22 Products You’ll Waste Money Buying at Warehouse Clubs

We talked to shopping experts to find out which products shoppers should steer clear of (and why) at warehouse clubs Costco, Sam’s Club and BJ’s.

a shopper walks the aisles of warehouse retailer COSTCO
(Image credit: Getty Images)

When your shopping list is long and time is short, it’s tempting to make a single stop at the warehouse club. Face it: Costco, Sam’s Club and BJ’s stock everything from groceries and cleaning supplies to electronics and clothing – often in bulk quantities and often at good prices. Plus, you feel the need to shake your money’s worth out of the annual membership fee you're paying (particularly if you got talked into one of the fancier tiers).

We’ve written plenty about how warehouse clubs are a great place to stock up on toilet paper, various kitchen pantry staples and even wine. However, you may still want to skip certain items. There are three big reasons why: First, buying in bulk is a waste of money if you won't use the product before it spoils or expires. Next, quality isn’t always up to snuff at warehouse clubs. Lastly, you’re missing out on the money-saving power of weekly sales and coupons – Costco and Sam’s Club don’t accept manufacturer coupons; BJ’s does, but with restrictions.

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Bob Niedt

Bob was Senior Editor at Kiplinger.com for seven years and is now a contributor to the website. He has more than 40 years of experience in online, print and visual journalism. Bob has worked as an award-winning writer and editor in the Washington, D.C., market as well as at news organizations in New York, Michigan and California. Bob joined Kiplinger in 2016, bringing a wealth of expertise covering retail, entertainment, and money-saving trends and topics. He was one of the first journalists at a daily news organization to aggressively cover retail as a specialty and has been lauded in the retail industry for his expertise. Bob has also been an adjunct and associate professor of print, online and visual journalism at Syracuse University and Ithaca College. He has a master’s degree from Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and a bachelor’s degree in communications and theater from Hope College.