How Much Is a Costco Membership? Find Out If It’s Worth the Hype

Is a membership at this popular wholesaler really worth it?
February 28, 2023
2 mins read
How Much Is a Costco Membership? Find Out If It's Worth the Hype
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Costco is known for its cheap prices and great deals. However, you have to be a member to shop (for the most part). If you’ve wondered, “How much is a Costco membership?” or have been curious if it’s worth the annual fee, we’ve got you covered.

There are a number of wholesale stores to choose from these days, so it’s good to weigh your options. Membership fees can be pricey, but the idea is that you make up the fee and more with discount shopping. If you’re looking to buy in bulk and save big, here’s exactly how much a Costco membership costs, how to get membership discounts, and what’s included in the membership. 

How much is a Costco membership?

Costco membership costs vary—ranging from $60/year to $120/year. While that may seem like a lot to shop at a grocery store, the amount you save as a member far outweighs the annual fee. Not only are the grocery prices super low, but you have access to deals across travel, home, kitchen and appliances, outdoor furniture and much more. 

Related: Flower Delivery, Discounted Gift Cards and Getaway Deals? Shh—12 Secret Costco Perks To Know About

What is the cheapest Costco membership?

The cheapest Costco membership is Gold Star, which has a $60 annual fee. It includes two membership cards and can be canceled at any time. Gold Star members can also take advantage of their member benefits at any Costco location worldwide or online.

What’s the more expensive Costco membership?

Although it has a higher annual fee of $120/year, the Executive membership offers the most rewards. You have an annual 2 percent reward, which gives you money back up to $1000/year. You’ll also have access to Costco Services discounts like pet insurance, bottled water delivery and identity protection.

How do I get a Costco membership for free?

Well, there’s no exact way to claim a free membership. However, Costco offers a 100 percent satisfaction guarantee. So if you’re a few months into the membership but realize it’s not for you, you can cancel and Costco will refund your membership. This isn’t meant to be a workaround for a free membership, but it’s nice to know that you’re not tied down by the annual fee. Costco gets that families need flexibility!

Related: Get Ready to Stock Up! Here Are the 31 Best Wines at Costco

Are there any deals or discounts on Costco memberships?

While the deals really kick in once you have your Costco membership, there are select deals on the membership itself. College students can get a discount on a Costco membership via Unidays. Teachers, medical professionals, first responders, government employees and military also get a discount. Costco frequently has promotions for new members as well, so be on the lookout for those if you’re thinking of purchasing a membership!

Can you get a 1-day Costco pass?

A 1-day pass doesn’t exist, but there are several other ways to enjoy Costco for the day without purchasing a membership. First, you can shop online. Head over to either Costco.com or Instacart to purchase Costco goods without a membership. The catch is that you will likely pay more, and, in the case of Instacart, wait longer. Members hold their perks online, but non-members are still welcome to shop. 

The other workaround is a Costco Shop Card, which is essentially a gift card. These must be purchased by a member, so you would have had to be gifted one from a Costco member. Gift cards sort of function like memberships by allowing you to shop at Costco, but once you spend all of the money, you either have to ask a member to re-load money or purchase another Shop Card for you. Not exactly the most convenient solution.

Is a Costco membership worth it?

For many people, yes. Costco offers insanely low prices that make shopping affordable. Costco Travel is also a big reason people join because it makes travel a lot cheaper and easier to coordinate. However, a lot of Costco’s groceries come in bulk. So if you’re living solo or don’t anticipate purchasing that much per week, then maybe it’s not for you. Remember: you can always try it out and see what you think!

Next, Planning a Costco Trip? Here Are the 51 Best Foods to Buy


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