Sam’s Club vs. Costco


Sam’s Club vs. Costco by Cassidy

Now that summer is in full swing (even though it feels like it’s been in full swing since March), do you find yourself shopping for ALL THE THINGS all the time? My children go through approximately 500 snacks between breakfast and lunch. I learned a long time ago that the best way to save my sanity, and some money, was to buy in bulk. We joined Costco several years ago, and last year, we added a Sam’s Club membership card to our wallet. While you may think they offer basically the same things, you’d be wrong!

I never imagined I’d prefer one to the other when it comes to certain items, but after a year of shopping at both Costco and Sam’s Club, I definitely pick and choose items from each warehouse store.

Sam’s Club

As seasoned parents, we were late in the game when it came to joining Sam’s Club. We went on a whim one day last summer with our neighbors, and after that, we were hooked. If your children are anything like mine, they’re not the most refined eaters. Sam’s has individualized boxes of snacks…not just variety packs. This was a GAME CHANGER for me. I would always buy the variety packs of chips and snacks at Costco, and at least 20% of the items weren’t eaten. That was frustrating and a waste of money. Sam’s has everything we want in bulk cases without the extra items we don’t eat. I can buy my middle son a box of 50 individualized bags of Funyuns. I can buy my oldest son 50 bags of Chex Mix. I can get my youngest a box of 50 bags of pretzels. It’s fabulous! This saved me so much when it came to making lunches this year, and it’s perfect for summer snacks. I also buy the mini muffins they all eat for breakfast in bulk. They all only eat one flavor, and they sell just that flavor in a huge box. The possibilities are endless! If you prefer variety packs of items, they have those as well.

Here’s a little list of the things I prefer to buy at Sam’s:
-Frozen chicken nuggets (they taste like Chick-fil-A)
-Fresh meat
-Salad mixes
-Breakfast food (fresh muffins from the bakery & muffins for my boys)
-Cookies from the bakery
-Garlic knots from the bakery
-Clothes for myself
-Clothes for my boys

Here are a couple of last minute things worth mentioning about Sam’s before I move on to Costco. Their food court food is delicious — it blows Costco’s out of the water! They have so much more variety, and it’s so tasty! Their soft pretzels are delicious. We love eating lunch/dinner there when we go. I also prefer the checkout method there. You can wait in a line with an attendant, or you can check yourself out. We always opt for this method because it is so much faster. You can scan items on the belt, or you can use a handheld scanner. We quickly scan our items and we’re out of there. It’s great!


We’ve been members of Costco for several years, so when we first joined Sam’s, I felt like I was betraying it. While I truly love Sam’s, there are still a list of items I prefer to get at Costco. We live in North Georgia, so Costco is much closer to us than Sam’s, so it has that advantage as well.

Here’s a list of things I prefer to buy there:
-Frozen meat in bulk (we buy our chicken, fish, and ground beef there)
-Coffee in bulk
-Clothes for my husband
-Desserts to serve a group (their cakes are delicious)
-Paper goods

When it comes to items like fresh produce, milk, eggs, drinks, bread, and cereal, I can do either store. The prices are comparable, and those items are basically the same from both. When it comes to home goods, it really just depends on what either store has on any given day. I’ve bought electronics, decor, and kitchen items from both and have been pleased with each store.

At the end of the day, if I had to choose only one store to keep a membership to, I’d probably choose Sam’s Club. I hate to turn my back on Costco like that, but for this stage in my family’s life, Sam’s caters to our needs better. Thankfully though, I don’t have to choose just one. I can keep making trips to both to help keep my family stocked up on what we need! I’m thankful Chattanooga is a big enough city to have both stores within a short drive!


  1. Enjoyed all your comparisons — we are just Costco members for now for the two of us but seems Sams’ has a lot to offer — thanks for the heads up —

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