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Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi: Is It As Good As Its Predecessor?

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi: Is It As Good As Its Predecessor?

If you're already a Costco member this card is a no-brainer. It provides some of the best rewards on gas, restaurants and travel we've seen
Editor's Rating: 5.0/5.0

Editor's Rating

5.0/5.0

The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card is easily one of the best reward credit cards. It is an improvement over the old and popular Amex Costco card. We recommend this card to anyone who is already a Costco member.

Review: Is the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card Worth Getting?

By all measures, the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card is an improvement over the old American Express version -– a card that was already quite good. The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card provides 4% cash back on gas (on up to $7,000 in purchases per year), 3% back at restaurants and on travel, 2% back on Costco purchases, and finally 1% cash back on everything else. In the categories where it earns more than 1%, the Costco credit card produces far better returns than most credit cards. The 4% rewards rate on gas is enough to make it one of the best credit cards for gas purchases. The travel rewards it offers also allows it to outperform some of the top travel credit cards –- though by not awarding you miles like some of those cards, you have less opportunities to maximize your rewards rate.

Good For…Bad For…
Existing Costco members who spend a lot on dining out, travel, and gasThose who want a big credit card bonus. This card has none.
Those who spend a lot at Costco - when using the card there you can earn an unlimited 2% cash backAnyone who wants instant access to the rewards they accumulated. You can only redeem once per year

We've compared below the estimated annual savings that a family with the average household budget might see when charging everything to the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card versus a top cash back credit card like the Citi® Double Cash Card.

Costco Anywhere Visa® CardCiti® Double Cash Card
Gas$96$48
Dining Out$83$55
Groceries*$79$79
General$80$161

*For the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card we assumed all groceries were purchased at Costco.

One factor that may dissuade some from the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card is that redeeming rewards is restricted to once per year. All of your cash back savings is provided as an annual credit card rewards certificate every February. If you are someone who likes to take advantage of the rewards you have saved up when the right moment arises, having to wait a few months can be frustrating. Most of the time, you will be locked out of your rewards. Worse yet, if your account gets cancelled, all the rewards will be gone. You won’t have a chance to cash them out.

The other thing to note about the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card is the fact that it has no signup bonus, just like the old Amex card. While in the long run this doesn’t matter, welcome bonuses attract many consumers to reward credit cards. They have the opportunity to boost short-term value tremendously. For example, the Chase Freedom® earns users $150 if they spend $500 on purchases in the first three months of account opening. That means the first $500 you spend on the card will essentially earn you a rewards rate between 31% and 35%.

Bottom Line: Despite not having a welcome bonus and having a very limited redemption window, we believe the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card is still highly valuable -– especially on purchases of gas, travel, and dining out.

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card Benefits & Features

The main benefit of the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card is the cash back it provides on gas, travel, restaurant, and Costco purchases. Cardmembers earn 4% on eligible gas purchases, up to the first $7,000 per year; after that, you’ll get just 1%. The one other limitation on this benefit is that you cannot earn the full 4% when purchasing gas at other superstores, supermarkets or convenience stores. In those cases, you earn just 1% back. Using the card at Costco will earn 2% cash back.

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card
Annual Fee
$0
Purchase APR
16.99%* (Variable)
Credit Needed Excellent Credit
Details
  • Exclusively for Costco Members: Go Big with Cash Back Rewards
  • 4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter
  • 3% cash back on restaurants and eligible travel purchases
  • 2% cash back on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases

All the cash back you earn throughout the year is provided in the form of a certificate, every February. You have until December 31st of each year to complete the redemption before the certificate expires. Also, if your account is closed before February, for any reason, the rewards will be forfeited and not mailed to you.

Citi Private Pass

One of the added benefits of the credit card moving from American Express to Citi is the access to Citi® Private Pass, a feature that comes with most Citicards. Private Pass allows members to buy presale tickets to concerts, shows and sporting events. In some cases, tickets are also reserved for Private Pass members, and sold after a show is officially considered “sold out”.

Is It Worth Signing Up For Costco Membership Just For The Credit Card?

If the rewards on the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card appeal to you, but you aren’t currently a member of the wholesale store, it may be worthwhile to sign up just to get the card. The cheapest and most basic membership to Costco costs $60 per year. If we treat that as the annual fee for the credit card, the issue becomes whether or not paying that will get you enough cash back rewards to still come out ahead. For instance, if you spend approximately $167 a month at restaurants and travel, the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card rewards rate is worth paying the fee for a Costco membership.

How Does The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card Compare Against Other Credit Cards?

