spoofee may logo

How to Shop at Costco Free Without a Membership

Posted: 12/27/13 02:22 pm ( 3 months ago )
star rating  fair deal       thumbs up 119246 Interests     arrow 103 Comments
By Melonie Miller
L0 Newbie
How to Shop at Costco Free Without a Membership

Costco Wholesale allows non-members to shop if they are using the Costco Cash Card during checkout.

Ask your friend with a Costco membership to buy several $10 gift cards or buy several $25 gift cards online

When non-members shop, just show the Costco Gift Card and pay remaining balance with cash

- Same discounts apply for non-members

- Same lenient return policy applies, you just need to keep your receipt

- Warehouse Locator

Update: You can use the card for liquor and pharmacy, as these do not require membership. Otherwise you will pay a surcharge or you have to purchase the membership to save the surcharge fee.

If you would like to join Costco, membership rates are located here.

Comments
103
    Interests
119246
vbulletin discussion
or Login
2000 characters remaining
Guest
Guest - 3 weeks ago
If you shop frequently at Costco, get the $110 executive card with the rebate. I always get a check once a year from them for at least $85, making my membership $25 or less. Also, if you use the gift card, you can not pay your balance with Amex, you have to use a debit card or cash.
Guest
Guest - 3 weeks ago
You can't return stuff as a non member
spazntwitch (It's like déjà vu again) - 3 weeks ago
Reply to Guest
Yes. If you would like to join Costco, membership rates are located here.

Quote: original post by Guest;836655
can you get one free pass to go into Costco
No, Costco does not offer free passes anymore.

Quote: original post by Guest;836658
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO JOIN?
If you would like to join Costco, membership rates are located here.
Guest
Guest - 3 weeks ago
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO JOIN?

Guest
Guest - 3 weeks ago
can you get one free pass to go into Costco
Guest
Guest - 1 month ago
I'm in the Coast Guard Aux, can I join Costco
Guest
Guest - 1 month ago
People, its worth the $55 a year that's $4.58 a month, you'll save that buying gas at Costco alone. $110 your paying 9.17 a month, plus you earn cash back on that membership. Everything is 100% satisfaction guarantee. Nothing to loose. Costco takes care of their members! It's worth the money!
Guest
Guest - 1 month ago
how much to join
Guest
Guest - 1 month ago
Does Costco still partner with Lemon Party for free membership?
Guest
Guest - 2 months ago
are going to La Quinta for eye appointment can we shop in the store we are non members nocostco where we live??
Guest
Guest - 2 months ago
Or you could not just leech off of your membership paying friends and get your own membership!
Guest
Guest - 2 months ago
I think this is a great deal for people they want to shop at the store for the first time
Guest
Guest - 2 months ago
what do you have to have to join costco
Guest
Guest - 2 months ago
i wish to contact a costco in portland, oregone. can i get their phone number?

Edit by mod --> remove personal information
Guest
Guest - 2 months ago
My mom's boyfriend is an indifferent member of the actual site of the signal hill warehouse site. I had my picture taken in front, while it was a family leisure ordeal. Reminencing.
He is a tall german chess finnatic, and chief-engeineer. Great father figure. Had a blast. Love, Lace.y
Spoofee (Spoofee.com!) - 2 months ago
This should show you a Costco near Brisbane
https://www.google.com/search?q=brisbane costco&oq=brisbane costco&aqs=chrome..69i57j0l5.1963j0j4&sourceid=chrome&espv=210&es_sm=91&ie=UTF-8
Guest
Guest - 2 months ago
where's a closest Costco in Brisbane?
Guest
Guest - 2 months ago
Smart
Guest
Guest - 2 months ago
Some of you people don't read !!! It said have a 'member' buy the gift card on line and give it to you then you can shop for Free !!!!!
Guest
Guest - 3 months ago
Thanks! I have an old membership that was expired but it lets me order prints online even though membership is expired. I just logged in and ordered a $25 Costco Cash Card and it allowed me to purchase it. Once I receive it I will go to the store! Thank you so much!
Guest
Guest - 3 months ago
Unfortunately when I go to the website, order the cash card and click to check out - they request a membership number in order to get a cash card. So in reality this does NOT work!
upx1 (L4 Interested Member) - 3 months ago
@Hot Tub - "How do you get in the door without a Costco membership card to use your gift cards? I don't think they would except a gift card at the door. "

In AZ, I get in using the Costco CashCard (gift card) with no problems.
Before that, I just said, "Pharmacy", and they let me in -- (then I went to their hot food area, cash only)

