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Costco Opening This Month!

By jessieduck 13 July 2011 58

With Costco due to open in a week and a half, I thought I would have a poke around the internet to see what we are in for. Having been to Costcos in Canada and the US, I am excited about the prospect of discounted groceries but also wondering how the typical Canberra home will cope with bulk buying (not many basements around these parts). I’ve paid my $60 membership fee (price is per family, not per person) and am ready to shop but we’re yet to see any emails or received any coupon books from Costco yet. It’s only from checking the website that I can see they are opening on the 22nd.

So quick education for the uninitiated. You need a membership to shop there. Thems are the rules. The stores are huge- a Bunnings style supermarkets with pallets of goods sold mostly in bulk- big bottles, large jars, multi-packs, boxes etc. Kirkland is Costco’s own brand and I guess is comparable to the Woolworth Select model. They sell everything from toilet paper to electronics to diamond rings along with meat, fruit and veg. They also have a food court selling hotdogs, pies, pizza etc and all-you-can-drink sodas (oops sorry, soft drinks). I’ve been told that members will get a coupon book a few times a year that will increase the savings on certain items. Costco is also pretty famous for their staff handing out samples as you move down the aisle (it’s how they get you).

Because I was curious… and had a bit of time on my hands… I jumped on Flickr and looked at “Costco Melbourne” pictures to suss out what they sell here in Australia. Most of the pictures are from 2009 and 2010 but I think the following is a pretty good indication of a fraction of what will be on offer here in Canberra. Don’t laugh, the following is not indicative of what I’ll be buying just what I was able to see prices for:

Box of Tim Tams (equiv to 6 packets) $10.49
1.2kg Shapes biscuits $12.49
Bucket of Vegemite (1kg?) $11.17
Box of 72 Caramello Koalas $23.99
Box of 30 small packets of Red Rock Deli chips $31.99
Box of Crunchies $45.99
4x 160gram Colgate toothpaste $16.98
2x 750ml Head and Shoulders $22.99
2x 354ml Aveeno Bodywash $15.99
5 carat diamond ring $159,999.00 (yes, the decimal point is in the right spot)
120 Crayola crayons $24.99
Ecomonmy pack of Optifree contact lens cleaner $12.99
HP 6 pack colour ink refill $79.99

Meat and fish
Korean marinated beef $13.99kg
Cooked lamb shanks $10.99kg
Prepared chicken parmigiana $12.99kg
Beef tenderloin (bulk) $27.99 kg
1.25kg bucket of marinated baby octopus $19.99
140gram crabmeat $10.99
Prepared salmon steaks $31.99kg
Whole salmon $14.99kg
Chicken thighs $9.49kg
NY striploin (bulk) $15.99kg
Cooked chook $9.99

Cheese
Happy Cow 24 pack $2.99
Soresina Provolone $17.29kg
Parmigino Reggiano $29.99
Jindi Camembert $33.99

There weren’t any pictures of the fruit and veg prices but I am led to believe it’s a very good price in Melbourne so I imagine we’ll get similar. I’ve also heard that TP is something like 30c a roll but you need to buy half a years supply in one go.

Costco might not be the place to shop if you can’t control your impulse buying but otherwise I think it has the potential to save my family money… if I shop smart. I’m willing to give it a go but if it doesn’t work for us, oh well, at least my North American husband will have somewhere to go if he gets homesick.

What’s Your opinion?


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Costco Opening This Month!
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gazzo1365 2:00 pm 22 Jul 11

Ive just taken a friend into costco without a drama.
Gotta say, a 1000 tin of chubba chubs looks mighty fine to me for $180!!!! 🙂

nsn 1:55 pm 22 Jul 11

So which part of “Membership Warehouse” didn’t you understand?

EvanJames 1:07 pm 22 Jul 11

… and I can report, with considerable annoyance, that they are not letting anyone in without a membership card! Arrrrgh.

We did view some of the giant shopping trolleys coming out though, and like others have said, the “bulk” thing really isn’t bulk as we know it. Very do-able for the weekly family grocery shop.

If they”ll let you in.

EvanJames 12:00 pm 22 Jul 11

People from our building went over an hour or so ago, and said the checkouts were only 4 or 5 people deep, 10 minute wait, max. I imagine the real crowds will happen tomorrow, so far it’s a bit of a bust!

kezzafezza 11:05 am 22 Jul 11

Watson said :

Erg0 said :

John Moulis said :

I don’t think I’ll bother going. I don’t need to buy 30 rolls of toilet paper at once. Woolies and Coles will do me.

Funnily enough, I saw on the news the other night that toilet paper is their number one selling item.

