How to Use Costco Cash Rewards

Calling all Costco shoppers! Are you a Costco member looking for more ways to save money? Are you considering becoming a Costco member but need more perks than what you can find in-store to finally commit to a warehouse? Are your current rewards cards just not doing enough anymore?

If you are either a current Costco member, or are considering becoming one, and you really need a credit card that works for you, then you need to consider the Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi. When I say “works for you”, I mean a true return on value.

The Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi provides rewards that are constantly being highlighted by bloggers and financial gurus alike. It is almost unprecedented for the amount you receive in return, and you can really use those rewards for some amazing things.

If you want to learn more about Costco Cash Rewards, how it works, and how to get the most out of the Costco Rewards program, hang with me and we’ll dive into not only the best way to use your card, but compare it to other programs, as well!

Let’s take a look at Costco Cash Rewards in more detail!

Costco Cash Rewards

So, what are Costco Cash Rewards? Well, basically, for every purchase made with the Costco Anywhere Visa Card, you get a certain percentage back in cash. This comes in the form of a lump sum certificate around February of the following year.

How to Accrue Costco Anywhere Visa Card Rewards

Lucky for you, accruing Costco Anywhere Visa Card Rewards is fairly simple. Designating your Costco Anywhere Visa Card as your main in your wallet or even saving it in an online wallet such as Google Pay makes it quick and easy to rack up rewards.

For every purchase you make, there is a percentage provided back in the form of Costco Cash Rewards. The current breakdown is

  • 4% cash back on eligible gas (including Costco gas) for the first $7,000 per year, then 1% back after that
  • 3% cash back on restaurant and eligible travel purchases worldwide
  • 2% cash back on purchases from Costco and
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases

That means that pretty much any time you swipe or charge your card, you’ll get something in return. And, if you don’t think those percentages sound like a lot, try out the rewards calculator to see how much you could potentially earn based on what you spend today!

What kind of purchases can earn rewards?

Just about any purchase you make can result in rewards that land effortlessly into your horizon come February of next year.

  • Summer Vacation plans and lodging, restaurants, and activities while out
  • Weekly gas fill-ups
  • All of your online purchases, including at
  • Date nights or evenings out with friends
  • Birthday and holiday gift purchases
  • Concerts, movies, and sporting events

You get the drift, folks. If you can pay for it with a credit card, you are almost guaranteed a reward out of your purchase.

How to Access Costco Cash Rewards

Accessing your Costco Cash Rewards is quite easy, as well. Each February, your rewards become available for you to redeem in three different ways.

If you have the Citi Mobile app, you can access your certificate from within the app by selecting “Access Certificate” after logging in. It’s important to note that you cannot redeem it from the mobile app, but can only view it.

If you are enrolled in paperless billing, you should receive the certificate in your email inbox, as a part of your February credit card billing statement. This can be presented at the warehouse.

If you’re not enrolled in paperless billing, you should receive it in the mail with your February credit card billing statement.

However you receive your statement, there should be a barcode that you can use to redeem them towards your next Costco purchase. It’s essentially like shopping for free!

Ways to Redeem your Costco Cash Rewards

When it comes to redeeming your Costco Cash Rewards, you have a few options. You can either take your statement or email on your phone to the Customer Service desk for cash (or have them print out a check), or you can use it for warehouse purchases.

Is one way better than the other? You bet! If you take your rewards and use those to purchase your next Costco warehouse run, you miss out on the 2% rewards you would have made on that purchase. Don’t do that!

To get the most out of your Costco Rewards, work with Customer Service to get cash or a check, and then use your Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi as you normally would for your Costco and purchases. Don’t leave money on the table!

Ways to Get the Most from your Costco Cash Rewards

There are some “good to know” tidbits out there on using your Costco Cash Rewards effectively. It’s your money, and you should get the most from it, don’t you think?!

