Everyone always says that buying things in bulk and in advance will help you save money in the long haul. That’s one of the reasons why places like Costco have become so popular. But do you really save any money with a Costco membership? Let’s find out!
How Does It Help?
Let’s start by getting to know Costco’s different memberships and how much they cost. The most basic, Gold Star membership costs $55 a year. With it, a shopper can also print one extra card for a spouse, a domestic partner, or “anyone over the age of 18 and living at the same address.” For the same price, there’s also the business membership. While only one cardholder can use the business account, they can buy specific products for resale, instead of personal use. Both memberships work at any Costco in the United States or Canada.
The executive membership costs $110 a year. Of course, it also has many more privileges. It includes more bonuses and better discounts. Yet, to get the payment for the card back, a shopper will have to purchase good for $2,750 a year. Sounds a lot, right? Still, breaking it down, that’s just $230 a month. Even better? Costco also promises a refund for unsatisfied cardholders. So, with that in mind, who should buy a Costco membership?
For Family With Kids
Of course, as any parent can tell you, kids cost a lot! Parents need to purchase food, toys, clothes, diapers, and much, much more. Many say that Amazon has become cheaper than Costco for parents, but let’s look at the numbers. While Amazon does have diapers in bulk for as low as $0.18 for on diaper, that does not include the $99 Amazon Prime membership. At Costco, the membership costs $55, and one can find diapers as low as $0.19 a diaper in bulk. As you can see, Amazon doesn’t actually save parents that much in the long run!
Plus, Costco features far more food than Amazon ever could hope to carry! And for those long days, wine lovers can easily pick up some bottles after stocking up on diapers.
For those with medications, a Costco membership could very likely be worthwhile. As Reddit user mokvendy shared, “My yearly membership is paid off with just one purchase. Generic, over-the-counter medications are absurdly cheap at Costco — I can buy a year’s worth of generic Zyrtec, and it’s more than $55 cheaper than the equivalent generic from CVS or Walgreens.”
For A Couple
Many couples without children do not think that a Costco membership could be worth it. After all, few eat enough to make it worth buying in bulk. However, these couples simply do not know the proper hacks! This can include frozen foods, dry goods, and non-refrigerated meat. With these items, meal planning becomes a breeze! Another tip: shop with another couple. Then, after the trip, simply split the bill and the food. No rotten food and extra waste!
For Someone Who Lives Alone
We understand, not everyone has a significant other or a family. Is it worth grabbing a gold star membership for those who live alone? If you’re not out of money completely, give it a try. The thing about Costco is that they have a fantastic return/refund policy. Apart from just being profitable for students and such, buying food is never a waste. “The Costco refund policy on its own makes the membership worthwhile. They stand behind the products they sell,” said Mark Kantrowitz, the publisher and vice president of strategy for Cappex.com. He also added that it’s easy to return products – he even did it once after a year had passed!
So, don’t be scared of Costco, no matter where you are in life!
Sources: Finance 101, The Penny Hoarder