Costco Travel 2022: Detailed Guide

Costco Travel 2022: Detailed Guide

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Members can book Costco vacations, cruises, hotel stays and car rentals through the Costco Travel website, potentially saving big on an upcoming trip.

Although Costco is best known as a members-only retail warehouse club where the motto is value in bulk purchasing, the company also features a growing travel services program, Costco Travel. At a glance, it seems Costco Travel has a different aim than most dedicated travel agencies. While most services are trying to provide the lowest price for the same options, Costco is attempting to win in terms of value.

Costco trips aren't always cheaper than the options available on websites, such as Priceline or Travelocity. But Costco trips typically include a ton of value, sometimes providing features that other services can't match.

In the following guide, we take a look at the value of various travel options on Costco Travel to help you determine if Costco Travel is worth your while.

Costco car rental

Costco Travel offers a convenient way to search for a rental car, compare prices and vehicle types and book a car for your next trip. Costco car rentals include:

  • Alamo
  • Avis
  • Budget
  • Enterprise

Costco car rental offers simple and transparent pricing that includes taxes and fees in the total.

How do Costco car rentals compare to other travel sites?

Pros

  • Simple and transparent pricing, including taxes and fees

Cons

  • Limited car rental partners
  • Limited pricing options
  • No discounted "pay no" option
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Is Costco a good deal for car rentals?

Costco trips offer competitive rates on car rentals but may not always have the cheapest prices for the type of vehicle you want, so it pays to shop around.

  • Costco Travel offers rates that are competitive against booking directly with the rental car agency.
  • Priceline and Travelocity offer lower rates. In our sampling, both Priceline and Travelocity offered significantly lower rates than Costco for each vehicle size. Albeit, through car rental companies that get very mixed reviews.
  • It is good to shop around, but you should also consider whether the savings are worth booking with a company that you aren't familiar with.

We did a comparison shop for a one-day car rental in February 2022, picking up and dropping off at the Denver International Airport in Colorado. We compared Costco car rentals to Priceline, Travelocity and booking directly with Budget or Alamo, the car rental agencies that Costco offered as the best deal for us.

Costco Travell
Budget/Alamo
Priceline
Travelocity
Economy Car$138$120 pay now or $133 pay later (Budget)$112 pay now or $119 pay later through Fox Rent A Car$112 through Fox Rent A Car
Intermediate Car$145$126 pay now or $140 pay later (Budget)$114 pay now or $123 pay later through Fox Rent A Car$114 through Fox Rent A Car
Full-size Car$152$155 pay now or $163 pay later (Alamo)$99 pay now or $106 pay later through Fox Rent A Car$99 through Fox Rent A Car
Full-size SUV$312$319 pay now or $336 pay later (Alamo)$222 through Routes Car Rental$266 through Routes Car Rental
Savvy traveler tip: If you choose a "pay now" option from a competitor, be sure to read the terms carefully before you pay. While you are locking in a lower rate, you may not be able to cancel or change your reservation if your plans change. Costco offers free cancellation and does not require an upfront payment.
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How to book a Costco car rental

Costco Car Rental

1. Enter pickup and drop-off details

To book a Costco car rental in San Francisco, first, select "Rental Cars" on the homepage menu and enter your pickup and drop-off locations, dates and times. Because we're searching for the city instead of an airport, you'll be provided a list of potential locations.

Costco Car Rental Price Examples

2. Compare rates by location

Choose up to four locations to compare rates for Costco car rentals. If you don't recognize the addresses, you can also switch to a map view to narrow your choices to something more convenient.

3. View results

Then click "Continue" and head to the results screen.

4. Assess rental prices

Costco Travel will then present your options for rental cars in San Francisco. The interactive table will list the price for varying car classes from car rental agencies that you selected. You'll see the price of car rentals within each car class compared across different agencies. Costco highlights the lowest price in red.

Costco Best Car Option

5. Confirm car details

If you want more information about any vehicle, click the price listed in the top bar. A drop-down panel will display a description of the vehicle and a price breakdown. (For our example, we chose a compact car from Avis.) Click "Continue."

6. Select additional equipment

The next screen will present optional equipment you can add to your rental and the price per day for these extras. We had the option of choosing a booster seat, infant child seat, child toddler seat, navigation system, roadside safety, tablet or Sirius XM. You could also add e-Toll Unlimited, which allows you to pay tolls electronically and have the cost added to your car rental bill.

