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Great ‘What to Buy at Costco & Makro’ Hunt

edited 28 April 2009 at 6:54PM in Shop but don't drop
1.9K replies 769.2K views
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  • budgie2budgie2 Forumite
    57 posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker I've been Money Tipped!
    The Catsan cat litter is brilliant value, about £7.50 for 20 litres!

    Also, they do gorgeous big bagels, two bags of six for £2.99. We are addicted to them. Muffins and Danishes are also lovely.

    Their big bags of pistachios are good value, as are the other nuts.

    Oh - and the delish Skippy peanut butter is excellent value, a massive jar (think it's 1kg) for £2.99. I've only seen it elsewhere in Waitrose, where they were asking almost £2 for a very small jar.
  • magfermagfer Forumite
    4 posts
    I am a member of Costco, and find that sugar works out cheaper to buy than in most supermarkets at the moment, and I also use manuka honey, which is about the same price for 2 jars in Costco, than Tesco charges for ONE. I also buy soap powder (Daz) and fabric softener (Lenor) and dishwasher tablets (Finish), which are better value to buy from Costco.
  • edited 1 May 2009 at 1:58PM
    sdmitchsdmitch Forumite
    37 posts
    edited 1 May 2009 at 1:58PM
    I originally joined Costco in the US over 20 years ago and have been a fan ever since. Here are some of the reasons why:
    • Customer service is fantastic, if you ever need to take something back for whatever reason, there are no problems.
    • Car parking - decent size spaces (American size) no dents or scratches at Costco
    • The Tyre store - they sell only Michelin tyres, the price is all inclusive, including nitrogen filled & balanced - and generally the best price anywhere.
    • Their overall selection of goods is varied and always of first class quality - even their own brand (Kirkland) stuff.
    • Their bakery is first class - on site, as others have said - the kids birthday cakes are great value. Butchery is the same.
    • Varied selection of wines that you don't find elsewhere and well priced.
    • Clothing, although limited in selection is always top name brands at great prices.
    • Look out for the TVs - their pricing may not seem as low as some of the other discount retailers, but it always includes a full warranty for 3 years (or is it now 5?) - again no quibbles - if it fails after 35 months, they replace it or give you your money back (happened to my parents)
    • Conveneince of buying in bulk for general items - paper towels, toilet paper, washing powder etc.
    • Salads and produce are great quality - salads lasts for days (even weeks) whereas Tesco goes after a day or two.
    • Try their in house cafe for a lunch - if you can get s seat - pizza is great value and better than any of the other pizza restaurants.
    You really have to go and see for yourself - membership is easy, and the best part is that it's a global membership, so if you travel to the US, then you can use your card there also.
  • Salads and produce are great quality - salads lasts for days (even weeks) whereas Tesco goes after a day or two.

    I don't want to quibble, but is a salad that lasts for weeks necessarily a good thing? ;)

    Great thread btw, I am thinking of joining Costco now!
  • Having been a member of makro for 10+ years the things I buy are

    Beer and Wine (German Lager)
    Pet Food
    Toilet Rolls
    Sweets
    Frozen foods catering packs

    watch for special offers in the makro mail and save

    You have to watch what you are spending as VAT is charged at the till
  • I live close to a Makro in Washington UK. I am selective what I buy there and take advantage of their 'loss leaders' from the Makro Mail which is posted to my home. My main purchases include Diet coke cans, toilet rolls, kitchen rolls (BOGOF) and occasionally shoes.

    I also live near to Costco of Gateshead near to the Metro Centre shopping Centre. Membership is about £29 per year and although I don't go their very often I got my money back and more by buying a set of tyres for my car. They have a tyre fitting department which only sells Mitchelin tyres. They don't repair tyres only fit new. They balance the wheels, fit new valves while you browse around the shop. No garage locally can get anywhere near to their prices.

    Costco have a good variety of interesting goods which are very tempting. It's the type of place where you end up buying more than intended.

    Hope this assists.

    John
  • AngelaAngela Forumite
    1.5K posts
    magfer wrote: »
    I am a member of Costco, and find that sugar works out cheaper to buy than in most supermarkets at the moment, and I also use manuka honey, which is about the same price for 2 jars in Costco, than Tesco charges for ONE. I also buy soap powder (Daz) and fabric softener (Lenor) and dishwasher tablets (Finish), which are better value to buy from Costco.

    Would you be able to list the types of sugar and the prices please.
  • edited 29 April 2009 at 8:12AM
    BellyButtonFluffBellyButtonFluff Forumite
    16 posts
    edited 29 April 2009 at 8:12AM
    I agree with the consensus that Costco is a good place.

    Meat - notably chicken and mince - is really good value, good quality and noticeably cheaper than the supermarkets. (e.g. about £14 for 2.25kg of chicken if i remember right)

    Other branded goods a bit less so, and some caution is advised. One example close to my heart that springs to mind - weetabix, you can buy a pack of 4x24 I think, which is a little cheaper than the supermarket, but go for a supermarket own brand (not even value) and you can undercut costco (or more accurately, weetabix) considerably.

    Also you will find that supermarket "loss leaders" on popular items (like 2L cokes etc) that are BOGOF in the supermarket will beat costco.

    I do very much appreciate being able to buy BIG washing powders, mega packs of toilet rolls, toiletries (toothbrushes, toothpastes, hairgels, shaving foams etc) etc etc etc - it is very convenient IF you have the storage space (eg garage). I find this makes the weekly supermarket shop more manageable as the amount you have to find and carry to the car/house is much reduced!

    I don't recall ever being disappointed with anything I've bought at Costco, whether it was their own brand, the meat, bakery or more staple goods. We've had trays of pre-made sandwiches for a kids party pre-made from their deli which were excellent (saved us loads of time) and we even had a tray of sushi to share a couple of weeks ago for a one-off treat which was good

    I don't regret spending the £25-ish membership per year at all. Just get a big freezer, and as others have said, it is easy to rack up a big shock at the checkout, but don't look past the long term nature of the savings.
  • So do Costco do a day membership? How do you get this? Just turn up? Or is there a particular time of the week? And how much is it?

    Questions! Questions!
  • emmell wrote: »
    Costco electrical items tend to be well known brands whereas Makro sell a lot of brands that are not household names. I also get bored quickly in Makro it's too big and the checkout process is very slow.
    My favourite Costco purchases are:
    Apple pie
    Carrot cake
    Muffins
    Special occasion cakes
    Fresh pizza
    Minced Steak
    Chicken & Bacon bakes
    Cat litter (the large green tubs)
    Books
    Jewellery & watches
    Christmas gifts and toys
    What me and my sister like best is looking for 7's ( items ending in 7 ie £9.77. £3.17,
    77p, 17p etc.) a member of staff years ago told us that items that are reduced do not have stickers on, the price always ends in a 7. Don't know why but it has proved to be true.
    ML.

    Not sure anymore - but the 7 thing used to be true for Dixons/ Currys - anything ending in 7 is discountinued, ending in a 8 is nearly end of line.... Left them 5 years ago, but still see products like this (although with the new vat rules, this may have changed this!!!)
    Attempting the Jan 2012 £10 a day challenge... £0/£310
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