In addition to paying 2% cash back at Costco and Costco.com, the Costco Anywhere Visa Card offers cash back on gas, restaurants, eligible travel and more.
However, the way you redeem your rewards is particular. And perhaps rigid.
You get an annual rewards certificate along with your February credit card billing statement. Then you need to take the certificate to a Costco. From there, you can redeem your certificate for Costco merchandise or cash. (It’s up to the discretion of the individual Costco location if the certificate can be redeemed for actual cash or a check.)
However, cardholders can now access another, more convenient option. That’s what a listener of the Clark Howard Podcast recently pointed out.
Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi Now Allows Direct Deposit for Rewards
The card_name traditionally giveth and taketh away. In addition to 2% off everything at Costco, it offers up to 4% cash back on eligible categories.
The 4% cash back on eligible gas and EV charging applies to purchases for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter. And the 3% on restaurants and travel can cut down the amount you’d have to spend at Costco to unlock the direct deposit rewards option.
But it limits you to one reward certificate per year. And you have to physically visit a Costco in order to use your annual reward.
Per the Citi website: “Cash back will be provided as an annual credit reward certificate once your February billing statement closes, and is redeemable for cash or merchandise at U.S. Costco Warehouses, including Puerto Rico.”
At least, that used to be the case. But we got some nice intel from a Clark listener on the March 2 podcast episode.
Andrew in Georgia wrote: “Clark, I never hear you mention this fact about the Costco Citi rewards. Because our recent reward was over $300, Citi emailed me and said I could choose a direct deposit option instead of using it at Costco.
“I chose the direct deposit, and I had the funds in my bank account within three days. This was so much easier than trying to figure what to buy in order to redeem my rewards.”
There may be some small stipulations with the direct deposit option. One Clark listener suggested that in order to receive your rewards via direct deposit, you must have made two payments to your rewards card from that bank account.
The major catch with the $300 limit is that, if you only used it for shopping at Costco, you’d need to spend $15,000 at Clark’s favorite store in order to rack up enough rewards to access direct deposit.
“With the Citi rewards, you can go into the store and you just have them turn it into a check,” Clark says.
“Or because it was creating so much hassle for the front end at Costco, and I’m sure some embedded costs for Citi, they now offer this option for you to convert it into a direct deposit into an account of your choosing. I love that.”
How Clark Uses the Costco Anywhere Visa and the Sam’s Club® Mastercard®
Clark counts the Costco Anywhere Visa Card as one of the six credit cards he keeps in his wallet.
One of the others? The Sam’s Club® Mastercard®. That card offers 5% back on gas purchases. Clark’s primary vehicle is an electric car. But whenever he does need to buy gas, he uses the Costco card at Costco and the Sam’s Club card everywhere else.
The Sam’s Club card also offers 3% back on dining, with some fine print that clarifies eligible purchases.
The Costco and Sam’s Club rewards cards offer 1% cash back on non-qualifying purchases.
Clark offers a simple trick to maximize all your credit card rewards.
“My wife has had me write out stickers for her because she can’t remember, ‘Do I use this card, this card, this card?'” Clark says. “And she has it right there on her Costco card, where to use it. It leads to marital bliss.”
The Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi is an added bonus for Costco members who want to get even more money off the store’s typically generous prices.
You can only redeem your rewards once a year. But if you build enough of a rewards balance, you’re eligible to get it sent to your bank account via direct deposit.