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Savvy Shoppers Use These 5 Cards at Costco!

Savvy Shoppers Use These 5 Cards at Costco!

Million Mile SecretsSavvy Shoppers Use These 5 Cards at Costco!Million Mile Secrets Team

We devote thousands of hours of research to help you get Big Travel with Small Money. You support us by signing-up for credit cards through partner links which earn us a commission. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.

Update: One or more card offers in this post are no longer available. Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers.

Card Name Earn Rate on Costco Purchases
Chase Freedom Unlimited
-Earn 1.5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points (1.5% cash back) with no cap

Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi
-Earn 4% cash back on the first $7,000 of purchases of gasoline at Costco and gas stations worldwide

-Earn 2% cash back on purchases at Costco and Costco.com
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

-Earn 2 Venture miles per $1 on ALL purchases with no cap
Capital One Quicksilver Card
-Earn 1.5% cash back on ALL purchases with no cap
Discover It®
- Earn 5% cash back (up to $75 each quarter) when wholesale clubs (includes Costco) are included in the rotating quarterly bonus category

I know Costco shoppers are always looking to get the best deals!

A simple way to make shopping at Costco more rewarding is by making purchases with a card that earns you bonus cash back or extra miles & points.

Best Credit Cards To Use At Costco In 2018
If You Shop at Costco Like Emily Does, You Can Earn Easy Bonus Rewards by Paying With the Right Credit Card!

The Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi is a popular choice, because you’ll earn 2% cash back on purchases at Costco and Costco.com.  But there might be better alternatives depending on your travel goals!

Best Credit Cards to Use at Costco in 2018

The best card to use at Costco will depend if you recently opened any new credit cards.

For example, if you recently got a new card and are working to meet minimum spending requirements, I’d recommend using that card until you earn the sign-up bonus.

Earning lucrative new cardmember sign-up bonuses is the quickest and easiest way to get Big Travel with Small Money!

Best Credit Cards To Use At Costco In 2018
Making Costco Purchases With a New Credit Card Can Help You Unlock a Lucrative Sign-Up Bonus! This Way You Can Travel to Destinations Like Hawaii for Less!

Just keep in mind, Costco only accepts Visa cards in-store.  For online purchases, you can also use MasterCard or Discover credit cards, but NOT cards issued by American Express.

If you’re not working toward minimum spending on a new card, here are 5 excellent cards to use at Costco to earn valuable rewards!

1.   Chase Freedom Unlimited

Link:   Chase Freedom Unlimited

Link:   My Review of the Freedom Unlimited

The no annual fee Chase Freedom Unlimited is my top pick for Costco shoppers because you earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points, which are my favorite flexible rewards!

With this card, you earn earn 1.5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on ALL purchases (with no spending caps!), including at Costco.  You don’t have to worry about registering for rotating bonus categories.

Best Credit Cards To Use At Costco In 2018
Earn Valuable Chase Ultimate Rewards Points by Using the Chase Freedom Unlimited at Costco!

You can only redeem the points you earn with the Freedom Unlimited for 1 cent each for cash back or towards travel.  But your points are worth much more if you transfer them to any of these card accounts:

When you combine points to one of the above accounts, you can transfer your points for Big Travel with airline and hotel partners, like Hyatt or Southwest!  Or redeem your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for discounted airfare, hotels, or rental cars through the Chase Travel Portal.

Note:   In the past, the no annual fee Chase Freedom card has included wholesale clubs as one of the rotating 5X bonus categories.  So keep an eye on the bonus cash back calendar in 2018 to see if using the Chase Freedom card can earn you lots of points for your Costco purchases!

2.   Citi Costco Visa Card

Link:   Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi

Link:   My Review of the Citi Costco Visa Card

Folks looking to earn straightforward cash back might consider the Citi Costco Visa card.

With this card, you’ll earn 2% cash back on purchases at Costco and Costco.com.  You’ll also earn:

  • 4% cash back on on the first $7,000 of purchases each annual reward period (1% thereafter) of gasoline at Costco and gas stations worldwide (excluding superstores, supermarkets, convenience stores, and warehouse clubs other than Costco)
  • 3% cash back at restaurants & bars worldwide
  • 3% cash back for eligible travel purchases including airfare, hotel stays (excluding timeshares, banquets, and events), car rentals, and purchases from Costco Travel
  • 1% cash back on all other eligible purchases
Best Credit Cards To Use At Costco In 2018
Citi Costco Visa Cardholders Can Earn 2% Cash Back on ALL Purchases at Costco, Even Cute Dresses Like Team Member Jasmin’s Daughters Found In-Store!

