Costco Is Bringing Back Samples This Month (but Things Will Look Different)

updated Jun 8, 2020
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There are plenty of reasons that people shop at Costco. The company treats employees well, carries cool products, keeps buying in large quantities affordable, and has an awesome food court (I mean, have you had the pizza?). But every Costco shopper, whether they’re willing to admit it or not, relishes the best thing about a trip to the warehouse store: the samples.

As everyone adapted to the experience of grocery shopping during the pandemic, Costco had to understandably put a moratorium on handing out food freely in stores. Some people mourned the end of the tradition, while others recreated it at home in adorable videos. But now it seems, according to the Takeout, that the samples will be available again!

Putting a pause on samples wasn’t the only thing that Costco changed during the pandemic. The company also put a limit on the number of people allowed in the store for each membership, they required customers to wear face masks while shopping, and they limited the number of meat products per customer. But since states have started to slowly reopen, Costco has also changed their policies. There is no longer a limit on the number of customers per membership, and the food court has reopened with select items.

On a recent call, the company’s CFO Richard Galant said that they plan to begin a slow rollout of the samples around mid-month. “We’re going to start doing some things in mid-June on a slow rollout basis in sampling,” Galanti said. “I can’t tell you any more, but needless to say it’s not going to be where you go and just pick up an open sample with your fingers.” So no, it won’t be quite the same as the free-for-all, grab with your hands, open-to-the-air version that shoppers are used to, but they will be back in some form. 

The samples, which are not done directly by Costco employees, but through outside contractors, are one of the store’s most beloved features and really do sell a lot of the products they feature, in addition to keeping customers happy.