What Credit Cards Are Accepted at Costco in The United States?

With proper use, credit cards can provide many benefits, including credit, travel, emergencies, and cost savings, such as at retailers like Costco in the United States. A rewards credit card allows the user to accumulate points that can be used at a later time, and rewards vary according to the issuer and card type. 

Rewards may include cash back at the supermarket, discounts at gas stations, loyalty rewards, and travel miles. The  main advantage of credit cards for cardholders is that they can redeem their rewards for things they would have purchased as well as the occasional treat. And Costco has plenty of both! So, what kinds of credit cards does Costco accept?

What Are the Credit Cards that Costco Accepts? 

As with any credit card, the ones you use at Costco will allow you to have access to the credit limit the credit card issuer offers. The maximum amount you can borrow is your credit cap. You can use a credit card to purchase groceries, shoes, bags, furniture, cars, etc. There are many uses of a credit card nowadays, which makes shopping and simply purchasing stuff more convenient and less of a hassle.

So, for the answer to the main question: What credit cards does Costco accept now?

In the U.S., warehouse locations at Costco accept the following:

  • All Visa Cards
  • The Costco Visa Card by Citi
  • Most PIN-based Debit/ATM Cards
  • Costco Shop Cards

In addition to credit cards and debit cards, they also accept:

  • Cash
  • Personal checks from current Costco Members
  • Business checks from current Costco Business Members
  • Traveler’s checks
  • EBT cards
  • Mobile Payment such as Apple Pay
  • Google Pay
  • Samsung Pay

As for Costco gas stations, they accept:

  • All Visa Cards
  • Citi’s Costco Anywhere Visa Card,
  • Many Debit/ATM Cards based on PIN
  • Costco Shop Cards

Why Does Costco Only Accept a Visa Card?

Actually, Costco only accepted American Express cards from 1999 to 2016. You might wonder why. Well, in return for exclusivity, AmEx was able to give them a favorable merchant rate. That is a huge deal for a credit card company. It ensures that the 79 million members who walk into Costco with something other than cash or a check will charge the payment to Costco’s card network of choice.

In 2017, that contract was dissolved, with Visa taking American Express’s place. Being the only plastic payment form at Costco means that Visa was prepared to negotiate the fee down to a reported 0.4 percent. That’s pretty remarkable. And it’s actually a good deal for both companies.

So, since it saves them a large amount of money in processing fees, Costco requires you to use a Visa card. At the counter, you can also use most branded debit cards, as the “swipe” fees for retailers are much smaller.

What About Costco.com?

On the Costco.com website, however, you can use both Mastercard and Discover as well. In other words, you don’t need to have  a Visa card specifically in order to shop on Costo.com’s online store.


The biggest decision will definitely come down to what you’d like to do with the rewards you receive while choosing the best credit card to use with your Costco purchases. If you want to increase the value of what you earn, credit card points are usually the way to go. Those that don’t mind incentives that are only available at Costco will get great value from the co-branded card, but normally the most redemption versatility will be an unlimited cashback card.

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