Yes, yes, we love Costco. So we were both fascinated and impressed by this Uproxx exploration of the different meanings behind certain Costco price codes. Turns out, something that ends in .99 has a different meaning that something that ends in .97: “We’ve also all noticed that Costco prices things… oddly. There are items that end in configurations of $x.09 or $x.29 cents or are priced at exactly $x.00 all the time. There’s a method to this madness.” As straight-up Costco nerds, we find this all tremendously fascinating.
If a price ends in .98 or .99, “That means Costco didn’t get a special deal from the supplier… It’s not on sale or marked down in any way.” But any other price that ends in “.x9"—like .29 or .79—indicates a manufacturer deal, which means that Costco bought these items in bulk, meaning more of a bargain for you.
.97 is Costco’s code for manager sale prices to move stock, indicating even more of a discount item. But the real deals are the prices that end in .88 and .00, which are for discontinued or damaged items that won’t be replaced. Says Uproxx, “Translation: these are steeply discounted to move out of the store as quickly as possible. If you see something you like, act fast.” A sign with a double asterisk in the top right-hand corner indicates something similar.
We are grateful to Uproxx for cracking these retail codes, and now we can’t wait to hit the big-box store this weekend. We just hope we have room for more giant packs of paper towels and multi-unit cases of tuna cans.