PS - I get my friend to buy me $10 CashCards, then I use one per visit. Any amount over $10 can be paid with debit card or cash.
Guest
Guest - 3 months ago
Can I pay cash for shopping at Castco?
morriefisher (L9 Spoofeed Member) - 3 months ago
Reply to Guest


Try it. Sometimes they put on 5%.
Guest
Guest - 3 months ago
can you shop costco online without being a member?
Guest
Guest - 3 months ago
ultimate
Hot Tub (L5 Interested Member) - 3 months ago
How do you get in the door without a Costco membership card to use your gift cards? I don't think they would except a gift card at the door.
Guest
Guest - 3 months ago
can my daughter use my costco card
Guest
Guest - 3 months ago
Family member to join
Guest
Guest - 3 months ago
what is a regular membership price?
Guest
Guest - 4 months ago
is there a fee for a 75 yr.old senior?
Guest
Guest - 4 months ago
I just got custody of my baby granddaughter and would like help with a Costco card because the formula she drinks is a formula you buy from Costco and lasts longer and even the pampers etc ! if anyone could help please email me at alvamosquito [at] gmail or text me at [removed for privacy] IN Calgary Alberta thank you
Guest
Guest - 4 months ago
is it better to have a costco executive member card of a gold star member
Spoofee (Spoofee.com!) - 5 months ago
That's why it says 'Ask your friend with a Costco membership to buy several $10 gift cards or buy several $25 gift cards online '
Guest
Guest - 5 months ago
You cannot purchase a gift card online UNLESS you are a member
Guest
Guest - 5 months ago
This is a good deal for Costco. People that don't shop there enough to pay back their $55 membership fee via Amex cash back bonuses, pay Costco up front for credit they may not use for months. Costco gets the sales instead of Walmart and nobody pays out a cash back . Everyone wins except Walmart and Costco creates good will.
Guest
Guest - 5 months ago
Nearest costco to 27526 zip code
Guest
Guest - 5 months ago
There is one thing untrue about this post, and that is non members are not allowed to take advantage of coupons. You also do not reap the full benefits of what Costco has to offer like the $1200.00 I got back on the 2 cash back programs they offer (executive & American Express).
Guest
Guest - 5 months ago
If you want to go 'Cheap' go all in...shop everything from one Costco, keep it for several months, return it and then shop from another Costco. Why save just $55/year......Shame on Spoofee to show such deals.
Guest
Guest - 5 months ago
SAMS CLUB
precocious (Goody 2 Shoes Goddess TY) - 6 months ago
Reply to spazntwitch

I have plenty of good advice.:wink:
spazntwitch (It's like déjà vu again) - 6 months ago
Good advice Preco. Hadn't thought of that.
precocious (Goody 2 Shoes Goddess TY) - 6 months ago
Reply to Guest

1) Let him put you on as his secondary member

2) Why not have you get the membership in your name and you can do his shopping
Guest
Guest - 6 months ago
What if your 65 yrs of age then what s the membership cost?
Guest
Guest - 6 months ago
This seems that you would be taking advantage of friends or family who have paid the membership fee. It would only seem resonable if you were going to USE their time and membership to do this, you would offer to compensate the individual by paying a percent of THEIR membership.
morriefisher (L9 Spoofeed Member) - 6 months ago
Reply to Guest

Use it to get in & pay cash. Same as if he was with you.

Questions about this sort of thing you can ask @ the desk.
Guest
Guest - 6 months ago
The Ft. Wayne IN store is the one I am in question of. I have an executive card at Cosco....do I get to shop earlier than the other card holders? The store has not opened yet.
() - 6 months ago
Worked out great today with my friends gift card. Thank you!
Guest
Guest - 6 months ago
Can I sign in use my Australia Costco membership card?
Guest
Guest - 6 months ago
Can I add my granddaughter to my Costco card
Guest
Guest - 7 months ago
you dont need either when purchasing alcohol or pharmacy.
elvisaintdead (L4 Interested Member) - 7 months ago
*aw geez, not this thread again.....*
Guest
Guest - 7 months ago
As a past Costco Supervisor, I can tell you that as a non-member, you can actually go in and purchase a gift card also. (a supervisor will have to approve it, same as if u were a non-member using a cash card)

People would purchase a Cash Card, then go pick up items, then try to purchase them at the register. That doesn't usually fly (it all depends on the supervisor you encounter. Some may let you through, others will tell you that it's not possible)

best bet, buy a cash card, come back in a day or two to go shopping.
Guest
Guest - 7 months ago
get a life....these comments are about the deal not about this other bs you guys are talking about. Getting a Costco Cash Card this weekend and will let you know how it goes.
Guest
Guest - 7 months ago
thanks
spazntwitch (It's like déjà vu again) - 7 months ago
Reply to Guest

