affiliation.

For the longer term, thanks to Fidelity and US Bank, earning good rewards on Costco purchases with your credit card is easy.

Fidelity® Rewards Visa Signature® Card earns Unlimited 2% cash back on everyday purchases.

You don’t have to be a Fidelity customer to get the card, though if you want the full 2% rewards you need to deposit them in a Fidelity account, which they’ll open automatically when you apply.

If that’s not appealing, we mined our card database to find no annual fee Visa cards that you’ll be able to use at Costco to earn 2% cash rewards at more places than Costco: `

Bank of America® Cash Rewards Credit Card

This card offers 2% cash back at warehouse clubs like Costco and Sam’s Club, but only up to $2,500 in spending each quarter. There’s a $0 annual fee. It also offers 3% back on gas and 2% at grocery stores, and spending in these categories counts toward the $2,500 per quarter limit.

NASA Federal Platinum Cash Rewards Card

NASA Federal Platinum Cash Rewards Card
Once you spend $2,000 on the card each year, all your purchases beyond $2,000 enjoy unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases. There is a $0 annual fee. Anyone can join the NASA Federal Credit Union by becoming a member of the National Space Society, which costs $20. Your first $1,000 a year in purchases earns 1% cash back, $1,001 – $2,000 earns 1.25%, and $2,001 or more earns 2%. And if you like travel rewards, remember, any Visa card you have can be used at Costco starting June 20th, so if you like those rewards better than cash back, you’re in good shape with the cards you already have.

What about Costco gas purchases?

4% on eligible gas with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi is pretty decent, but you can do a bit better without limits.

One of the most lucrative gas rewards cards is the PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature® Card which earns 5x points on gas at the pump, 3x points on groceries, and 1x points on all other purchases.

The catch is PenFed requires your purchase to be for gas ‘at the pump,’ which is signaled by Visa merchant code 5542.

According to MyFICO forum readers Costco doesn’t use that merchant code for gas purchases.

The Fort Knox Credit Union's Visa Platinum lets you Unlimited 5% cash rewards for gas and 1% cash rewards for other eligible purchases. But, doesn’t have the ‘at the pump only’ limitation, though we’ve seen no confirmation it will work for 5% cash back at Costco gas stations.

Same goes for the AARP® Credit Card from Chase Bank*, but doesn’t specifically limit gas purchases to those made ‘at the pump.’

Here’s what Chase’s website has to say about how it classifies gas purchases:

“Merchants in the gas stations category sell automotive gasoline that can be paid for either at the pump or inside the station, and may or may not sell other goods or services at their location. Please note that some merchants that do not specialize in selling automotive gasoline are not included in this category; for example, truck stops, boat marinas, oil and propane distributors, and home heating companies.”

The information related to the AARP® Credit Card from Chase Bank, Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi and Bank of America® Cash Rewards Credit Card has been independently collected by MagnifyMoney and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

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