Are Wholesale Clubs Worth It?
Costco and Sam’s Club are the most popular wholesale clubs in the USA offering steep discounts primarily on bulk purchases. These retailers are great for buying household items, food and everything sold is generally below MSRP. Selection is limited and changes often but they generally carry a lot of great products and brands.
They both have annual memberships at a cost of around $60 a year but if you shop there enough it will pay for itself many times over – especially if you fill up your gas tank often. They almost always have gas 5 – 10% cheaper than other gas stations in the area. The clubs also offer excellent pickup and delivery options that are bringing them into direct competition with other online retail giants.
Costco offers items under the brand Kirkland which offers premium quality without the premium price tag. I highly recommend trying anything they sell under this brand as most of it is manufactured or created by premium partners and just rebranded.
Food courts at both warehouses offer excellent pricing. It is almost gives you the nostalgic effect when you can get a food and drink for just a couple bucks. During mid-day you can often find free samples being offered throughout the warehouses for those interested in trying before you buy.
The down side? If you don’t live close to one it can be a bit of a bust. It prevents you from seeing the cost benefit of the fuel savings. If you live in a small household like myself, we often found bulk food would spoil or expire before we had a chance to finish it. You will almost always spend more on a shopping trip to these clubs, the savings is in the volume of product you receive.