Optional Equipment Avis

7. Confirm selections

Choose one or more of the available options to enhance your reservation by clicking the "+" sign. Otherwise, click "Continue" to the next step.

8. Select upgrades

After the optional equipment screen, you can choose from a list of available upgrades (if there are any) from the car rental agency. In this case, Avis offered two upgrade options. We could choose an intermediate-size car for $3.66 or upgrade to a standard car for $17.92 more.

Car Rental Upgrade

9. Finalize payment

Click "Update Selection" if you want one of the upgrades, or click "Continue" to finalize your reservation. The final step is to log in to your Costco Travel account, confirm and pay.

Costco doesn't offer rental cars for some destinations, such as Aruba.

Costco vacations

You can book a variety of Costco trips through its travel package options. These packages range from family theme park adventures to all-inclusive resorts to romantic European getaways. You can book domestic or international packages that include hotel, transportation and tours, with the option to add airfare. Popular destinations include Disney World, Europe, Hawaii and Las Vegas. Some newlyweds take advantage of special pricing to save money with Costco honeymoon packages.

How do Costco Vacations compare to other travel sites?

Pros

  • Easy to book online
  • Highly customizable
  • Great overall value
  • Often include extras, like food and beverage credits and special discounts
  • Costco Shop Cards come free with many cruises

Cons

  • Prices may not be the lowest
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Costco vacation packages vs. Travelocity vacation packages

Are Costco vacations a good deal compared to packages on other travel sites, such as Travelocity? We went shopping for popular vacation packages on both sites to find prices, pros and cons. Here's our take on Costco versus Travelocity for vacation packages to four popular destinations.

Italy

Disney World

Hawaii

Las Vegas

We shopped a sample itinerary of a one-week Italy trip in June 2022 for two adults. Our sample package costs about $1,900 more than the Travelocity package but also provides much more value, including:

  • Ground transportation to and from the airport
  • Daily free breakfast for two
  • A side trip to Tuscany
  • First-class train travel between cities

Costco Travel acts as more of an agency, offering the whole package, while Travelocity requires you to customize your own trip, adding extras like ground transportation and tours for an additional fee.

The extras may make the Costco trip worth the higher rate, depending on your preferences and budget. However, the Travelocity trip might be better for budget-minded travelers.

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Provider
Costco
Travelocity
Cost$6,064$4,154
Details
  • Flights to Rome
  • Three nights at Villa Agrippina Gran Meliá hotel in Rome and four nights at Cerretani Firenze in Florence
  • Daily breakfast
  • Welcome drinks and amenities
  • Ground transportation
  • First-class train from Rome to Florence
  • Flights to Rome
  • Seven nights at Villa Agrippina Gran Meliá in Rome
  • Additional payment for taxes, continental breakfast, self-parking and use of facilities apply
  • Option to add ground transportation and tours to your trip for additional fees starting at $57

Costco Executive Members receive additional benefits, which make booking Costco travel packages that much more worthwhile. Additionally, those members also earn 2% annually on Costco Travel purchases.

Italy

We shopped a sample itinerary of a one-week Italy trip in June 2022 for two adults. Our sample package costs about $1,900 more than the Travelocity package but also provides much more value, including:

  • Ground transportation to and from the airport
  • Daily free breakfast for two
  • A side trip to Tuscany
  • First-class train travel between cities

Costco Travel acts as more of an agency, offering the whole package, while Travelocity requires you to customize your own trip, adding extras like ground transportation and tours for an additional fee.

The extras may make the Costco trip worth the higher rate, depending on your preferences and budget. However, the Travelocity trip might be better for budget-minded travelers.

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Provider
Costco
Travelocity
Cost$6,064$4,154
Details
  • Flights to Rome
  • Three nights at Villa Agrippina Gran Meliá hotel in Rome and four nights at Cerretani Firenze in Florence
  • Daily breakfast
  • Welcome drinks and amenities
  • Ground transportation
  • First-class train from Rome to Florence
  • Flights to Rome
  • Seven nights at Villa Agrippina Gran Meliá in Rome
  • Additional payment for taxes, continental breakfast, self-parking and use of facilities apply
  • Option to add ground transportation and tours to your trip for additional fees starting at $57

Costco Executive Members receive additional benefits, which make booking Costco travel packages that much more worthwhile. Additionally, those members also earn 2% annually on Costco Travel purchases.

