Costco offers several different membership levels. The lowest tier is a Gold Star Costco membership for $60 per year, which includes two membership cards and allows you to shop at any Costco warehouse and online at Costco.com.
There’s also the Costco Executive Membership, which is $120 annually and includes everything the Gold Star membership does, plus additional benefits and discounts on various Costco services and a 2% reward of up to $1,000 on select Costco and Costco Travel purchases.
Finally, there’s a Costco Business Membership for $60 and a rewards-bearing Business Executive Membership for $120. Both offer a free household card and allow you to purchase items for business, personal and resale use.
If you’ve ever considered buying a Costco membership but you’re still unsure, here are seven times in your life where a Costco membership is totally worth it.
You Have a Big Family
This one is a no-brainer. You can save on many of your household staples at Costco, including toilet paper, paper towels, milk and meat. The only catch is that if you have family members who are picky and won’t eat the same thing, some bulk food buys might not be so wise.
After all, you don’t want to be left with a box-and-a-half of breakfast cereal that some members of your family are sick of and the other ones just don’t like.
You Have Someone To Share Bulk Items With and Split Costs
Even if you don’t have a big family, it’s worth it to buy a Costco membership if you have a roommate or friend who is willing to split the costs of certain bulk items with you.
However, make sure to agree on all bulk purchases before you head to the store, and resist the urge to buy anything on impulse that you won’t be able to utilize on your own. Otherwise, you’ll be stuck holding the bag, so to speak.
You Own a Deep Freezer
If you have a running list of frozen Costco favorites and you own a deep freezer, it makes sense to shell out $60 for a membership. According to FoodSafety.gov, frozen entrees can be safely stored for 12 months.
There are even certain fresh foods, like poultry or beef, that can be stored for up to a year. That means you’ll always have food on hand when you don’t have time to make a Costco run.
You Live Near a Costco and Can Fill Up Your Tank
Some people use their Costco membership not only to buy products in the store and online, but also to purchase gas for their vehicle. If you live near a Costco location, it will be convenient for you to fill up there on the regular.
Costco’s Kirkland Signature gasoline is considered a top-tier gasoline that helps boost your vehicle’s performance and efficiency. Additionally, Costco has been recognized by GasBuddy as the cheapest fuel station across the nation for multiple years in a row.
You Have a New Baby
It’s no secret that buying baby supplies for a new addition to your family can really put a strain on your budget. For example, newborns can use up to 10 diapers per day, which is 70 diapers per week.
Costco sells Huggies Plus Newborn Diaper Starter Kit, which contains 104 newborn and 22 Size 1 diapers — 126 diapers total — for $33.49, or about 26 cents per diaper. In contrast, Walmart sells 112 newborn diapers for $39.97 or about 35 cents per diaper. If your baby uses 10 diapers per day, you could potentially save 90 cents per day, $6.30 per week and $25.20 per month by shopping at Costco. That would pay for your membership very quickly on its own.
You Own a Small Business
If you own a small business and need supplies for it or you want to purchase items for resale, you can save big by having a Costco Business membership.
For example, Costco has great prices on business cards. You can get 500 single- or double-sided, full-color business cards on 16-point card stock for $21.99 and free shipping. At Office Depot, 250 standard business cards on 14-point paper start at $21.99.
You Buy a Lot of Wine
Talk to any avid wine drinker with a Costco membership and they will likely agree that Costco is a great place to save money on wine. In fact, you can find plenty of great wines at Costco for under $20.
According to Reverse Wine Snob, Costco’s Kirkland Signature wines are high-quality, affordable wines made exclusively for Costco by highly-rated wineries. The reason Costco can pass the savings on to its members is that there is no middleman.
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