In order to get a better understanding of the value of the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card, one must see it in the context of other available offers. Below you’ll find our analysis of how the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card performs when compared against other top credit cards.

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card vs Chase Freedom®

The Chase Freedom®, one of the top cash back credit cards, periodically does offer decent rewards on gas purchases. The card earns users 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter, and 1% back on everything else. This quarter those categories include wholesale clubs, so you could earn decent rewards at Costco using it. The Chase credit card never offers more than 1% cash back on travel purchases, compared to the 3% offered by theCostco Anywhere Visa® Card. For consumers who whish to optimize their savings, our recommendation is to get both cards. Use the Chase Freedom® whenever you can get 5% cash back, and the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card in all other circumstances.

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card vs Citi® Double Cash Card

The Citi® Double Cash Card is a prime example of a fixed rate cash back card. Those who use it earn 1% cash back at the time of their purchase, and another 1% when they pay it off. The purchasing power of the Citi® Double Cash Card comes through on categories other than gas, restaurants, and travel. There, the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card will perform better. If you have significant spending on other things, such as groceries, entertainment, department stores, the Citi® Double Cash Card will be the card to use. Since neither of these come with an annual fee, you always have the option of signing up for both, and using them whenever one is best.

Compare Credit Cards Based On Your Spending

Another good way of seeing how the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card compares against other options is to use our calculator. By inputting your estimated monthly expenditures into the tool below, we can show you our estimated 2-year value of each card, and rank them accordingly.

Assumptions Based On Monthly Spend of: $1,430 Edit
General:
U.S. Gas Stations:
U.S. Supermarkets:
Airlines:
Hotel:
U.S. Restaurants:
Office:
Utilities:
Computing:
Card Annual Fee 2-yr Net Rewards Rate

The Net Rewards Rate is equal to the Rewards Value over two years divided by the total spending. The total spending is equal to the values entered into the tool and multiplied by 24 months. See the rewards Value note to see details on how it is calculated.

The estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone. They are not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. All estimates are based on the spend assumptions entered above (which you can edit).

Bonus Value

The bonus field shows our estimate for the value of the card’s welcome bonus. If the bonus is point or mile based, we multiply the total bonus points/miles by our estimate for their value to arrive at a dollar equivalent. We display $0 if there is no bonus or if the user doesn’t qualify for the bonus based on the current spending entered into the tool. All estimates are based on the spend assumptions entered above (which you can edit).

The estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone. They are not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

2-yr Rewards Value

The Rewards value is calculated by adding together the rewards earned from charging purchases to the card over two years and any welcome bonuses (if applicable). They are then multiplied by our estimated point/mile value, with any annual fees (if applicable) subtracted. All values are based on our own estimates for the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using a card and on the spend assumptions entered above (which you can edit).

The estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone. They are not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Citi® Double Cash Card
$0* 2.00%
$0
$686
Graph Card Read Review More Details and Value Calculation

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Estimated Rewards Value Dollars*
Spending Rewards 686 x $1 = $686
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 686

*The value estimate is calculated using ValuePenguin.com rewards point value.

Annual Fee $0*
APR 15.24% - 25.24%* (Variable)

Card Details

  • Earn 2% cash back on purchases: 1% when you buy plus 1% as you pay
  • Balance Transfers do not earn cash back
  • 0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 15.24% - 25.24% based on your creditworthiness*
  • Click 'Apply Now' to see the applicable balance transfer fee and how making a balance transfer impacts interest on purchases
  • No categories to track, no caps on cash back, no annual fee*
Capital One® Quicksilver® Card
$0 1.94%
$150
Get $150 bonus after spending $500 within the first 3 months
$665
Graph Card Read Review More Details and Value Calculation

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Estimated Rewards Value Dollars*
Spending Rewards 515 x $1 = $515
Bonuses
0 x $1 = $150
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 665

*The value estimate is calculated using ValuePenguin.com rewards point value.

Annual Fee $0
APR 14.74% - 24.74% (Variable)

Card Details

  • One-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus, cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months; 14.74%-24.74% variable APR after that
  • 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 15 months; 14.74%-24.74% variable APR after that; 3% fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months
  • Pay no annual fee or foreign transaction fees

Note: The information in this box was provided by Capital One® and is not part of our independent analysis.

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card
$0 1.74%
$0
$598
Graph Card Read Review More Details and Value Calculation

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Estimated Rewards Value Dollars*
Spending Rewards 598 x $1 = $598
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 598

*The value estimate is calculated using ValuePenguin.com rewards point value.

