It’s important to know how to pay for your groceries, especially if this is your first time shopping at Costco. The wholesaler separates itself from other grocery stores thanks to the Costco membership benefits and product deals. When it comes to paying, Costco accepts many payment methods, so the best choice is up to you. Using cash can save you money because of how you budget physical currency as opposed to credit cards. As a result, continue reading for guidance on all things concerning money in-store and feel confident when it comes time to pay at Costco.

Related: How Much Is a Costco Membership?

First Things First – Does Costco Take Cash?

does Costco take cash

Costco does take cash as a form of payment. You can pay at the register once all your groceries are scanned, and there are some benefits to paying in cash as well, detailed below.  If you’re using the Self-Checkout, though, that only takes credit cards.

Three Reasons to Use Cash at Costco

Lately, carrying cash can be easy to forget thanks to Apple Pay and other forms of easy payment options. However, paying with cash may make your life easier, and here are some reasons why.

First, if you don’t have a credit card that Costco will accept as payment, cash is an easy fix. Costco stores do not accept Discover, American Express, or Mastercard, so you would need a Visa to pay with a credit card at Costco. If this is you, it’s helpful to make sure you have enough cash for your groceries before you visit your local Costco.

Another benefit to using cash is that you can budget and avoid overspending. Instead of using your credit card’s spending limit as a budget, you can concretely hold your budget in your hands. This keeps you realistic about what you can afford and will help you stick to your shopping list. Costco shoppers know the temptation that Costco brings because even though it is known for its affordable prices, there are always extra items on sale that might call to you in-store.

Lastly, if you’re already in credit card debt or trying to boost your credit score, you might be looking to keep your credit card balance low. While using cash can feel free because it doesn’t show up on your outstanding credit card balance, this won’t help you pay off what you owe. That being said, using cash can prevent more fees and interest if you are having trouble paying off a particular credit card bill.

Ultimately, how you spend your money is a very personal choice. Rest assured that you can definitely pay with cash at Costco if it will help you budget and make you feel better about your expenses. If not, they can also take certain credit cards, which you can read more about below.

Check Out: What Are the Main Costco Benefits That Come with a Membership?

Does Costco Take Credit Cards?

does Costco take credit cards

Costco does take credit cards in-store, but only if they are Visa-branded payment products. If you prefer to shop online at or through their app, then you can pay with Visa, Discover, or Mastercard. The most important thing to note is that you cannot use an American Express card at either the warehouse or online store. So, to sum it up:

Credit Cards You Can Use in Costco Stores:

  • Visa

Cards You Can Use Online or on the App:

  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • Discover

Cards You Cannot Use at Costco Online or In-Store:

  • American Express

Why Does Costco Only Accept Visa Cards?

Costco only accepts Visa cards due to their exclusive contract with Visa. Their in-person stores exclude all other credit card companies such as Discover, Mastercard, and American Express, but that’s not an issue when you can use cash as an alternative method to paying for your groceries.

Read More: Smart Strategies for Saving at Costco: Get the Most Out of Your Membership

What Other Payments Does Costco Accept?

Other than Visa credit cards and cash, there are a few other payments Costco warehouses will accept. These include food stamps (EBT), Costco Shop Cards,  personal and business checks, and debit cards. As long as you have one of these payment methods, then you are good to go!

Cash is one of the easiest payment methods that can have several benefits, especially if you find it hard to budget with credit cards. If you’re tired of using plastic everywhere you go, luckily, you can always default to paying cash for your Costco goods.