General chatter - Sams VS Costco




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taragettingthin
06-25-2008, 11:27 PM
What do you prefer?

I used to have Sams club membership years ago...never renewed it, and now am thinking about getting it...but am kinda debating between Sams and Costco.

Thanks...


GradPhase
06-25-2008, 11:33 PM
This is a GREAT thread idea. I'm getting a membership when I get home, too, and I also didn't know which one to go with. Thanks, Tara!

taragettingthin
06-25-2008, 11:48 PM
My pleasure, Eskino. :D

I used to actually work at Sam's club. Then when I moved, I let the membership run out...and never renewed it.

When i needed some stuff from there, I go with someone who already has membership and pay them. But I know both Sam's and Costco have great food items...that I would love to get, along with some toilet paper I have to get. :P I just don't want to pay close to $50 for a year if I'm not going to like it really...and I heard a great deal about Costco... so I wondered if there were anyone out there who've either used both, or have Costco...:)


PhotoChick
06-25-2008, 11:53 PM
I actually have both. Hubby gets a Sam's membership through his work and I have a Costco membership for my business.

They usually have somewhat different foods where I live.

Sams has better meat and a wider variety of drinks (juices, V8, etc.)
Costco has a huge dairy/specialty deli area (I can get Laughing Cow cheese, a huge block of Dubliner, and even Babybel) and has the organic wild frozen blueberries that I eat in my yogurt every morning.

Both of them are hit or miss on produce - sometimes it's great and sometimes not. I haven't tried the bakery goods at either.

Oh, and I prefer Sam's photo center to Costco's, but that's because I've been using Sam's longer and the lab manager knows me by name. ;)

.

EZMONEY
06-25-2008, 11:59 PM
We have both in our area. I have never been to Sam's, Angie has and likes Costco better for us, we shop at Costco about every 6 weeks and buy a lot of our items there. Have no idea if that helps you.

GradPhase
06-26-2008, 12:19 AM
Oooh, good input.

Which is better for college-student type stuff, do you think? Small appliances, dishes, foods that won't spoil outside of a mini fridge?

EZMONEY
06-26-2008, 12:32 AM
Since I have never been to Sam's IGLOO GIRL I can't say...but I will tell you when my son was in college (living at home) and when my daughter was (living on campus/apt.) we bought a lot of things they needed at Costco. The biggest problem there I would think for college students is that you have to buy a lot of thing in bulk...how many kids need/have room to store 20 rolls of toilet paper!

I think anyone can go into the store and ask to check it out...this way you can see which one works better for you!

taragettingthin
06-26-2008, 12:44 AM
Thanks for your input, PhotoChick and Gary!

Also, Eskinomad, wherever you end up getting membership at, how about dividing them with your friends? For example, toilet paper. You can buy it and then your friends can pay for the half and you get them the half of the box. I know it took me 1.5 years to use all toilet paper that I bought at Sam's Club when I moved into my apartment. So if you can find someone to do that, that would probably help a lot..even with food. :)

GradPhase
06-26-2008, 12:57 AM
Yep - I absolutely plan on doing that. I also do a lot of safe-sex conferences and stuff around campus, so it'll be great to be able to get family planning stuff in bulk, so we can use more of our funding on better stuff. No one else in the group has a membership either. But wow! A year and a half - that's a whole LOT of toilet paper! Better safe than sorry, I suppose!

kahnfv
06-26-2008, 01:06 AM
In the DFW area, Costco seems to be better than Sams. Cleaner, brighter, and we like most of the Costco brand items. Costco just works better for us.

snapless
06-26-2008, 01:12 AM
I'd have to agree with kahnfv...the last few times I've been to DFW area (last time was about 1 year ago, so things may have changed) and when I lived there, Costco was much better than Sam's, in the cleanliness aspect, in the helpful employee aspect, and in the availability of brands aspect.

I also noticed, with a lot of Sam's bigger merchandise, you could get the same item cheaper without paying membership fee at their sister company Wal-Mart. Never compared food prices though.

HarpoChicoGroucho
06-26-2008, 01:38 AM
I don't have a membership to either, but I do read Consumer Reports, and I remember an article awhile ago comparing Sams and Costco. It's online here: Sams Vs Costco (http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/money/shopping/where-to-buy/warehouse-clubs-5-07/overview/0507_ware_ov.htm)

The family I nanny for shops at both, so I eat food from both, and I tend to be more impressed with the food when it comes from Costco.

taragettingthin
06-26-2008, 01:52 AM
Thank you for the report, Harpo.

snapless
06-26-2008, 02:31 AM
Thanks for that link HarpoChicoGroucho.

THE Heather
06-26-2008, 05:16 AM
In the DFW area, Costco seems to be better than Sams. Cleaner, brighter, and we like most of the Costco brand items. Costco just works better for us.