I don’t tend to buy items in bulk as we’re only a 2-person family. But I do believe that one can never have enough toilet paper stacked up! I can run out of milk, rice, bread, dishwshing liquid, laundry powder, anything. But running out of toilet paper = horror! (Running out of coffee makes me a danger to society, but that’s a different story.)

Not every things Costco sells is massive. My family consists only of myself and my husband (and two cats) and there is lots for us to buy. For example, the loo cleaner comes in normal sizes, but its two wrapped together, and far cheaper than the shops. You should go along with someone who has a membership, buy a few things and determine then if you should buy yourself one or not.
Even as only a couple my husband and I will be buying most of our groceries from there, and saving heaps.

Watson 10:54 am 22 Jul 11

johnboy said :

Watson said :

I don’t tend to buy items in bulk as we’re only a 2-person family. But I do believe that one can never have enough toilet paper stacked up! I can run out of milk, rice, bread, dishwshing liquid, laundry powder, anything. But running out of toilet paper = horror! (Running out of coffee makes me a danger to society, but that’s a different story.)

Just remember there’s always a Chronicle on the nature strip.

Fear no more.

You just described my uni days…

johnboy 10:43 am 22 Jul 11

Watson said :

I don’t tend to buy items in bulk as we’re only a 2-person family. But I do believe that one can never have enough toilet paper stacked up! I can run out of milk, rice, bread, dishwshing liquid, laundry powder, anything. But running out of toilet paper = horror! (Running out of coffee makes me a danger to society, but that’s a different story.)

Just remember there’s always a Chronicle on the nature strip.

Fear no more.

Watson 10:41 am 22 Jul 11

Erg0 said :

John Moulis said :

I don’t think I’ll bother going. I don’t need to buy 30 rolls of toilet paper at once. Woolies and Coles will do me.

Funnily enough, I saw on the news the other night that toilet paper is their number one selling item.

I don’t tend to buy items in bulk as we’re only a 2-person family. But I do believe that one can never have enough toilet paper stacked up! I can run out of milk, rice, bread, dishwshing liquid, laundry powder, anything. But running out of toilet paper = horror! (Running out of coffee makes me a danger to society, but that’s a different story.)

Thoroughly Smashed 10:38 am 22 Jul 11

I wonder if they’re bringing EXTREME COUPONING with them.

kezzafezza 10:38 am 22 Jul 11

Costco is amazing!! I went at 9am today, and it wasn’t heaps busy. The price on most items is like when Coles and Woolies have their stuff half price. But everything is that price at Costco all the time. Too bad I’m moving house in 2 weeks, I could have bought so much stuff.
They have all the normal food, plus some random US foods. They everything from toilet paper to whole Alaskan king crab.
Even with the $60 membership fee I can see I am going to save a lot of money

Erg0 10:24 am 22 Jul 11

John Moulis said :

I don’t think I’ll bother going. I don’t need to buy 30 rolls of toilet paper at once. Woolies and Coles will do me.

Funnily enough, I saw on the news the other night that toilet paper is their number one selling item.

EvanJames 9:48 am 22 Jul 11

Some blokes in our building reported that there are people protesting, with Shame Terry Snow signs and suchlike. Looks like it’s these blokes:
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/news/local/news/general/extenants-of-failed-brand-depot-to-rally/2234613.aspx
who opened up that Dash coffee at the front of Brand Depot after Starbucks left. Nice people, I got coffee there a few times and they were running a good business.

Thumper 9:43 am 22 Jul 11

It is, without doubt, the end of the world as we know it.

EvanJames 9:21 am 22 Jul 11

Tons of cars there, but also quite a lot of evident parking spots right out the front (on the newly washed bitumen) and blokes in fluro vests waiting to direct the hordes. No apparent crazed mayhem, yet.

montana 9:14 am 22 Jul 11

Is anyone there this morning?

How busy is it to get your membership card done?

Im worried there’s gonna be a huge wait to get the memebrship card tomorrow

Heavs 8:45 am 22 Jul 11

Plus I heard the whole place is populated by ABC listeners as well. You’d hate it John.

Henry82 8:20 am 22 Jul 11

allyroger said :

Pretty sure that they stopped that policy (at least in the US) – people were taking back 100kg old school projection tvs and walking out with plasmas with the refund.

you’re right – I just looked it up, 90 day return policy for electronics. It doesnt mention the “exact” policy for anything else.

John Moulis 8:48 pm 21 Jul 11

I don’t think I’ll bother going. I don’t need to buy 30 rolls of toilet paper at once. Woolies and Coles will do me.

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