How to Join Costco Warehouse Membership

How to Get a Costco Membership

Costco opened as a business in the mid-1970s as a service to small businesses, but has evolved significantly over the decades. In 1983 the company decided to open up to the public, but specific criteria was still necessary in order to become a member. At this time to join as a Costco member you needed to either be a small business, be affiliated with one, or belong to an organization, such as a union.

Today Costco is open to the general public and everyone can reap the benefits of warehouse shopping. There is a fee to become a member, but the theory is customers save a lot of money over the course of that year through bulk purchases.

To purchase a membership an applicant first needs to choose a membership level, and the fees and perks vary according to which level of service the consumer chooses to buy. The different levels of Costco membership available are Business Membership, Gold Star Membership and Executive Membership.

If joining Costco is something you decide is worthwhile, there are three primary ways you can sign up to become a member. You can register in person at one of the warehouse locations, join online or send an application through the mail.

Here is what you need to do:

*In person

To open a Costco membership, all you need to do is stop by a Costco customer service desk, fill out an application and pay your membership fee. Your picture will be taken and imaged onto a membership card which you’ll receive immediately.

Additionally if you call Costco at 1-800-774-2678 they’ll fax an application to you and you can bring it to your local Costco for processing; this will save you a few minutes at the customer service desk because you can fill it out ahead of time.


Joining online is easy! You can sign up at the time you are shopping for merchandise. As you finish your shopping on the Costco website, you can add a membership to your cart. When you finish checkout, the annual fee will be added to your overall purchase.

Your membership card will be mailed to you somewhere between a week and 10 days. You can also log onto the Costco website and sign up without a purchase if this is your preference.

*By Mail

If you call the 1-800-774-2678 customer service number Costco will fax you a membership application. You can fill it out, enclose payment and mail to Costco Membership P.O. Box 34535 Seattle, WA 98124-1088. You’ll receive your membership card mailed back to you after your application is processed.


The best part is the renewal of your Costco membership is a snap. No longer do you need to write a check and mail it in or stand in customer service lines in order to renew your annual membership.

Costco has it conveniently set up where you can renew your membership right at the checkout register when you are done shopping; it is all automated even through the self-checkout lines.  To sign up for another annual membership, what you need to do is select the renew option on the screen and the annual fee will be added to your total balance of the items you are purchasing.

Additionally you can renew online if this is preferable. If you log onto their website, you can easily renew right from the comforts of home. There is always the option of renewing with customer service in the store; this is especially helpful if you have questions about the different levels of membership or some other customer service issue.

Most anything can be purchased at Costco. The warehouse has a full bakery, meat department and produce section. They also make several ‘convenience’ style foods which are fresh and ready to eat. This is in addition to other kinds of merchandise such as groceries, dairy products, frozen foods and health and beauty aids.

Costco has a pharmacy, an eye clinic, and even an automotive service when you can purchase tires at a discounted price. In addition, there are a large variety of electronics, clothing, furniture, and household appliances; office supplies too. There are many benefits to joining Costco.

A Costco membership is a great option if you buy in bulk and want to get good savings based on quantity. Additionally you can get name brand products at a lower price than you would in other traditional stores.