Wednesday, May 24, 2006
The Wholesaler War- BJ's Versus COSTCO
May 24th, 2006
Suburban American packrats like myself often feel the need to buy copious amounts of items as opposed to the standard supermarket portion. Wholesale shopping saves time and money IF done correctly. When I moved to this island ten years ago, I'd never heard of wholesale stores before. Fast forward a few weeks later and BAM! I found COSTCO. Don't get me wrong, I love the place. Where else could you buy institution sized coffee containers and hundreds of coffee filters for under ten bucks? Hubby spends that on three cups' worth of Dunkin Donuts French Vanilla (Extra large, extra cream and sugar).
Yesterday at COSTCO we spent 100 bucks on things that would normally cost us three times the amount if purchased at an outside convenience store (gotta love brownbagging!!).It is only after you embrace the love of shopping wholesale several times that you start to wonder what's on the other side of the fence. I knew COSTCO had a few competitors (BJ's, SAMs club) and so the frugal detective in me started to wonder, Could this BJ's be a little less costly? Heh heh....WRONG!Last Saturday, Hubby and I intercepted a free sixty day membership pass to BJ's. I felt a little naughty, as though I'd defected to the other side of the wholesale cause but I quickly got over it. At first I was impressed because the store looked alot cleaner than COSTCO. Sadly, that was the only positive in my experience. Aside from a few minor things that aren't available in COSTCO, the rest of the items were equal or slightly higher in price. Green seedless grapes were $9.99 in BJ's while COSTCO has them for $7.99. The biggest jump in price I noticed was in the head and shoulders shampoo- BJ's has it for $9.99 while COSTCO's that and other shampoos for $6.99. The meats were MUCH higher in price... I'm talking at least four to five bucks in difference.I'm thinking location might have something to do with the price difference? If there's one thing I learned from this experience it's this: IT DEFINITELY PAYS TO COMPARISON SHOP, EVEN IN WHOLESALE STORES!!
Today we found a total of $1.36 in the form of four quarters, one dime, and twenty six pennies. The first three pennies were uncovered during our AM workout. The four quarters were all discovered at a car wash in NJ. I followed a hunch since I was in the neighborhood and it paid off! Another nearby carwash yielded the dime and four pennies. The remaining pennies were all found at a taco bell drive-thru. Normally I don't like taco bell for lunch but the 1950 wheat penny was worth it. Thank you, Taco Bell!
Total Cash found and redeemed today: $1.36
Total Since Blog Inception: $108.51
at 6:29 PM