Are you looking to get the Costco Membership? Costco Wholesale Corporation, which is also known as Costco, is an American multinational corporation that operates a chain of membership-only warehouses.
Honestly, if you are serious about getting the Costco membership – it all depends on how much you expect to spend at the store or online. You’ll have to spend about $3,500/yr to absorb the $60 individual Costco membership cost and if you are looking at getting the Costco business membership then get ready to at least spend $6,000 to absorb the full $120 cost.
But anything over $3,500 spent will be like getting money off of your membership. If you are not sure about which membership to pick, I would strongly suggest getting the $120 business membership one, coz you always can “refund” the extra $60 if it wasn’t worth it for you in the first place.
In this article, let’s take an in-depth look at everything Costco Membership has to offer, types of membership offered, Costco Online, Costco Travel, Eye Care and Pharmacy and finally conclude if its membership is right for your household or personal needs. At the end of the day, you need to be satisfied with the purchase or memberships you have. Now let’s get started.
You can find this on the Costco membership signup page – “100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEE. If you are not satisfied with your membership, you’ll get a full refund on your membership fee.”
Now, Is there anything more that I can say, apart from the fact that, give Costco a visit near your neighbourhood? I’m sure you will enjoy the great services, benefits and the in-store experience. Along with shopping for wholesale prices.
Like I said before, the benefits and savings are pretty clear. You may not save a ton of cash but here’s the thing – The minimal membership for individuals is $60. And that’s the annual fee. So, you’ll have 12 full months to make the most of it.
Also, Costco offers a variety of premium services including, Gasoline (where you can easily save a couple of cents compared to outside regular gas), Costco Opticals, Costco travel, Costco Pharmacy, Photo center and many more.
To be frank, I shop at Costco almost every other week.
Here’s the list of things I always end up buying at Costco:
Good Quality energy drinks (it’s way cheaper compared to Metro or Loblaws)
Excellent Quality Toilet Paper (Quilted Northern)
Lot’s of Bottled Water (Love it for the price)
Must and sure purchase – Laundry Detergent
Zip Loc Freezer bags (Excellent quality again to store the frozen foods)
Trash Bags (Bulk quality for less price)
Nova Salmon (Excellent quality)
Cookies/Biscuits (Good Quality)
- Cooking Oil – Olive/Sunflower Oil (Bulk Deals)
Kirkland Cheese Pizzas (Great Price and Kids love em)
Salt/Pepper (should I even mention this)
Protein Bars (Great Quality again)
Workout Fleece (Must buy at Costco)
Bananas and Apples
All of the above mentioned are definitely cheaper than what you’d find elsewhere in your neighbourhood. You don’t have to take my word here but do lookout around, if you find the same quality for a cheaper price, then go for it.
Couple of things that I don’t recommend from Costco that I’ve bought:
Kirkland Bourbon (Personally did not like the taste of it, not sure if it was only for me/bad day that I got it).
Kirkland pre-sliced Turkey deli cold cuts (yuk, they always tasted bad, tried getting it twice).
Costco’s bagels if you don’t freeze bagels (not yumm for sure, ok quality)
Goodyear wipers for your cars, they are terrible and should not be sold whatsoever.
Costco’s Dresses and T-shirts, the sizes are very big and box and not all that great
Is A Costco Membership Worth It?
Before we get into the actual list, as a Costco consumer below are the few points that I can relate to in terms of quality products and savings overall.
Huge and wide range of branded products available at Costco’s Warehouses, be it from shampoo to electronics. The best part is the huge discounted savings at a very good price.
Single Annual membership starts at $60 and covers discounted purchases at – Costco Gas, Pharmacy, Gas Stations, Opticals, Travel, Photo Center, etc. All of these services are as part of Costco subsidiaries, which comes to you built-in along with the primary membership.
Costco’s membership is valid at all its locations worldwide. That’s right. Anywhere you are and you need to go to Costco, the membership covers. You can purchase products and services at any Costco worldwide.
Convenient payment options – Including Mastercard debit or business cheque payment types.
Shop online for products at costco.ca – Free Shipping included on thousands of items you won’t find at your local warehouse are available for only customers.
Access to while-you-shop services – Such as Photo Centre, Tire Centre, Hearing Aid Centre, Optical and Pharmacy services
Access to Costco’s exclusive Kirkland Signature Brand – Costco’s created an exclusive range of products that reflect member’s tastes and exceed quality expectations.
