Costco price hike: Popular items see unexpected jumps in cost

A Costco Wholesale location. Photo by Fang Dongxu/VCG via Getty Images)

Creeping price hikes have become all too common for consumers recently and Costco has generally been a safe haven for savvy shoppers due to its bulk buys and competitive prices. 

However, the retailer has upped the prices on some of its popular goods recently.

For instance, while most Costco warehouses have gas stations with prices lower than competitors in that area, the company has quietly increased its prices on gas. Costco gas tends to be thirty to fifty cents cheaper than other gas stations, according to GoBankingRates, which is based on prices listed by the GasBuddy app.

EatThis,NotThat! (ETNT) reported that shoppers across the U.S. and Canada saw notable price increases on Kirkland Signature organic extra virgin olive oil. At one store in Brooklyn the oil jumped from $16.99 in March 2023 to $24.99 this year, according to ETNT.


Membership fees, according to reports, may see an uptick in price. During the chain's fiscal-first-quarter earnings call, former Costco CFO Richard Galanti hinted at a price increase on the company's popular CostcoGold and Executive memberships — the first time the memberships have increased since 2017. The increase could be anywhere between $5 and $10. The company reported its total cardholders increased to 132 million as of the end of the second quarter, a 7.3% increase over the same period a year ago.

Galanti added that there’s been improved profitability in gasoline, however, and the club has been able to increase prices in line with the market, according to The Street.

"What we have found is we've been able to see improved profitability, not just in the last quarter or two, but over the last few years, the last three to five years, improved profitability in gas because others are making more and we're allowed to make a little more," Galanti said. 

"When we do our competitive price shops on gas, which we do weekly at every gas station we operate with neighboring competitive gas stations, our value proposition is actually increased — increased number of cents per gallon than we've ever seen," he said. "So, that's been, if you will, a win-win for us."



Drivers refuel vehicles at a Costco Wholesale Corp. gas station in Brookhaven, Georgia (Elijah Nouvelage/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

However, Galanti said at the earnings call that some items like furniture and other bulky lower-priced items may start falling in price due to reduced freight costs, The Street reports. 

"Some deflationary items were as much as 20% to 30% and, again, mostly freight-related," he explained.

Meanwhile, in better news, Galanti said the $1.50 cost of the warehouse retailer’s hot dog and soda combo "is probably safe for a while."

The hot dog and soda combo has long been a fixture of Costco’s food court, and so has its $1.50 price. The company hasn’t increased the combo's cost in the roughly four decades it has offered it, thanks to a pledge from its founders, FOX Business previously reported.


Galanti said the $1.50 cost of the warehouse retailer’s hot dog and soda combo "is probably safe for a while." (Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

Elsewhere, Fox Business reported last month that the retailer is now selling Kimbap, a dish similar to sushi, at competitive prices. It consists of rice and various ingredients wrapped in seaweed. The item has been a popular feature at Trader Joe's, often selling out.

"You get 6 kimbap for $18, making it slightly cheaper than TJ's," one Reddit user wrote under the Costco thread. "Solid 8/10. We will definitely be getting it again once it's back in stock."

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