Savings Tips Costco Hopes Shoppers Never Learn

Costco Store Sign
Costco Store Sign. Moment Mobile / Getty Images

Most shoppers are smart about ways to save at Costco savings, however, not everyone knows the following tips.

1) Don't Skip the Coupon Book

Every month Costco members receive a coupon book in the mail that is full of some pretty good deals and even some fantastic deals. Be sure to read the terms of the coupons that you like so that you know if they are good in-store or online, or both.

2) Costco App

You can also get the Costco app which has the coupons that are offered in the coupon book.

It is a very simple app to use. You just clip the coupons that you want to use to the shopping list then show it to the cashier when you are checking out.

3) Check Online for Bigger Savings

Costco offers items online that they do not carry in the stores. Before you make a purchase in another store because you could not find it at the Costco store, check Costco online.

Also, it is not unusual to find non-perishable items that are offered online at cheaper prices than the Costco store, plus you can often get free shipping.

The next time you decide that you want to buy an electronic, piece of furniture or even a new shirt, check out the prices online before you shop at your local store.

4) Head to the Middle of the Store

Want to find the deepest discounts inside Costco stores? Then you better go to the middle of the store and check out the huge product displays. This is where you'll find the very best deals in the store.

5) Top Picks on Kirkland Products

Kirkland is Costco's store brand and many of the Kirkland products are as good as the name brand, but without the high prices. In fact, some of the products are made by the name brand companies.

Products that have scored high include:

  • Kirkland Signature Ultra Clean Pacs
  • Kirkland Signature Free & Clear
  • Kirkland Signature Dishwasher Packs
  • Kirkland Signature Regular Sliced Bacon
  • Kirkland Signature Real Mayonnaise
  • Kirkland Signature maple syrup
  • Kirkland Signature Tuna (made by BumbleBee)
  • Kirkland Signature Organic Chicken
  • Kirkland Signature Vodka (made by Grey Goose)
  • Kirkland Signature Bourbon(made by Jim Bean)
  • Kirkland Signature AA Alkaline batteries

6) Keep an Eye on the Prices

Just like all stores, Costco has a pricing structure that is fairly complicated, but if you keep a few of their pricing rules in mind, it will help you save. For a complete understanding of how the price structure works and for a very detailed look at ways to save, be sure to read Len Rapoport  article "Secret Price Codes Will Save You Money At Costco."

Products ending in 99 cents are at regular price. Depending on the item, you may want to hold out until it goes on sale.

Products ending in 97 cents have been marked down. These items generally sell faster than the regular priced items, so if it is something you really want you may want to go ahead and buy it.

Products ending in an odd number are special purchases. Sometimes this means it came in at a great price, sometimes it is just an OK price.

Products ending in an even dollar amount or in 88 cents means that it is a manager's markdown. Other stores like Target and Best Buy have manager's markdowns and basically how it works is that the managers are given the go ahead to take markdowns on certain products in their stores that need to go. It might be because they received too much of the product for their market, or the product is being introduced with new packaging, or the product was a slow seller. Whatever the reason is, these are some of the very best prices in the stores.

7) Check Out the Pharmacy

Costco's pharmacy is well stocked and the prices are so low that they often beat your insurance prices.

Also, a membership is not required in order to use the Costco pharmacy.

8) Do the Math - Buy Per Unit

Costco has some amazing deals, but not everything is as good a deal as it seems. By doing some comparison pricing of how much the cost is per unit, you will soon be able to skip the Costco items that cost you more or that you can get elsewhere at a better price.