10 things you may not know about Costco

Mental Floss has compiled a list of 14 wild facts about Costco that you probably don’t know. Here are the top 10 (see full list at the link):

  1. You don’t actually need a Costco membership to shop there. If you know a member, they can purchase a Costco Cash (i.e. gift) Card on your behalf, which you can use at your leisure.
  2. Costco likes to mess with your brain. Costco often stocks a variety of large-ticket items–expensive handbags, entire barrels of Jack Daniel’s Whiskey–because retailers know that the desire and excitement they cause releases dopamine.
  3. No ID? Airport security might accept your Costco card. KPIX 5 in San Francisco discovered the TSA will accept everything from utility bills to Costco cards as proof of identity. The catch: you’re more likely to get a pat down or a swab test than if you used your driver’s license.
  4. Costco made Brad Pitt an unsatisfied customer. In July 2015, Pitt wrote to CEO Craig Jelinek, asking him to set a timetable for the company to stop selling eggs produced from cage-raised hens.
  5. The Costco rotisserie chicken has its own fan page. The company moves 157,000 whole birds every single day, estimating they lose $30 to $40 million a year by sticking to a $4.99 price point.
  6. One Costco store has horse and buggy parking for the Amish. In Lancaster, Pennsylvania, the parking lot features a livestock parking stall, with a rail to tie up horses, and a roof to shield them from inclement weather.
  7. Costco once had to recall a punching bag filled with dirty underwear. In 2007, Costco was forced to send out a public recall notice after discovering punching bags made by TKO, Inc. were filled with dirty men’s and women’s underwear instead of sand.
  8. Costco considers shopping to be a “treasure hunt.” The company regularly relocates necessities like toiletries, light bulbs, and other frequently-replenished items so the customer has to begin a search for them and see new areas of the store.
  9. Costco once labeled the Bible as “fiction.” A Simi Valley pastor incited a minor Twitter flare-up in November 2013 when he was browsing in a Costco and noticed their copies of the Bible were labeled “fiction.”
  10. Costco is America’s biggest car dealer. Costco moved nearly 650,000 cars in 2018, making it the nation’s biggest car dealer.



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