Disney World

We shopped a sample itinerary of a six-day trip in March 2022 for two adults and two children, ages six and eight. Not only does the Costco Disney package offer more convenience than the Travelocity package with one-stop shopping, the total price is actually lower than using Travelocity. The trip includes:

  • Flights from Atlanta to Orlando
  • A stay at Disney's Coronado Springs Resort
  • Five-day Disney park hopper tickets
  • Magical Express transportation service
  • Transportation to the Disney theme parks
Provider
Costco Disney World Package
Travelocity Disney World Package
Cost$4,813$2,440 flights and hotel $2,579 Disney five-day park hopper (sold separately) $5,019 total price
DetailsIn addition to flights and hotel with resort-view room, includes: Five-day Disney World passes (worth almost $2,600)Flights and hotel sold by Travelocity Disney World tickets sold separately

At first glance, the Costco Disney vacation costs $2,373 more than the Travelocity package. However, Travelocity's packages do not include Walt Disney World tickets. Costco's package includes a five-day park hopper pass that costs almost $2,600 for two adults and two children.

When you add in the cost of the theme park tickets, the Costco package is approximately $200 cheaper.

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Because both options include stays at a Disney resort hotel, they include complimentary transportation from the airport (through Dec. 31, 2021) and to the theme parks. However, the Costco package also includes complimentary standard parking at the theme parks in case you decide to rent a car during your trip.

Hawaii

An extended trip to Hawaii is an example of how you can save money with Costco honeymoon packages over the competition. We shopped a sample itinerary of a two-week trip for a couple to Maui in March 2022. The trip includes:

  • Round-trip flights from Los Angeles
  • A 12-night stay at a beachfront hotel
  • A rental car

The Costco package is almost $2,000 less than the Travelocity package, it includes a rental car upgrade from economy to full-size car. If you wanted to upgrade to a full-size car with Travelocity, the package price would increase another $229.

Hawaii Hotel

With substantial savings and a roomier rental car, we'd choose the Costco package for this trip to the Aloha State.

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Provider
Costco Hawaii package
Travelocity Hawaii package
Cost$6,388$8,312
Details
  • Premium ocean-view room (+$119/night to upgrade to oceanfront)
  • Full-size rental car
  • Premium ocean-view room (+$87/night to upgrade to oceanfront)
  • Economy rental car

Las Vegas

Our sample Costco Vacations package to Las Vegas has more perks for a lower cost, if you don't mind limited hotel options. We shopped a sample itinerary of a long weekend trip for a couple to Las Vegas in May 2022. The trip includes:

  • Round-trip flights from New York City
  • A stay at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
  • A $75 per day food and beverage credit
  • Complimentary daily valet or self-park

The Costco Las Vegas package is $32 cheaper than the Travelocity package. However, you can bring down the Travelocity package by $33 if you're willing to depart and return to different New York airports.

The Costco package is the clear winner for a Vegas weekend getaway at The Cosmopolitan.

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However, for the weekend that we selected, Costco only had one hotel choice available with two options – with or without a rental car. Travelocity had numerous hotels to choose from based on your budget and preferred location within the city.

Provider
Costco Las Vegas package
Travelocity Las Vegas package
Cost$1,804$1,836
DetailsIncludes:
  • Flights from NYC
  • Luxury room at hotel
  • Two queen beds
  • Upgrades available starting at $52 per night
  • $75/day food and beverage credit
  • Daily valet or self-park included
  • Additional $135 to be collected at property for daily resort fees
  • Option to add transportation or tours at an extra cost
Includes:
  • Flights from NYC
  • Luxury room at hotel
  • Two queen beds
  • Upgrades available starting at $52 per night
  • Additional $153 to be collected at property for daily resort fees
  • Option to add transportation, tours or shows at an extra cost

How to book a Costco vacation package

Book Costco vacation package

1. Choose destination

The Costco Travel homepage menu allows you to search for vacation packages.

Start by choosing a destination from a prefilled list. Options include the Caribbean, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Europe, Fiji, Hawaii, Las Vegas, Mexico, Tahiti and more. You can also select the "Guided Vacations" or "Theme Parks," if you wish. For our sample booking, we chose the Caribbean.

2. Select city

The next step is to select the city or island of your choice. Of the nine options shown, including Antigua, Bahamas, Jamaica and Saint Lucia, we chose to see what Costco Aruba vacation packages were available.

