Things You Should Never Buy At Costco

Costco membership is an incredible deal.  Costco consistently ranks high when it comes to customer satisfaction. The savings from your purchases will more than makeup for the membership fee. But that doesn’t mean that Costco offers the best prices on every item its stores.

Common beliefs among Costco shoppers

Here are a few common beliefs among Costco shoppers.  These beliefs are true most of the time but not always.

  • Costco sells in bulk, so its per-unit cost must be cheaper than other stores
  • Costco is a members-only store. So its prices must be the cheapest

Better Deals for some products elsewhere


Kirkland diapers may look like a great deal,  you can find better deals at Target, Walmart, or Amazon. Also since Costco sells diapers in high volume, if your baby grows up, you may end up with unused diapers.


Costco makes you buy two gallons of milk at a time. If you have a big family, that may work fine. Otherwise, you are better off buying them from your grocery store.  Grocery stores also have lower prices for their brand of milk, which are likely to be cheaper than what Costco offers.


Eggs have a shelf life of 3 to 5 weeks and are usually cheaper at your supermarket. Unless you are cooking eggs for a big party, you are better off skipping purchasing eggs at Costco.

Name-brand clothing

Most people are aware that items sold at the outlet store or outlet mall are made specifically for those stores – that is they are of lower quality than the full-priced name brand item. The same is true for Costco. These name brand companies make products specifically for Costco – these products are cheaper and lower quality as well. You are better off looking for deals at stores that usually sell these items at full price.

Printer paper and office supplies

Unless you need boxes of paper, you are better off buying paper from office supply stores such as Staples and Office Depot. Staples sometimes run $0.01/per ream deals.  The same is true for office supplies such as pens, pencils, notebooks, etc.  Many stores sell office supplies at huge discounts around back-to-school-time.


Costco only has a limited selection of books, usually just best sellers. But you can find them cheaper at Amazon or other book stores. These places will also allow you to buy electronic versions of books, which are not an option available at Costco. Ebooks tend to be cheap and have the added advantage of not cluttering up your room.

Toothpaste and shampoo

You can buy toothpaste and shampoo cheaper at drug stores and supermarkets.  Sometimes, you can buy for almost free with a coupon. There is no need to buy these items in bulk as they tend to break down after they are opened.

Bottom Line

Costco is a great place to get deals. My family loves shopping at Costco. But you don’t get the best deals at Costco. For certain items, your grocery store may offer better deals.  When you buy at a supermarket, you can only the quantities you need unlike at Costco, which sells items in bulk quantities.

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