7 Ways You Can Shop at Costco Without a Membership

Being a Costco member is about to become costlier. So be sure to consider these alternatives before you buy or renew a membership.

5. Use a delivery service

Some third-party delivery services, like Instacart and Google Express, will pick up what you want from Costco for you and bring it to your home. There’s no waiting in line and no membership necessary on your part.

These services aren’t available in every city and generally aren’t free, though. On top of the cost of your purchases, you’ll usually pay a delivery fee, presumably a tip and possibly an additional fee if you are not a Costco member.

6. See the optometrist

In need of an eye exam? Nonmembers can see on-site optometrists at Costco clubs.

Nonmembers cannot purchase optical items, though. So if you end up needing new glasses and don’t want to join Costco, you’ll need a Costco Cash Card or a member willing to let you pay them back for your purchase.

So, it might be wise to first check out “Lookin’ Good! How to Get a Killer Deal on Eyeglasses.”

Not all Costco clubs have optical departments. Visit the “Find a Warehouse” page to look up specific locations and click on “Store Details” to find out whether a location has an optical department.

7. Buy prescription drugs

Prescription drugs are the one exception to Costco’s 5 percent surcharge for nonmembers who order online.

Additionally, nonmembers can generally use the pharmacies in Costco clubs. Just note that this can vary from state to state due to differences in state laws. Costco states that pharmacies are open to nonmembers “where required by state law.” Also, not all Costco locations have pharmacies. So nonmembers might want to call ahead before using a brick-and-mortar Costco pharmacy for the first time.

Again, visit the “Find a Warehouse” page and click on “Store Details” to find out whether a location has a pharmacy.

If your prescription drug costs are limited to co-pays and you don’t frequent Costco, you’re probably better off using your nearest pharmacy. But if you pay out of pocket for prescriptions, compare what you currently pay to what Costco charges for your medications.

Costco pharmacies also carry pet medications.

For more tips, check out “6 Ways Warehouse Stores Get You to Spend Too Much.”

What’s your favorite way to save money at warehouse clubs? Share with us by commenting below or over on our Facebook page.


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