3. Enter trip details

After entering a departure city, dates and number of travelers and rooms, click "Find My Vacation." You'll be taken to a results page with packages.

4. Assess packages

From here, you can view each package or use the "Filter Your Search" box at the top of the screen to filter by country and city. Our sample Costco Travel to Aruba search results provided five packages at familiar brand names, like Marriott, Hilton and Ritz-Carlton.

5. Select and customize package

Select your travel package and click "View Details & Customize" from the results screen to see what's included and pick your flights. Costco trips typically include a few extras. For example, a stay at the Renaissance Wind Creek Aruba included a $107 Costco shop card. Costco Executive Members receive a complimentary upgrade to an Island Room.

6. Modify flight preferences

Next, you'll view the flights that were automatically included in your package price. You can change the airline and flight times based on your preferences and budget.

7. Modify room

On the next screen, your chosen room is shown, along with any included extras. Here, you can modify the room selection to a better view or larger room size. With the Renaissance, guests have the option of adding an all-inclusive option. For our sample, four-day, three-night stay, the all-inclusive option was an extra $1,819.

8. Book additional transportation

Once you're satisfied with your flights and hotels, transportation options are available. Here, you can arrange to rent a car, book a shuttle or other selections, depending on your destination. For example, our itinerary included transfers to and from the airport in a motorcoach at no extra charge.

9. Review package recap

Before paying for your Costco Aruba travel package, the website presents a package recap that shows all of your selections and the total price.

10. Finalize payment

Finally, proceed to the final step: payment. Log in to your Costco Travel account and book your vacation.

Costco cruises

Costco cruises offer bookings with 12 different cruise lines, including Carnival, Celebrity, Disney Cruise Line, Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises and Royal Caribbean.

It's easy to book a cruise through the Costco Travel site, which lets you search cruises, filter your options, customize your cruise and book in one seamless process.

How do Costco cruises compare to other travel sites?

Pros

  • Easy to book
  • Transparent pricing
  • Lots of perks, such as cruise credits
  • Includes a Costco Shop card loaded with cash to use on your cruise

Cons

  • Not always the lowest price
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Is Costco a good deal for cruises?

Costco may not always offer the lowest prices on cruises compared with competitor travel sites, but it does offer some good deals. And the perks and extras that come with Costco cruises may stretch your travel dollar. All in all, Costco cruises offer excellent value.

Costco is also transparent about its cruise pricing. On the Costco travel packages website, below the bold text of the cruise price per person, there are usually additional government fees and taxes listed. These extra costs are added to your final price when booking your reservation. Other websites may not show the full price until you've reached the booking page.

As you can see from our sampling below, the savings vary, depending on the cruise. For a cruise to Alaska, Costco cruises comes out ahead, while Expedia offers significant savings over Costco for the Vancouver cruise:

Cruise booking company and cruise
Costco cruises
Expedia cruises
Cruise line direct booking
Norwegian/seven-night round-trip cruise from Miami to the Caribbean$995$995$995
Royal Caribbean/seven-day round-trip Alaska Glacier Cruise sailing from Seattle$843$878$878
Celebrity/11-day Hawaii cruise from Honolulu to Vancouver$2,580$2,050$2,580

*Prices are per person. We included the taxes and fees in the per-person price for the lowest-priced room starting price, (typically an inside stateroom). You can pay significantly more when you upgrade to a stateroom with a view or even a suite.

When comparison shopping, you'll also have to compare the value of the perks, factoring in the Costco Shop Card and any cash back you may get for booking through Costco.

Costco usually offers perks, like a Costco Shop card, a beverage package, prepaid gratuities and unlimited internet. However, cruise lines and other travel sites also tend to include attractive benefits to encourage booking. For example, Expedia offered excursion credits, free airfare for a second guest and Wi-Fi for one of the cruises. And Norwegian offered a choice of four generous perks, including an open bar, free specialty dining, Wi-Fi and a discount on excursions.

How to book a cruise through Costco

Coscto Cruises Intro

1. Select cruise destination

To book a cruise through Costco Travel, select the "Cruise" option on the homepage and enter your dates and the duration of the cruise you want to book. For our sample trip, we chose a cruise to Hawaii. Click "Find My Cruise" to proceed to the results page and see available cruises.

