Costco is one of the most popular retailers in the United States.
With great prices and helpful staff, there’s little not to love about the store.
As grocery stores transition to adapt to future technologies, many of them are switching to NFC technology at checkout lanes.
NFC enables wireless and contactless payment transfers from a digital wallet.
One of the apps that use NFC technology is Apple Pay.
Since Costco has NFC terminals in their stores, you may wonder if they accept Apple Pay as a form of payment.
Here’s what you need to know about Costco and Apple Pay.
Does Costco Take Apple Pay?
Yes, Costco does take Apple Pay.
Costco accepts Apple Pay at most, if not all, of its stores.
Some Costco stores that don’t accept Apple Pay likely don’t have an NFC reader.
If you don’t see this terminal at the checkout lane, then there’s a chance that your Costco store either doesn’t support it or is in the process of installing it.
It’s important to know that Costco only authorizes the use of Visa cards through Apple Pay in the United States.
In Canada, they accept all major credit cards.
If you’re in the United States, however, you have to have a Visa credit card as your default payment method on Apple Pay.
Otherwise, the transaction will fail.
What Payment Methods Does Costco Accept?
Although Costco does accept Apple Pay, you may want to use a different method to pay for your items.
Costco only takes Visa as a viable credit card for its sales.
If you have any other kind of credit card, then you won’t be able to pay for items at the store with whatever credit card you have.
That said, they do accept several different types of debit cards.
As long as the debit card uses a PIN, Costco will accept it.
This is also true for ATM cards.
If the ATM card has a PIN, then Costco will accept it.
If you don’t have a Visa credit card, then you can still pay for your items with cash or a personal check.
They’ve also invested in mobile payment methods.
If you don’t have an iPhone or access to Apple Pay, then you can use Google Pay or Samsung Pay instead.
Both of these payment methods are similar to Apple Pay.
They use a digital wallet to which you connect a card or bank.
Then you can use the app to make purchases instead of a physical card or cash.
Since Costco has NFC terminals enabled for Apple Pay, they’ll work just as fine for Google Pay and Samsung Pay, as well.
Similar to Apple Pay, you need a Visa card connected to your Google Pay and Samsung Pay to pay for your purchases.
What Forms Of Payment Does Costco Online Accept?
If you want to shop online at Costco’s official website, then you’ll find they allow additional methods of payment there.
They don’t restrict payments to only Visa cards.
You can also use your MasterCard to complete your payment.
Besides that, they still allow PIN-based debit cards and ATM cards to buy items on their online store.
If you have a Costco shop card or Discover card, then you can also use those to pay for your purchases.
Do Costco Gas Stations Take Apple Pay?
Yes, Costco gas stations also take Apple Pay.
They have similar regulations as to the store in that you can only use a Visa card linked with your Apple Pay account.
Their gas stations will also accept other digital wallets like Samsung Pay and Google Pay.
All need to have a Visa card linked to the account.
You can also use PIN-enabled debit cards and ATM cards at the gas station.
Finally, gas stations accept cash and personal checks.
You can make fueling up even faster and safer by using Apple Pay.
Since some criminals place a hacking device inside of credit card terminals at the pump, there’s always a potential risk of leaking sensitive information to them.
Any time you use a compromised terminal, it sends the hacker information about your card.
The criminal can then use that information to either make purchases or ransom the information.
They’ll force you to pay a certain amount of money to get back the details of your personal credit card information.
Apple Pay and other digital wallets avoid this problem.
They don’t need you to physically swipe anything.
Instead, a scanner reads information on a QR code or something similar.
That information is only valid for that one time.
It’s then randomized for the next purchase that you make.
In this way, it’s a lot harder for hackers and criminals to access your sensitive information at the point of contact with the terminal.
It can also speed up the process of paying for gas.
Instead of waiting for the cashier or terminal to feed you the next prompt, you can handle everything with a single scan.
