5 Ways to Get Costco Membership Discounts
April 21, 2012
Costco Membership Discounts 2012
Costco membership certainly has rewards, such as discounts & deals on your purchases and cashback with the TrueEarnings Card; but access to these benefits does require an annual fee.
Fortunately there are Costo membership discounts and promotions where you can save money on the fee, with the right offer or coupon code you could even get a free Costco membership. If you’re trying to decide if Costco is worth it to your family, the lower the fee the more likely it is your membership will pay for itself.
There are five different ways you can find Costco membership deals to lower your fee for Gold Star or Executive members. Costco has three different types of memberships: Gold Star memberships, Business memberships, and Executive memberships. We’ve only been Gold Star and Executive members so so I don’t know if any of these Costo membership discounts will apply for the Business card.
Costco Employer Discounts
The company I work for has a relationship with Costco Wholesale; once or twice a year Costco reps setup shop at a table in our lunch room and offer discounted Costco memberships for a few hours.
You actually pay the full membership fee and then they give you a Costco gift card for $10 or $20 depending on your plan and the company discount.
Be aware you’ll need to pay for the membership with cash or check unless you have an American Express card. There were a few people who wanted to sign up but couldn’t because all they had with them were Visa or Mastercard. Of course, I had our Blue Cash card with me so I didn’t have to leave empty handed.
In some cases they’ll raffle off free stuff, everyone who becomes a member is entered into the raffle. When I signed up I won something; nothing major, just a $10–15 free gift but still a nice little perk.
Costco Association Discounts
When my wife was a full time teacher she was a member of the National Eductation Association. Because it’s such a large organization, many companies will offer a special discount in order to be promoted to the millions of members. The NEA offers a Costco discount, if you’re part of any large associations check to see if they have any special Costco coupon codes that will save you money on membership.
Costco Direct Membership Deals
Periodically you’ll find Costco membership promotions where you can get more membership for your money. For example, a recent one on their website offered two months of free Costco membership for new members when you signed up online and entered a specific coupon code.
In this case, although the fee you pay isn’t reduced, you’re getting 14 months for the price of 12 so your cost per month is lower.
Discount & Deal Websites
Rewards sites like MyPoints have been known to offer discounts. The most recent promotion allowed you to purchase a Costco membership certificate through MyPoints and get a $50 coupon in return; basically the same as a year of free Costco membership. Also, keep an eye on deal sites like FatWallet, new Costco promotions are likely to turn up there.
Costco Amex TrueEarnings Card
If you’re already a Costco member and you sign up for the TrueEarnings card or setup your Costco membership to be automatically renewed each year on your TrueEarnings card you’ll get two free of months Costco membership. There’s no annual fee for the card for Costco members and in a recent survey shoppers at Costco rated their overall satisfaction with the card at 4.5 out of 5 stars, so customers are happy with it.
Once you open the TrueEarnings card it’s both a credit card and your Costco membership card. TrueEarnings is one of the best gas credit cards, earning you 3% cashback on gas plus 2% for restaurants, 2% for travel, 1% everywhere else – More Info.
As I mentioned earlier Costco has three different types of memberships:
- Gold Star Member
- Business Member
- Executive Member
We started off with a Costco Gold Star membership but then later upgraded to an Executive membership because we made some big purchases from Costco and Executive members earn cash back on purchases.
The Executive membership has a higher annual fee, which is why I avoided it when we first signed up for Costco. However, once I saw how we used the card and the money we were saving I ran the numbers for our family and figured out that we would save enough with an Executive Membership to cover the cost of the higher annual fee.
One of the main benefits of the Executive membership is that you can earn 2% cash back on your Costco purchases. If you combine that with the money you earn using the True Earnings card the cash back can add up over the course of a year.
The only type of credit card that Costco accepts are AmEx cards. You don’t have to open a new credit card to shop at Costco if you already own an American Express card. For example, we have a Blue Cash card that we can use as well.
Hopefully some of the tips will save you some money on membership if you decide you want to give Costco a try.
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All posts by Ben Edwards