Annual Fee $0
APR 16.99%* (Variable)

Card Details

  • Exclusively for Costco Members: Go Big with Cash Back Rewards
  • 4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter
  • 3% cash back on restaurants and eligible travel purchases
  • 2% cash back on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
$0 2.04%
$150
Get $150 back after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. You will receive $150 back in the form of a statement credit.
$700
Graph Card Read Review More Details and Value Calculation

Terms and Limitations Apply

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Point Value Rewards Value
Spending Rewards 550 x $1 = $550
Bonuses
0 x $1 = $150
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 700

*The value estimate is calculated using ValuePenguin.com rewards point value.

Annual Fee $0
APR 14.74%-25.74% Variable
*Rates and Fees

Card Details

  • $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%).
  • 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores, 1% back on other purchases.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable rate, currently 14.74% to 25.74%.
  • Over 1.5 million more places in the U.S. started accepting American Express® Cards in 2017.
  • Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be easily redeemed for statement credits, gift cards, and merchandise.
  • No annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Chase Freedom®
$0 1.44%
$150
Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
$493
Graph Card Read Review More Details and Value Calculation

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Estimated Rewards Value Dollars*
Spending Rewards 343 x $1 = $343
Bonuses
0 x $1 = $150
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 493

*The value estimate is calculated using ValuePenguin.com rewards point value.

Annual Fee $0
APR 16.74% - 25.49% Variable

Card Details

  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.74-25.49%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate
  • Enjoy new 5% categories each quarter
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - it's automatic
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open and there is no minimum to redeem for cash back.
  • Free credit score, updated weekly with Credit Journey℠
  • No annual fee
BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ Credit Card
No Annual Fee 1.95%
$150
$150 online cash rewards bonus after you spend at least $500 on purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
$668
Graph Card Read Review More Details and Value Calculation

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Estimated Rewards Value Dollars*
Spending Rewards 518 x $1 = $518
Bonuses
0 x $1 = $150
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 668

*The value estimate is calculated using ValuePenguin.com rewards point value.

Annual Fee No Annual Fee
APR 12.99% - 22.99% Variable

Card Details

  • 0% APR for the first 12 billing cycles and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days, then, 12.99% - 22.99% Variable APR. 3% fee (min $10) applies to balance transfers.
The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express
$0 1.29%
$100
Earn 10,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you make $1,000 in purchases with your new Card in the first three months.
$443
Graph Card Read Review More Details and Value Calculation

Terms and Limitations Apply

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Point Value Rewards Value
Spending Rewards 34,320 x $0.01 = $343
Bonuses
10,000 x $0.01 = $100
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 443

*The value estimate is calculated using ValuePenguin.com rewards point value.

Annual Fee $0
APR 14.74%-25.74% Variable
*Rates and Fees

Card Details

  • Earn 10,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable rate, currently 14.74% to 25.74%.
  • $0 balance transfer fee. Balance transfers must be requested within 60 days from account opening.
  • 2x points at US supermarkets, on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1x); 1x points on other purchases.
  • Use your Card 20 or more times on purchases in a billing period and earn 20% more points on those purchases less returns and credits.
  • Over 1.5 million more places in the U.S. started accepting American Express® Cards in 2017.
  • No annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

Comments and Questions

Opinions, analyses, reviews, or recommendations expressed here are the author's alone, and have not been reviewed or endorsed by the issuer. We may be compensated through the issuer's Affiliate Program. For a full list of our advertisers see our disclosure page

* See the online credit card application for details about terms and conditions. Reasonable efforts are made to maintain accurate information. However all credit card information is presented without warranty. When you click on the "Apply Now" button, you can review the credit card terms and conditions on the issuer's website.

Info about the following cards: American Express® Gold Card, Delta Reserve® Credit Card from American Express, Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express, Hilton Honors Surpass® Credit Card, American Express® Blue Sky, American Express® Green Card, The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express, The Plenti® Credit Card from Amex, Blue from American Express®, Platinum Card® from American Express Exclusively for Mercedes-Benz, Bluebird, Centurion® Card from American Express, Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card, and Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card has been collected independently by ValuePenguin. The issuer did not provide the details, nor is it responsible for their accuracy.

Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through the credit card issuer Affiliate Program.

These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

How We Calculate Rewards: ValuePenguin calculates the value of rewards by estimating the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using the card less any associated annual fees. These estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone, not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Advertiser Disclosure: Some of the offers that appear on this website are from companies which ValuePenguin receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). The site does not review or include all companies or all available products. For more information please see our Advertiser Disclosure.