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Today is the day that Costco is switching from American Express to Citi. That’s a pretty big deal. American Express used to have a huge contract with Costco, but they lost that to Citi.
Initially Costco was supposed to switch to Citi earlier in the year, but American Express ended up selling their Costco portfolio to Citi, meaning those with a Costco American Express would automatically have their card switched to a Costco Citi Visa Card.
Today, June 20, is the official switchover date, meaning that only Visa cards are accepted at Costco stores effectively immediately.
This also means that it’s now possible to apply directly for the Costco Personal Visa or the Costco Business Visa. These cards have a good rewards structure, which is actually better than what American Express used to offer. Specifically, the card offers the following cashback:
- 4% cash back on eligible gas worldwide including at Costco for the first $7,000 per year (then 1% thereafter)
- 3% cash back on restaurant and eligible travel purchases worldwide
- 2% cash back on all other purchases from Costco and costco.com
- 1% cash back on all other purchases
The Citi Costco Visa Card has no annual fee, though you do need to be a Costco member in order to apply — during the application process it will request your membership number.
If you’re not yet a Costco member and want the card, you’ll want to complete the process of applying for a membership, and then submit your application for the credit card.
Do keep in mind that while Costco’s new arrangement is with Citi, you can pay with any Visa card at Costco, even if it’s issued by another bank (conversely, you can’t pay at Costco with a Citi MasterCard, for example).
Costco is a huge retailer with a ton of clout, and I know plenty of people who shop there religiously. So the switch from American Express to Citi is a huge deal for many people. If you had a Costco American Express Card, that should automatically be converted into a Costco Citi Card. However, if you don’t yet have the card but are a Costco member, you can now apply for the Costco Personal Visa or the Costco Business Visa, both of which have a pretty compelling earnings structure.
Stay tuned, because soon I’ll have a post sharing what I consider to be the best alternative credit cards for spend at Costco.
How are you feeling about Costco’s transition from American Express to Citi?