Costco Membership Types
First of all, If you ask me which Costco Membership Type (whether the Gold Star or the executive) is right for you, it all depends on your use and how much you’ll end up spending at Costco.
You need to spend around $3,000 per year to absorb the $60 cost (Gold star membership) and $6,000 to absorb the $120 annual membership cost (executive).
For the Gold Star Costco membership, anything over $3,000 spent will be like getting money off of your membership.
Honestly speaking, it all depends on how much you expect to spend.
Costco’s Membership is divided into two types: For Individuals and Business Owners
1. Individual Costco Membership
Gold Star – $60 CAD Annually
Gold Star Executive – $120 CAD Annually
2. Business Membership
Individual Business – $60 CAD Annually
Business Star Executive – $120 Annually
All Four Costco Membership types have two things in common:
Includes a Free Household Card for your spouse
Valid at All Costco Locations Worldwide
Also please note that the membership prices mentioned above are pre-tax. You may have to pay more depending on the region you’ll purchase the Costco membership from.
If you are not aware of your expected Costco spending habits I’ll suggest you get the $120 membership to start with. Then depending on the cash back you’ll make you can always switch over if required.
Costco Membership Promo Code
For a limited time only, Costco is offering promo code on its gold and executive membership types.
If you sign-up for the Costco Executive membership today, you’ll receive a $40 costco.ca online voucher.
Use the PROMO CODE – COSTCO40 to get this offer during check-out.
Or, If you want to sign-up for the Costco Gold Membership, you’ll get a $20 costco.ca online voucher.
Use the PROMO CODE – COSTCO20 to get this promotional offer during check-out.
How To Get The Costco Membership Promotion Vouchers?
When paying for your membership, enter the promo code (mentioned above) at checkout.
You will receive an email from Costco that will include your membership number. Bring the email to the Membership Counter at any Costco location in Canada to pick up your membership card.
You will then receive an email within 1-2 weeks with your Costco.ca online voucher to use towards your next online purchase.
Costco Digital Membership Card
Did you even know that Costco offers a free digital membership card? Yeah, that’s rite. This will potentially help you from carrying the physical Costco membership card, by just presenting your digital card where and when necessary.
How To Get The Costco Digital Card?
1. First, You need to download and install the Costco Mobile App – Once you’ve installed the app, launch the Costco app and tap on the Membership Card icon
2. Sign In to your Costco membership account with valid credentials – Follow the instructions on the app’s login screen to sign in to the app or if you are new or a first time user click on the create a new account
3. You’ll need to get verified at any of the Costco centres – All you have to do now is to, visit the Membership Counter at your local Costco warehouse or you can even call them at 1-800-463-3783 to get your digital card or account verified
4. You’re all set, just close and re-Launch the Costco Mobile App – Once you’ve verified at the local Costco centre, your Digital Membership Card should appear on the screen. Now, all you have to do is to re-launch the Costco mobile app.
Benefits Of The Costco Mobile App
You can download and install the Costco Mobile App from the iOS and Android App Stores.
Also, The Costco Mobile App is the easiest and by far the best way to save time and money on the go.
1. Costco Digital Membership Card
You can now use your mobile device to provide proof of Costco membership upon entering the warehouse and again during checkout.
2. Costco’s Exclusive Mobile Offers
With the Costco Mobile App, you’ll always be the first and have the latest Warehouse Savings right on your device. You can also clip your favourite Costco offers right from a tap on the screen.
3. Shop Online At Costco.ca
As a Costco member, you can shop online at costco.ca – The online product selection offers thousands of items not found at your local warehouse and will be delivered straight to your home.
4. Global Costco Warehouse Locations
You can now see all the details of your nearest local Costco store, including hours of operation and holiday hours, and then navigate straight to the warehouse.
5. Costco Photos
Costco Gold Star Membership
Benefits and Features Of The Costco Gold Star Membership
The annual membership fee is $60
You’ll get one Additional Spouse card for free
Costco Individual Gold Star Executive
Benefits and Features Of Costco Individual Gold Star Executive
The annual membership fee of $120
Includes a FREE Spouse card Included
Annual 2% Reward Included
Be part of exclusive member-only offers and additional discounts
You’ll Receive Costco Connection magazine and Costco.ca insert by mail
Costco Business Membership
Costco’s Business Membership is only available to owners or operators of businesses who want the benefits of a Costco Business Membership, with the added value of an Executive Membership.
Business Members who wish to purchase items for resale must provide Costco with the appropriate resale information.