  1. Rewards Expire in December – Unfortunately, the rewards aren’t something you can accumulate for years to come for a lavish vacation. Rewards expire each December 31st, so mark your calendar ahead of time as a reminder. Don’t let that money go to waste because you forgot about it!
  2. Can’t Redeem Rewards at – You can’t redeem your rewards directly on, Costco Travel, or directly on the app. Plan your purchases wisely to ensure you can use that money for good.
  3. Pro Tip: Cash Out Rewards – As I mentioned above, cashing out your rewards is a good way to stretch your earnings on that next purchase. Don’t lose 2%, especially if it’s a big purchase!
  4. Don’t Cancel Mid-Year – If you ever decide Costco isn’t a right fit for you, finish out until the next March to ensure you get your rewards certificate. Once you’re no longer a Costco member, your rewards dissolve. But, if you have the certificate, they will still let you cash it out.
  5. Use the Card for Costco Gas – Costco gas is notoriously cheaper than other gas, and by using your Costco Visa card, you can then get 4% back on top of that. That’s definitely putting money back in your pocket!

How Do Costco Rewards Compare to Other Warehouses?

There are other cost-saving warehouse subscriptions out there that compete pretty regularly to Costco. Let’s take a look at their rewards programs and see how those specifically compare to Costco.

Costco Anywhere Visa Cash Rewards BJ’s Perks Mastercard RewardsSam’s Club Mastercard Cash Rewards
Percentage Back on PurchasesFrom 1% – 4% on Any Purchase1% – 2% Back1% – 5% Back
Percentage Back of Warehouse Purchase2% Back3% for BJ’s Perks Plus, 5% for Perks Elite3% Back
How Long until Reward Expiration?December 31st, the same year received6 months after earnedSpecific Date Based on Renewal
How to Redeem?In-StoreIn-Store or OnlineIn-Store or Online
When Do I get Rewards?February, for the previous yearEach time earnings balance reaches $10February, for the previous year

As you can see, when Costco Anywhere Visa Cash Rewards are compared to BJ’s Perks Mastercard Rewards and Sam’s Club Mastercard Cash Rewards, there are some similarities. They all offer a range of rewards back, even for non-warehouse purchases.

It is worth pointing out that BJ’s and Sam’s Club offer their rewards to be redeemed online, but do have shorter times for redeeming those points than Costco. Still, these cards, especially the Costco Anywhere Visa Cash Rewards card, are worth looking into.

FAQs on Costco Cash Rewards

How does Costco Cash Rewards Work?

Basically, you use your Costco Anywhere Visa Card for day-to-day and Costco Warehouse purchases to get a percentage back in the form of cashback rewards. You can then redeem those the following year.

How do I redeem Costco Cash Rewards?

You’ll receive your rewards by mail, email, or on the Citi mobile app. You can then convert them to cash at your local Costco Warehouse, or use them for in-store purchases.

How do I get the most out of my Costco Cash Rewards?

Turning those rewards into cash or check and continuing to use the Costco Anywhere Visa Card for your purchases will get you the most bang for your buck. That way, you’ll earn 2% back on that entire purchase, instead of losing some of that by using the rewards.

When do I get my Costco Cash Rewards?

You’ll receive your Costco cash rewards certificate in February of the following year, and it’s good until December 31st of that year.

Are Costco Cash Rewards Worth it?

Based on how flexible the Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi can be, and how easy it is to redeem points back, I’d say that aiming to accumulate Costco Cash Rewards is worth the effort. 

They have a long period of time the dollars can be redeemed, and a cash option to use in other ways. Plus, getting 4% back on gas by using the Costco Anywhere Visa card is a great way to save, even if you only used your card for gas.

Look at these other Costco Membership Benefits! And, see if Costco is worth it for you, even if you’re flying solo.

Leslie Roberts is an experienced writer, Salesforce consultant, and contributor from North Carolina who enjoys writing about a variety of topics and hates overpaying for things. She also loves traveling, spending lots of time outdoors, and reading.

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