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Need a credit card that allows you to earn cash back, build credit, and conveniently shop at big-box retailers like Costco? You’ve got some great options, including the KOHO Prepaid Mastercard and CIBC Costco Mastercard.

KOHO’s card is a prepaid credit card that is designed to help you keep your credit card debt in check, while Costco’s new card comes with a few extra perks that allow you to earn sizable rewards with every expenditure you make. 

Each card is a little different, so let’s dig a little deeper into both of them to help you determine which one works best for you.

KOHO Prepaid Mastercard

KOHO Mastercard

The KOHO Prepaid Mastercard is a reloadable, prepaid card that you can use much like a conventional credit card, except your funds are already loaded onto your account. This way, you can better control your spending and keep your debt levels in check. 

Simply fund your account through an Interac e-transfer to your KOHO account or by depositing your paycheque to the card. Then, you can use the card to make purchases as you would use a regular credit card. 

With the KOHO Prepaid Mastercard, you can earn rewards on all purchases and extra cash back with eligible merchants. Moreover, since this card is a Mastercard, it can be used anywhere that Mastercard is accepted, including Costco. There are also no fees associated with this card unless you upgrade your card for added perks.

KOHO Prepaid Mastercard Options

There are three options when it comes to choosing the right KOHO Prepaid Mastercard for your needs. KOHO offers three account levels, Essential, Extra, and Everything and each comes with a prepaid card that account holders use to access the money in their accounts.

KOHO Essential Account

  • Has a monthly fee of $4 or an annual fee of $48
    • No monthly fee if you set up a direct deposit or contribute $1000 per month
  • 1% cash back on groceries, transportation (gas, parking, rideshare apps, etc.), and eating and drinking
  • Up to 50% extra cash back with select merchants
  • Earn 5% saving interest on the entire balance in your KOHO account
  • Free e-transfers
  • No NSF fees
  • Credit Building for $10/month
  • Flexible Credit Building also available
  • Get your credit score for free in-app

KOHO Extra Account

  • Has a monthly fee of $9 or an annual fee of $84
  • 1.5% cash back on groceries, transportation (gas, parking, rideshare apps, etc.), and eating and drinking
  • 0.25% cash back on all other categories
  • Up to 50% extra cash back with select KOHO partners
  • Earn 5% saving interest on the entire balance in your KOHO account
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1 Free International ATM withdrawal each month
  • Credit Building for $7/month
  • Flexible Credit Building also available
  • Get your credit score for free in-app

KOHO Everything Account

  • Has a monthly fee of $19
  • 2% cash back on groceries, transportation (gas, parking, rideshare apps, etc.), and eating and drinking
  • 0.50% cash back on all other categories
  • Up to 50% extra cash back with select KOHO partners
  • Earn 5% saving interest on the entire balance in your KOHO account
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1 Free International ATM withdrawal each month
  • Discounted Credit Building for $5/month
  • Flexible Credit Building also available
  • Get your credit score for free in-app

Additional KOHO Prepaid Mastercard Features

The KOHO Prepaid Mastercard comes with the following additional features:

RoundUps

To help you save as much as possible, every time you buy something with your KOHO card, the total amount will be rounded to the nearest $1, $2, $5, or $10 (your choice). 

Lock Your Card

If you suspect that someone else is using your KOHO card without your permission, toggle the Lock button on your cards when you log in to your account online to lock your card and prevent anyone from continuing to use it fraudulently.

Financial Coach 

Get all your financial questions answered by KOHO’s Financial Coach, an expert who holds the Accredited Financial Counselor designation in Canada. You can reach the Financial Coach through KOHO’s in-app chat. 

Price Match 

Send KOHO your receipts for your recent purchases and they’ll check to see if the price drops or if it’s selling for a lower price elsewhere. If so, KOHO will help you recoup the difference and credit it to your account. 

Build Your Credit

KOHO offers two Credit Building Programs, Credit Building and Flexible Credit Building.

KOHO’s Credit Building is a credit-building line of credit that you can sign up for in the KOHO app. It costs $5, $7, or $10 a month and users can stay opted in for as many months as they need.

Each month your payment is automatically withdrawn from your account and KOHO will report it to one of the credit bureaus. This will help you build a positive payment and credit history, which in turn can help you build credit. 

KOHO’s Flexible Credit Building is a secured line of credit that you can also sign up for in the KOHO app. Users will need to set aside $30 to $500 within their KOHO accounts to act as security for the line of credit. There is also a $5 monthly service fee, that users must pay. Once the line of credit is active, you can make purchases and repay what is owed each month. These payments are reported to a credit bureau and can help you build a healthy credit history.

Referral Bonus

Get $20 after a friend you refer signs up with KOHO and makes their first purchase within 30 days of registering an account. Plus, they’ll get $20 too. 

CIBC Costco Mastercard

CIBC Costco Mastercard

CIBC is now the exclusive issuer of Costco Mastercards in Canada. Consumers who have a Capital One Costco Mastercard will have their account moved to CIBC. Cardholders will need to hold a Costco membership and pay the yearly Costco membership fee ($60 or $120).