Benefits and Features Of Costco Business Membership
The annual membership fee of $60
Includes a FREE Spouse card
Add people to your membership Included
Purchase Costco products for resale
What Are The Benefits Of Costco Executive Membership?
Benefits and Features Of The Costco Executive Membership:
The annual membership fee of $120
Includes a FREE Spouse card Included
Annual 2% Reward Included
Exclusive offers and additional discounts Included
Receive Costco Connection magazine and Costco.ca insert Included
Add people to your membership Included
Purchase products for resale
How Do I Sign Up For A New Costco Membership?
1. Visit any of the Costco wholesale locations
2. Sign up online at Costco.ca
From the homepage, click on the “Membership” button located in the blue bar at the top of the page.
Click on the type of Costco membership you are interested in
Add the membership type to your shopping cart
Read the Membership Conditions and Regulations, and press “Accept.” You will be asked to proceed through the checkout process to provide and verify your information. If all the information is correct, you may complete your purchase by clicking on “Cart.”
How Can I Renew My Costco Membership Online?
It’s extremely easy to renew your Costco Membership Online.
Sign in/Create a new account
Click on “Membership”
Click on “Renew Membership”
Provide your membership number and last name
Click on “Proceed to Checkout”
Online accounts have to be verified by the primary member before making any changes. In order to be verified, head over to the Membership Counter of your local Costco warehouse and ask to have your online account verified.
Once verified, an email will be sent to you that is valid for only 48 hours after the verification process takes place.
When renewing your membership, all cards on the membership (primary and Spouse cards) will be renewed. You will receive a confirmation email when renewal is complete.
A Spouse refers to either a spouse or a family member 18 years of age or older living at the same address.
What Is The Costco Gold Membership?
Most of the people I know and see, usually opt for the $60 Gold Membership.
It is the bare minimal membership offered by Costco and it’s worth every penny you pay for. At least that’s what my experience has been with it. If you really don’t use the membership much or have been visiting Costco much less off-late you may decide on the renewal or giving up your membership after-all.
But my sincere request is – give it a try at-least. Purchase the Costco membership and visit Costco once or twice and then decide if it’s really worth it for you or not.
To be frank, Costco has something to offer for everyone and I’m sure you’ll like it there.
What Are The Benefits Of Costco Business Executive Membership?
In this section let’s look at all the benefits that Costco Business Executive Membership has to offer:
Benefits and Features Of The Costco Business Executive Membership:
1. Exclusive Annual 2% Reward
Annual 2% Reward on most Costco purchases, up to a maximum of $1,000. You must remain an Executive Member to receive the annual 2% Reward.
2. Exclusive offers and additional discounts
Costco Connection magazine and Costco.ca insert by mail
3. Free Spouse Card
How To Qualify For Costco’s Annual 2% Reward?
To upgrade to Executive Membership and get an annual 2% Reward (up to $1,000), stop by the Membership Counter or call customer care at 1-800-463-3783.
The Executive Membership upgrade fee is an additional $60 for Business or Gold Star Members. The upgrade amount will be pro-rated based on the months remaining on your current membership.
At your next renewal, you will be billed a total of $120 (plus applicable taxes) for your Executive Membership.
Costco Executive Membership Annual 2% Cash Back
Items that fall into the following categories are not eligible for the 2% Reward.
Costcos Annual 2% reward is applicable under all provinces in Canada.
Below is the complete list of all the applicable products to get the 2% cashback reward from Costco.
All prescription drugs, tobacco products (including cigarette paper, lighters, matches and tubes), food court items, bottle deposits and refunds, taxes and levies, all Costco Services, eye examinations, tire disposal fees (where applicable), tire mounting and balancing, and stud installation fees, gift certificates and Costco Cash electronic gift cards, membership fees, oil disposal fees (where applicable), home delivery charges, administration fees, gasoline, charitable donations, third party insurance payments, postage stamps, environmental fees, deposits or levies, other items, products, and services specified as exclusions from time to time.
How Much Do You Have To Spend At Costco To Break Even?
Costco’s Executive Membership has a 2% annual cashback reward. What that means is – Along with the discounted price and bulk savings you’ll also be eligible to get 2% cash back just by opting for the executive membership.
Let’s dive straight to the point here on breaking even –
Point Considered For Break Even At Costco
1. Costco Membership Type – Executive Membership
2. The first column is Qualifying Purchases (Monthly), 2nd column is Qualifying Purchases (Annual), 3rd and the final column is Costco’s Annual Reward at 2%.
