Citi Custom Cash® Card
vs. Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi

Updated: June 19, 2024

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The Citi Custom Cash® Card and the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi both offer appealing cash back rewards without an annual fee, a common thread that likely brought you here. In the face-off, the Citi Custom Cash edges ahead due to its flexible 5% cash back in your top spending category and a 0% introductory APR offer.

But if you're a frequent Costco shopper, the Costco Anywhere’s higher rewards rates on gas, travel and dining, coupled with 2% cash back on Costco purchases, might tip the scales. The Citi Custom Cash is more accessible with a lower credit score requirement, but the Costco Anywhere is a strong contender for loyal Costco members.

Credit Card logo for Citi Custom Cash® Card
Citi Custom Cash® Card
Credit Card logo for Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi
Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi
MoneyGeek Rating
4.2/ of 5
MoneyGeek Rating
4.2/ of 5

  • Regular APR
    19.24% - 29.24% variable
    20.49% variable
    0% APR Offer
    0% for 15 months on purchases
    -
    Intro Offer
    Earn $200 Cash Back
    No current offer
    Rewards Summary
    Earn 1%–5% cash back
    Earn 1–4% cash back
    Balance Transfer Offer
    0% for 15 months on balance transfers
    -
    Balance Transfer Fee
    5% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum.
    Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
    Annual Fee
    $0
    $0
    Recommended Credit
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
    740-850 (Excellent)
    Penalty APR
    Up to 29.99% (variable)
    Up to 29.99%
    Not sure?

Which Card Is Better for You?

You might prefer the Citi Custom Cash if you're looking for a card with no annual fee and a generous introductory APR offer. Its flexible cash back rewards program adapts to your top spending category each billing cycle, making it a good fit if your spending varies or you plan to make large purchases soon.

You might prefer the Costco Anywhere if you're a frequent Costco shopper and spend a lot on gas, travel and dining. With this card, you'll earn high cash back rates in these categories and additional rewards on Costco purchases. But it requires a Costco membership, which should be factored into its overall value.

Head-to-Head Comparison: Card Details and Features

Evaluating the Citi Custom Cash and Costco Anywhere cards side by side clarifies their distinct APRs, fees, credit requirements, and rewards. For example, while the Citi Custom Cash offers a 0% introductory APR period, the Costco Anywhere rewards frequent Costco shoppers with exclusive cash back rates.

    discount icon

    Regular APR: Citi Custom Cash

    The Citi Custom Cash offers a more favorable regular APR range starting at 19.24%, compared with the Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi's single rate of 20.49% variable.

    annualFee icon

    Annual Fee: Citi Custom Cash

    Both cards technically have no annual fee, but the Costco Anywhere Visa requires a Costco membership, starting at $60 annually. Therefore, the Citi Custom Cash is better if you’re seeking a card without any associated membership costs.

    lowInterestAPR icon

    Introductory 0% APRs: Citi Custom Cash

    The Citi Custom Cash is better for introductory 0% APRs, offering 0% for 15 months on both purchases and balance transfers. The Costco Anywhere Visa does not provide any introductory 0% APR offers.

    coins icon

    Rewards: Tie

    Both cards offer compelling rewards, but in different ways. The Citi Custom Cash adapts to your top spending category each billing cycle with 5% cash back on up to $500, then 1%, and an additional travel bonus.

    The Costco Anywhere provides strong rewards for Costco members, especially on gas (4% on up to $7,000 per year, then 1%), dining and travel. Your best choice depends on where you spend the most.

    rewards icon

    Welcome Offers: Citi Custom Cash

    The Citi Custom Cash is better for welcome offers, offering $200 cash back after spending $1,500 in the first 6 months. In contrast, the Costco Anywhere does not have a current welcome offer.

    creditApproved icon

    Recommended Credit Score: Citi Custom Cash

    The Citi Custom Cash is more accessible, requiring a credit score range of 670 to 850, compared with the Costco Anywhere's 740 to 850 range.

    autopay icon

    Penalties and Fees: Costco Anywhere

    The Costco Anywhere is better for penalties and fees, notably because it does not charge foreign transaction fees, unlike the Citi Custom Cash. Both cards have similar late fees and penalty APRs, but the absence of foreign transaction fees with the Costco Anywhere provides a clear advantage for international travelers.

    points icon

    Issuer Satisfaction: Tie

    Because both the Citi Custom Cash and the Costco Anywhere are issued by Citi, they share the same issuer satisfaction score of 4.1.

    airplane icon

    Other Features & Perks: Tie

    Both cards offer unique perks: Citi Custom Cash provides a special travel offer on the Citi Travel portal, while the Costco Anywhere offers exclusive benefits for Costco members. Because perks are hard to value and change frequently, this category is a tie.