That’s less time spent at the gas station and more time on the road.
Does Costco Pharmacy Accept Apple Pay?
If you want to avoid long pharmacy lines, then you may want to consider using a quick way to pay.
Apple Pay makes checking out faster and easier.
However, you may not be sure if you can use it to pay for your medications at Costco’s pharmacy.
The good news is that their pharmacy does accept Apple Pay as a form of payment.
This is also true of all digital wallets.
When you go in to pay for your medication, you need to scan the QR code or let the pharmacist scan it for you.
Then you can pay for the medication and finalize the order.
If you have any coupons or discounts that drive the price down of your medication, you can also apply them before completing your purchase.
Your Apple Pay account has all the information a pharmacist needs outside of verifying your identity.
It can make picking up and paying for your medications fast, easy, and secure.
As with the rest of the store, however, you can only use Apple Pay at the pharmacy if you have a Visa card attached to your Apple Pay account.
Why Do You Need A Visa Card To Use Apple Pay At Costco?
The freedom of using a digital wallet is that it’s easy to switch between different payment methods if needed.
Shopping at Costco limits you to only Visa cards for your in-store purchases.
Considering that other grocery stores tend to accept almost any major credit card, it might make Costco seem strange.
This isn’t the first time Costco was exclusive to a particular credit card company either.
Before Visa, they partnered with American Express.
From 1999 to 2016, Costco and American Express had a mutual relationship.
Costco would only allow the traffic in their store to use American Express instead of other credit cards to make payments.
In return for this exclusivity, American Express would keep the merchant transaction fee low.
This relationship served both companies well.
Costco was able to keep its operational costs down and American Express enjoyed a bulk of fees from the various Costco locations.
They were always able to rely on money coming in from Costco stores because that’s all the people could use when shopping there.
That relationship came to an end in 2016.
Costco ended up partnering with Visa instead in 2017.
The relationship is similar.
Costco makes credit card purchases exclusive to Visa and Visa charges them a low transaction fee.
Reportedly, their transaction fee is 0.4%.
This means that customers who visit a Costco store can pay cash, check, use a debit card or ATM card, or use a Visa credit card.
That extends to digital wallets, too.
When setting up the account, Apple Pay users need to acquire a Visa card if they want to use Apple Pay to pay for their items.
It saves Costco money, which helps to keep its prices low, and it gives Visa plenty of money to draw on for future investments.
It can be a minor hiccup for anyone who shops at Costco for the first time.
Because of its great prices and selection of products, however, Costco is sure you’re going to make the adjustment you need to keep shopping there.
How Do You Use Apple Pay At Costco?
To use Apple Pay at Costco, you first need to have an iPhone.
Apple Pay is an Apple product, it’s only usable on other Apple products.
Using your phone, you’ll want to navigate through its apps until you find a Wallets setting.
From there, you’ll need to create a PIN or set up some type of biometric for security.
With that security, you can then start adding different payment types to the wallet.
For Costco, you’ll want to add a Visa card.
You’ll also need an Apple ID on the iCloud.
This is where the wallet will store important information.
Once your wallet is ready, you can start shopping at Costco.
When you have all your items, you can head to a cashier or a self-checkout lane.
If you’re with a cashier, then inform them that you intend to pay with Apple Pay.
If you’re using a self-checkout lane, then you can proceed to the next step.
There are a few different ways to use and access Apple Pay.
Some of them depend on the type of device that you’re using to access Apple Pay.
1. iPhone With Face ID
For a standard iPhone, for example, you’ll want to double-click the side button to use your default card.
A prompt will appear asking you to either scan your face or put in your passcode to authenticate the purchase.
Once it’s authenticated, you can place the screen near the reader.
Once you see a checkmark on the screen, the payment is complete.
2. iPhone With Touch ID
If you’re using an iPhone Touch ID, the process is slightly different.
Instead of using your face to authenticate the payment, you’ll press your finger to the Touch ID portion of your phone.