2. Assess optional routes

In our case, Costco Travel showed us five Hawaii cruise options for our dates in May 2022. Each cruise option shows:

  • The name of the cruise line
  • A map with the route
  • The ports of call
  • A per-person starting price
  • Departure date options
  • Stateroom type choices
  • The name of the ship
  • The ship rating
  • The Costco member rating for that cruise.

3. View perks

You'll also see the included extras, such as food credits and the Costco Shop Card you get for booking. You may have to log in to your account to see the exact amount of the Costco Shop Card you'll receive. We were offered a Costco Shop Card ranging from as low as $405 for booking an inside stateroom to as high as $1,450 for booking a suite.

4. Apply filters

Click on the filter at the top of the page to see options and tailor search results. You can filter by:

  • Destination
  • Duration
  • Departure date
  • Cruise line and ship
  • Ship rating.

5. View cruise details

You can click "Cruise Details" to get to a screen with detailed information about all aspects of the cruise, including a sailing itinerary, a list of included onboard activities, dining options and descriptions of onboard restaurants, a deck plan and ship facts. Click "Continue" to move on.

Ship Info

6. Modify details

On the next few screens, you'll customize your reservation according to the number of people, their ages and state residency. You can also specify whether anyone on the reservation is part of an applicable cruise loyalty program, which can potentially give you extra savings and value.

7. Choose stateroom type

After entering the information about your reservation party, you will be prompted to choose between various stateroom types. There were four options available for our cruise: inside, ocean view, balcony and suite staterooms. The prices increase respectively.

Stateroom choices

8. Select stateroom location

After selecting a stateroom, click "Continue" to select a specific stateroom on an available deck of the cruise ship. You'll first see the stateroom that has been chosen for you, and you can keep it or click "Choose a Different Stateroom" from an interactive floor map of the cruise ship's layout.

9. Assess stateroom details

If you want more information about any rooms you're considering, click the stateroom on the interactive cruise ship layout to get more details. This is also the next step in booking your cruise. You'll see the occupancy limit and approximate size in square feet. You can also request your bed configuration on this screen.

10. Select desired stateroom

If you're happy with your stateroom and bed configuration, click "Continue" to move on.

Choose stateroom

11. Confirm or change stateroom selection

Scroll down to see the details and description of your room, including the bed arrangement. If you're not happy with your choice, you can click "Choose Different Stateroom" to make another selection.

12. View additional perks

With Costco travel packages, additional perks are always included. Click on "Always Included," to see the details of the benefits that are included with your cruise reservation.

Cruise credits

13. Finalize payment

When you're ready to book your cruise, you must log in to your Costco Travel account before you can finalize your reservation. The final step is to pay.

Costco hotels

Costco Travel offers a hotel booking option that lets you shop for and book a hotel stay on its platform. You simply enter your dates, choose a hotel, log in and book. Costco offers far fewer hotel selections than many hotel search engines and travel sites but also may offer extras and perks to make your stay nicer.

How do Costco hotels compare to other travel sites?

Pros

  • Transparent pricing
  • Pricing can often be reasonable

Cons

  • Limited selection of hotels
  • Won't always offer the lowest price
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Is Costco a good deal for hotels?

Costco hotels doesn't always offer the best deal or the best selection of hotels, but it does offer the most transparent pricing. Some other sites require you to click a "price breakdown" link or continue all the way through to the final booking screen to see the full price. If you don't like to get lured in by "advertised prices'' only to find out the true price later, you may want to choose Costco hotels.

To offer a sample of Costco's rates, we searched for hotels for six nights in New Orleans in March 2022, comparing Costco hotels with the offerings of other hotel search engines.

Since the value is so high, you'll need to comparison shop Costco hotels if you truly want the lowest price.

One of the biggest differences is choice. Costco offers only 25 hotels in the city for our dates, while hotel search engines offer hundreds of options. If you like simplicity, you might appreciate Costco's streamlined selection. But if you prefer to shop around or want to stay with a favorite hotel brand, you'll find more choices elsewhere.

As you can see from our samples below, Costco sometimes has the lower price (the Kimpton Hotel Fontenot) and sometimes has a higher price (the Holiday Inn New Orleans Downtown Superdome).