Rewards Comparison

The Citi Custom Cash edges out the Costco Anywhere in terms of overall rewards, thanks to its higher effective reward rate and flexibility. It adapts to your spending habits, offering 5% cash back in your top eligible spend category each cycle, up to $500. This makes it particularly appealing if you have varied spending.

The Costco Anywhere Visa with its 4% cash back on gas and EV charging, making it a strong contender for frequent drivers and Costco loyalists. Its 2% cash back on Costco purchases adds extra value for store members.

Citi Custom Cash Categories

For the Citi Custom Cash, eligible categories for the 5% cash back include:

  • Restaurants
  • Gas stations
  • Grocery stores
  • Select travel
  • Select transit
  • Select streaming services
  • Drugstores
  • Home improvement stores
  • Fitness clubs
  • Live entertainment

The table shows a detailed comparison of the bonus categories for each card.

Category
Citi Custom Cash
Costco Anywhere

Gas

5% for the first $500 spent each billing cycle/1% thereafter

4% for the first $7,000 annually/1% thereafter

Grocery

5% for the first $500 spent each billing cycle/1% thereafter

1%

Restaurants

5% for the first $500 spent each billing cycle/1% thereafter

3%

Travel

5% for the first $500 spent each billing cycle/1% thereafter/5% if purchased through portal

3%

Costco Purchases

1%

2%

Redeeming Rewards

The Citi Custom Cash offers a straightforward redemption process with no expiration on points, ensuring that rewards are not lost over time. Cardholders can redeem points for a variety of options such as statement credits, gift cards and travel, with no minimum redemption requirements for most options, providing a high degree of flexibility.

Conversely, the Costco Anywhere takes a more restrictive approach. Rewards are distributed annually and must be redeemed by December 31 of the year they are issued, potentially pressuring cardholders to use them or risk forfeiture. Redemption is primarily in-person at Costco warehouses, potentially limiting convenience for some. While rewards can be redeemed for merchandise or cash back, the latter may be subject to Costco's discretion, possibly in an alternative form such as a check or electronic transfer.

Methodology

MoneyGeek evaluates credit cards like the Citi Custom Cash and Costco Anywhere using a detailed scoring system, highlighting the use case where it scores highest. This approach ensures that the score reflects the card's performance in the scenario where it provides the most value.

For cash back cards, the primary factors we consider are the effective reward rate and the return on investment for offers. These elements — along with annual fees, introductory purchase rates and issuer satisfaction — contribute to a card's overall score. For a detailed understanding of our process, you can review our ranking methodology.

FAQ: Citi Custom Cash vs. Costco Anywhere

What are the cash back rewards for each card?
Do either of the cards offer a 0% intro APR period?
Are there annual fees for either card?
Can I use these cards for international purchases without extra fees?
What credit score is required for each card?

About Doug Milnes, CFA


Doug Milnes, CFA headshot

Doug Milnes is a CFA charter holder with over 10 years of experience in corporate finance and the Head of Credit Cards at MoneyGeek. Formerly, he performed valuations for Duff and Phelps and financial planning and analysis for various companies. His analysis has been cited by U.S. News and World Report, The Hill, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and many other outlets.

Milnes holds a master’s degree in data science from Northwestern University. He geeks out on helping people feel on top of their credit card use, from managing debt to optimizing rewards.


*Rates, fees or bonuses may vary or include specific stipulations. The content on this page is accurate as of the posting/last updated date; however, some of the offers mentioned may have expired. We recommend visiting the card issuer’s website for the most up-to-date information available.
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