You'll need your father to contact Customer Service at 800-774-2678 and find out. I'd be curious if this is possible.
Guest
Guest - 7 months ago
my father is no longer physically able to go to/or be taken to costco, but would like me to make purchases for him, using his card/credit card. Is this possible?
spazntwitch (It's like déjà vu again) - 7 months ago
Reply to Guest
You'll need him to contact Customer Service at 800-774-2678 and add you to the membership. I don't know if there will be any fees involved.
Guest
Guest - 7 months ago
How can I be added to my boyfriends membership he is not able to come to the store this time of year, to busy with job, but would like me to purchase things for him.
Guest
Guest - 7 months ago
still costco vegetables/fruits are fully genetically modified .

The apple is 5 times large as normal whole foods apple

don't buy into this offer
Guest
Guest - 7 months ago
People like to complain, but this is useful if you won't be going but once a year. I was looking up dog foods, trying to remember which brand was where but I believe it is at Costco. The closest one is over an hour away, and I was hoping to check it out as I have an appt in the area next week. If you are going to be using it a membership is best, but if you are going max 2x a year, well, paying $55 to spend $100 is quite the waste.
spazntwitch (It's like déjà vu again) - 7 months ago
We ended up returning an item to Costco: the kitchen faucet that we had for nearly two years. We purchased a brand new one that supposedly had a lifetime warranty through the manufacturer, but the manufacturer never responded to my e-mails, phone calls, or other correspondence. I wanted to give the manufacturer a chance first to fix the broken handle. Since they never responded after several months, we finally took it in to Costco.

No questions asked and Costco refunded every penny. We ended up buying another faucet from a different manufacturer from Costco. Folks, it was worth our money to buy it from Costco the first time and I am glad we did. That would have been nearly $150 out of pocket to get a new one.
morriefisher (L9 Spoofeed Member) - 7 months ago
Reply to Guest

ask for one .
Guest
Guest - 7 months ago
can I get a one day pass
precocious (Goody 2 Shoes Goddess TY) - 8 months ago
Reply to Guest

I belong to all three. You are paying dearly for your "friendliness". I made the mistake of joining Sam's upgraded membership at $100 per year. What I have found is...merchandise overpriced (constantly finding prices lower on regular store shelves, not even sales, overpriced by dollars! and limited selection), extremely limited coupons and no cash back. AND!!! coupon kiosk always broken, they don't even mail a coupon book. Costco, however, is $55 (I think) for their membership, plus I have the AmEx Costco card....I get a ton of coupons plus cash back from the upgraded membership and the Costco AmEx....HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS BACK EVERY YEAR!. There is no comparasion between the 2. Keep your smiles and show me the money....lots of money back! BJ's is reasonable and has great prices and terrific coupons as well.
warsurplus (L0 Newbie) - 8 months ago
Reply to sensei

Yes as another poster already pointed out..."Please go check Costco's SEC quarterly report filing and look for the Income Statement. It shows as 12 weeks end of May 2013, total Revenue - $24,083 Millions, and Membership fee revenue - $531 millions, which makes the membership fee a 2.2% of total Costco's revenue." This is the same as my earlier post stating 2.2 percent.

I realize that the SEC data doesn't line up with your businessweek story but it does concur with the Bloomberg story. I tend to think the SEC filing is correct and the businessweek story is hyperbole but I'm open to being corrected. I don't think my claim was as ridiculous as you suggest since this is what Costco reported to the government.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
The return policy is nice as you can return all but electronics at any time if you're not satisfied. I returned things years later and return things when i am done with it and not quite satisfied. I have to get my membership fee back some how. Gift cards for non-members have been tribal knowledge for decades.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
Please go check Costco's SEC quarterly report filling and look for the Income Statement. It shows as 12 weeks end of May 2013, total Revenue - $24,083 Millions, and Membership fee revenue - $531 millions, which makes the membership fee a 2.2% of total Costco's revenue.
morriefisher (L9 Spoofeed Member) - 8 months ago
I don't shop there but have before. People buy a months worth of food. Open it, see it only stays fresh for two weeks, so must eat it. Thus, Costco shoppers are usually a bit fatter than say TJs shoppers.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
Appreciate the reply post. That 80 percent number doesn't concur with the Bloomberg story and sounded very high but now I'm perplexed as to what the correct fraction of earnings the membership fees provide since the two numbers are so far apart. The 14 percent or less margin on goods sounds right. At their volume, 14 percent is a pretty good profit.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-05-30/costco-s-profit-advances-19-as-membership-fees-boost-revenue.html
sensei (howdy y'all) - 8 months ago
Costco CEO Craig Jelinek Leads the Cheapest, Happiest Company in the World - Businessweek

