Costco – A review

Bringing big- box retailing to Melbourne’s thriving Docklands precinct is the Costco Wholesale Corporation, the largest membership warehouse club chain in the world, based on sales volume!

Imagine If Kmart, Bunnings, and the Melbourne Cricket Club had a baby.

Costco. It’s a space the size of a 747-hangar, filled with forkliftable pallets of consumable goods. But, you have to be a member to cross the threshold.

The ceilings are inexplicably high, the curvature of the earth prevents you from seeing the far end of the store, and it is jam-packed with dumb punters like me, wandering around, mouths agape.

If you want to buy a rotisserie chicken, three litres of yellow mustard, 1,144 rolls of double-ply cottony softness, and a 65-inch Sony TV in surrounds redolent of exclusivity, I heartily recommend visiting.

I thought it would be like Aldi, the German discount retailer. But it’s not. Aldi sells no-brand goods at mental na-nas prices. Costco sells branded goods at prices oddly similar to what you might see at Coles, JB Hi-Fi and Target.

In fact, the highlight of the Costco experience is when you’ve gone past the checkout. They have a cafe on the premises, serving the most unsavoury-looking piles of pure deep-fry I’ve ever seen. Cutting through the grease however is the option for unlimited soda refills. You can get a pure pork-sausage hotdog and an infinite volume of softdrink for $2.49. Wow!

If you’re looking to further the obesity epidemic in surrounds redolent of exclusivity, I heartily recommend visiting.

The hype, the crowd and the floorspace are not the only supersized things at Costco. The trolleys are massive. Everyone pushing a trolley looks like a midget. The benefit of the trolleys becomes apparent after you’ve left…

Don’t take the lift. Take the ramp. Pile several of your nearest and dearest in and ride. These massive things handle like a Porsche. None of your IGA / Bi-Lo caster-wobble is evident. Immense speeds can be reached on the downhills. As the wind blows in your hair and the carpark levels whizz by, you’ll know the membership was worth it.

If you’re looking for cheap thrills, I heartily recommend visiting.

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Thomas the Think Engine is the blog of a trained economist. It comes to you from Melbourne Australia.

3 thoughts on “Costco – A review”

  1. They should call it ‘little America’, it really felt like I was there. Everything’s bigger – including the people. That’s what happens when you buy Snickers by the kilo.


  2. I like comically large things…hats, phones, those hands that you wear at sporting events….perhaps I would like this Costco establishment, but enough so to pay membership? Only time will tell


  3. I’ve been to these Costco places in Canada and the States and groceries were crazy cheap over there so I am very disappointed to see that the Australian version does not meet expectations.

    I would like to go for a sticky-beak but have some reservations about signing up. What a dilemma!


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