Costco hotels
Booking.com
Hotels.com
Travelocity
Holiday Inn New Orleans Downtown Superdome$1,066 pay later/free cancellation$1,011 pay later/free cancellation$1,008 pay later/free cancellation$1,008 pay later/free cancellation
Kimpton Hotel Fontenot$1,417 pay later/free cancellation$1,432 free cancellation or $1,537 with free cancellation and continental breakfast$1,432 pay later/free cancellation or $1,537 with breakfast and free cancellation$1,433 with free cancellation
Hyatt Regency New Orleans$1,518 pay later/free cancellation$1,601 non-refundable or $1,684 with free cancellation$1,601 non-refundable or $1,684 with free cancellation$1,601 non-refundable or $1,684 with free cancellation

We are using the total price with taxes and fees, rounded up to the next dollar.

How to book a hotel through Costco

Hotel booking

1. Visit CostcoTravel.com

To book a hotel through Costco, start by visiting CostcoTravel.com. Click on the "Hotels" tab and enter a destination into the search box.

2. Select destination

Once you start typing, you'll be able to select the correct destination from a drop-down menu.

3. Input trip details and find hotels

Add your check-in and checkout dates, number of rooms and number of adults and children in your group. Then click "Find My Hotel" and assess the options.

Find My Hotel

4. Enter Costco membership number

For some destinations, you may need to enter your Costco membership number to see prices.

5. Consider featured hotel

Depending on your destination, Costco may show you a "Featured" hotel. In our case, we wanted to see what hotels were available through Costco for a Key West vacation.

For Costco Travel in Key West, the featured property was the Kimpton Winslow's Bungalows. It was priced near the top-end of the five Costco hotels in Key West. It didn't include any extras for being a Costco member, but it was good that Costco included the mandatory fees in the price so there were no hidden surprises.

6. Select a room

Choose the hotel you want and click the "Continue" button. That will take you to a page that offers details about the hotel and about the room included in the package.

7. Make modifications

You can click "Modify Room" to make changes to your room, but doing so may change the price of the package.

8. Submit loyalty details

When you've decided on your room, click "Continue to Travelers." You'll enter your name as the primary guest. You can also enter your hotel loyalty number for the potential to earn stay credits and hotel points, and receive elite status benefits.

9. Submit special requests

Before booking your room, you may submit special requests for the type of bed, smoking vs. non-smoking room and accessible features. Here is where you can also include a note letting the hotel know if you're celebrating something special, like a birthday or anniversary.

10. Submit payment

Finally, click "Continue to Payment" to see a summary of your hotel, transportation and any other options you've included. Then log in to book your hotel.

Who can book Costco Travel?

Any Costco member who lives in the United States can book Costco Travel. It is a service that is offered as a perk of membership in the wholesale club.

You have two choices when it comes to Costco membership: Executive and Gold Star. Each comes with a different annual fee and suite of benefits.

Who can book Costco Travel

Gold Star membership is the base level, providing the ability to shop at all Costco retail warehouses around the world. It includes membership access for you and someone in your household. Beyond this initial access, there are few additional benefits. You do, however, get significant savings due to the relatively lower prices offered by Costco.

Executive Membership is an elevated version of Gold Star membership and requires an annual payment of $120, consisting of a $60 annual fee and $60 upgrade fee.

Executive member benefits provide additional value and savings. Chiefly, you'll get up to 2% cash back on qualifying Costco purchases, including Costco Travel offerings like vacation packages. The reward maxes out at $1,000 per year.

Need help choosing the best Costco membership for you? This table outlines the yearly value of the 2% reward available to Executive members:

Monthly purchases
Yearly purchases
Approximate annual reward
$250$3,000$60
$500$6,000$120
$800$9,600$192
$1,250$15,000$300
$2,500$30,000$600
$4,170$50,040$1,000 (max)

If you spend $250 a month on qualifying Costco purchases or $3,000 a year, you would earn $60 in cashback rewards. This would offset the upgrade fee required to move into Executive membership from Gold Star membership. Although you'll likely spend $3,000 annually at Costco if it's your primary source for groceries and other retail goods, you can reach that amount much faster through Costco Travel. Many of the Costco travel packages offered are well beyond $3,000 and more than enough to justify the added expense of being an Executive member.

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi: Should you apply?

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi

On Citibank's Secure Website

$0

15.24% (Variable)

720 - 850

  • Discover one of Citi's best cash back rewards cards designed exclusively for Costco members
  • 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
  • No annual fee with your paid Costco membership and enjoy no foreign transaction fees on purchases
  • Receive an annual credit card reward certificate, which is redeemable for cash or merchandise at U.S. Costco warehouses, including Puerto Rico
  • The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 15.24%. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi's discretion.