From page two of the article
Quote:
"Eighty percent of its gross profit comes from membership fees"
sensei (howdy y'all) - 8 months ago
Warsurplus - do you have any data to backup your ridiculous claims?
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
Wow, lots of arguments here. Costco's a well-managed company. Any company that goes toe to toe with Sam's/Walmart and wins knows a thing or two about what they're doing. Let's be clear - if they see significant losses from the gift card use, they'd discontinue the benefit.

However, for the time being, they're well aware that nearly 20% of all gift card recipients never use the gift card. Meaning, for every $1 worth of gift card sales, they're likely only going to part with $0.80 worth of merchandise (better than a 10% markup on cash purchases). They also know that for those who do use their cards, they'll likely upspend. Yes, as a company, they want additional memberships, but it's not their only driver. They recognize that their Executive Members make up about 30% of their membership, but account for 2/3 of their revenue (even after the 2% bonus).

The way I see it, if they were losing money on this, they'd stop the practice. But, since they haven't, they're actively reaping the benefits.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
I would agree that I see a lot of pushy folks in there. Men especially. But must say at our Costco, the folks working there are not overly friendly at all. The manager is the worse, checkers not so friendly and pharmacy acts like they are doing favors. I have joined Sam's and actually was welcomed by a manager. Pretty much, if you are going to buy a computer, go to a computer store. If you are buying a mattress, go to a mattress store etc.
warsurplus (L0 Newbie) - 8 months ago
Reply to sensei
Please do some research. Costco's membership fees represented only 2.2 percent of revenue in 1Q 2013 and its private label brands have a respectable profit margin.
sensei (howdy y'all) - 8 months ago
Costco makes 80% of their revenue from membership dues. They either break even or make pennies on purchases. Yeah sure use this to see if you like the place but if you do, sign up.
magwheels (L6 Experienced Member) - 8 months ago
Do not be shocked when all of you who go this Gift Card route find out unexectadly one day that this no longer works. Loop holes can close.
spazntwitch (It's like déjà vu again) - 8 months ago
Reply to morriefisher

This makes me sick. As a business owner, I've had to fire customers because they were belittling to me or my staff. Granted that only happened a couple of times, but the bad customers ruin it for the good ones.

Remember, as a customer you are NOT entitled to walk all over a business. Their policy is to try to make you happy but when you abuse it, then policies change, and usually not for the benefit of the customer.
morriefisher (L9 Spoofeed Member) - 8 months ago
I talked to a gal that works the return desk there she said that 90% of the customers are rude. try to be nicer.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
Abusing Costco policies ruins it for the rest of us.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
Well, it is problematic for anyone following the rules and buying yearly memberships that aren't cheap. There is a difference in buying a gift card/being able to buy and buying on to get out of the yearly membership. Maybe not so to Costco, and that's where the problem lies.
Uleepera (L6 Experienced Member) - 8 months ago
I think all these people critiquing the deal need to create their own accounts and stop posting as a guest. This isn't a cheat to the system of Costco as they are choosing to honor the purchase. Good god man, save your inane speech about dishonesty/quality for something actually deserving and if you don't like Spoofee go join one of the dozens of other deal sites out there instead of harping on Melonie's find. I love this site and find their posts significantly more useful than most of the other deal website that just bomb you with a 1000 items a day. Thanks Melonie!
rjmaerz (L2 Curious Member) - 8 months ago
Only members can purchase cash cards, although anyone can use them.
Spoofee (Spoofee.com!) - 8 months ago
This policy is mentioned on Costco's very own page.

It has been this way for many years and Costco remains a highly profitable business.

Costco Cash Cards exist so members can give the gift of shopping at Costco to others.

Maybe they are counting on the gift card shoppers to eventually become a paying member.

Costco's profit margin on products are on the lower side, but at the end of the day, gift card shoppers make Costco happy by adding to the profit.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
I agree with the other poster, support costco and it's living wages. If you research the founder Jim Sinegal, there is ALOT TO ADMIRE AND SUPPORT.

Don't be a scumbag and look for unwarranted loopholes.

You can always go to Walmart if your asphyxiatingly cheap.

Wayne
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
I do agree with this message. Now for sure Costco is going to update their system to fix this glitch.

