Costco’s Incredible Return Policy

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I know a lot of folks love Costco, I’m one of them. Did you know that their return policy permits you to return ANYTHING (except computers) with or without the receipt whenever you want as long as you still have the same membership. If you bought a pair of pants, as I did, and found that you didn’t really like them but tossed the receipt already… no fear, just go back and they have it all on record. Yes, I bought these pants two months ago and had been meaning to return them for two months. You can also use this as a (semi-free) extended warranty – buy a TV or DVD player and if/when it stops working after four or five years, just return it! The only exception to this rule is a computer purchase and that return period expires after six months.

Update: Costco recently amended their return policy. Televisions, projectors, computers, cameras, camcorders, iPOD / MP3 players and cellular phones can only be returned within 90 days of purchase.

Don’t believe me? My friend David bought a mattress from Costco and emailed them to find out their return policy on mattresses. In short, he could return at any time, at no cost, to a store or arrange with customer service for pickup if you can’t get it to the store because of size and weight. Pretty sweet.

{ 749 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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749 Responses to “Costco’s Incredible Return Policy”

  1. Jon says:

    I bought a notebook pc at Costco a couple of weeks ago. The hinged lid felt kind of flimsy and it ended up that the torque applied when closing the lid was enough to crack the screen. Can I return this to Costco as a manufacturers defect?

  2. Lizzie says:

    I bought a desk at Costco 6 months ago for 99.99 and saved the receipt. I was in our Costco today and noticed that there were still desks left and they were now on sale for 49.97. Would it be a problem for me to purchase the desk for 49.97 and then later return it (still in package) with my old receipt?

    • Carl says:

      In 2005, I bought a tv for around $700. About 2 months later the TV went on sale for $600. My brother went to the Costco with the receipt and they gave him the difference! I would ask about that.

  3. Mike says:

    Costco is the best thing since…I don’t know. But Costco is great!

  4. Joeseph says:

    Lizzie, You can definitely do that. I did exactly that with the shark steam mop that costco had for $130 and then later for $75!. If unsure, just ask them.

  5. TAylor says:

    If something is cheaper next time you go, just tell them, and they will give you the money back, you dont have to rebuy, and return it.

  6. Joe says:

    R u allowed to return prescription glasses within a few weeks?

  7. Mark says:

    All right, here is my question: Can you really buy (for example) an ipod at Costco, USE it for 89 days, and then return it in a PERFECT condition. And then buy another one and do the same thing, so you can use it for 6 months, without losing your money?

  8. dblm says:


    • Boo Hoo dblm says:

      Go cry somewhere else… Don’t take time out of your day to call me an a-hole and tell me I should be ashamed in all caps…

      Can you honestly say you’ve never returned anything before? Really, can you?

      You’re taking the time to look this site up to disrespect people you don’t know just to tell us what you think. Essentially communicating that you hate us “a-holes” for wanting to please our own lives just by returning an item we don’t want. Do you realize that it’s “A-Holes” like you who start fights with that kind of talk? Do you realize that communicating like this has caused wars?

      So mind your own business and get a life instead of trying to ruin others… Or just take that pretty mouth of yours to a street corner where it might have a better chance suckin’ some guy off.


    • Lai says:

      In Spanish, we call people like you “comemierdas.”

  9. Lou says:

    Where can I find in print about the “grandfather” clause in reference to televisions. I can only find the updated return policy on costco’s website.
    Thank you

  10. Al Dave says:

    I bought a sports good from costco two months ago for $300, and today I saw costco selling the same product for $199. There is no coupon involved. I asked an employee why they reduced the price by $100. She told me they could not sell much so they are trying to get rid of it. If I want I can return and rebuy. However, I dont want to do that. I do not want to return the stuff I used for a new one. My question is why would not they just price adjust. Perplex me a little bit. In general I have never seen things in costco goes on sale without a coupon. Seann, your thoughts please.

    • Ace says:

      Because just like any other business they are trying to stay in-business and to do that they have to make a profit. More than likely they marked it down below cost and are trying to sell the rest to make room for new items. If they give everyone a price match on everything they will eventually go out of business and you will be stuck shopping at Walmart with a 20% mark up on junk. It was good enough for you when you bought it at the price you bought it. You can play the waiting game like everyone one else and see if you can get the last one at the lowest price.

  11. Jim says:

    The myth of the Costco return policy just isn’t true. I purchased a Dewalt drill from Costco in 2007 and, after very little use, it broke last month. I contacted Dewalt and they said it is outside of warranty. I thought, “Well, that’s fine. I bought it at Costco, so I can just return it.” I tried returning the item, but they refused saying it had been too long. That’s it; no recourse. They simply won’t take it back. The “super return policy” at Costco is bullshit.

    • WORK HARD says:

      3, almost 4 years later you want costco to give your money back? seriously? I cant believe what I’ve just read in this post!
      + You buy something, if the price goes down 6 months or 1 year later, welcome to a factor called depreciation! So sad, people trying to take advantage is small crappy stuff…. work an extra hour and be done with it!! because of crying babies like this , America Declines.

    • Denny says:

      Really Jim? You expect a retailer to take a product back after 3 years? That’s ridiculous. Costco’s policy of 90 days, no questions asked, is as good as it gets!

      • Tim says:

        Denny, if a retailer tells you that you can return your purchase anytime if you are not 100% satisfied, would you define that as being a limited or unlimited return policy ?