How To Buy From Costco Online?
Yes m you can, Costco’s online shopping website is costco.ca.
Now that we know everything about the different Costco Memberships types and what they have to offer; let’s now talk a bit about Costco’s online platform.
You’ll need to be a Costco member to buy stuff here.
Once you do get the Costco membership, there’s also free 2-day shipping on eligible purchases.
Are Costco Travel Deals Good?
You can visit Costco Travel’s website by clicking here.
Benefits And Features Of Costco Travel
Exclusively for Costco members
The value you want with the quality you expect
No surprises when you’re ready to pay
Additional advantages of Costco membership
I’ll be writing a separate article with use cases on the Costco Travel website, pricing and other useful stuff from an end-user perspective. So do look out for that.
Other Travel Items you’ll find at Costco.ca travel website:
Lots of quality options on –
Is Costco A Top Tier Gasoline? Why Is Gas So Cheap At Costco?
Costco’s Gas stations have the Regular unleaded (87 Octane), Premium unleaded (91 Octane), and Diesel (at select locations only) options.
What really sets Costco Gas apart is:
1. Costco only sells Top Tier fuel at its gas stations. Read more about this below:
Costco uses fuel filters to catch particles or debris larger than 10 microns in diameter. For comparison, the average human hair is sixty microns thick.
Their attendants check the nozzle flow rate every week to assure that filters are fresh. When the flow rate falls below 32 litres per minute, they change the filter.
Costco uses ethanol-compatible filters designed to catch sediment, water or phase-separated ethanol and water mixtures for locations that sell gasoline with ethanol.
Costco’s electronic sensors continuously monitor our underground storage tanks for water.
2. You can check the fuel price in your location, and usually 99% of the time, Costco gas is the lowest price in your neighbourhood or community. You’ll end saving at-least a couple of cents on high-quality graded fuel.
3. Costco’s approach to gasoline is the same as inside the warehouse: high volume and low prices. The concept is clear – One-way traffic makes it easier to get in and out of our stations quickly.
4. Extra-long hoses allow fuelling from either side of the vehicle, so there is no concern with which lane to choose.
5. Both grades of gasoline sold at Costco meet and exceed Top Tier requirements. The owner’s manuals provided by the following manufacturers recommend using Top Tier gasoline to maintain optimal engine performance. and efficiency
Do Costco Members Get Free Eye Exam?
Costco Optical accepts current prescriptions from licensed doctors, optometrists or ophthalmologists.
You do not need to have an eye exam done to purchase at Costco to purchase eyewear.
Are Costco Glasses Cheaper?
1. Great variety of quality choices at discounted prices. Well worth the money.
2. Costco Optical has been named the No.1 place to buy glasses in the USA, according to a Consumer Reports survey of 91,000 respondents
3. You’ll get discounts on the second pair of eyeglasses at Costco
4. Savings on Contact Lenses – Minimum $20 OFF when you purchase four boxes of contact lenses (Valid till Dec 2019)
What Is The Cost Of Dispensing Fee At Costco Pharmacy?
First of all, register with Costco Pharmacy by clicking on “Register Now“.
Once you are registered to Costco Pharmacy online, you can choose one of three options to begin your prescription order with the Costco Pharmacy Prescription by Mail.
You can take advantage of Costco’s prescription mail order service, which will allow you to fill your new and refill prescriptions online from the convenience of your home, 24 hours a day.
Your prescriptions are then delivered right to your door, through free expedited shipping, so that you get your medications in a timely, convenient and affordable manner. There’s no dispensing fee at Costco Pharmacy. It’s FREE shipping!
If you have a new prescription, have your doctor fax it or send it to the online mail-order pharmacy.
If your prescriptions are at another pharmacy, simply provide Costco Pharmacy with the pharmacy name and contact information and the prescription details and Costco will transfer them to their mail order pharmacy (including another Costco Pharmacy store).
Once your prescriptions are at your desired Costco’s mail order pharmacy location, refilling them is simple. You need to login into your account and request to re-order your prescriptions.
Once you’ve confirmed your order, Costco will ship your prescriptions from their mail-order pharmacy to the address you had chosen within 2-5 business days.
You will also be able to track your orders online!
With every order online, you will receive a tracking number that will allow you to track your delivery.
Costco Rental Car In Canada
Wondering if you can rent a Car with Costco In Canada? Of course, you can. I’ll tell you how. It’s pretty simple and straight forward.