'I'm really disappointed in some of these Spoofee posts lately. Between the Chinese knock-off Apple cords, how to adopt iOS7 early, or how to get around the system at Costco, there are some ethical lines being crossed lately. What happened to simply offering one site where people can find great deals or freebies without being dishonest? You might as well tell us to borrow a friend's Costco card and charge it to their account or share Netflix passwords with your neighbors. I'm all for a deal, but some of these lately cross my ethical line and I'm disappointed to see these on Spoofee. You're better than that!'
upx1 (L4 Interested Member) - 8 months ago
This seems like a great idea, thanks, I'm going to try it when my membership expires in November.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
To the person complaining about deals, allow my Apple products are made in China. Something 'made for iPod' is not illegal. Apple branded products are likely higher quality. You get what you pay for. Costco is getting 10% more from non-members. How is this unethical on Spoofee's part? Costco loves the extra business I'm sure. I
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
get a freaking membership!
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
Many on this board seem to have trouble reading and understanding the original offer. The terms posted by Spoofee are the same terms posted at the Costco website. The posts declaring that there is a surcharge are simply uninformed. READ the terms before posting contradictory information that confuses readers. My two cents.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
Costco employee here.

This is 100% wrong.

Current policy is that non-members with a cash-card of any denomination will pay a 5% surcharge on all purchases (Sam's Club and BJ's have a 10% surcharge). The purchase is limited to the amount of the cash-card (minimum cash-card purchase is $25.00). And receipts w/o a membership number are not suppose to be granted Costco's membership return policy. Concierge extended warranties however are granted.

All this said, it's up to the manager and/or front-end supervisor to enforce the 5% surcharge. Many managers do not - mine included. There's no way around the return policy - any return w/receipt that does not have a membership number is denied a return if it's over 90 days.
Spoofee (Spoofee.com!) - 8 months ago
I just called Costco and all the same benefits apply with a cash card.

1. There is NO surchage

2. You get the same discounts as every regular member

3. Same lenient return policy.. you just have to hold onto your receipt. While the membership folks just swipes their card
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
While I understand that people want to save money... you have to pay 10% extra without a membership if your are using a card. So the deal isn't that great.

Plus I am O.K. with paying 55 bucks a year for a membership to a company that actually pays their employees a living wage unlike the rest of the retail industry.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
Does this work with Sam's club too?
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
non members do not get benefits of coupons when shopping with a cash card!!!
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
I'm really disappointed in some of these Spoofee posts lately. Between the Chinese knock-off Apple cords, how to adopt iOS7 early, or how to get around the system at Costco, there are some ethical lines being crossed lately. What happened to simply offering one site where people can find great deals or freebies without being dishonest? You might as well tell us to borrow a friend's Costco card and charge it to their account or share Netflix passwords with your neighbors. I'm all for a deal, but some of these lately cross my ethical line and I'm disappointed to see these on Spoofee. You're better than that!
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
I only buy certain items at Costco and use the gift cards all the time. There is no non-member surcharge (I believe BJs has the surcharge).
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
Our Costco limited the purchase to the amount of one gift cart ($10).
morriefisher (L9 Spoofeed Member) - 8 months ago
buy a membership, you can get a full refund on it anytime.
NuttyBuddy (L3 Curious Member) - 8 months ago
The simple math on this offer ... if you'll spend more than $550 in a year at Costco, membership saves you money. If you'll spend less, then this method is cheaper.
Guest
Guest - 8 months ago
I did this when a friend gave me a gift card. It worked without any extra fees but they have to call over a manager to override the membership number.
c627627 (L1 Semi-Newbie) - 8 months ago
There has always been a 10% non-member surcharge if you don't have a membership card and are *only* using a gift card. The deal would be valid if you stated that Costco has somehow dropped this charge, have they?

I am guessing not and that non-members have to pay 110% of the price with a gift card and no membership card. Hardly a good deal.
Hot Tub (L5 Interested Member) - 8 months ago
Deal will probably remain valid until Costco discovers their membership numbers dropping.
Spoofee (Spoofee.com!) - 8 months ago
Costco Cash Card's website clearly states "Members and non-members may use the cash cards to shop at any Costco location in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and online at Costco.com or on Costco.ca"

Deal is valid!

Costco Cash Card



RSS Feed Facebook Twitter
Spoofee-Footer
Submit Deals
Have a good deal or coupon? Want to share with our members? Please post it on our forums

If it's a hot deal, we will post it on the front page with your name on it!
Follow Us
New Deals
Hot Deals Only (4.5+ stars)
New Coupons
Facebook Fanpage
Google Plus Us!