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How to use Costco to find great travel packages

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How to use Costco to find great travel packages

Meghan HunterHow to use Costco to find great travel packagesMillion Mile Secrets Team

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Besides saving money, booking a trip through Costco Travel sometimes comes with extra perks. For example, you can get a resort credit or room upgrade, which may not be available when you book through an online travel agency like OrbitzExpedia, or Priceline.

And Costco Travel makes it convenient to book a vacation because in one quick search, you can get upfront pricing for airfare, hotels, rental cars, and excursions to destinations like Disney World, Europe, Hawaii, and many others. So not only can you earn travel rewards with many of the best cards for travel, you can save time and money planning your getaway.

I’ll share the pros and cons of booking a Costco Travel vacation package and compare prices with other sites for a couple of different trips.

It’s quick and easy to book Costco Travel vacation packages to beautiful destinations like Maui. Plus, you can save money and get extra perks, too! (Photo by MH Anderson Photography/Shutterstock)

Costco Travel Packages

Costco negotiates prices with hotels and travel destinations around the world to arrange discounted vacation packages for members. And many times, you can book a trip that includes added perks like:

  • Free breakfast
  • Resort credits
  • Room upgrades
  • Shuttle transportation
  • Costco cash card

Costco Travel is a one-stop resource to book an entire vacation because after you enter your destination, travel dates, and departure city, you can get an all-in price, which includes taxes and fees, for airfare, hotel, and a rental car.

And you can filter vacation packages based on your desired travel preferences, such as hotel rating or location.

While booking a Costco Travel vacation package has its advantages, it might not be for everyone. For example, you’re unlikely to earn hotel points or credit toward elite status when you book through Costco because it’s a 3rd-party site.

And folks who already have elite status usually don’t receive the perks unless they book directly with the hotel chain. This isn’t an issue if your vacation package includes a stay at a boutique hotel without a loyalty program.

If you book a Costco Travel package to the Four Seasons Bora Bora, you don’t have to worry about missing out on elite status perks because the chain doesn’t have a loyalty program. (Photo by EQRoy/Shutterstock)

At the same time, you should earn airline miles for flights that are included as part of a Costco Travel package as long as you link your frequent flyer number. And booking flights through Costco Travel is optional, so folks with miles can book award flights and still use Costco for the hotels.

To see the potential savings and perks you can get with Costco Travel, I researched vacation packages to three destinations. Here’s what I found:

Family vacation to Disney World

I searched a Costco Travel vacation package to Disney World for two adults and two children. The sample package includes round-trip, non-stop airfare from Chicago to Orlando and:

The total cost of the package is ~$3,300, which includes all taxes and fees.

Book a family vacation to Walt Disney World through Costco and enjoy extra perks, like Disney FastPass+ .

I checked Priceline to compare the price of a similar hotel stay. But you’d also have to separately purchase tickets to enter Disney World.  Here were the prices I found:

  • ~$1,832 for the hotel stay
  • ~$1,756 for four, 5-day tickets

So you’d save ~$288 by purchasing through Costco Travel. And this doesn’t consider the added Costco Travel benefits like a complimentary room upgrade and FastPass+ perk.

All-inclusive trip to Cabo

I searched Costco Travel for a trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico without airfare.  Cabo San Lucas is a Southwest destination, so you might have points you can redeem for an award flight.

I found a five-night stay at the all-inclusive Breathless Cabo San Lucas Resort & Spa for ~$2,652, which is the total price for two adults. This hotel ranks highly on TripAdvisor for excellent food and service.

And booking through Costco travel comes with these perks:

  • Complimentary transportation from the airport to the hotel
  • $200 Costco cash card
  • Resort coupons worth $100+
Booking through Costco Travel can save you hundreds of dollars. (Photo by rhfletcher/Shutterstock)

So you’re getting at least $300 worth of perks, which effectively reduces the price of the package to ~$2,352.

I checked the cost of booking the same trip directly through the hotel. The price is ~$2,685, which is $300+ more than Costco Travel. And booking directly doesn’t include transportation from the airport or any extra perks.

Earn bonus travel rewards on Costco Travel purchases with these cards

When you book a cruise through Costco Travel, you can earn bonus cash back, miles, or points when you pay with a card that includes travel as a bonus category. Here are a few to consider:

The information for the Citi Premier and Costco Anywhere Visa cards has been collected independently by Million Mile Secrets. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Bottom line

Costco members can take advantage of the Costco Travel program to save money on vacation packages.

I like that Costco Travel is a one-stop tool to quickly book an entire vacation, including airfare, hotel, rental cars, and excursions. Plus, the pricing is transparent, which allows you to see the total cost of a vacation upfront, including all taxes and fees.

Besides saving money on vacations to destinations like Disney World and Cabo San Lucas, Costco typically offers extra perks you can’t find on other online booking sites. For example, you can get resort credits, room upgrades, and Costco cash cards.

Keep in mind, when you book through Costco Travel, you’re unlikely to earn hotel points or credit toward hotel elite status. And the hotel might not recognize your elite status because you’re booking through a 3rd-party site.

Have you booked a vacation package through Costco Travel? We’d love to hear about your experience!

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.

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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Executive members also get 2% back on their purchases, in addition to the Costco cash card and 3% back for using a Costco Visa or 3x travel on Chase Sapphire Reserve.

I booked a 10-day trip through Italy for my husband and myself using Costco travel 2 years ago. I like that you can choose the level of luxury you prefer in your hotel and pick your flight to fit your budget.

We used Costco to book a trip to London, Paris, Venice, Florence and Rome in 2017. It was fantastic! All air and train travel was included and we stayed in some really unique hotels. I would like to book a trip to Greece in 2020 through Costco. Anyone know when 2020 dates will be available?

Costco is Great! They stand by their everything they do!

I’ll echo this sentiment!

I’ve love them for their WONDERFUL returns policy and customer service.

I booked a trip through Costco to the Bahamas this year. Could not have better. The hotel was beautiful with a particularly ocean view.The resort credit was very generous and easy to use.Busy looking for another great deal through Costco.

Awesome to hear a success with a Costco booking, thanks for sharing Nina!

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