4 Things You Need to Know About Costco Price Tags

Many or all of the products here are from our partners that compensate us. It’s how we make money. But our editorial integrity ensures our experts’ opinions aren’t influenced by compensation. Terms may apply to offers listed on this page.


  • Costco offers many great deals for warehouse club members, and you can get even better deals if you know what to look for.
  • Costco’s price tags give you tons of information needed to find bargains.
  • Examples of price tags that represent a discount include ones that end in .97 and .88.

Don't shop at Costco again without reading this.

Costco offers many beloved products, including name-brand items and items from its Kirkland house brand. And, often you can get great prices by shopping at the warehouse club. But if you really want to be smart about maximizing the savings your Costco membership offers, it's a good idea to know how to decode the store's price tags.

Understanding what the different numbers on the tags mean can help you to decide if it's time to buy a particular item or if you should wait to break out the credit card until later.

You'll pay full price for items with this number on their price-tag

If you're looking at a Costco item and the price ends in .99, there's no rush to buy the item unless you need it now. The .99 numbers signify that it's a full price item not likely to be discontinued anytime soon.

You'll score a bargain if the price tag ends in these numbers

Price tags that end in .00 or .88 indicate that the item has been returned or that the supply of the item is running low. Managers mark down these items in order to clear the shelves of them so you can expect to pay a lower price.

If you definitely want the item, it may be time to act when you see these numbers. That's because this tag usually means the only inventory available are the items you see in front of you and the store won't be getting any more of the item anytime soon.

Price tags ending in .49, .79, or .89 can also be good deals because these numbers generally mean the manufacturer is offering a special promotion. Unlike with .88 or .00, the inventory isn't necessarily limited on these items. But, the deal may not last forever since it depends on how long the manufacturer is running the sale.

You should look for more info if you see these numbers

Tags ending in .97 are indicative of a bargain as well, but the specific amount you save will vary based on the item so you'll need to do a little more research.

See, these numbers suggest the item is a Manager's Special. They may be deeply discounted, or the savings may be as low as a dollar or two depending on the circumstances. You can ask in store to find out the original price to see how much you're saving, or you can assess how much stock is left to see if the item is likely to be marked down even further.

When checking out items on Manager's Specials, it's also worth looking at the bottom-right-hand corner of the price tag to see the date when the most recent markdown occurred. If it was recent, there's a good chance the price will come down again -- although there's no guarantee.

You should act quickly when you see this on a Costco price tag

Finally, if you see an asterisk (*), that means the item may be discontinued or is not going to be restocked once the current supply runs out. If you want the item, you need to buy it now or you could miss your chance forever.

Knowing these Costco price tag rules should help you to make more informed choices on your next shopping trip so you can make sure you don't miss out on items you want -- and don't pay more than you need for those items either.

Alert: our top-rated cash back card now has 0% intro APR until 2025

This credit card is not just good – it’s so exceptional that our experts use it personally. It features a lengthy 0% intro APR period, a cash back rate of up to 5%, and all somehow for no annual fee! Click here to read our full review for free and apply in just 2 minutes.

Our Research Expert

Related Articles

View All Articles Learn More Link Arrow