Monday, March 24, 2014

Winco & Costco Price Comparisons

I don't have a detailed price list of good grocery prices like some frugal people do or my mom's good-price memory, but I did want to do a few comparisons so I can best make use of my new Costco membership.

All prices reflect the time period of February-March, 2014 in Richland, WA. Seasonal produce of course varies more than other staples. For each item compared, I checked the prices in both places within a week of each other.

Here are my results:

Costco Wins:

  • Earthbound Farms organic spring mix, 1 lb.: $3.99 ($4.78 at Winco)
  • Strawberries: $1.69 per lb. sold in 4 lb. package ($1.98/lb. at Winco)
  • Whole Milk, gallon: $2.53 per gallon, sold in 2 gallon packs ($2.76 at Winco, although it was cheaper another time I checked there but forgot to check again at Costco)
  • Pizza cheese blend: $2.92/lb, sold in 5 lb. bag. Winco no longer sells a pizza blend.
  • String cheese: $0.19 each (Winco $0.25 each)
  • Aidell's Chicken & Apple sausages: $0.93 per sausage sold in packs of 15 ($1.20 per sausage at Winco)
  • samples! Frequent and free at Costco, pretty rare at Winco.

Winco Wins:
  • White unbleached flour: $0.02 per ounce in 5 lb. bags = $1.67 ($0.032 per ounce at Costco, must buy 25 lb. bags) 
  • bread: $1.57 for a loaf of Honey Wheat Berry. Costco didn't carry anything quite the same, but all the loaves I looked at were more than that.
  • Most other items. Without crunching the numbers, most of our staples (vegetables, fruit, fruit juice, nuts, crackers etc.) appeared to usually be a better deal at Winco. I will continue to write down prices on things we buy frequently, just to make sure!
  • ability to buy smaller quantities of everything (especially things in the bulk bins you can buy any quantity you want)
Hope that is helpful to other shoppers! I'm curious if other locations of Costco have significantly different prices, and how they compare to other local stores.

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