Costco is a true haven for savvy shoppers, with exclusive member savings available on everything from groceries to outdoor furniture. While you can score deals simply by perusing the aisles, there are some tactics you can utilize to save even more on your next Costco trip.
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GOBankingRates spoke with shopping experts who shared their top tips for getting the best deals at Costco. Find out how to save big.
Peruse the Monthly Members-Only Savings
Every month, Costco releases new “members-only savings” that highlight the best deals of the moment.
“Costco sends out mailers with members-only savings at least a couple of weeks before they actually begin, so take the time to peruse it and see what kind of deals you can expect for the upcoming period,” said Julie Ramhold, consumer analyst with DealNews.com.
“These mailers can also be found online, and note when deals are online-only, warehouse-only or available both in-store and online. Sometimes the deals will be vague and only note that it’ll be something like $10 off, but other times you’ll see the starting price, instant savings and the final price. Also keep an eye on purchase limits, too.”
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Shop the Bundle Deals
“Costco will frequently have item bundles,” Ramhold said.
For example, last year in late July, you were able to get a Chromebook bundle that included a wireless mouse and protective sleeve for $150 off.
“Even if it’s the same bundle offered elsewhere, sometimes Costco’s price will be cheaper,” Ramhold said.
Check Out the ‘While Supplies Last’ Section on Costco.com
“If you’re shopping online, you should definitely check out the ‘while supplies last’ section of the site as these are often limited offers — once they’re gone, they’re gone,” Ramhold said.
“This is where you may find things like themed LEGO sets for $15, special beauty picks (I got a six-pack of the best tinted lip balm I’ve ever used in this section for ridiculously cheap a couple of years ago, for example), super cheap home items like an Eddie Bauer plush sherpa throw for $10 and so much more.”
Take Advantage of the ‘Buy More Save More’ Option for Clothing
“You can double up on savings when you shop for sale and clearance clothing online at Costco,” said Marie Clark, managing editor of CostContessa, which provides tips for shopping at Costco.
“When you buy any five items, you save $20, and you can stack that on top of sale and clearance prices. (Most items qualify, but check each item listing.) There are some real steals online, and it’s always free shipping.”
Know How To Read the Price Tags
“Knowing how to read Costco price tags is the key to getting markdown and clearance deals in-store,” Clark said.
“Unlike most traditional retailers, Costco doesn’t ‘red line’ or ‘clearance’ tag their clearance deals. You can identify markdowns by the cents they end with — .97, .00 or anything that ends in 7 cents are the clearance deals.”
Stick To the Store Brand
Although Costco sells many brand-name products, the best deals will be on its own Kirkland Signature line.
“These stores offer great deals on big name brands, which can make it seem worthwhile, but it’s often still better value to purchase their own brand items,” said Alice Gerwat, senior content editor at Magic Freebies.
“These items are often of the same quality but with a much lower price tag, so don’t be fooled by big discounts on household names. This is especially true for alcohol.”
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Nicole Spector contributed to the reporting for this article.