The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi is Costco's own unique credit card that offers benefits geared toward customers of the wholesale one-stop-shop. If you want to maximize your value with Costco Travel, consider applying for the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi. Or, if you have a small business, you might prefer the Costco Anywhere Visa® Business Card by Citi, the small business version.

These cards both offer 4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter, 3% on restaurants & travel, 2% at Costco & Costco.com, 1% on all other purchases. The 3% back on travel purchases is the most beneficial when it comes to Costco Travel. This credit card also has a $0 annual fee, but it does require being a Costco member.

An alternative to the Costco credit card: Any other card that offers you 3 points per dollar or 3% cash back on travel purchases. Most of these cards also offer a welcome offer, a benefit the Costco credit card lacks. Examples include the American Express® Green Card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve®. But keep in mind that these cards typically charge annual fees, while the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi does not.

Coscto card rewards

One downside to the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi is that redeeming your rewards isn't simple. You get the rewards you've earned in a lump sum once a year as a credit card reward certificate issued after your February billing statement closes. The annual credit is redeemable for cash or to make a purchase at a Costco store. If you shop at Costco often, you're already a member or you plan to use Costco Travel often, then you should definitely apply for this credit card. Despite its limitations, it still provides exceptional value to frequent Costco shoppers.

Is Costco Travel a good deal?

Costco Travel is definitely a good deal for convenience: You can book vacations, all-inclusive resorts, theme park stays, cruises, flights and car rentals all through one trustworthy platform with transparent pricing.

The most value can be found in some Costco vacations and car rentals. In one of our sample reservations, Costco Travel's vacation package was almost $2,000 cheaper than booking with a competitor. Costco Travel's car rental also offers great deals and may cost less than booking directly with the car rental agency itself.

The differences vary between Costco Travel's cruise packages and hotels and its competitors' offerings. Costco cruises tend to be pricier and offer fewer options, but they do provide substantial value for the price point. Many cruises and Costco trips include perks, such as welcome drinks, food and beverage credits and a Costco Shop Card, which can tip the scales. The extra cash back you can get for booking travel as a Costco credit cardholder or Executive Member sweetens the deal even more. Our recommendation: Spend some time researching vacation packages and cruises from Costco and other providers to find the best value before you book.

Costco Travel FAQs

Can I use Costco Travel without being a Costco member?

Costco Travel is open exclusively to members, so you'll need to be either a Gold Star or Executive member to use this travel program. The annual membership fees are $60 and $120, respectively.

What are Costco cash cards?

Costco Shop Cards, also known as Costco cash cards, are like gift cards that can be used to pay for Costco purchases. They're available in amounts ranging from $25 to $2,000 and they never expire. A Costco Shop Card can help maximize your Costco Travel value because many cruise and vacation packages include these cards. For some travelers, these credits may tip the scales in favor of booking through Costco.

Do Costco Travel packages include airfare?

Costco vacations offer the option to include airfare. You can choose Costco Travel packages that include hotel plus airfare, rental car or both. Packages that don't include a rental car often include round-trip ground transportation between the airport and the hotel.

Should I book my flight with Costco?

We recommend searching other services for lower rates before buying a flight through Costco. Costco Travel allows users to book Costco flights through the service as an optional part of the travel packages, which may be convenient for booking everything in one place. But Costco has fewer airline options than most dedicated travel services like Expedia and Travelocity. You may find a great package deal on Costco Travel, but flights may be available for the same price or lower by searching the top flight search engines. For example, Skiplagged offers cheap flights and Google Flights is good for finding multi-city flights.

Can you make payments on Costco Travel?

The ability to make payments on your trip depends on your travel dates. When you book in advance, you can make payments on Costco Travel. You'll only need to pay a deposit to secure your reservation and then pay the rest according to the schedule. The deposit amount varies based on the type of travel. Packages require a deposit of $100 per person, plus the full cost of the flights if your package includes airfare. Cruise deposits vary by cruise line and fare type. The final payment is due 45 days before departure for packages and between 104 to 134 days before sailing for cruises.

Does Costco travel accept American Express?

Costco Travel does not accept American Express. The only forms of payment you can use to buy cruises and vacation packages with Costco Travel are Visa and Mastercard. When you use an airline credit card to book through Costco Travel, you may forgo some perks that come with the card, such as free checked bags.

