When I was a single guy living alone, I just didn’t see the point of warehouse stores. Whenever I found something that I liked, it always came in a package that was way too large for me. This meant that I had to throw away a lot of spoiled food.
But now that I have a wife and three kids, I get it. In fact, we often end up just buying two of everything so we don’t run out.
BJ’s is a warehouse store that has 210 locations in 15 states. In addition to offering great deals on bulk purchases, it now offers two different credit cards: the Perks Plus and the Perks Elite.
But how good are they? And how do they stack up to warehouse cards from Costco and Sam’s Club?
BJ’s Perks Plus Mastercard
The Perks Plus card offers cardholders 3 percent cash back on BJ’s purchases, a 10-cents-a-gallon discount on BJ’s gas, 2 percent cash back on dining and other gas purchases, and 1 percent cash back on all other transactions. There’s no annual fee, but you pay BJ’s membership fee of $50 each year.
BJ’s Perks Elite Mastercard
Moving up to the BJ’s Perks Elite card and you’ll get 5 percent off of all BJ’s purchases. And like the Perks Plus Mastercard, you also get a 10-cents-a-gallon discount on BJ’s gas, 2 percent cash back on dining and other gas purchases, and 1 percent cash back on all other transactions.
There’s no annual fee, but you pay BJ’s membership fee of $100 each year. So considering the higher rate of return and the bigger discount on purchases, those who spend about $1,200 or more each year at BJ’s will be better off with the Elite card rather than the Plus card.
Costco Anywhere Visa Card By Citi
Costco used to only take American Express, and it was an exclusive credit card partner. But now Citi is its new financial partner, and it has a strong rewards card.
The Costco Anywhere Visa offers 4 percent cash back on all gasoline purchases, including those at Costco, although there’s a $7,000 annual limit. You also get 3 percent cash back for spending at restaurant and on travel purchases, 2 percent on all Costco purchases, and 1 percent elsewhere. You receive your rewards once a year in February as a coupon that can be redeemed for merchandise or cash at any Costco store.
There’s no sign-up bonus offered, but new customers receive seven months of zero-percent APR financing on new purchases. There’s no annual fee with your paid Costco membership.
Sam’s Club Mastercard
Not to be left out, Walmart’s warehouse offshoot Sam’s Club has a Mastercard that offers 5 percent cash back on gasoline purchased from Sam’s Club (on up to $6,000 spent each year, then it falls to 1 percent). You also get 3 percent on dining and travel and 1 percent on all other transactions. There’s no annual fee.
Which is best?
For gas purchases, the Sam’s Club card comes out best with a 5 percent discount, although BJs credit card would be superior if gas prices somehow fall below $2 per gallon. The 4 percent Costco discount on gas is also very close.
At the same time, the BJ’s card is the most conventional, in that it offers a significant discount of 5 percent when shopping at BJ’s stores. Costco offers a decent 2 percent and amazingly, the Sam’s Club cards don’t offer more than 1 percent for in-store purchases. So the BJs credit card seems to be the most competitive offer of the three in that regard, so long as you overlook the annual fee.
In the end, BJs credit card and Costco are the most competitive cards, yet devotees of one of these stores are unlikely to change their allegiance based on a credit card.
Did we provide the information you needed? If not let us know and we’ll improve this page.
Let us know if you liked the post. That’s the only way we can improve.