Have you ever stepped foot into a Costco? It is like no other store you have ever walked into. First of all, it is just massive. It might take you a little while just to get your bearings in the store. Secondly, they offer many products that are only sold in bulk that are big enough to feed a small army.
As you start walking up and down the oversized aisle ways, you’ll likely see a carton of tissues that contains 10 boxes all sold as one unit. The same thing goes for crackers, cereal, and fruit snacks. There are many units boxed as one, and the premise is basically that the more you buy, the better deal you are going to get. So, if you are buying a carton of 10 boxes of tissues, you would expect to pay less per box than you would if you were buying a single box somewhere else; perhaps for $1.29 vs. $1.99.
Know Your Prices When Shopping at Costco
While many people think that they are getting deals on everything in the store, this just isn’t the case. Perhaps you buy that big carton of tissues for $12.99 and think you are getting a deal, but in reality Target might have a sale on their tissues and you could buy a single box for only $0.79. The point is, watch the per unit costs to make sure you’re really saving money by buying the item at Costco.
Just because you are shopping at Costco does not mean that you will always get the best price on your goods. Do your due diligence and look at sale papers for other stores. If you don’t, then it’s possible you will not save money at Costco.
Don’t Get Tempted by the Samples
Sure, it’s nice to walk around and try free samples, but there is a reason those nice ladies are there feeding you. They want to tempt you into buying those foods that you loved so much in the sample.
We have been guilty of this on occasion, especially when we bring the kids. What I’ve found to be the key is to avoid the samples altogether. Not only will it drive up your bill, but could also hinder your desire to eat healthy in the case it’s some sort of snack or dessert.
Avoid the Big Ticket Aisle
Do you really need a big screen TV or surround sound? Then what are you doing in that aisle when you are grocery shopping? Yes, Costco sometimes has great deals on electronics and big screen TVs, but that does not mean you should buy any of it. If it’s easy for you to get tempted by those shiny electronics, then stay away from them altogether.
Be Sure You Can Use All of What You Buy
Once you start to calculate how cheap of a price you are getting on some of these goods, it’s easy to get carried away a little. While it is true that you are paying very little per pickle in that pickle jar, do you really think you can eat ten pounds of them in a reasonable amount of time? That’s also not to mention the fact that you may not need to eat 10 pounds of pickles!
Chances are that some of those pickles will go bad, or will just be uneaten because you are so sick of them. The end result is any realized savings get thrown in the garbage. I hate food waste as it’s literally throwing money away.
Use the Store Coupons
Costco often sends out coupons to their members. It takes very little effort for you to look through them and cut out the ones that you need. They even have an app you can use in the store if you don’t want to mess with the paper coupons. Due to the size of the items they sell, it’s quite often you can save a good bit of money.
What are some of the ways you shop smart at Costco? What is the biggest size food item you have ever bought there? Do you ever eat lunch by showing up for the samples – come on, I know some of you have.
Photo courtesy of: IMG_2035