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Costco Membership: Here’s Everything You Need to Know

With budget-friendly prices on household goods, bulk groceries, and big-ticket items like TVs and furniture, Costco offers unbeatable savings compared to many traditional big-box stores. However, to take advantage of Costco’s affordable prices and exclusive discounts, you’ll need to purchase a Costco membership.

Costco has four membership tiers: Gold Star Executive, Gold Star Everyday Value, Business Executive, and Business Everyday Value. Investing in a Costco membership can help you save on eligible purchases and services with exclusive discounts while enjoying Costco’s double 100% satisfaction guarantee.

In this article, we’ll take a look at the different tiers of Costco membership, whether you can share your Costco membership, and whether Costco membership is really worth it.

 Gold Star
Executive
Gold Star
Everyday Value
Business
Executive
Business
Everyday Value
Annual 2% reward on eligible purchasesYesNoYesNo
Additional benefits and discounts on Costco servicesYesNoYesNo
Costco Connection subscriptionYesNoNoNo
Valid on at all Costco locations and on Costco.comYesYesYesYes
Includes two membership cardsYesYesYesYes
Purchase for resaleNoNoYesYes
Add additional people to membership ($60/person)NoNoYesYes
 $120 annual fee$60 annual fee$120 annual fee$60 annual fee

What Are the Types of Costco Membership?

Costco offers four membership options: Gold Star Executive, Gold Star Everyday Value, Business Executive, and Business Everyday Value—each with their own benefits. While Costco’s Executive memberships cost $120 annually, the more basic Everyday memberships have a $60 annual membership fee.

Let’s take a look at the different Costco membership options and their benefits.

1.   Gold Star Executive

At $120 annually, Gold Star Executive offers a wide range of exclusive membership benefits compared to Costco’s basic personal membership, Gold Star Everyday Value.

Costco’s Gold Star Executive membership benefits include:

  • Annual 2% reward on qualified purchases (up to $1,000)
  • Additional benefits and discounts on Costco services
  • Free subscription to Costco Connection
  • Valid at all Costco locations worldwide and online at Costco.com
  • Two membership cards—one for you and one for your household
  • Costco’s double 100% satisfaction guarantee

2.   Gold Star Everyday Value

As Costco’s basic personal membership package, Gold Star Everyday Value offers fewer benefits than Gold Star Executive. However, with a $60 annual membership fee, Gold Star Everyday Value can help you take advantage of Costco’s budget-friendly pricing both online and in-store.

Costco’s Gold Star Everyday Value membership benefits include:

  • Valid at all Costco locations worldwide and online at Costco.com
  • Two membership cards—one for you and one for your household
  • Costco’s double 100% satisfaction guarantee

3.   Business Executive

With a $120 annual membership fee, Costco’s Business Executive membership offers a wide range of benefits to business owners, from Costco’s annual 2% reward to exclusive discounts on many Costco services.

Costco’s Business Executive membership benefits include:

  • Annual 2% reward on qualified purchases (up to $1,000)
  • Additional benefits and discounts on Costco services
  • Valid at all Costco locations worldwide and online at Costco.com
  • Two membership cards—one for you and one for your household
  • Purchase for resale
  • The option to add additional people to your membership for $60/person
  • Costco’s double 100% satisfaction guarantee

4.   Business Everyday Value

Compared to the Business Executive membership, Business Everyday Value offers more basic membership benefits for business owners with an annual membership fee of $60.

Costco’s Business Everyday Value membership benefits include:

  • Valid at all Costco locations worldwide and online at Costco.com
  • Two membership cards—one for you and one for your household
  • Purchase for resale
  • The option to add additional people to your membership for $60/person
  • Costco’s double 100% satisfaction guarantee

Can You Share Your Costco Card?

Although your Costco membership card is non-transferable, you can still share the benefits of your Costco membership with friends and family. When you purchase a membership, you can use your card to bring up to two guests with you to your local Costco warehouse who can use your membership benefits.

Although Costco members can bring two guests along on their shopping trip, it’s important to keep in mind that the member will have to pay for every order.