While the CIBC Costoc Mastercard is a good choice for those consumers who frequent Costco, shop on costoc.ca, or even purchase their gas at Costco gas stations. This credit card still offers competitive cash back rates for those who don’t do the majority of their shopping at Costco. Cardholders will earn 3% cash back at restaurants and 1% cash back on all other purchases.

CIBC Costco Mastercard Features

If you’re an avid Costco shopper, you may want to start using the CIBC Costco Mastercard for all your expenditures at the membership-only big-box retailer. Here are a few benefits you can enjoy as a cardholder:

Cash Back 

Earn 3% cash back at restaurants and Costco gas stations, 2% cash back at Costco.ca and other gas stations, and 1% cash back on all other purchases.

Welcome Bonus

Get a $20 Welcome Bonus when you use your newly activated CIBC Costco Mastercard to make a purchase before December 31st, 2022.

Coverage and Protection

The CIBC Costco Mastercard comes with several products to protect your purchases:

  • Mobile Device Insurance Coverage. Get up to $1,000 to cover repairs or replacement of your mobile device if it’s ever stolen or damaged. 
  • Purchase Security and Extended Warranty Insurance. Certain items purchased with your CIBC Costco Mastercard will be covered if they’re lost, stolen, or damaged. Plus, the original manufacturer’s warranty will be automatically doubled, up to 1 additional year. 
  • CIBC Pace It. Pay for more expensive items through regular installments with CIBC’s exclusive installment plan for credit cards. Purchases over $100 are eligible, and you can choose from 6- to 12-month payment plans. 
  • CIBC Payment Protector. This coverage ensures your CIBC credit card payments are still made if you’re unable to work due to job loss, disability, critical illness, or death.

CIBC Online Banking Tools

Easily manage your account virtually with the help of online banking tools:

  • Redeem Gift Certificates. Get access to your Costco gift certificates and redeem them through the CIBC Mobile Banking App. 
  • Mobile Wallet. Use Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay to make quick and convenient purchases when you add your new credit card to your mobile wallet.
  • Cash Back on International Money Transfers. Use your CIBC Costco Mastercard to fund your money transfers with the CIBC Global Money Transfer service and earn 0.25% cash back on each dollar you spend. If you pay the minimum balance, you won’t have to pay any transaction fees or interest.

CIBC Costco Mastercard Fees

There’s no annual fee for the CIBC Costco Mastercard, but you must have a Costco membership and pay the annual Costco membership fee of $60 for Gold Star membership or $120 for Executive membership. 

Here’s how the CIBC Costco Mastercard stacks up against the KOHO Prepaid Mastercard.

KOHO Prepaid MastercardCIBC Costco Mastercard
Account Fees– KOHO Essential: $4/monthly or $48/annually
– KOHO Extra: $9/monthly or $84/annually
– KOHO Everything: $19/monthly
– $0 annual fee
– 2.5% foreign transaction fee
Earn Rate– Up to 2% cash back on groceries, transportation, food, and drink
– Up to 50% cash back with select partners.
– 3% cash back at restaurants & Costco gas stations
– 2% cash back at Costco.ca & other gas stations
 – 1% cash back on all other purchases
Interest RateN/A– Purchase interest rate: 19.75%
– Cash advance rate: 21.49%
Extra Features– RoundUps to help accelerate savings
– Lock your card feature
– Earn 5% savings interest on your entire account balance
– $20 Welcome bonus
– Mobile device insurance coverage
 – Purchase Security and Extended Warranty Insurance 
– CIBC Pace It installment payment plan 
– CIBC Payment Protector

KOHO Prepaid Mastercard vs. CIBC Costco Card Eligibility Requirements

Each card has its own eligibility criteria:

KOHO Prepaid Mastercard Requirements

CIBC Costco Mastercard Requirements

  • $15,000 minimum annual income 
  • Valid Costco membership

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use the KOHO card to shop at Costco?

Since Costco accepts Mastercards, you can use your KOHO Prepaid Mastercard to shop at the big-box retailer. If you choose to shop at Costco, you’ll also have access to their great return policy.

What’s the earn rate when you shop at Costco for the KOHO and CIBC Costco cards?

With the KOHO Prepaid Mastercard, you may be able to earn up to 2% cash back on all purchases at Costco. With the CIBC Costco Mastercard, you’ll earn 3% cash back at Costco gas stations, 2% cash back at Costco.ca, and 1% cash back on purchases made in-store at Costco.

What is replacing the Capital One Costco Mastercard?

As of March 4, 2022, the CIBC Costco Mastercard replaced the Capital One Costco Mastercard.

Final Thoughts

Both the KOHO Prepaid Mastercard and CIBC Costco Mastercard come with some attractive perks, though they differ slightly. If you’re looking to get a handle on your credit card debt, then the KOHO card might work for you. But if you’re looking to maximize cash back rewards and like the idea of having some insurance coverage options and extensive online banking tools, then the new Costco card may be one to consider. 

Lisa Rennie avatar on Loans Canada
Lisa Rennie

Lisa has been working as a personal finance writer for more than a decade, creating unique content that helps to educate Canadian consumers in the realms of real estate, mortgages, investing and financial health. For years, she held her real estate license in Toronto, Ontario before giving it up to pursue writing within this realm and related niches. Lisa is very serious about smart money management and helping others do the same.

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