The CostCo Craze

Costco Sign

Photo by greenwenvy08

After the disappointing loss by the Blues tonight, I decided to watch The CostCo Craze on CNBC. It appeared immediately after the game. You can learn more about the program here.

I must admit, it is an amazing watch. Jim Sinegal, the recently retired CEO reminds me a lot of Sam Walton.

Having been a member of all three major wholesale clubs (Sam’s, CostCo, and BJ’s) I still consider Sam’s my favorite. Sadly, they aren’t located in the DC suburbs, only the exurbs like Woodbridge. I was a member of CostCo for 2 years, but the parking at the Pentagon City CostCo is such a pain in the butt, as is going through all of the lines there. While lots of famous people shop there, I had enough. The cost of membership wasn’t worth it.

I retreated to BJ’s on Duke Street near Landmark Mall. Frankly, BJ’s is indistinguishable from CostCo in my opinion. And there aren’t the crazy lines.

Wholesale clubs will only save you money if you are a prudent shopper. I have made mistakes over the years, buying more food than I ate before it expired. Naturally, I’ve altered my buying habits and leveraged the BJ’s membership. One thing I found was interesting was that much of their revenue came from membership dues, not profit margins. Also interesting was that wholesalers tend to offer significantly less items than, say, a typical Walmart, Wegmans, or a Shoppers. Restricting consumer choice at wholesale clubs is one way to make the price point lower and still profitable.

Make sure you check it out on CNBC , I am sure if you check your TV Guide it will be on again soon. 

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