Thanks! Good to have a personal opinion from this area!!

angeline
06-26-2008, 07:58 AM
i've had a membership at costco for about 13 years - both in LA and in Pgh. I LOOOOOOOVE COSTCO!!! I've never been in a Sam's. I've also heard the same comments about Sam's vs. Costco. Costco is cleaner, laid out better, and treats its employees better!

as for college students - i agree storage would be the big thing. we've purchased a small refrigerator for our bar area. there's a huge office supply area in our costco.

off the top of my head, i buy our cereal (kashi and nature's post), english muffins, raw almonds & walnuts, dried fruit, soda water, lots of meat (chicken breasts, organic ground meat, salmon, shrimp, scallops), sometimes fruit (apples, sliced mango, blueberries), organic peanut butter, coffee, toilet paper, paper towels, kleenex, protein powder, dishwashing powder/liquid, laundry detergent.

i just made a recent shopping trip so things are fresh in my mind from my list.

ladybugnessa
06-26-2008, 08:04 AM
I hate Sams. I belong to COSTCO where I get their cleaning supplies (love their popup wipes, laundry detergent and dishwashwer gel) i like their meats i love the trident salmon burgers and the frozen lean beef (in one pound tubes) I like that I can get certain produce there and old fashioned oatmeal

I also belong to BJs because it's very close to my house and I get a few things there but if Costco was closer I'd drop the Bjs membership now.

the slim me
06-26-2008, 08:16 AM
I used to have a Sam's membership but let it run out. 50 dollars is a lot to pay if you don't shop there all the time. With only 2 of us the bulk items are just too much. My son and DIl has a Costco membership and like that much better. They send you a coupon book and she says it pays for it's with the free coupons of things. If I want something I go with them to Costco a few times a year. They do have really nice things around Christmas time

nelie
06-26-2008, 08:53 AM
I belong to Costco and I love it. Even if I didn't shop there, I'd still have a membership. I got my car insurance through them and it was the cheapest by far.

I believe Costco has better quality items and really when I buy stuff at Costco, I am happy with my purchases. I know Costco does try to look out for the best stuff and ensure quality.

Even though there are only 2 of us, I shop Costco every week. I buy my 2.5 lb bags of spinach there, my 6 lb bags of frozen strawberries and my 3 lb bags of frozen blueberries. I also buy bananas and a few other things there on a regular basis. I think Costco is one of the best things I've done and I had a membership when I was single :)

LisaMarie71
06-26-2008, 09:37 AM
My husband and I had a Costco membership many years ago but let it run out because we didn't really buy things in bulk and mostly just used it for their meat and other foods. We loved it when we had it, though.

Now I'm trying to decide between Sam's and Costco because I'm thinking I'll want to buy diapers in bulk. Does anyone know which club is better for baby things? I won't be working for the next year so money will be VERY scarce!

nelie
06-26-2008, 09:47 AM
One thing you can do to compare the 2 as well is to look at their website although I have a disclaimer on Costco. Stuff on their website usually costs more than in the store. We recently bought a dehumidifier and in the store, it was $50 less than on their website. Also they don't always have things on their website in every store but it does give a general idea of what you'd see in the store. Kirkland brand is also awesome.

CandyKisses0204
06-26-2008, 10:31 AM
lisamarie~ from my experience sams diapers are not so great. They leak and fall apart. I have never used the costco ones, but if you have a friend with a membership maybe go with them to buy the diapers to decide for yourself before getting a membership

taragettingthin
06-26-2008, 01:39 PM
Lisamarie, I have to agree with Candy. I used diapers from Sam's club but it was not good at all. If you go to Babies R Us or Toys R Us, they have their own diaper called "Especially for Baby".. That's what I used for my DD and she's only 2.5 years old now and just potty trained. They have regular ones and Supreme ones and get the supreme ones. They also have special deal going on for that diapers quite often... They are surely cheaper than Huggies or Pampers and works better than both, in my opinion. :)

suetalks
06-26-2008, 02:34 PM
Family members use Costco in CA and swear by the Kirkland brand paper products. I have been in both stores with friends/family and have to agree that Costco is just a brighter, cleaner store. I would have a membership if we had one close-by.

taragettingthin
06-26-2008, 02:40 PM
Well, looks like Costco is the winner by far! Costco is about 1-2 mile closer to my house than Sam's Club so that helps too. :) Thanks everyone! I will be getting the membership sometime this weekend. :D

FrouFrou
06-26-2008, 03:28 PM
I prefer Costco over Sams but we don't have Costco here only Sams. Seems to me though, they are basically the same.

WebRover
06-29-2008, 06:19 AM
Now I'm trying to decide between Sam's and Costco because I'm thinking I'll want to buy diapers in bulk. Does anyone know which club is better for baby things? I won't be working for the next year so money will be VERY scarce!

