Is It Cheaper to Shop at Amazon or Costco? The Answer Might Surprise You.

updated May 1, 2019
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(Image credit: The Kitchn)

Be honest: You almost didn’t click on this story because you assumed you knew you the answer. Amazon has got to be cheaper, right? And it saves you time because you don’t have to make a trip to the store? Well, the latter is true at least.

The experts at LendEDU, a financial site dedicated to helping students and graduates make educated decisions and better manage their money, went shopping at a Costco in Long Island City, New York, and browsed Amazon Prime to compare the prices on 38 identical, commonly bought items. Here’s what they found.

(Image credit: The Kitchn)

Costco is cheaper!

If all 38 items were purchased at the exact same time, buying on Amazon would be 12.10 percent more expensive than shopping at a physical Costco store. And don’t think this is just about televisions and FitBits — food and beverage products actually had the biggest differences of all the items in the experiment. The total price of all the food and beverage products from Amazon was 95.82 percent more expensive than at Costco.

(Image credit: Jeramey Lende)

For example, a 40-ounce bag of Dunkin Donuts Original Blend coffee came in at $14.34 at Costco and $20.99 on Amazon. A pack of 48 Sweet & Salty Bars by Nature Valley were $12.79 at Costco and $22.94 on Amazon. And Dannon Light & Fit Nonfat Greek Yogurt was $12.99 for 18 at Costco, yet a staggering $37.99 on Amazon. Also, we don’t think any of you are buying another turkey any time soon, but next Thanksgiving, you might want to get yours at Costco.

(Image credit: LendEDU)

A direct quote from the report: “Judging from these results, consumers would be best served purchasing their food and beverage items from Costco Wholesale instead of on Amazon.”

See the full report: Costco vs Amazon at LendEDU

Have you found similar results in your own shopping experiences?