Home Theater Forum and Systems banner

1 - 20 of 25 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
22,577 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I often see members reference Costco as the place where they purchased electronics of various sorts. I have never shopped there, but did have a chance to walk the aisles this past weekend for the first time as a visitor. I did not pay attention to the pricing on electronics, which now I kind of wish I had written down a few just for comparison sake. I did find a rolling tool box (6') with a butcher block type top that I really wanted and have learned is only available at Costco. So I am guessing there are probably some electronics that may only be available via Costco. I am curious about this and if their deals on electronics are really that good.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
15,054 Posts
I think the biggest thing about Costco is there return policy, they offer a one year in store return regardless what the manufacturer states. Televisions are a very good deal most of the time but they dont offer huge discounts like Black friday deals.
 
G

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Sonnie, you are correct that Costco has/had one of the easiest and best TV return policies in the business. I believe they had tightened them up because members were abusing the policy and using it to upgrade TVs instead of only returning broken TVs.

Before you buy, be sure to read the current policy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
132 Posts
Sonnie, you are correct that Costco has/had one of the easiest and best TV return policies in the business. I believe they had tightened them up because members were abusing the policy and using it to upgrade TVs instead of only returning broken TVs.

Before you buy, be sure to read the current policy.
You are correct about people abusing, Costco has come down on their policy. I have never bought electronics from them, only because most (if not all) of the time the products they have are Costco only. Most of us enthusiasts are looking for specific models, top of the line, blah, blah, trying to find a model number on a Costco product can sometime be a pain. I will admit they carry nice stuff at good prices, but until Amazon charges tax (next September) Amazon it will be!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
22,577 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
I am HUGE Amazon fan myself. I find it hard to find better deals anywhere. Rarely... and I mean rarely, I will find a better deal elsewhere. I have Amazon Prime, so I get free 2-day shipping on almost everything I order as well. I also buy a lot of used CDs on Amazon... great deals and most are in "Like New" condition.

As far as Costco... I think their electronics return policy is now 90 days, but everything else is pretty much whenever. I called them yesterday and was asking about that tool box and since they only had the floor model remaining I thought I might get a discount. They would not budge on the price because it is a new item and more on order. Actually the floor model is in perfect condition and is already put together, so that is a bonus. At any rate... the lady was the refunds manager and she stated that while she could not authorize a discount, that if I was ever dissatisfied with it that I could bring it back. I exclaimed to her, "ever?" and she replied, yep. I told her I can't imagine people bringing items back at just "any time" they so desire. She said... "Trust me... I know, I am the refunds manager and we will take anything back at anytime." Of course with the 90 limit on electronics. No doubt people are abusing the refund policy, which only leads to those of us who are honest ending up paying for those who are not.
 
G

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
What is Amazon's return policy? Even though Costo dropped their extremely long return policy, I think they are still free of re-stocking fee's. No matter how much research and preparation someone does when TV shopping, they still might not actually like it when they get it home. Almost all retail stores still have a 15% re-stocking fee. I know newegg does. It's not something they like to talk about and it's in small print, but it can still be a pesky problem for honest people who make honest mistakes.

IMO, the number one thing that can be over looked... The remote. Great picture with a horrible remote.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
22,577 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
It depends on the item with Amazon, but I have never had any issues returning anything. I normally have to pay the freight unless it is damaged/defective/etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
132 Posts
Sonnie, I also have Prime and love it! I kid you not, the two weeks before Christmas to the 22nd. At least 3 boxes from Amazon were on my porch!!! I also agree about not finding a better deal, I just bought a TV in December and was watching the price, I pulled the trigger and then 2 days later the price dropped $50!!! I emailed Amazon and they credited my account!! I have not had to return anything to Amazon, but have had issues with things not showing up time to time, average about once every two years something does not show up. One phone call later and Amazon OVERNIGHTS the product to me!!! No questions asked!!!
I will also say that the Prime movies are really coming up!!! They are making deals all the time and in my opinion are WAY better than Netflix... just my opinion!
Honestly, the only thing my family uses Costco for is the pizza, hotdogs, TP, bottled water, laundry soap, meat, seafood (GREAT quality), mens jeans ($14!!!), mens socks and the occasional knick-knack. We have the $100 executive card and it pays for itself with the cash back. Also if you are BofA you can get $20 back for signing up through their add it up website. Also the Kirkland brand is overrun's of popular items. For example the Kirkland diapers are actually huggies, the kirkland beer is actually Gorden-Birsh! The vodka is Grey Goose, and so on....

On the discount deal, I once talked to someone who worked at Costco and they said their profit margin on items was something like 3.5% and this is why they did not accept Visa. Visa want 3% and that would drop their profit to .5%.... Now I may be wrong on the numbers and this conversation happened over 10 years ago, so no telling if it is true of just a rumor now!!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
22,577 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
The major issue with us is we are 50 miles south... about an hour drive from Costco. So it's not like we can just run up to Wal-Mart or Dollar General (yeah, we shop there and Fred's). We would have to make a special trip and make sure we spend enough to make it count. Electronics wise, I don't plan to buy much this year... bought everything last year and then some. Most of it via Amazon. I bet I had fifty-eleven boxes during the month of December.

