Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi review: Generous rewards at the bulk retailer and beyond, with a few caveats to consider

By Holly Johnson

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The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi offers generous cash-back rewards in several spending categories, including Costco purchases. But where the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi really stands out is for the rewards it offers on gas purchases worldwide.

If you're someone who drives long distances or commutes to work, this card could be an excellent choice for your wallet for that reason alone. You'll earn 4% cash back on eligible gas purchases worldwide on up to $7,000 in spending per year (then 1%). 

You'll also earn 3% cash back on all restaurants and eligible travel, 2% back on Costco purchases, and 1% back on everything else. Note that the card has no annual fee, but you'll need an active Costco membership to qualify for the card.

While the ongoing rewards you earn with this card can be quite lucrative, the fact that there's no sign-up bonus is a downside, as is the limitation on how you can use your rewards — you'll only receive your rewards once per year, in the form of a certificate you can redeem for cash back or merchandise at Costco.

Because of this, most people should also consider one of the best cash-back credit cards before they decide on the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi. For example, the Citi® Double Cash Card effectively earns 2% cash back on all purchases (1% when you buy, and 1% when you pay it off) — and the rewards are much more flexible to redeem. 

Bottom line: If you're a Costco member and you spend a lot of money on gas, the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi card can a great option. Just remember that your rewards will only become available to you once per year, and that you'll have to visit a brick-and-mortar Costco store to get your cash back or to cash in your rewards for merchandise.

We're focused here on the rewards and perks that come with each card. These cards won't be worth it if you're paying interest or late fees. When using a credit card, it's important to pay your balance in full each month, make payments on time, and only spend what you can afford to pay.

*on up to $7,000 spent per year, then 1% back

**on up to $6,000 spent per year, then 1% back

The biggest downside of the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi is that you don't receive your rewards in the form of a check or statement credits. Not only that, but you also can't cash them in throughout the year.

According to the terms and conditions on this credit card, "cash back will be provided as an annual credit card reward certificate once your February billing statement closes, and is redeemable for cash or merchandise at US Costco Warehouses."

In other words, your rewards are good for more Costco purchases or cash back — but you have to visit a Costco location in order to redeem rewards for cash back instead of merchandise. And you'll only receive your rewards once per year, and during the middle of winter at that. This makes the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi unlike most other cash-back cards, which let you redeem your rewards any time you want.

The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi does offer a few notable benefits that can help consumers save money and protect their purchases.

You'll get purchase protection against damage or theft, for example, provided you report the incident within 120 days of purchase (90 days for New York residents). You'll also receive extended warranties on qualifying products that already come with a manufacturer's warranty.

Additionally, the card gets you access to presale tickets and exclusive experiences through the Citi Entertainment program.

In addition to having no annual fee, the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi doesn't charge any foreign transaction fees.

However, you should note that you do have to belong to Costco in order to qualify for this credit card. Costco memberships start at $60, which is worth considering if you don't have a membership already and don't plan on shopping at the store very often.

In terms of additional costs, this card comes with an APR of 15.24% (Variable) on purchases. You'll also pay a 3% fee (minimum $5) for balance transfers and a 5% fee (minimum $10) for cash advances. 

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Please note: While the offers mentioned above are accurate at the time of publication, they're subject to change at any time and may have changed, or may no longer be available.

For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, please click here.