        • Jason says:

          @ Denny, it shouldnt take you 3 0r 4 years in Jims case to decide if hes 100% satisfied. Some of you people are a little redicules. In fact im taking back a KNEX building set that I got our son for xmas of 2010, never been opened, it was in his closet, im sure Costrco will take it back 8 month later

  12. Sam says:

    I bought a Nikon D3000 a year ago but I’ve seen now they have a new model for about the same price and has more features. Is it possible to go to Costco and exchange it or say it’s broken so they could give me a new one?

    • Tony says:

      That is an obvious no. 90 days for cameras. If you want the new model, put up the money and buy it….and sell yours on e-bay.

  13. no says:

    Lol SAM, that’s a bit extreme.

  14. TonyT says:

    Sueann maybe you can help.

    I bought a TV from Costco back in the Spring of 2007. Literally weeks before the 90-day electronics policy went into effect. So I considered myself “grandfathered” in. It crapped out on me in the Spring of 2009. I called Costco and they said “no problem”. We will send somebody out for free to fix it. Sweet.

    Well now in Nov/Dec of 2010. It started showing the same problems, just not as bad. Also I moved 450 miles from where I bought and about 300 miles from the now nearest Costco. Do I call Costco and complain or do I call the company that fixed it. Or can I just return it.

    Really, if I would of bought the TV when I did and now had problems, I would have chalked it up to life. But since I already had it fixed once. I feel as if I am entitled to a solution.

  15. William says:

    When you gave the update, does that include game systems such as the Wii, Xbox 360 Slim, or Ps3?

  16. Theresa says:

    I purchased a camera over the summer that was on the best digital camera list. However, I’ve found that the sports feature on it stinks. Every time you take a picture of anything with movement, it’s blurry. Obviously, it’s past 90 days now, but it’s no use to me without being able to capture my kids in sports…do you think they will accept a return or even an exchange??

    • Tony says:

      No… you can’t return it. Cameras are one of the items that you must return within 90 days.

  17. Anonymous says:

    I like all the people who think that if their crap breaks down after 3-4 years that they are still entitled to anything from poor Costco. *sigh*

  18. bull says:

    poor costco pffttt poor consumer ! if we didnt have to pay the 300 – 400 percent markup of store we could purchise stuff n WHEN it craps out we can afford a new one n we all know product are made CRAP now adays n still expensive !

    • Jason says:

      @ bull, Costco’s average markup is 8-12%,volume,volume volume. Costco makes the bulk of their money on the membership fees.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Costco’s return policy is much better than most companies… so consider these returns a privilege. now REI has a great return policy… 100% guaranteed!

  20. PDX West says:

    Costco sold me really bad tires that sucked. I went back a few months later and they rsfused to exchange them. I Should have taken them to small claims court becasue the retrun policy does not say “I can’t” return them.

  21. Angie says:

    My husband purchased a GPS from Costco for my Christmas present. Then, my puppy got it a few weeks later. Will Costco exchange it?

    • Tony says:

      No… you can’t. There will be obvious bite marks on it. You have to return the product in the same condition you bought it in. If it stopped working on its own, then that would be a different story. Now if you used a credit card to purchase this item, most credit card companies have an accidental loss coverage for 90 days. You could have made a claim with them.

    • Petey says:

      go and return in. they will accept it anyways don’t worry they get paid back by the manufacturer.

      • Ace says:

        no we don’t the manufacturer only credit manufactures defects and requires most items to be return shipped for inspection. We might return items for you because your a member, but we lose money on it and intern have to raise our prices or go out of business.

    • Carolyn G says:


      I believe you can, although I would go to a Costco that is not your usual club, just in case. It can’t hurt to try. Technically they should and they usually do. I doubt Tony works for membership services. He seems to be giving you his opinion, rather than fact.

  22. Jes says:

    I just recently bought a treadmill. It has been shipped, but I have not received it yet. I looked on Costco’s website and saw that now the same treadmill is $250.00 cheaper. I am crossing my fingers they will price match and refund me the $250.00. Taking a treadmill in for return when I don’t have a truck will be a pain in the butt, but I might have to do this if they won’t refund my money.

    • Tony says:

      First of all, it sounds like you bought it online as the Costco warehouse doesn’t deliver. If so, the return policy for large online purchases includes the shipping company coming to your home to pick it up. You just have to call customer service from and start the return process. Someone will eventually call you to arrange a pick up time/date. Or you could take it to the closest store if you wanted your money back right away.

      I would try to call customer service first and ask them to make a price adjustment. It might work. Hell, if they don’t want to price match it, just refuse the delivery and you will get credited the money back eventually. That way you don’t have to deal with taking off another day for the shipping company to come and pick it up. Just let customer service know you are doing this.

  23. samina says:

    I bought an IHome alarm and Iphone radio clock. I had it for a year or two, and now it doesn’t work. One day it wouldn’t turn on. Could I at least exchange it? or will Costco turn me down?

    • Tony says:

      Just return it. The warehouse doesn’t do exchanges. You would have to re-purchase it, but chances are they will have a newer model, or not have it in stock anymore.

  24. Tim says:

    My point with Costco is they tell you that you can return your purchase if you are not 100 % satisfied ANYTIME !! After they change their policy to 90 days, they are refusing to honor returns on purchases made before the start of the new policy. This should be a business violation.

  25. rachel saunders says:

    can i return my ipod that is cracked replaced with a new ipod??????please responde as soon as you get this message:)

    • Jon says:

      As long as you purchased it within the last 90 days: they will refund your money. They can’t replace your iPod as they no longer carry iPods.

      Longer than 90 days and you are probably out of luck, because they no longer carry iPods and don’t want to deal with Apple.

    • Tony says:

      No. You caused the crack. iPods don’t crack on their own.

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