This card has no annual fee if you have a paid Costco membership.  And Citi cards offer perks like Citi Price Rewind, purchase protection, and extended warranties.

The only drawback with this card is you can only redeem your cash back rewards as a check once per year.  So if you cancel the card for any reason before receiving the cash back, you’ll lose all the rewards you’ve earned.  And some folks prefer the option to redeem cash back rewards at the end of each billing cycle.

3.   Capital One Venture

Link:   Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

Link:   My Review of the Capital One Venture Card 

If you want to earn straightforward miles you can easily redeem to save on travel, you might consider using the Capital One Venture card at Costco.

With this card, you’ll earn 2 Venture miles per $1 you spend on all purchases.

Venture miles are worth 1 cent each when you redeem them toward eligible travel purchases.  You just have to pay for travel expenses (like airfare, hotel stays, parking, and much more) with your credit card.  Then, log-in to your account and “erase” the charge by redeeming your miles.

Best Credit Cards To Use At Costco In 2018
Use the Capital One Venture Card to Earn Miles Shopping at Costco. Then, Redeem Miles to Save Money on All Types of Travel Purchases, Even Cruises!

Plus, when you sign-up for the Capital One Venture card, you can earn 50,000 Venture miles (worth $500 in travel) after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months.

While this card is worth considering, I typically recommend folks get Chase cards first.  Because Chase makes it harder to get their valuable cards if you sign-up for lots of cards with other banks.

4.   Capital One Quicksilver

Link:   Capital One® Quicksilver® Card

Link:   My Review of the Capital One Quicksilver Card

The no annual fee Capital One Quicksilver Card is a great option at Costco for folks strictly looking to earn cash back.

With this card, you’ll earn 1.5% cash back on all purchases.  And the card comes with a $150 sign-up bonus after spending $500 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.

I like how easy it is to redeem the cash back you earn.  Simply request a check or statement credit, any time, with no minimum redemption amount.

5.   Discover It

Link:   Discover It

Link:   Discover it Cash Back Calendar

Folks who shop online at Costco.com can do well with the no annual fee Discover it card.  Remember, you can’t use Discover cards in-store at Costco.

With this card, you can earn 5% cash back in rotating quarterly bonus categories (up to $75 cash back each quarter).  And in 2018, wholesale clubs (like Costco) are included in the 5X bonus category in 2 quarters!

Best Credit Cards To Use At Costco In 2018
Discover It Cardholders Can Stack Up Some Cash by Shopping at Costco in 2018. Because Wholesale Clubs Appear Twice in the 5% Rotating Quarterly Bonus Categories!

You’ll earn 5% cash back at wholesale clubs when you make purchases between January 1, 2018, and March 31, 2018, and between September 1, 2018, and December 31, 2018.  Just remember to log-in to your account to activate the bonus.

And for new cardmembers, Discover will match the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first 12 billing cycles.  So any purchases you made in the 5% bonus categories will get you 10% cash back!

Bottom Line

Folks who shop in-store at Costco must pay with a Visa card.  There are many terrific card options to earn extra cash back or bonus miles & points on all of your Costco purchases.  I recommend these cards:

If you only shop online at Costco.com, the Discover It can be very rewarding.  Because this card offers 5% cash back in rotating quarterly bonus categories (up to $75 cash back each quarter).  And wholesale clubs (includes Costco) are included in the quarterly bonus category 2 times in 2018.

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Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $500 in travel
  • Earn 2X miles on every purchase, every day. Plus earn 10X miles on thousands of hotels; learn more at hotels.com/venture
  • Receive up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
  • Fly any airline, stay at any hotel, anytime
  • Travel when you want with no blackout dates
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year; $95 after that

More Info

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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To take advantage of the 5% Discover offer, can I use it at costco.com to buy costco gift cards and use them at the store?

Whenever the 5% offer comes up on Discover, I always purchase Costco cash cards online and then use them in store. You’ll get the 5% back.

Million Mile Secrets

Thanks for sharing the data point, Barry!

A good use of the Discover Card Q1 bonus category is to purchase Costco cash cards on-line using Discover for use in store at Costco, where it works same as cash, though you purchased them at essentially a 5% discount!

Does it work? Or is this a suggestion?