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What Credit Cards Does Sam's Club Accept?

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by the credit card issuer. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the issuer.

If you’re trying to figure out what credit cards does Sam’s Club accept to make sure you bring the right one to the store, don’t worry! Sam’s Club accepts all major credit cards. A few years ago, the list of credit cards accepted by Sam’s Club was limited, but more recently that has changed and now all cardholders can shop at Sam’s Club with ease.

Check out the best rewards credit cards.

Until 2006, Sam’s Club only took Discover cards. In an effort to compete with its major competitor, Costco, Sam’s Club added MasterCard to its accepted cards in 2006. Then, in October 2015, just after Costco announced it would stop taking American Express cards, Sam’s Club said it would begin accepting AmEx. In January 2016, Sam’s Club announced it would also accept Visa cards. So, no matter what card you have in your wallet, you can use it at Sam’s Club.

The Sam’s Club® MasterCard®

What Credit Cards Does Sam's Club Accept?

Sam’s Club members may want to consider signing up for the Sam’s Club® MasterCard® for its convenience and cash back bonuses. The credit card has no annual fee for club members and members can use it in place of a Sam’s Club ID card to access the store. Cardholders also earn 5% cash back on gas on their first $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%), 3% on dining and travel and 1% on other purchases.

Keep in mind that there are certain locations that are not eligible for the aforementioned 5% cash back on gas. These include fuel purchases at wholesale clubs that are not Sam’s Club, certain supercenters and supermarkets. Furthermore, cardholders of the Sam’s Club® MasterCard® can use their card anywhere that accepts MasterCard, since it acts as a regular credit card too.

How Else Can I Pay at Sam’s Club?

Even though Sam’s Club accepts all major credit cards, you may want to pay another way. Sam’s Club also accepts cash, checks, debit cards, SNAP, Sam’s Club gift cards, Walmart gift cards and the Walmart Credit Card. Sam’s Club is part of the Walmart family of stores, which is why it accepts Walmart gift cards and credit cards.

How Does This Affect Sam’s Club Customers?

Shoppers worried about which credit cards Sam’s Club accepts can rest easy, since Sam’s Club accepts all major credit cards! Shoppers are not limited by the card in their wallet, and don’t have to apply for a specific credit card just to be able to shop at Sam’s Club with a credit card. Customers might find themselves frustrated at stores with limited credit card acceptance when they have a favorite rewards credit card they want to use or airline miles to rack up, but the card issuer is not one of the accepted forms of payment. This is not something shoppers will need to experience at Sam’s Club.

Sam’s Club vs. Costco

What Credit Cards Does Sam's Club Accept?

Sam’s Club and Costco are the two biggest warehouse chains in the world, and both are in the top 10-largest retailers in the U.S. Naturally, they are competitors. Back when they were first founded, both stores only accepted Discover cards. Discover has far fewer credit card holders than Visa, MasterCard or American Express.  In 1999, Costco signed a deal with American Express, opening its stores to a much larger clientele than Discover provided. Consequently, the gap between Costco and Sam’s Club widened.  By 2006, Costco was earning four times as much as Sam’s Club. So Sam’s Club signed a deal in that year to accept MasterCard. At the time, MasterCard was competing with Visa for the top credit card in the US. It had many more cardholders than Discover and even American Express.

In 2015, Costco announced that it was ending its exclusive deal with American Express, and instead signing one with Visa. Within months, Sam’s Club picked up American Express as one of its accepted credit cards, hoping to woo Costco members. Sam’s Club also signed a deal with Visa in early 2016, meaning it officially accepted all four major credit cards as payment.

Now, customers who favor choice may be more likely to choose Sam’s Club over Costco. While Costco only accepts Visa credit cards, customers can pay with Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover at Sam’s Club.

The Bottom Line

Sam’s Club accepts all major credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover. All of these options make it easy for members to pay with their favorite credit card at check out. Plus, customers can always pay with cash, debit cards, checks, SNAP and Sam’s Club and Walmart gift cards.

Photo credit: ©iStock.com/slobo, ©iStock.com/slobo, ©iStock.com/Yvan DubA

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by the credit card issuer. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the issuer.

Advertiser Disclosure: The card offers that appear on this site are from companies from which SmartAsset.com receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). SmartAsset.com does not include all card companies or all card offers available in the marketplace.

Danielle Klimashousky Danielle Klimashousky is a freelance writer who covers a variety of personal finance topics for SmartAsset. She is an expert on topics including credit cards and home buying. Danielle has a BA in English from Wesleyan University.
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