Costco To Stop Accepting American Express In 2016

It’s been rumored for months that Costco and American Express would eventually end their exclusive relationship, allowing members of the warehouse club to use other cards. Now AmEx has confirmed that the deal will indeed come to an end in early 2016.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Costco/AmEx arrangement is slated to terminate on March 31, 2016.

“Taking a very disciplined approach, we began discussions on a possible renewal with Costco well in advance of the contract expiration,” explains AmEx CEO Kenneth Chenault in a statement. “However, we were unable to reach terms that would have made economic sense for our company and shareholders.”

Costco and AmEx have already parted ways in Canada, where the wholesaler replaced its store-branded American Express card with a Capital One MasterCard. The company has reportedly been negotiating with CapOne and MasterCard to do the same for its U.S. stores.

As we pointed out in November, while the AmEx exclusivity deal likely had kept Costco’s payment processing charges down by only having the single card network, it also severely limited the number of members who could pay with plastic.