Sunday, January 16, 2011

Oh Costco, how I've [Not] Missed Thee...

I have an uncle who absolutely loves Costco. We joke that everything he buys is from Costco, because really, about 98% of what he buys actually comes from Costco (the other 2% comes from Home Depot). He even has a "Costco Room" in his house (okay, it's a very large pantry in his very large laundry room, but to us, it'll always be his Costco Room).

I, on the other hand, loathe Costco. I haven't been to Costco in years.

Unfortunately, now that I have a baby, I find myself needing to go to Costco again. I avoided Costco for the first three months of Elizabeth's life, but after I needed to start supplementing her on formula, I started buying Kirkland brand formula because a) it's super cheap and b) it's actually a highly recommended brand. Several moms I know also love the Kirkland brand diapers, and since I was buying formula at Costco, I decided to start buying their diapers (I'm totally a Pampers mom - I LOVE Pampers Swaddlers and recommend them to everyone - but they are incredibly expensive, and I'm trying to recommit to saving money wherever I can. Although the Kirkland brand diapers are pretty great, I'll admit I miss Pampers. (Moms, I have a post I'm working on for baby items I recommend (because I know you all want my opinion), and we'll talk diapers...let me just say now AVOID HUGGIES AT ALL COSTS. That's it for now.)

Don't get me wrong - Costco has some great stuff, and they do have good deals. I used to shop at Costco each month, buying paper towels, toilet paper, soda, chicken...the list went on and on. Unfortunately, that was the problem - the list was long and I never left Costco without spending $100-$200. After Costco, I'd head to the grocery store for "big shopping" and spend another $100; add to that the money I'd spend picking up "just one thing" multiple times a week, plus buying produce and milk throughout the month, and I was spending over $500 each month on food and household items. That might not be too bad - except that there were only two of us!

One problem I found with Costco is that I often found better prices at stores like Winco and Wal-Mart. Okay, I don't always like going to those stores, either, but sometimes the savings were significant. Plus, I already had to go there, so it became easier to make just one trip and not another trip to Costco.

Another problem I had with Costco were the lines and the PEOPLE! The Costco nearest to my house (both the one near my house when I lived downtown, and the one near my house now), are always packed - always. Minutes before they open until minutes before they close, the parking lot is full and cars are driving around, blocking lanes because they're waiting to get that perfect front spot.

I hate all these people.

Why? They're rude. I love people, but I love people who are sociable and have manners. People at Costco do not have manners. Take today for an example. I've been going to a Costco a little ways from my house because it's not as busy as the one near my house; today, however, I made a quick run to the one near my house because I had the opportunity to go baby free. I got a parking space fairly close to the front of the store (amazing), and went in to get my items. I had three items, count 'em, THREE: a set of storage boxes and two cans of formula. I went to the front of the store to get in line, and....crap. 90% of the check stands were open, and they all had a line of at least three people, if not more. I found a line with two people and headed over. Just as I pulled up, a young punk (he was probably 25 or so, which is younger than me so therefore young punk) pulls up to the same line. We literally arrived at the exact same time. Now, I had three items...he had two carts! If I were in his shoes, I totally would have let me go first. Three items, come on, it's not going to take long to check out. Did he let me go first?

Of course not.

No, he pretended not to see me, so I moseyed back to another line. Jackass. Then the line I was in didn't move at all, so he and his two carts ended up checking out before I even got my items up on the conveyor belt.

You've got to love the people who check your receipt when you leave, too. I've always wondered what they're actually looking for when they study your receipt with a highlighter in their hand - are they actually looking at each item I have and checking to see if it's in the cart? Are they making sure I haven't smuggled a flat screen tv under my 10 lb. bag of onions? I think they're just faking it, honestly.

Today, my suspicions were confirmed.

In front of me was a couple who had a cart full of items. The husband was pushing the cart, and the wife had the receipt. A Costco employee took the receipt and began scanning it (all important highlighter in hand). She looked at it for quite a while...and while she was looking, the husband was pushing the cart right out the door! I don't think she looked once looked at anything in the cart, because she sure didn't seem to notice the husband (and the cart) were halfway to the car by the time she gave the receipt back to the wife!

So there you go, my frustration with Costco. Maybe you love them, maybe you don't. Either way, thanks for letting me vent about them a bit!


  1. Costco shoppers suck. Period, end of story. The BF and I used to go and spend a crap-ton of money on food that would just go bad since we couldn't eat it in time, and I hated every minute of being in that building.

    Not to say that Winco shoppers are any better. That place sucks too, but I can tolerate it now that I know when to go. :-)

  2. I have had some bad experiences with shoppers at Costco as well. You post make me laugh.

    But I still love Costco. It's an obsession. Oversized products? I can't get enough. :)

  3. Katie, I feel the same way, and about Winco too!

    Hannah, I'm glad I made you laugh. Thanks for reading!


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