Costco is one of the most well-known and well-loved retailers in the United States. It caters to the needs of a large number of consumers, and their requirements for purchasing their products and services are almost as varied as their consumers. One of the requirements that the company enjoys is having no credit check process for its card applicants. The rules are very simple, and the requirements match Costco's reputation.
The requirements to get a Costco credit card depend on the type of account you have. The most common is a Blue Chip Plus Card, which is issued by American Express and requires little more than a good payment history and an adequate rating to qualify. This option is usually the preferred option for many households and business establishments, as it provides them with a credit card without the additional hassles of extra payments, applications and inquiries. It is important to note that this type does not include gas cards, as these are paid for with inactivity fees.
Costco also has specific requirements for its gasoline cards. It requires a minimum balance of at least one gallon of gas each billing period, which is based on the average fuel purchased during the month. In addition, there is a maximum credit limit for the card, which may not exceed five hundred dollars, and Costco requires an annual renewal fee for this option. An important reminder of Costco's policies for credit card issuers is the no-pay-check-out policy, which requires cardholders to pay for purchases with cash at the time of the purchase rather than allowing the purchase to be debited from their checking account.
Costco requires all cardholders to maintain a high level of responsible spending. This means that Costco credit cards are not to be used for entertainment expenses. Purchasing something like a new laptop or cell phone means that the cardholder will need to make monthly payments, which are detailed in the form of a chargeback. While a chargeback may not seem like a major concern, if a cardholder misses a payment and then tries to make another, the company can attach large charges to the missed payment. Credit card issuers should make every effort to work with customers to avoid such scenarios, so look for a company with good customer service if you have questions about Costco's policies regarding chargebacks and other concerns.
Some consumers wonder why they should bother applying for a Costco credit card. After all, most of the credit card market is dominated by the major banks and financial institutions. Costco, however, has long rejected the practice of issuing credit cards to its customers. Its long-standing policy of controlling credit spending has made it averse to issuing credit cards, even to its largest customers. But credit card issuers must realize that their failure to control purchases using debit cards can spell big trouble down the road.
Like many other businesses, Costco stores have seen a recent increase in sales as well as in customers. The company claims that its membership numbers are up and that it now serves as the biggest retailer in the country by sales volume. That may be true, but membership numbers do not necessarily correlate directly with customer satisfaction. Even if a percentage of customers have had problems with a particular credit card, it's not clear that percentage is due to Costco's policies. That said, credit card requirements do appear to be relatively high, so the chance that one of your regular memberships might result in chargeback or other problem is probably not as great as the annual fee you will likely pay for a Costco card.
Costco's credit card requirements include annual membership fees of $75 or more. Some analysts believe that this price could actually hurt the company's future sales. The credit card issuers are not publicly releasing information on their specific credit card requirements. So, while Costco credit card information is freely available online and elsewhere, it is difficult to tell what their exact policies are.
It is possible that Costco may soon become one of the first retailers to drop the annual fee. At present, they are not offering any debit cards. However, if they begin to offer one in the near future, it could be seen as a means to compete with the other major retailers. After all, credit card issuers are already competing with one another to attract members and retain their members.
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