I bought my niece a box of Huggies ($35) at Sam's (160 diapers) thinking that would be a good deal. Then I saw the same box at Babies R Us for only a dollar more ($36) and thought that was odd. I expected the difference to be greater. At Target I could buy 4 packages of 40 of the same diapers for $3 less total than Sam's ($8X4=$32).

We loved Costco, then they left our area.
Pace came into the area and we hated Pace.
Then Sam's came in. Better than Pace, not as good as Costco.
Then Costco came back, but in a nearby town, long drive, heavy traffic. We tried it for a year, but it was just too far away - and that was before gas prices went up this last time. But it was just too far away and we didn't go.
Now BJ's is also here, almost across the street from work. I haven't been in yet. I haven't heard a comparison of the two, although I know folks who've shopped both.

Editing to add: I don't want to imply that there aren't savings to be had. We have a long list of items that we buy regularly at Sam's and know we are saving by doing so. No matter where you shop, you need to know what's a good deal and what isn't. Not being diaper consumers ourselves, we didn't know what a good price was.

jillybean720
06-29-2008, 07:23 AM
I also belong to BJs because it's very close to my house and I get a few things there but if Costco was closer I'd drop the Bjs membership now.
I'm glad you mentioned BJs because that's really a questions for me--Costco or BJs. Anyone else have BJs experience to share?

ThisTimeIsDifferent
07-01-2008, 09:48 AM
I have a Costco and a BJ's here. For a year I went to Costco and It was okay. They really dont have many name brand items and some of their meat was really gross. When our membership expired we decided to try Bj's. Let me tell you...BJ's is 100% better then Costco (my op)! I will never go back to Costco again. Bj's is cleaner, it has more stuff. Their fruit section has alot of variety. Costco had a floor stand for a fruit section. CHOOSE BJ'S...YOU'LL LOVE IT!

ladybugnessa
07-01-2008, 09:56 AM
I have a Costco and a BJ's here. For a year I went to Costco and It was okay. They really dont have many name brand items and some of their meat was really gross. When our membership expired we decided to try Bj's. Let me tell you...BJ's is 100% better then Costco (my op)! I will never go back to Costco again. Bj's is cleaner, it has more stuff. Their fruit section has alot of variety. Costco had a floor stand for a fruit section. CHOOSE BJ'S...YOU'LL LOVE IT!

see that's interesting... our COSTCO is cleaner than our BJs and i've been to two different Costcos here. I belong to both Costco and BJS and would give up BJs before Costco.

Sassy_Chick
07-02-2008, 12:43 AM
Hi Ya,

I have never had a membership to Sams but have been there a few times with a friend of ours. Its okay, but I prefer Costco. We have been members there for a while now and we love it! Another great thing about Costco is their return policy is awesome!

I remember BJ's when we used to live in Upstate NY, we don't have any around here. I don't think we went there a whole lot, but it was okay. Its hard to remember and I'm sure they probably have changed some since then too.

I say go with a friend or you can go in and ask for a guest membership for the day -- I know that Sam's does this, as I've seen them in the paper, not sure if Costco does or not, but its worth a try asking anyways, that way you can "take a look" before you purchse the whole membership. Or like many people have said here, split the membership with a friend/friends. Friends of ours wanted to split our membership to Costco, but we figured we are gonna be a member either way, so we didn't do it, but we said they are welcome to come with us at any time if they need/want anything!!

taragettingthin
07-02-2008, 12:46 AM
BJ's? I'm not sure if they have that where I live...Near Detroit...... Never seen it before. I did get Costco and love it! The one near here also has gas station and I got to put gas for 3.98 while all the other gas station was 4.09 and up. :D

Sassy_Chick
07-02-2008, 12:54 AM
Oh Yeah I had forgotten about the gas! Also we got a discount on the price of our new car we purchased in 06 because we were Costco members! ;)

BJ's is another wholesale club, I'm not sure where they are nationwide, I just know there was one when we lived in Upstate NY, cuz my DH was a member of the fire dept. there and they gave all their fire dept. free memberships.

Slim81
07-05-2008, 02:00 PM
I shop at BJ's. I love that store. You can save so much money buying in bulk.

SunshineCA
07-06-2008, 09:02 PM
We have a membership with Sam's Club. We like it as we get great savings for a family of 5. My DH wants to get a Costco membership. I had one through my cousin years ago but never went very often. I think it'll be great having both. Especially with how much everything costs these days. Whatever savings I can get, I'll take it! :cupgold:

colebear
07-08-2008, 02:54 PM
Another thing to think about w/ BJs vs Costco. My mom & SIL are w/ BJs because there's one close to their houses... I'm with Costco, because it's next door to work. My SIL said she's been eating a lot of bison since it's leaner than beef and she can get it at BJs. I checked for it at Costco, and they don't carry it here, though I love many other things about Costco. I don't generally buy produce there because it goes bad before my SO & I can finish it, but I get frozen chicken breast, lean ground beef, Cheerios, and many other household things at a huge savings.