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Get a $30 Costco Shop Card when you sign up for a new membership this September

A Costco Wholesale Store Grand Opening
Costco is offering a rare $30 digital Costco Shop Card promotion for new members this summer. Bloomberg/Getty Images

If you've been thinking about becoming a Costco Wholesale member, now is the perfect time. That's because Costco is offering a new promotion on memberships right now: Join as a new member online at and enroll in auto-renewal of your annual membership. Then you'll receive a $30 Digital Costco Shop Card. Just be sure to enter code CJPROMO at checkout.

Costco memberships deals are seldom this good, so we think you take advantage of it ASAP. It's like getting your Costco membership for half price. (If you're not close to a Costco warehouse store, don't worry -- we also found a $15-off deal on Sam's Club memberships.)

Costco membership with $30 Costco Shop Card, $60 (a $90 value)

Why become a Costco member?

A Costco Wholesale Store Grand Opening
Bloomberg/Getty Images

I absolutely love Costco -- I've been a member for more than 23 years. I do much of my household shopping there. It's my go-to store for paper towels, garbage bags, laundry detergent and all those other household essentials I don't want to buy regularly at a supermarket. It's also where I stock up on groceries such as milk, coffee and eggs (they're much cheaper at Costco than at my local supermarket). Costco is a great place to stock up on wine too. I recommend Kirkland Signature brand boxed wine -- it's the perfect combination of high quality and low price.

I also make sure to pick up a $4.99 rotisserie chicken when I'm at Costco. It makes a great dinner entree, with plenty left over for making sandwiches or chicken salad the next day. And the price can't be beat -- you'll pay way more buying a whole chicken to roast at home.

Costco is a great place to find household goods -- think furniture, small appliances, bedding and more. Costco also offers an extended warranty on electronics at no added cost, and has a much friendlier return policy than Best Buy and other retailers.

When I need gas, I stop at the station attached to my local warehouse store. The price there is typically 15-40 cents lower per gallon than nearby stations. (Don't be discouraged by long lines -- most Costco gas stations have more pumps than your average gas station. Lines move quick.)

And, of course, every time I visit Costco I stop by the in-store cafe. It's hard to go wrong with the $1.50 hot dog and drink combo. Try it the next time you visit. Or take a fresh-baked $10 pizza home for the whole family.

Why I love Costco:

  • Costco has all the grocery essentials I need in bulk at a great price.
  • Costco is a great place to find new snacks and treats, including local favorites.
  • Costco has high quality standards, especially when it comes to its own Kirkland Signature brand.

Costco membership with $30 Costco Shop Card, $60 (a $90 value)
Important: Be sure to enter code CJPROMO at checkout.

My recommendation: Upgrade to a Costco Executive membership

If you want to take your Costco savings to the next level, I recommend upgrading to a Costco Executive membership. It costs an extra $60 per year over a standard membership, but you'll start earning a 2% rebate on your yearly Costco purchases, including vacations purchased through Costco Travel. The annual 2% reward is mailed with your renewal notice, two months before the renewal date.

Why I love the Costco Executive membership:

  • If you spend more than $3,000 at Costco per year, the upgrade will pay for itself.
  • If you're not saving money with the Costco Executive membership, you can ask for a downgrade and a refund at any time.

Costco Executive membership with $30 Costco Shop Card, $120 (a $150 value)
Important: Be sure to enter code CJPROMO at checkout.

Is Costco better than Sam's Club?

Which warehouse club is best? For most people, the answer will be simple. Since both warehouse clubs offer comparable goods at comparable prices, the best warehouse club is likely the one that's closest to your home and the most convenient to visit. But what if you have both Costco and Sam's Club in your area?

For me, Costco is the best store. It's less expensive to join right now (once you factor in this $30 Costco Shop Card deal). Plus, I prefer the quality of Costco's own Kirkland Signature brand.

Get a Sam's Club membership starting at $35 

Sam's Club

Don't have a Costco store near you? Or maybe you're looking for a more affordable warehouse club membership? In either case, you should check out the deal that Sam's Club is running on memberships in June. Sign up for an annual Sam's Club membership online today and you'll save $15 instantly. 

Like with a Costco membership, you'll start saving money on groceries, gas and so much more. Sam's Club also offers travel deals, a car-buying program, plus pharmacy, tire, optical and photo centers. The chain offers free curbside pickup, and, in some locations, same-day delivery.

You can find your local Sam's Club location (and Sam's Club Fuel Center) using the club finder tool on the Sam's Club website.

You can earn a 2% Sam's Cash rebate on purchases when you upgrade to a Sam's Club Plus membership. You'll also get free online shipping and free curbside pickup.

What's the fine print on the Costco deal?

The Costco summer promotion is for new members only or for members whose memberships have been expired for more than 18 months. To receive a Digital Costco Shop Card, you must provide a valid email address and set up auto-renewal of your Costco membership on a Visa card at the time of sign-up. If you elect not to provide a valid email address and sign up for auto-renewal, a Digital Costco Shop Card will not be emailed.

This deal is valid only for non-members for their first year of membership. It's not valid for renewal or upgrade of an existing membership. To qualify as a new member, a Costco membership must be expired at least 18 months or more. Limit one promotion/incentive per household. This promotion is non-transferable and may not be combined with any other promotion. The Digital Costco Shop Card is not redeemable for cash, except as required by law. New members will receive their Digital Costco Shop Card by email within two weeks of sign-up. Costco is not liable for incentives not received due to entry of an invalid address during sign-up. Digital Costco Shop Cards are not accepted at gas stations, car washes or food court kiosks. Use the provided single-use promo code when entering your payment information.

A Costco membership is $60 a year. An Executive Membership is an additional $60 upgrade fee a year. Each membership includes one free Household Card. This may be subject to sales tax. Costco accepts all Visa cards, as well as cash, checks, debit/ATM cards, EBT and Costco Shop Cards. Departments and product selection may vary.

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