But Costco isn’t for everyone. Whether you don’t buy enough to make the $60 yearly fee worth it, relocate to an area where there isn’t a store, or simply don’t like the shopping experience, you may decide its time to cut Costco out of your life. Fortunately, it’s easy to cancel your Costco membership.
Here’s what you need to do to cancel your Costco membership
You may know that Costco has one of the most generous return policies in the retail business. That extends to its memberships.
“We will cancel and refund your membership fee in full at any time if you are dissatisfied,” Costco says on its website.
To cancel your Costco membership, head to the membership counter at your local Costco. An employee will be able to process your refund. Or, you can call Costco’s member services center at 1-800-774-2678.
A full refund at any time might sound to good to be true, but Costco honors the policy. One woman even bought and the canceled her Costco membership in the same day, a story she shared with the Kitchn.
Here’s what happens to your Costco credit card if you cancel
Canceling your Costco membership is easy, but there’s an additional wrinkle if you have a Costco credit card.
Many members sign up for the Costco Anywhere Visa to get a little more mileage out of their Costco membership. The card gives you 4% in Costco cash rewards on the first $7,000 you spend on gas, including Costco’s already low-priced fuel. You’ll also get 3% back at restaurants, 2% back on Costco purchases, and 1% on all other purchases. There’s no fee to get the card, but you do need to be a Costco member.
Unfortunately, if you cancel your Costco membership, you’ll also lose your Costco credit card. According to the card’s fine print: “We may cancel your Card Account and participation in the Costco Cash Rewards Program if you do not maintain your Costco membership.”
Not only will you lose access to the card and its cash-back benefits, but your credit score could also take a hit. Your total available credit and how much of it you use is one factor in determining your credit score. If you cancel your Costco credit card and have high balances on your other credit cards, your score could fall.
The length of your credit history also affects your credit score. If you have a short credit history and your Costco Visa is one of your only cards, closing the account could ding your score more than someone who has a longer credit history.
Is your Costco membership worth it?
If you’re on the fence about your Costco membership, you’ll probably want to figure out how much you’re really saving. Unfortunately, tracking how much you save by shopping at Costco is tricky, unless you’re willing to do a lot of price comparisons.
One analysis found that Costco gas was 21 cents cheaper on average than competing gas stations. If you fill up your 13-gallon tank once per week, the savings would pay for your Costco membership in about 6 months.
If you have the Costco Visa card, you’d need to make $3,000 worth of Costco purchases at 2% cash back to earn back the $60 membership fee. But you’ll rack up savings faster if you were using the card to pump your gas at Costco and getting 4% back.
Many shoppers will find that the Costco savings do make the membership fee worth it. But if the math doesn’t work out in your favor, at least you know it’s easy to cancel.
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