First, head over to the Costco Car Rental Page or click the link here.
Once you land on the car rental page for the first time, you’ll have chosen the province you are from or travelling to – “ON” in my case. Then,
1. Choose The Car Pick Up and Drop Off Location
2. Pick up date and Pick Up Time
3. Drop Off Date and Drop Off Time
That’s it you are done. Click on “Find My Car” to see the rental car options.
For ease of explaining I have selected the below entries:
Here’s How The Costco Car Rental Works In Canada –
Once you select the dates and the location fields and hit the find my car button, you’ll be loaded with several rental car options.
What I absolutely love about the Costco Rental Car algorithm is that it shows you all the list of the rental car options along with prices – low to high.
You have the car options from Economy, Compact, Luxury to a Full-size Van. Isn’t that great!
The best part of the Costco Rental Car is that – Along with showing you the complete list of cars – Costco automatically picks and expands the rental car with the lowest price for the number of days you have chosen. See the screenshot below:
Now isn’t that sweet of a deal!
Along with expanding the lowest rental car by price option, the system also shows you the car you’ll get for the price, car size and the rental company details.
Next, select the car from the list and click on “Next”. Then, you’ll be loaded with additional options or services you might need along with the rental car, like the car seat, Navigation system etc along with the prices for each.
To sum it up, Costco’s car rental unit in Canada is a breeze to use and really great once you start using the system. I personally use it and it’s great.
What Is A Costco Business Center?
Costco’s Business Centre has the same great quality and value as your local Costco, but with unique differences designed to fit the needs of your business.
You’ll find thousands of products that are not available at the traditional warehouse locations
One good thing to note here is – If you place your online order by 3 pm, Monday through Friday, and receive your delivery the next business day.
Now then, the best part is you don’t have to be a Costco Business Member to enjoy the benefits of Costco Business Centre.
Whether you want to set up a home office, enjoy next-day delivery to your business or stock up on groceries and snacks for your growing family, Costco Business Centre gives you new ways to get even more value from your Costco membership.
What Are The Benefits Of A Costco Mastercard?
The Capital One Mastercard is exclusively for Costco members. I’ve mentioned the benefits and features of this credit card below.
Benefits And Features Of The Capital One Mastercard
You will earn cashback virtually everywhere – not just at Costco locations
Also, You will earn 3% cashback on restaurant purchases, 2% on gas purchases, 0.5% on the first $3,000 you spend annually on all other purchases, and 1% after that
The best part is that there is no annual fee
Doubles as your Costco membership card
Price Protection Service
Common Carrier Travel Accident Insurance
Car Rental Collision/Loss Damage Waiver
Mastercard Global Service
Can You Pay With A Mastercard At Costco?
Yes, you can. Costco accepts the Capital one Mastercard. And the best part is, you don’t even need to carry the Costco Membership card, the Capital One Mastercard does the job for you by doubling down.
You must be a Costco Member to apply for the Capital One Mastercard.
The advantage you’ll get apart from the benefits listed above is, you don’t have to carry both the Costco Membership card and the credit card along with you while shopping at Costco. You can just tap the Capital One Mastercard for membership and payment.
Costco is one of the premium wholesale stores in North American with lots of presence on the Canadian soil.
With that said, for individual and small families you’ll be good having the Gold Membership at $60.
For $60, you’ll end up with a ton of savings on everyday shopping – be it for grocery, electronics, gas and so on and so forth. Also, do check out their exclusive online portal for more clarity on the discounts and product range.
Another important thing to note here is, Costco has only genuine quality products on its shelves, you may rest assured of the quality and pricing here.
You’ll also be eligible for online-only exclusive shopping and discounts for Costco Members with the delivery option which is really good.
Finally, talking about the Business Executive Membership – yes it’s really good for business re-sales and combined with the Capital One Credit Card, it can seriously elevate your earnings and cashback.
If you like the content of this article or found it helpful, please share it on social media and help spread the word. Also, do let me know your thoughts and comments below. Thanks for reading!
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Sagar Sridhar is a personal finance blogger from Canada. His genuine passion for personal finance coupled with his unique style of writing is what stands out. Professionally, he is a computer engineer, agile certified and has a master’s degree in Project Management. His writing has been featured or quoted in the leading Canadian publications such as Credit Canada and many other personal finance publications. While he is juggling between his day job and blogging, he is the main author on this blog and has miles to go before making the final pit stop.