If you shop at Sam’s Club, you’re probably someone who knows how to get the best bargains. These warehouse clubs are similar to Costco Wholesale stores, where you can buy quality products in bulk at lower prices. Depending on the length of your membership, you might consider yourself a Sam’s Club aficionado. But even diehard fans probably aren’t aware of some things the warehouse club doesn’t want you to know. Read on to discover six secrets that Sam’s Club has been keeping from you.
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Bargain shoppers beware – if you go to Sam’s Club hoping to cash in your coupons, you’ll be disappointed because the retailer won’t accept them.
According Julie Ramhold, consumer analyst at DealNews.com, while Costco has a similar policy, you can still expect to see additional sales and discounts when you shop there. But while you might be disappointed to learn about Sam’s Club’s coupon policy, it might actually be a blessing in disguise.
“The fact that they don’t accepting coupons can make the process easier because you don’t have to worry about showing them to redeem them,” says Ramhold. “Instead, you can just shop the promotions with confidence to get the best prices.
That being said, you can wait to buy the Instant Savings, which happens once a month and means special offers and bigger discounts. “That means it’s a good time to stock up on your favorites, but also to try new things,” Ramhold says, adding that sometimes stores replace these events with a special savings week. When these arrive, it’s a good time to buy more expensive tech items.
You probably know that Sam’s Club is a subsidiary of Walmart, but what you may not have realized is that Sam’s Club will accept any Walmart gift card that puts a dent in your wallet.
“Walmart and Sam’s Club gift cards are interchangeable,” says Ramhold. “So if you have any from Walmart, use them for your next trip to Sam’s Club!”
Ramhold cautions that unit prices between Sam’s Club and Walmart are often very similar, if not identical. “In these cases, the only real benefit of Sam’s Club is that you buy more,” she says. “If you already have a season ticket that’s fine, but if you’re considering getting a season ticket just because you think the prices are better at Sam’s Club then you might want to reconsider.”
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Queuing for groceries can be a pain, but Sam’s Club actually lets members skip that step with an app. “With the Sam’s Club app featuring Scan & Go, you can, well, scan products as you go,” says Ramhold. Once your basket is full, you can pay directly on the app and show your digital receipt when you leave.
“It’s a huge benefit for Sam’s Club shoppers and one that Costco shoppers desperately want to be implemented,” adds Ramhold.
For those who prefer to shop in physical stores, you’ll be happy to hear that this is probably the best place to find Sam’s Club deals. According to Ramhold, markdowns are often better in-store than when shopping virtually.
“Buying online means having to worry about shipping, so markdowns may not be as good as you’ll find in-store, where you can buy an item and take it home immediately,” says- she. “If there’s something you’re interested in, be sure to check your local club to see if they have a better price.”
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Warehouse clubs require a membership, but you may be able to find another way to get in. At checkout, purchases were hit with a 10% non-member fee. This perk is no longer available, according to the Sam’s Club website, but thanks to new partnerships, there is a workaround.
Do you prefer to do your shopping from your couch? You’re lucky. You don’t need to be a member to shop and place an order through Instacart, but you’ll see higher prices on the platform, reports Slickdeals. If you think the high prices are worth it, just keep in mind that they might end up costing you more than Sam’s Club’s $45 fee for a basic membership.
If you’re looking to fill a prescription at Sam’s Club, you can bypass the membership requirement entirely. The warehouse club confirmed this on its website: “For pharmaceuticals with a script, there is no charge for non-members.”
Looking to buy some booze or a quick cafe snack? These also do not require a membership. You can also take advantage of the retailer’s photo center, if you need your photos developed in a snap.
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