How the Costco Liquor prices compare to Sam’s Club

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How the Costco Liquor prices compare to Sam's Club

Costco is known for its low prices and the liquor business is no different. Costco Liquor offers greatly reduced prices for beer and hard liquor compared to local liquor store prices. But Costco isn’t the only discounter that sells alcohol. How do Costco liquor prices compare to Sam’s Club?

To find out, I visited both my local Costco and Sam’s Club and gathered price comparison information on beer, liquor, and wine.

Note: All prices are from Costco and Sam’s Club in Rochester, MN. Prices may vary depending on the location.

Costco Liquor Prices Compared

Costco and Sam’s Club sell a variety of brands of beer. Below is a comparison of some of the brands sold by both camps.

CostcoSam’s club
Corona, 24 pack$ 22.89$ 22.96
Stella, 24 pack$ 24.49$ 24.26
Bud Light, 24 pack$ 15.99$ 15.96
Michelob Light24 pack$ 15.99$ 15.96
Coors Light24 pack$ 15.99$ 14.96

Both retail giants also sell schnapps. The following table compares some of the popular booze sold by both of them.

CostcoSam’s club
Fireball whiskey 1.5L$ 19.25$ 19.28
Jack Daniels 1.5 l$ 33.99$ 33.99
Tanqueray Gin 1.5 l$ 28.49$ 28.56
Captain Morgan Rum 1.5L$ 19.99$ 19.99
Jameson Irish Whiskey 1.5L$ 35.99$ 39.48

Both Costco and Sam’s Club have a nice selection of wines, but the products they carry are almost entirely different. At the time of my research, I could only find two wines that were offered by both retailers.

CostcoSam’s club
J LOHR Cabernet$ 11.99$ 13.48
Rodney Strong Cabernet$ 13.89$ 13.88

Costco Liquor Prices, analyzed

While there are products that are cheaper on one side or the other, Costco and Sam’s Club have almost identical prices for most of the products they both sell. The real story here is, if you can find a beer or a schnapps in either of the two camps, it is probably a great deal.

Shopping at Costco or Sam’s Club liquor stores has a few disadvantages compared to local liquor stores:

  • Limited variety – Only the most popular brands and types of alcoholic beverages are sold in liquor stores. If you’re looking for a specific bottle of wine, craft beer, or a less popular type of alcohol, you probably won’t find it there.
  • Bulk Just – Costco and Sam’s Club liquor stores normally only sell alcohol in 1.75 liter bottles. For a smaller bottle of a product, visit a local full service liquor store.
  • No special order – What’s in stock in a liquor warehouse is what they have. At a local liquor store, you can almost always ask them to order something, and they can have it delivered from their local dealer within a few days.
  • Rotating inventory: Just because you find a product in a warehouse doesn’t mean it’ll be there the next time you want it.

Readers, where do you prefer to buy alcohol? Are you surprised by the results of this price comparison?

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