They could probably get a little better deal today on Visa, but it would still be 1-1.5%, which would indeed get into their profit margin... and we know whatever it is, it can't be too much.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
237 Posts
I but lots of stuff from Costco, but I get almost all my electronics through Amazon. So far, I've never had to return an item that I ordered through them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
459 Posts
One interesting thing about Costco's electronics is they often have special versions of products that you can't get anywhere else. Seriously, if you google the model numbers on some Costco electronics (like Sony blu rays, or Panasonic TVs, etc.) you won't find them anywhere else because Costco is such a volume seller that manufacturers do special runs for them. Sometimes the models a LITERALLY exactly the same as another model number sold elsewhere, but often, Costco throws in a little something extra on their model. Things like non-glare filters on one model TV... the model is exactly the same as another model sold elsewhere, but has a non-glare filter added that normally you have to get the next model up (elsewhere) to get, but for the same price or less as the otherwise-equivalent model. That was the case with my Sony LCD TV I bought some time back. My Sony blu ray player came with an HDMI cable (not that I needed it) and was otherwise identical to a different model number (which cost a little more elsewhere but lacked the HDMI cable).

So keep an eye out for the little differences on Costco electronics... they can often be interesting. You may need to do some checking (online forums often have threads where they've figured out how the model number lineups match up), but you can get some great stuff there.

There have been times that I've beat Costco's prices, but rarely times that I've felt actually ripped off by the relative cost of a purchase there.

Naturally, all of this assumes you live near enough to a Costco that other factors don't come into play (driving an hour to get there would kill a lot of the savings... unless you have to drive an hour to get everywhere else, too).

Costco gas prices also generally meet or beat the cheapest gas in the area, too. (around here, Arco is usually cheapest, but they charge a 45 cent ATM surcharge fee, and Costco doesn't)

The one downside to Costco is they don't take credit cards (except Amex, which barely counts as a true credit card in my book). Cash, check, or ATM/Debit cards only.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,539 Posts
I am not a Costco member, but I am a Sam's Club member... from what I understand they are pretty similar.
Some items are special editions made just for Sam's and Costco, sometimes they are better than the 'equivalent' production model and sometimes they are worse so you have to check to see which you prefer for the $$.
I buy some things mail order and other things I buy locally, I have found its always a good idea to at least check Sam's before making a purchase as well as checking the Amazon price.
The week after Christmas we bought a Samsung UN466050 TV from Sam's and it was a very good deal.
As was previously mentioned about Costco, the return policy is outstanding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
I often see members reference Costco as the place where they purchased electronics of various sorts. I have never shopped there, but did have a chance to walk the aisles this past weekend for the first time as a visitor. I did not pay attention to the pricing on electronics, which now I kind of wish I had written down a few just for comparison sake. I did find a rolling tool box (6') with a butcher block type top that I really wanted and have learned is only available at Costco. So I am guessing there are probably some electronics that may only be available via Costco. I am curious about this and if their deals on electronics are really that good.
With Costco, it's all about timing. I'm fortunate enough to be in Issaquah, HQ for Costco. The Issaquah location often carries items to beta test response and you'll find deals on items, electronics included, that you won't find anywhere else. Another great example is when Costco briefly carried the Pioneer Elite SC-37 receiver at nearly 40% off retail. Safe to say they didn't last very long. Keep your eyes and ears open, you'll always find good deals. Have patience.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
237 Posts
The main disadvantage of shopping electronics in a Costo is the very limited selection of products that are available. If they have a product that meets your needs, then it is usually at a good price.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Have been a COSTCO member for 10 years and have save quite a bit on many products and food items. In fact, I seldom shop at a regular store 4 anything.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
89 Posts
I watched a PBS, Dateline, 20/20 segment on Costco and its CEO. Was quite interesting. The CEO took a paltry $300,000 salary (with bonuses and stock options of course). During the course of the segment it was quite eye opening on this particular individual's outlook of the company.

He declined his bonuses for several years even leading up to the recession and in turn released raises and bonuses to the employees while Costco still maintained a profit (stayed in the black). His office at the time looked like a teachers lounge. Folding tables and metal file cabinets.

Costco only carries about 4-5000 items at any given time in their warehouses. Walmart has somewhere over 50K.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
683 Posts
One thing about Costco is the customer priority. I have never had a single bad experience with them and they have a no questions asked return policy. Even if they don't mention it or have it in the small print, you can take something back and they won't blink an eye. There really is something different about Costco's culture or something, but they actually care about their customers. Sometimes it's a little strange to be enamored with a warehouse...

Oh, and yeah, they may not always have the best prices on electronics, but they usually are very well priced and again, their automatic doubling on warranties is great.
 
1 - 20 of 25 Posts
Top