Costco Military Discount Membership

Costco military discount - Costco gives members of the military community a $30 gift card after signing up for a new membership. The discount is generally only good for the initial membership, it is not available on renewals.
Advertising Disclosure.

Advertiser Disclosure: Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone. This article may contain links from our advertisers. For more information, please see our Advertising Policy.

Costco military discount

If you’re like the rest of us, there are certain products you buy on repeat every week or every month. Over time, this can add up – both in the cost of the items and the endless trips to the store. If you’ve ever wondered if having a bulk-store membership to Costco is for you, this guide will break down the Costco military discount and the benefits of being a member.

As with other discount warehouses, Costco offers tiered memberships, which means your savings could be significant – provided you shop at the store a lot. Let’s take a look at how having a membership can benefit you and your family.

What Does Costco Have to Offer?

Choose from two different types of membership plans for individuals: the Gold Star and the Gold Star Executive.

As members of the military community, you might cringe like the rest of us at those names, but we’re pretty sure Costco means no disrespect to our Gold Star families.

The standard Gold Star membership costs $60 annually, and the executive membership costs $120. Both memberships come with one household card, however, a secondary cardholder can be added for free.

Membership to Costco gives you access to almost 1000 locations across the US as well as access to Costco gas stations and other member-only perks, like deep discounts of food and clothing. No matter which membership you purchase, you’ll also be eligible to use the eye exam, photo printing, and pharmacy services at Costco.

There are even international Costco locations for those stationed OCONUS. Your Costco membership gives you access to all Costco locations worldwide. These locations, in addition to providing discount bulk purchases, allow families to get a taste of home.

What Is the Military Discount?

Unlike some stores that offer a discount for each purchase, Costco gives members of the military community a $30 gift card after signing up for a new membership.

The discount is generally only good for the initial membership, it is not available on renewals.

Who Is Eligible for the Military Discount?

The Costco military membership is open to all active duty, veterans, retired service members, and spouses and dependents. The Costco military discount only applies to new memberships.

How to Get the Military Discount

To get the gift card online, you’ll need to verify your military status with ID.me and fill out a new registration card. Your $30 gift card will come via mail in about four weeks.

How Much Can You Save?

That depends on the type of membership you purchase and how frequently you shop at Costco.

The Gold Star membership is the basic membership program and includes access to the warehouse, Costco online, and other membership benefits, such as the Costco car buying program, Costco travel services (vacation plans, car rentals, resorts, and more), and other benefits.

The Gold Star Executive program features all of the above benefits, along with 2% cashback on all purchases through Costco (up to $1,000 cashback per year). If you’re planning to spend more than $250 a month at Costco, you’ll probably break even on the cost of the Executive membership compared to the standard Gold Star membership.

To help you decide between the two memberships, think about what kind of items you plan to purchase. Unlike other bulk stores, Costco does a good job of keeping the size of items relatively reasonable, which means you’re likely to consume the food before it goes stale or bad.

As for how much you’ll save on your recurring purchases, that depends on your household and buying style. For some, there’s no real benefit in the Executive membership, since Costco is only useful for semi-annual refill purchases like plastic bags, cleaning supplies, and other bulk items. If you plan to incorporate Costco into your weekly or bi-weekly shopping, it might make it more sense to spring for the Executive option. You’ll get 2% back on all your purchases at the end of the year.

How Does this Military Discount Compare?

Costco vs. Sam’s Club

There are several major warehouse outlets, such as Costco, Sam’s Club, and BJ’s Wholesale Club. Sam’s Club is probably the largest competitor, based on the number of locations and availability (BJ’s is a regional chain, with locations primarily on the East Coast).

Sam’s offers a $10 gift card for military memberships, while Costco offers a $30 discount on memberships. However, Sam’s Club membership costs $15 less annually than Costco, so the actual cost is pretty much the same.

There are apparent similarities between Costco and Sam’s – even down to the layout of the warehouses! Both retail chains offer similar products, have similar opening hours, and have excellent return policies. The biggest difference is the price point between the memberships.

If you choose to purchase Sam’s Plus membership, you get the store three hours earlier than the rest of the shoppers. That’s big news if you’re juggling a family and PT hours. Costco generally has a broader selection of deeply discounted gift cards. Both stores offer a similar variety of apparel, appliances, books, jewelry, and furniture choices. Costco generally has more organic and non-GMO products available than Sam’s, as well as a more comprehensive selection of pre-prepped meals.

Personally, the differences are null for my family and me. When we lived at Fort Sill, we were Sam’s members because Costco wasn’t available. Living in the DC area, Costco is closer, so we have a membership there. Ultimately, the shopping experiences are similar because we use the warehouse store for the same benefits no matter where we are – stocking up on the bulk items that we seem to continually go through.

Get Instant Access
FREE Weekly Updates! Enter your information to join our mailing list.

Posted In:

About Jessica Evans

Jessica Evans is a Cincinnati native who gets the chance to reinvent home every few years. Most recently, she lived in a Bavarian forest. Now, she's on the way to establishing roots in Washington DC. Evans has an MFA from Spalding and has over a decade of professional writing experience. She mainly writes within the military and wellness communities. Evans is also a mentor for Veteran's Writing Project, a nonprofit organization that connects veterans with writers eager to tell their stories. Evans is a previous Pushcart nominee, a fiction reader for literary magazines, and hosts a monthly writing group. When she's not writing, she's training for competition. Connect with her on twitter @jesssica__evans.

Featured on: Jessica's writing has been featured in the following publications: We Are the Mighty, Reserve + National Guard Magazine, Military Families Magazine, Lincoln Military Housing, Hire GI, and many other publications.

Reader Interactions

Leave A Comment:

Comments:

About the comments on this site:

These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

The Military Wallet is a property of Three Creeks Media. Neither The Military Wallet nor Three Creeks Media are associated with or endorsed by the U.S. Departments of Defense or Veterans Affairs. The content on The Military Wallet is produced by Three Creeks Media, its partners, affiliates and contractors, any opinions or statements on The Military Wallet should not be attributed to the Dept. of Veterans Affairs, the Dept. of Defense or any governmental entity. If you have questions about Veteran programs offered through or by the Dept. of Veterans Affairs, please visit their website at va.gov. The content offered on The Military Wallet is for general informational purposes only and may not be relevant to any consumer’s specific situation, this content should not be construed as legal or financial advice. If you have questions of a specific nature consider consulting a financial professional, accountant or attorney to discuss. References to third-party products, rates and offers may change without notice.

Advertising Notice: The Military Wallet and Three Creeks Media, its parent and affiliate companies, may receive compensation through advertising placements on The Military Wallet; For any rankings or lists on this site, The Military Wallet may receive compensation from the companies being ranked and this compensation may affect how, where and in what order products and companies appear in the rankings and lists. If a ranking or list has a company noted to be a “partner” the indicated company is a corporate affiliate of The Military Wallet. No tables, rankings or lists are fully comprehensive and do not include all companies or available products.

Editorial Disclosure: Editorial content on The Military Wallet may include opinions. Any opinions are those of the author alone, and not those of an advertiser to the site nor of  The Military Wallet.