- Costco members are entitled to perks beyond bulk products at a discount.
- The warehouse club has a travel program it pays to look into.
- Cash back, customer service while traveling, and exclusive vacation packages are just some of the benefits you'll find when booking a trip through Costco.
Why not book a trip while picking up your bulk pantry staples?
When I first started shopping regularly at Costco, I mostly used it for things like bulk paper towel purchases, cleaning supplies, and giant bags of snacks. These days, I still buy those things (especially the snacks), but I also use Costco for more than just groceries and household essentials.
Over the past number of years, my family has done home improvement projects through Costco, gotten eyeglasses at Costco, and even booked travel through Costco. And the latter was actually a really good experience even though the trip we had signed up for ultimately got canceled (more on that in a bit).
If you're thinking about going on vacation and have a Costco membership, it pays to look into the travel program and see if it's right for you. Here are a few lesser-known perks you might get to enjoy in the process.
1. Support in the event of hiccups
If you book travel yourself and things go awry -- say, your flight gets canceled ahead of your trip -- you'll have to sort things out yourself. That could mean spending hours on the phone getting increasingly aggravated.
When you book travel through Costco, you get a dedicated customer service team that serves as your personal travel agency. If you need assistance with anything related to your trip, they'll intervene on your behalf.
Years ago, my family booked a cruise to Alaska through Costco that was scheduled for August 2020. Needless to say, that trip didn't end up happening thanks to Covid. But Costco took care of everything for us and made sure the refunds we were due hit our credit card in a reasonably timely manner.
2. Loads of cash back
Costco travel purchases count toward the cash back you're entitled to through the Executive Membership program. If you book a $4,000 trip, you're entitled to 2% cash back, or $80.
Meanwhile, if you have a Costco Anywhere Visa® Business Card by Citi card, you can earn even more cash back on your travel purchases -- 3%, to be specific. We used this card when we booked our doomed Alaska trip, and had the trip actually taken place, it would've scored us some nice rewards.
3. Exclusive vacation packages
The vacation packages you book through Costco are often packages you can't book elsewhere. For example, you might manage to book a seven-day trip to Mexico through a travel agent or on your own. But you won't necessarily be privy to the same lodging, transportation options, and perks you'd get by booking a Costco trip.
What’s more, while Costco's vacation package options used to be more limited, the company has expanded its offerings through the years. So you may be surprised at how many destinations you can book through its travel program.
Costco not only makes travel affordable, but it takes a lot of the stress out of the planning equation. It pays to see if any of Costco's vacation packages align with your travel goals. You might benefit in more ways than one.
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