The amazing part of the Costco story isn’t just the rapid growth but the myriad of different products and services the company offers to its members. People think Costco and the first images which spring to mind are the garbage can sized pickle jars and bus-sized packages of bathroom tissue. One thing they won’t be able to buy now, however, is tobacco.
The first Costco location (then called Price Club) opened in 1976 inside a converted airplane hangar in San Diego, California. The original business model was to serve only businesses by offering bulk products at discounted prices. The company quickly realized it could increase its sales by offering memberships to a select group of non-business owners. The early 1980s saw the boom of the warehouse club industry, and 1983, the first Costco warehouse store opened in Seattle, Washington.
As of November 2013, the company has over six hundred locations across the US and over 71.2 million membership cardholders.
People will buy anything in bulk so long as they believe it’s a deal. ANYTHING. Here are some odd products people buy at Costco. We assume people buy them because Costco sells them.
Emergency Food Kits
You might not be aware but there are more than a few survivalist living among us. Just what is a survivalist? Survivalism is a movement of individuals or groups (known as survivalists or preppers) who actively prepare for major emergencies. These emergencies are any disruption in social or political order and include natural disasters, Earth changes, anthropogenic disasters like nuclear war or any widespread apocalyptic event (zombies). If you’re interested in learning more about survivalism, you can browse this magazine, and if you’re convinced it’s a good life plan you can head on down to Costco! They offer deals on a full year of food rations for four people and a water storage system because fresh water is key to survival.
The winter is always an unpredictable beast. One day it’s unseasonably warm and the next a foot of snow is dumped on your doorstep. Some areas of the United States get so much snow over the course of the year, its much more cost effective (and easier on the back) to attach a snow plow to the truck and dig out the driveway. Anyone interested in a snow plow doesn’t have to deal with a special vendor, they can just head on down to Costco. They even offer plows for sale online. Wouldn’t it be ironic if the delivery of your snow plow was delayed because of snow?
Sometimes a person needs a vacation just from planning a family vacation. Hotel reservations, air travel bookings, and itinerary planning — vacation planning are best left to someone else. Why not Costco? Not only will they help plan a vacation and handle everything from air travel, car rental, hotel booking, theme park visits and even cruises, but Costco members receive a discount from participating destinations and resorts. They even have travel experts on call 24/7 to book your vacation at your own convenience.
We knew that Costco carried jewelry, but we had no idea that, not only did they offer engagement rings, but a $63,000 engagement ring. The ring actually works close to $93,000 but Costco members get the insane discount. We’re not sure which will raise more eyebrows — the stunning ring, the actual and retail prices or the fact it was purchased at discount warehouse store.
Now why on Earth would anyone besides business owners or office managers care about buying cubicles? Good question. While most of the world hates the feeling of semi-confinement in half walls the cubicle could serve a purpose in the typical family home. Suppose mom or dad works from and needs a designated office space but doesn’t have an extra room to devote to a home office? Suppose the kids need a quiet and constructed area to work on homework or other projects that cut down on the distractions of television or other family members? Why not consider a home cubicle? But where could you buy just one? If we have to explain WHERE you obviously haven’t been paying attention to this list.
No one wants to plan a funeral, but sadly it’s a part of life. If you’ve been lucky enough to avoid funeral planning in your life so far, you’ve probably got a little idea as to how expensive the entire ordeal can be. Between the casket, the flowers and all the odds an end, dying costs an incredible amount of money. The time constraints and mental anguish of burying a loved one also cause people to make quick, often costly, decisions just to get the entire ordeal over with. Though it is a bit morbid, planning for a funeral is often the most cost-effective plan, and it saves loved ones from the uncomfortable task once you’ve kicked the bucket. Costco has an entire funeral section. Now you’re just going to need to make room in the basement to store your casket.