The Secret Language of Costco Price Tags

Costco Exterior
Photo: diane39/Getty Images

Next time you're headed to Costco to load up your shopping cart, you might want to take a moment to brush up on the store's unique pricing codes before you proceed. (And, while you're at it, you may want to consider making a shopping list so you're not tempted by too many impulse purchases.)

As Reader's Digest explained, the last two digits of a Costco price tag can actually reveal interesting insight on the products themselves. So what are the magic numbers? "...items ending with $0.97 are general markdowns, so stock up. And if a price tag ends in $0.88 or an even dollar, the item has been marked down by a local manager who wants to clear a product from his or her store," writes Brooke Nelson. Of course, there's no need to make unnecessary purchases, but if you do spot non-perishable items or year-round necessities that are capped off by these digits, you might want to think about adding a few extra to your cart.

If you're grabbing something that has a price ending in nine, the item is regularly priced and not on any special offer — though, of course, Costco boasts attractive prices even when products aren't on sale. Another thing to keep in mind when rolling through the Costco aisles is the presence of an asterisk on the upper right hand corner of a price tag. This symbol means the product is being discontinued or it is a seasonal item that won't return until next year, if at all. Once again, if you know you need it, best to grab it now or load up on several in case it's making its last Costco cameo.

WATCH: 7 Secrets Costco Employees Want You To Know

Not a Costco member? Well, you may want to consider adding a request for membership to the wholesale company to your holiday wish list.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles