7 Simple Ways to Avoid Overspending at Costco

For years the idea of shopping at a wholesale club has intrigued me. I fell in love with couponing seven years ago when our second son was born and I suddenly was staying at home full time.

I love all things frugal and finding ways to save money has always been exciting to me. I spent hours happily clipping coupons and making meal plans based on our grocery budget.

Fast forward a few years and life looks a bit different. As a mom of four kiddos and a full time networking business with Plexus, there is not as much time to clip as many coupons. Shopping at discount stores like Costco is the perfect fit for our family. I love sharing my meal plans and shopping for many of our groceries in bulk. 


The biggest concern I had when beginning to shop regularly at Costco was overspending. It is so incredibly easy to fill that cart with all the normal, and then be shocked at the total. You are buying everything in much higher quantities than the regular grocery store.

Here are some tips that have helped our family learn to shop at Costco without overspending. 

START WITH THE MEMBERSHIP

costco membership card

Walk into your Costco determined to get the best price. All membership levels are a great value as is, but why pay more when there are often sales. The less you pay for your membership the quicker you make up the cost on your purchase savings for the year.

Check Groupon and your local coupon discount mail flyers for special offers. Your local Costco may be running special offers, ask your member service representative for the details.

Read or Pin For Later: 9 Secrets to Save at Costco This Year

GO WITH A PLAN

Make a list and check it twice. I HIGHLY recommend menu planning for a couple weeks so that you can make a detailed list of what your family really needs. Don’t forget to use Ibotta– a free money saving app.

When you have a list, your much less likely to overspend on items that are not part of the plan. If you love organization and a plan check out post here that includes free printables and tips to help you shop monthly.

Read or Pin: How to Create a Perfect Money Saving Grocery List

SHOP ALONE

Costco really can be such a fun family outing. We love to go together as a family but I quickly realized that sticking to the budget was going to mean shopping alone.

When you shop alone you will find there are fewer distractions and emotions in your shopping. Kids love to beg for their favorites, partners love to grab extra items and overwhelm can come on quickly.

Read or Pin: Learn How to Shop Wholesale Clubs Based on Your Family Size

SAMPLE FOR IDEAS

One of the best parts of shopping at Costco is the samples. The reality is that those tasty samples cause us to want things off our list. Instead of impulse buying something you try, make a mental note to add it to your next meal plan and grab it next time.

I recently sampled their new Spicy Oriental Salad kit and it was definitely something I will be purchasing in the future.

EAT BEFORE YOU GO

costco pizza

It is a proven fact that you purchase more impulsively when you’re hungry. I have definitely known this to be true. I find that if I shop in the morning, and with a full stomach, it is much less tempting to stray from my list.

Even though we know someone who got a membership just from Costco’s Pizza!

USE YOUR COUPON BOOK

costco black friday deals

Before you head to Costco you can check the sales in the monthly coupon book mailed each month. Use this to plan your list and meals so you can maximize your dollars.

Check Out Costco’s Black Friday ad here.

STUDY PRICES

I love Costco, but let us get real, not all things are the BEST DEAL you can get. Take some time to check out prices and know what items your family needs are a good value. Prices fluctuate at times and you might find that certain items you can pick up less expensively not in bulk.

Read or Pin: The Best Kirkland Brand Items to Buy

Our family has been following these tips for months shopping at Costco and have avoided overspending. Costco has so many great things to offer that it is easy to become excited every visit you make.

I am confident that by following these simple guidelines you too can shop at Costco without overspending.

Feel free to share with us your own personal tips to avoid overspending at Costco?

MORE COSTCO THINGS WE LOVE:

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