4 Reasons a Sam’s Club Plus Membership Is Way Better Than a Costco Executive Membership

Both Sam’s Club and Costco offer entry level and upgraded memberships. The regular membership at Sam’s costs $50 annually, while the budget hit from Costco’s regular membership is $60 annually. The Sam’s Club upgrade is called the Plus membership, which comes in at $110 per year compared to $120 per year for Costco’s upgraded Executive membership.

In addition to being cheaper, Sam’s Club’s Plus membership also offers some really important perks that Costco’s Executive membership doesn’t. Here’s an overview of what to expect if you spring for Sam’s Club’s higher-tier membership.

1. It comes with free online shipping and curbside pickup

When you become a Sam’s Club Plus member, your status entitles you to free shipping on most online items that you purchase. Both Sam’s Club members and other complimentary cardholders on their account get free shipping. You can also get free curbside pickup with your Plus membership.

Since Sam’s Club doesn’t charge an added premium for online purchases, this is a huge advantage. You can shop from home and not pay an extra dime out of your bank account compared with the prices you’d pay at the club.

Costco, on the other hand, does charge more for online purchases. Its delivery is done through Instacart, which marks up items. And many items that ship online from Costco.com have shipping charges attached. Executive members don’t get any of these added fees waived by Costco. This is a huge disadvantage if you enjoy shopping online

Plus members at Sam’s Club get early shopping hours, gaining access to the club at 8:00 a.m. when the store regularly opens at 9:00 a.m. on weekends and 10:00 a.m. on weekdays. This makes it possible to shop when it’s less crowded and to have first crack at certain sales and bargains.

Costco offers no similar perks to Executive members. You’ll have to shop during regular club hours only.

3. The cash back is available monthly

Both Sam’s Club and Costco provide 2% back on qualifying purchases. Sam’s caps the cash back you can earn at $500 per year, while Costco allows you to earn up to $1,000.

But while Costco has the advantage on how much you can earn, Sam’s wins with its redemption policies. Your Sam’s cash is deposited to your account monthly and is redeemable once deposited, while Costco makes you wait for an annual rewards certificate. If you don’t want to wait an entire year to get your rewards, Sam’s Club is the better choice.

4. It comes with cheap generic prescriptions

Finally, Sam’s Club Plus members are entitled to some free generic prescriptions, as well as discounted drugs. This deal includes a 30-day supply of more than 600 drugs available for $10 or less.

While Costco does have a member prescription program you can join to get some medications for $9.99 or less, the savings at Sam’s Clubs tends to be greater — and Costco doesn’t provide any additional prescription discounts as a perk of upgrading your membership.

These added perks that Sam’s provides are pretty impressive. In fact, in reading them, you may just decide you’d rather opt for Sam’s than Costco if you’re going to pay for an upgraded membership to a warehouse club. If so, you should know you can cancel your Costco membership and receive a refund. You can do this any time in store or by calling member services at 800-774-2678. Then, you can sign up for Sam’s Plus and start enjoying all these benefits that Costco Executive membership doesn’t offer.

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