Once the app has confirmed you are the authorized user, you can hold the screen close to the reader.
The funds will transfer, and the payment will indicate completed with a checkmark.
Once you see the checkmark, you know the transaction has been successful.
3. Using An Apple Watch
If you want to use your Apple Watch to use Apple Pay at Costco, then the process is even simpler.
On the side of your watch, you’ll feel a button.
Double-click the side button and hold the face of the watch close to the reader.
The payment will process.
Instead of a checkmark on the face of the watch, you’ll feel a gentle buzz against your wrist.
That indicates that the transfer was successful.
How To Use Apple Pay At Costco.com
You can use Apple Pay when using Costco’s website, too.
You’ll need either your iPhone or an Apple Watch to complete the process.
Here are a few different ways you can use Apple Pay on Costco’s online store.
1. Using A Desktop Or Laptop
If you’re on a laptop or desktop, then you’ll need to sign in to your Apple ID.
You’ll also need your iPhone or Apple Watch.
Double-check to ensure you’re logged into your Apple ID on your mobile device, too.
Then navigate to your Bluetooth settings on your desktop or laptop and enable Bluetooth.
When you have your items in the shopping cart on the website, you can then proceed to check out with Apple Pay.
Click the Apple Pay button.
Check over the information, then confirm the payment.
You’ll need either your iPhone or Apple Watch at this point.
You’ll have to verify the purchase using either your face, fingerprint, or a passcode.
The process is similar to that in the store except you don’t need to put the screen near a reader.
You should see a checkmark or feel a gentle buzz when the transfer is complete.
2. Using Your iPhone
You can also use your iPhone to visit Costco’s mobile site.
From there, you can select the items that you want to buy and put them in your shopping cart.
When you’re ready to checkout, you’ll want to click the Apple Pay option.
You’ll have to confirm the payment, then verify the transaction by letting the phone verify your choice of biometric security.
A checkmark will appear on the screen of your phone when the transfer is complete.
How To Use Apple Pay On The Costco App
Like all major retailers, Costco also has its own app.
You can shop on the app which is friendlier for mobile devices than using Costco’s mobile site.
The process of paying on the app is simple with Apple Pay.
When you put everything you want in your shopping cart, you’ll need to press the Apple Pay button.
You’ll see it under payment methods on the app.
Go through your cart and check that the information related to your Apple Pay is correct.
You’ll then need to confirm your payment by using either your face ID, fingerprint, or passcode.
Once the transfer is complete, you’ll receive a notification.
How Can You Change Your Default Card For Costco?
If you have several cards on your Apple Pay account, then you need to know how to switch between them to ensure you have a Visa for Costco purchases.
Luckily, switching between them is easy.
Access Apple Pay under the Wallets section of your iPhone.
You can also click on the app for it.
You’ll then need to go to your cards section.
Click your default card and you should see a prompt to switch the card to something else.
You can also click on the card that you want to make the default and select the option to make it your default card.
You’re now ready to use your default Visa card at Costco.
Can You Use Apple Pay At Costco’s Food Courts?
One of the benefits of shopping at Costco is that many of them have food courts.
You can find several different types of food to tide you over while you shop for food to take home.
You can use your Apple Pay wallet to pay for your food at a food court.
It’s extremely easy to do so.
All you need to do is go to one of the payment kiosks in the food court.
Then click the checkout option.
You’ll then need to either use your face, fingerprint, or passcode to confirm the payment.
The entire process takes a matter of seconds.
It’s the fastest way to buy food at a Costco food court.
Costco accepts Apple Pay as a form of payment, but only if you have a Visa card in your digital wallet.
Since Costco has an exclusive agreement with Visa, they can’t accept any other types of credit cards at their stores.
However, you can use your Apple Pay on their online store and use whatever credit card you like.
Using Apple Pay at a Costco checkout terminal or kiosk is simple and fast.