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Old 02-12-2013, 11:56 PM   #1
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Tell me about Costco

I read often on the cruise board about Costco and that people book their cruises through there to get onboard credit. We would not be doing that in the next year.

I am assuming it is like Sam's and only sells large sized items. Is that correct? I am planning a trip to Kauai and some people have said to stop by Costco because local groceries are too expensive. But if I am only there a week and there are only 2 of us I could not use such big sized product.

Do you think it would be worth it for me to pay for a membership just to use it for 2 weeks? The nearest one to me is 45 minutes away so i doubt i would go there much.
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Old 02-13-2013, 01:01 AM   #2
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Not worth it for 2 weeks. I believe it is $55 or higher for a membership. Just go to the grocery store when you land! We do pay more on Maui, but I figure we save by eating breakfast and lunch in the condo.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:42 AM   #3
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By the time you paid the $55 membership, you wouldn't end up saving any money buying groceries at Costco for such a short trip. However, when we went to Hawaii (Oahu & Maui) a few years ago, we saved a couple hundred dollars on our car rental by using the Costco code (I think it was through Alamo), so that made it worth paying for a Costco membership, even though we never ended up shopping there (and at the time we didn't have a Costco anywhere near where we live).

Costco does have mostly bulk size items. Shopping there wouldn't be bad if you were traveling with a family, but for just the two of you, the quantities they sell would probably be too much.

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Old 02-13-2013, 11:49 AM   #4
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We joined Costco for a year when we went to Hawaii. The savings in gasoline alone covered the membership. They also have an incredible guarantee. They will refund your entire membership fee if you decide you aren't getting your money's worth. I never ask for a refund, but more than one employee told me that.

We finally have one at home and are members again. We don't buy a ton of things there (cheaper to buy sale items with coupons at the grocery store), but some items are a little cheaper. They have many things that are normal sized. I buy Krispy Kreme Donuts there, because their box of 15 is only 28 cents more than a dozen everywhere else. Many of their bakery and fresh meat products are in normal sized packages.

I got an incredible car rental rate for a March trip through them and the second driver fee is waived on their rentals for further savings. Their rental rates aren't always the cheapest, but I rerun my upcoming reservations every time I get an email from them and some of them kept going down.

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Old 02-13-2013, 01:32 PM   #5
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We love Costco and also scored a great car rental price for an upcoming trip. (I tried every code on mousesavers.com and still came out way ahead going through Costco.) I'm not sure if all Costco stores are the same but they have a great deli/meat section. I've been thinking about shopping at Costco on our next trip to Disney and just buying from the deli for our meals for the week. Below is a list of items I've been thinking about from their deli section:

Premade sandwich wraps
Rotisserie Chicken
Premade salads (cobb, and spinach-- dressing and all included)
Shrimp and cocktail sauce
fruit salad
milk & cereal
Tortilla crusted tillapia (freezer section, super yummy)
deli meat and cheese platter for sandwiches (rolls & crossiants from bakery)
Broc salad
Soda, water, wine, etc.
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Old 02-13-2013, 06:48 PM   #6
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I don't consider 45 min to be extremely far for a Costco. After all, it isn't a usual grocery store. It's a stock up warehouse!

I grew up 80 miles from the nearest Costco, and we felt lucky to have one on our side of the mountain! lol!

Even now, I am 20 miles away. I may go once a month. But I keep a list, and stock up when I go by. If I lived minutes away, I'd be less tempted to have a giant case of TP in my house.

It's the "I better get this while I'm here" mentality that keeps these warehouses in business. You don't have that feeling when you can go anytime.
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Old 02-13-2013, 07:45 PM   #7
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We love Costco! We have bought 4 TV's there, 2 cameras, a GPS and probably other stuff that doesn't spring to mind. Oh and their diapers are way better than the Sam's Club brand (grandson!).While you wouldn't save on groceries for a 2 week trip, like other posters said - it pays off in other ways. We dropped our Sam's Club membership - we had both for several years - but frankly, we like everything at Costco better. Think of it as a "step up" from Sam's Club.
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Old 02-13-2013, 07:48 PM   #8
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Costco treats their employees very well, and that's an important deciding factor for me.

<========has a Costco coming to her area soon.
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:54 PM   #9
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We absolutely LOVE Costco. We have a few staples that we get each time we go and others once a month. 5 lbs of 97% ground beef for $15 (Food Lion usually has 1 lb for $4-5 each around here.), tea, chicken, paper towels, all much cheaper than the grocery stores. Not to mention the savings in gas and cleaning supplies. Def. worth the membership.

I haven't used their travel discounts so can't attest to that.
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Old 02-15-2013, 02:11 PM   #10
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Our Costco is about 20 min. away but I did switch from Sam's for our Hawaii trip in 2010. We went to the big island and stayed in a condo. It was over Thanksgiving so I did get more than I planned for a Holiday dinner.
We got cereals, milk, pizza, rot chick, drinks, etc. The real saver for us was they had the Chocolate covered macadamia nut boxes. We bought those to bring back as gifts. (However, I did see my Costco had those this year. Not the same selection but it would have been worth not hauling it back).
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Old 02-15-2013, 07:51 PM   #11
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I'm lucky; there's a Costco less than 10 minutes from my house and it's not usually really busy.

Just a fun fact - Costco makes most of their profit from membership fees, not from selling merchandise.
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Old 02-16-2013, 10:31 AM   #12
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No, it's not at all worth it just to use for 2 weeks. Everything there is giant-sized so it wouldn't make sense for you to use it for a 1-week vacation. We went to Maui & Oahu in 2006 and rented a condo so we could make most of our meals there. We spent about $100 on basic groceries if I remember correctly. We ate very basic (pancakes/eggs/toast for breakfast, hamburgers/hot dogs/sandwiches for lunch, chicken or cheaper cut of steak for dinner), otherwise we would have spent a lot more in groceries. Yes, the groceries are very expensive there (I remember seeing a $7 gallon of milk and I think a $6 or $7 box of cereal) but eating out is more expensive! We ate out several lunches rather than dinners because lunch is cheaper. We also did the Old Lahaina Luau with a full buffet and open bar one night.

I love Costco -- but only if you plan to use your membership throughout the year.

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Old 02-17-2013, 05:53 AM   #13
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Costco can have the best pricing for car rental. Compare prices and see if your savings will pay for membership. I am gotten some amazing rates in Hawaii using their codes ($35/week plus taxes for a full size on Maui), but the rates change all the time and you need to keep checking.

When we get tired of paying so much for food on the islands, the $2 pizza slice helps us stay on or budget. The dining area Costco on the Big Island is always packed at lunchtime. You can buy a huge pizza to go for $10 and it is pretty tasty.

If you wear glasses, Costco has some excellent prices.

Walmart tends to match Costco's prices on milk, so if you only want a few food items, Walmart may be a better bet. The Costco on the BI had excellent prices on rum.
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Old 02-17-2013, 08:34 AM   #14
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I used to book my Disney cruises through costco because they were cheaper. Disney clamped down on letting travel agents give a discount so now they can only offer costco gift cards for booking cruises.

Having said that I don't think you would get your money's worth for 2 people for a week.
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