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Costco is known for its great prices and high-quality products, but what if you don’t have a membership? Fortunately, there are still ways to shop at Costco without a membership. In this article, we will explore some of the ways you can shop at Costco without a membership and still take advantage of its great prices and products.
How to shop at Costco without a membership
By using the tips and tricks we’ve shared in this article, you can shop at Costco without a membership and still take advantage of the great deals and selections that Costco has to offer.
Finding Costco locations
The first step to shopping at Costco without a membership is to find a Costco location near you. Costco operates over 800 warehouses worldwide, so chances are there’s a location within driving distance of your home or workplace. You can use the Costco Locator tool on the Costco website to search for warehouses by zip code, city, or state. Once you’ve found a nearby location, you can plan your visit using our next tips.
Shopping with a Costco cash card
One way to shop at Costco without a membership is to use a Costco Cash Card. Costco Cash Cards are like gift cards that can be used to purchase items at any Costco location or online at Costco.com.
You don’t need a membership to purchase a Costco Cash Card, and you can buy them in denominations ranging from $25 to $2,000. You can also reload your Costco Cash Card online or in-store. Keep in mind that if you use a Costco Cash Card to make a purchase, you’ll be charged a 5% surcharge over the posted prices for members.
Shopping with a Costco shop card
Another way to shop at Costco without a membership is to use a Costco Shop Card. Costco Shop Cards are only available to Costco members, but non-members can still use them to make purchases at any Costco location or online at Costco.com.
You can ask a Costco member to buy you a Costco Shop Card. Keep in mind that Costco Shop Cards also come with a 5% surcharge over the posted prices for members.
Shop with a Costco member
If you don’t have a membership, you can still shop at Costco by going with a friend or family member who is a member. Non-members can shop at Costco with a member, as long as the member pays for the purchases.
This is a great way to take advantage of Costco’s great prices without having to pay for a membership.
Shopping online at Costco.com
If you don’t live near a Costco location or prefer to shop online, you can still take advantage of Costco prices by shopping at Costco.com. You don’t need a membership to make purchases online, but non-members will be charged a 5% surcharge over the posted prices for members.
You can also sign up for a free trial of Costco’s online service, CostcoGrocery, which offers same-day delivery of fresh groceries, household essentials, and more.
Use a household card
If you reside with a Costco member, you may be eligible to receive a complimentary membership card known as a “Household Card.” This card is intended for use by anyone who is over 18 years old and shares the same address as the primary member. In addition to the individual membership card that comes with Costco’s primary membership, a free Household Card is also included.
Similarly, Costco’s Business Membership includes one free Household Card for every paying member, which covers both the primary member and any additional members (also known as affiliates).
Use a delivery service
If you’re looking to avoid the hassle of going to Costco, there are some third-party delivery services like Shipt and Dolly that can help. These services will shop for your desired items at Costco and deliver them straight to your home. This means you won’t have to wait in line or have a Costco membership.
However, it’s worth noting that these services may not be available in every city and they typically come with additional fees. In addition to the cost of your purchases, you may need to pay a delivery fee, as well as a tip for the delivery person. If you’re not a Costco member, there may also be an additional fee for the service. It’s important to take these extra costs into consideration when deciding whether to use a delivery service.
Costco same day delivery: Buy Costco items on Instacart without a Costco membership
Instacart is a popular online grocery delivery service that allows users to order groceries and household essentials from local stores and have them delivered to their door. Costco is one of the many retailers available on Instacart, and through Instacart Express, users can purchase Costco items without a Costco membership.
However, it’s important to note that the prices for Costco items on Instacart are higher than they are in a Costco warehouse. This is because Costco is likely factoring in the cost of membership fees that they would have received from the customer if they had shopped in-store. So, while it may be convenient to purchase Costco items through Instacart without a membership, it may not necessarily be a cost-saving solution in the long-term if you buy a lot of items from Costco on Instacart.
Additionally, it’s worth mentioning that Costco has recently launched a joint website with Instacart called “Costco Same Day.” This website is run by Instacart and allows users to purchase Costco items without a membership. However, the pricing policy on this website explicitly states that item prices are marked up higher than they would be in a local Costco warehouse.
Buy prescription drugs without membership
One benefit of buying prescription drugs from Costco is that non-members can purchase them without having to pay the 5% surcharge that applies to other online orders. In addition, non-members can also use the pharmacies located within Costco stores to purchase their medications. Costco pharmacies accept various forms of payment, including cash, debit/ATM cards, Costco Shop Cards, and Visa.
It’s important to note, however, that not all Costco locations have pharmacies, so it’s advisable to check ahead of time by using the “Find a Warehouse” page on the Costco website.