Does Costco sell travel insurance?

Similar to the setup with Costco auto insurance, Costco sells travel insurance but doesn't actually provide the insurance. Instead, Costco Travel offers preferred rates through Zurich Travel Insurance to protect trips booked through the service. You can learn more about the benefits offered and get a quote for travel insurance for your trip online or by calling 1-844-246-8470. Costco used to provide members with preferred rates from Travel Guard Insurance. As of Sept. 27, 2021, Costco no longer offers preferred rates on their plans. If you purchased a Travel Guard policy before that date, please contact Travel Guard at 888-691-2173 to review benefits and coverage.

Can you book Costco Travel for someone else?

A Costco member can book a vacation package or cruise for someone else, even if the Costco member is not traveling with them. If you book a Costco trip for a friend or family member, you will want to provide them with copies of the itinerary with the booking information that you receive from Costco in case any questions arise along the way. You may book a rental car for someone else only if they are also a Costco member. The primary driver will need a valid Costco membership card to show when they pick up the car.

Does Costco Travel save you money?

Costco Travel can save you money by offering exclusive discounts and valuable perks at a competitive price. Costco may not always have the lowest prices on cruises, hotels, rental cars and travel packages. Before completing your reservation, you should compare prices against other online travel agencies or booking directly. Costco trips generally offer reasonable prices and added value with perks, such as welcome drinks or room upgrades. Some Costco travel packages and cruise options include a Costco Shop Card, giving you cash to spend on your next trip to the warehouse store.

Are Costco Travel packages per person?

The prices shown for Costco Travel packages are per-person prices unless the offer states otherwise. The prices of Costco trips are based on double occupancy, meaning two people sharing a hotel room. For example, a couple buying a package that costs $3,500 would pay a total of $7,000 plus any taxes and fees not covered.

Does Costco Travel price include tax?

The price of a Costco Travel package includes some taxes but the traveler may have to pay other taxes out of pocket. For example, land-only vacation package prices include hotel taxes, and packages with airfare include airline taxes. Travelers who go on Costco trips may have to pay: departure taxes charged when leaving the country, other government taxes and fees and fuel surcharges for cruises.

Does Costco Travel do flights only?

Costco Travel offers flights only as part of a travel package. At Costco Travel, you can book cruises, hotels, rental cars and travel packages that offer you the option to add a flight. Costco flights may not always be the cheapest. It pays to shop around to see if you can get a better deal by purchasing your flights as part of your Costco Travel package, directly from the airline or through another travel provider. If you have an airline credit card, you may give up some associated perks, like free checked bags, when you use the card to buy your flight through Costco Travel.

Does Costco have guided tours?

Yes, for travelers who want someone else to do all the planning, you can book a guided tour through Costco Travel. These planned itineraries include group tours, organized transportation and arranged hotels. Costco Travel takes care of the details so you can sit back and enjoy the trip without worry.

What do Costco vacation packages include?

Costco vacation packages include accommodations and either airport transfers or a rental car. Unless specifically mentioned, airfare is not included in the price of Costco travel packages. If not already included, airfare can be added to most vacation packages. Additionally, some packages cannot be booked without also purchasing airfare. In general, you'll receive additional value or a better price when you buy a package that includes airfare.

Is Costco Travel to Hawaii worth it?

Depending on your departure city and dates of travel, Costco travel deals to Hawaii are definitely worth it. Costco offers some of the best value available on airfare, accommodations and rental cars. You can price out each one individually and possibly save money or receive additional benefits when you bundle your reservations.

Does Costco Travel do flights only?

No. Flights can only be booked as part of a vacation package. You may combine the purchase of a flight with reservations for a hotel room, rental car or both.

The information related to the American Express® Green Card has been independently collected by ValuePenguin and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication. Terms apply to American Express credit card offers. See americanexpress.com for more information.

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.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which ValuePenguin receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). ValuePenguin does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

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.

Example of how we calculate the rewards rates: When redeemed for travel through Ultimate Rewards, Chase Sapphire Preferred points are worth $0.0125 each. The card awards 2 points on travel and dining and 1 point on everything else. Therefore, we say the card has a 2.5% rewards rate on dining and travel (2 x $0.0125) and a 1.25% rewards rate on everything else (1 x $0.0125).