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10+ Costco Shopping Secrets To Score The Best Deals

Costco is truly everyone's playground. The prices are good, the food is delicious, the samples are free, and the toys? Well, they're A+.

Shopping at Costco is pretty difficult if you're doing it for the first time. Never fear — we're here to help guide you through the warehouse and teach you all the tricks you need to know to get the best deals!

The store's layout is meant to be confusing, but each one follows a similar pattern.

The entrance will usually be right next to the electronics, with dairy, the bakery, the deli, and produce at the back.

The middle is where all the good stuff is, like home goods, clothes, and candy.

You don't need a membership to shop there.

Instead, have an existing member pick up a Costco Shop card and use that as your membership! You can get them for anywhere between $25 - $2000, so it's great for big ticket items, like TVs.

You can get very expensive name brands there.

We're talking Chanel and Dior, people. It may take some time, and it's limited to certain stores, but you may be able to find a full-on Chanel bag at your local Costco.

Tags with asterisks are pretty important.

It means that the product the tag is on won't be getting a re-order, so stock up while you can. Once something is gone at Costco, it's pretty much gone for good.

They offer way more for your lifestyle than you'd think.

For vacation planning, or even home building, check out the displays on the way out. A Costco employee will be there to go over any product offered there, and offer you deals and flyers on whatever it is you want.

They offer gift cards at a discount.

Stock up on gift cards at Costco and never worry about needing a last-minute gift again. You can get gift cards from brands like Apple and movie chains, and they're almost always at a discount.

Their return policy is insane.

You can return almost anything, and they're not too picky about when you bought it.

I'm not saying you should do this, but I once knew a mom who returned an entire outdoor play set after her kids went off to college.

You can't use certain cards at the store.

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Costco has exclusive deals with certain credit card companies, which means they don't accept others. They currently only accept Visa. In the past, they were an American Express-exclusive store.

They also accept cash and debit!

Each country has its own special Costco experience.

While certain elements remain the same, Costcos around the world all offer different, locally-sourced products. In fact, 40% of the products from each Costco come from local suppliers!

Basically, it makes Japan's Costcos different from Canada's. You can take my word for it.

They don't provide plastic bags.

The only mode of packaging Costco offers is boxes, which are usually the boxes their products were shipped to the store in. You can carry those out, or bring your own bags.

NEVER shop on weekends.

If you value you life, you won't step foot in a Costco on a weekend. Those are the busiest days with the absolute longest lines. Opt for weekdays, or weeknights if you have to work.

The price of their rotisserie chicken will never change.

Costco Cuisine

They are determined to keep it at the same price as the day the stores opened. You'll never find a chicken that costs more than $4.99USD. And thank goodness, because that chicken is delicious.

ALWAYS go for their Kirkland brand.

I cannot stress enough how much money you're going to save by purchasing Costco's in-house brand. Get the essentials under the Kirkland label, like toilet paper and paper towel.

Items priced with a .97 at the end are special.

It means that they've been discounted, so you know you'll be getting the best possible deal when you pick up something with that number at the end. Every dollar counts, people.

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