If you typically only pay copays for your medications and don’t visit Costco regularly, it may not be worth it to use Costco’s pharmacy services. However, if you pay out of pocket for your medications, it’s worth comparing prices between Costco and other pharmacies to see if you can save money.
Buying alcohol at Costco without membership
It is indeed true that Costco allows alcohol sales to non-members in some states in the United States. This policy may vary by state and location, so it is best to check with your local Costco to confirm whether they allow non-members to purchase alcohol.
It’s important to note that while non-members may be able to purchase alcohol at Costco, they may not have access to other products or services that require a membership, such as discounted gas or access to Costco’s travel services. Additionally, the prices for alcohol may be slightly higher for non-members compared to members.
Free Costco health screenings without a membership
One of the services that Costco pharmacies offer is health and wellness screenings, which are available for free to both members and non-members. These screenings can include tests for blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, and other health conditions, depending on the location and the time of year.
To find out more about the health screenings that are available at your local Costco pharmacy, you can check the calendar of events on the Costco website. This calendar will list the dates, times, and locations of upcoming screenings, as well as the specific tests that will be offered.
If you are interested in getting a free health screening at Costco but you do not have a membership, you can simply go to the pharmacy department during the designated screening times and ask to participate. You will not be required to show proof of membership, and you will not be charged for the screening.
Using Costco optical services without a membership
Costco Optical Services is a division of Costco Wholesale that provides eyeglasses, contact lenses, and other vision-related services. If you want to get an eye exam at Costco Optical, you can do so even if you do not have a Costco membership. However, if you want to purchase eyeglasses or contact lenses from Costco Optical, you will need to have a Costco membership.
This means that while non-members can use Costco Optical Services for an eye exam, they will not be able to purchase glasses or contacts from Costco without a membership. Keep in mind that the cost of the eye exam may vary depending on your location, so it’s best to check with your local Costco Optical for pricing information.
Get food from the Costco food court without a membership
You can purchase food from the Costco food court without a membership, regardless of whether the food court is located indoors or outdoors. This is because Costco allows non-members to enter their stores for a variety of reasons, and as a result, they also allow non-members to purchase food from their food courts.
However, it’s important to note that if you are not a Costco member and you plan to purchase food from the Costco food court, you will need to pay with cash. Additionally, some Costcos have started to implement kiosk payment systems in their food courts, so it’s best to check with your local Costco to see what payment options are available.
While the food court at Costco offers great deals, it’s important to keep in mind that the options are typically limited to items like hot dogs, pizza, soda, rotisserie chicken, sundaes, and frozen yogurt. So if you’re looking for a healthy meal, you may want to look elsewhere.
The cost of a Costco membership
Costco is a membership-based retail chain that offers a wide variety of products, including groceries, electronics, and home goods, among others. To shop at Costco, you need to become a member and pay an annual membership fee, which ranges from $60 for the Standard Gold Star membership to $120 for the Gold Star Executive membership.
While these membership fees may seem expensive, they are how Costco generates a significant portion of its profits. In fact, according to its 2022 annual report, 78% of Costco’s net income comes from its membership fee revenue, with over 118 million members worldwide.
Costco’s business model is focused on offering high-quality products at low prices, often selling items in bulk to reduce costs. This strategy allows the company to keep its markups on food pricing razor-thin, which benefits its members. The more food essentials you buy and eat from Costco, the more you benefit from their low pricing strategy. However, it is essential to note that not all products sold at Costco are competitively priced, so it’s crucial to do your research before making a purchase.
Is there a free Costco membership or trial?
There is no free Costco membership or trial available. However, Costco does offer a guest policy where members are allowed to bring up to two guests with them during each visit. While non-members are allowed to enter the store and walk around to see what is offered, they will not be able to purchase any goods unless they are a member or have a member make the purchase on their behalf.
If you are interested in becoming a member but are unsure if it is worth the cost, Costco does have a risk-free 100% satisfaction guarantee on membership fees. This means that you can pay for a membership, give it a trial run, and if you feel that you are not getting the value from it that you would like, you can request a refund at any time.
Costco forms of payment
When it comes to payment methods, Costco has a few specific rules that you should be aware of.
It is important to note that Costco stores do not accept Discover, American Express, or MasterCard credit cards as payment. This means that if you typically use one of these credit cards to make purchases, you will need to use a different form of payment when shopping at Costco.
Accepted forms of payment at Costco stores include cash, check, debit cards, Costco Shop Cards, and Visa credit cards. Visa is the only credit card brand accepted at Costco stores, and this includes the Costco Anywhere Visa Card, which is a co-branded credit card offered by Costco and Citi. This card offers 2% cash back on Costco purchases, as well as other rewards for eligible purchases made outside of Costco.