With that said, your cashier will separate each order at the register so you can easily determine each order’s total.

According to Costco’s website, primary members and account managers can also assign their additional membership card to another member of their household.

When you assign your household card to another person, they’ll also be able to use the benefits of your membership.

To add someone to your Costco membership, follow these steps.

  • Sign in on the Costco website and click “My Account”
  • Choose “Account Details” to add a member of your household to your membership

When the process is complete, your household member can pick up their new card at your local store’s membership counter.

Does Costco Auto-Renew Memberships?

Yes, Costco auto-renews memberships. When you sign up for your Costco membership, you’ll have the option to choose the auto-renew option. If you choose not to auto-renew your account, your Costco membership will expire. Costco processes renewals at the beginning of your renewal month.

Members can only renew an active Costco membership within 90 days of the expiration date. If your Costco membership is currently expired, you can renew it online within 90 days of the expiration date.

Alternatively, you can call Costco’s customer service line or visit your local membership counter anytime to renew your membership.

If you’re looking to manage your Costco membership’s renewal settings online, here’s how.

  • Sign into the Costco website and click “My Account”
  • Under “My Account,” choose the “Renew Membership” option
  • Add, remove, or change your auto-renew settings as needed

Can You Shop at Costco Without a Membership?

Yes, there are a few ways to shop at Costco without purchasing a membership. One of the easiest easy to enjoy Costco membership benefits is to visit Costco with a family member or friend who has a membership. You can also ask them to purchase a Costco gift card that you can use to shop at Costco without a membership.

If your friend or family member is busy, you can ask them to load a Costco gift card up to $1,000 during their Costco run.

Although only Costco members can load cards, you’ll be able to use them at your local Costco warehouse to purchase items without shopping with a member.

Costco gift cards, also known as Costco shop cards or Costco cash cards, can be especially useful for bigger purchases such as furniture. This way, you won’t have to worry about paying your friend or family member back and you don’t have to purchase a membership for a single item.

Can You Get a Refund for Costco Membership?

Yes, you can get a refund for your Costco membership. Costco’s double 100% satisfaction guarantee applies to every type of Costco membership. In other words, Costco will refund your both membership and Costco products if they do not meet your expectations.

According to Costco’s membership refund policy, Costco will cancel and refund your annual membership fee at any time if you are dissatisfied.

To cancel your Costco membership, visit your local Costco membership counter and let a team member know that you’re canceling.

The team member will be able to process your membership refund. Alternatively, you can call Costco’s Member Services Center at 1-800-774-2678 to request a refund.

Is Costco Membership Worth It?

Even if you don’t shop at Costco regularly, a Costco membership pays for itself. From movie tickets and gas to bulk groceries and big-ticket items, investing in a Costco membership can help you take advantage of a wide range of exclusive discounts and unbeatable savings.

Shopping at Costco just once a month can help you significantly cut costs on groceries and other household essentials—and you’ll find unmatched value throughout the store in other departments.

If you’re not sure whether or not a Costco membership is right for you, you can rest assured knowing you’ll be able to refund your membership through Costco’s risk-free 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Conclusion

When it comes to savings, value, and convenience, Costco offers major advantages over traditional big-box stores. Even if you’re only considering Costco’s basic membership package, investing in a Costco membership is a great way to buy in bulk and eat healthy on a budget. Your family—and your wallet—will thank you.

If you’re interested in finding out more about shopping at Costco, check out the related articles below.

Related Articles:

Everything You Need to Know About Costco’s Hours

How to Contact Costco Customer Service Plus Costco’s Return Policy

Here’s What You Need to Know If You Lost Your Costco Card

Costco Delivery: How It Works and How Much It Costs

Does Costco Take EBT? (Yes, Here’s What You Need to Know)

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About the Author

Samantha Ellsworth is a freelance content writer and copy editor with over 7 years of experience. She worked as a bakery team member at Whole Foods for 3 years. Outside of work, you can find her hiking the trails in Colorado or trying out healthy new recipes.

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