And just because you shop at Sam’s or BJ’s doesn’t mean this doesn’t pertain to you. It does!
Let me start by saying, we are a family of 5 and I am at Costco more often than Publix, our basic grocery store. I buy everything in cycles and fortunately have enough room to store 3 large bottles of ketchup, 6 cases of water, 3lbs of cheese… You get the picture. I have over-committed myself to the teeth and every minute is precious. I know my Costco stuff. I know everyone by name and I get a little frightened when they hire someone new. I have this down to a science as do many of my friends, but there are those who do not. So this is to help those people and thereby help us. So let’s get started!
First and foremost, when coming into the parking lot, pick a spot and commit to it. Don’t impose on your neighbors spot and for God’s sake pull all the way in.
Choose your cart and get in line waiting for the doors to open ONLY if you are CERTAIN beyond any reasonable doubt that your level of membership allows you to shop at that time. There is nothing worse than a walrus trying to make its way against the salmon stream going in because they thought they could sneak in during the black card special time slot.
If you have made it inside the door, do not stop dead to look for your list, reading glasses, coupons or lost husband. Pull off to the side and let the traffic through.
Once inside have your flow plan in mind. If you haven’t shopped here recently, that’s completely ok. We have a plan for you and your own lane. Keep reading, it will all come together for you! 😉
Do not leave your cart in the middle of an aisle, ever! Not even if they scream fire, if your small child has scaled the floor model swing set or your husband is making his way to the sample cart! Move your cart completely to the right side of the aisle. In fact this is where you should be if you are new or fresh off a long lay-off…. Which is racing vernacular for not running at the track. Right side of the aisle, got it?
Now if you are waiting anxiously for the pierogis to heat up at the sample cart, be sure to leave your cart out-of-the-way down the aisle a bit on the right side and take your bag. Do not crowd the poor girl putting little slivers of food in paper cups with your big carts. You are blocking traffic! That is not the heat from the hot plate you feel, it’s me boring 2 holes through the back of your head because you aren’t responding to my gentle requests to please excuse me and let me pass.
When you find yourself zipping from the back of the warehouse to the checkout area, you may use the middle of the aisle. If you use the extreme right or left sides you will undoubtedly hit some poor person trying to exit their aisle who cannot possibly see you as the end caps are stacked 6 feet high and they are behind their carts. You may also use the middle of the aisle if you are zipping through and know exactly where you are going and what you need. How do you know if you are in that group? It’s easy! You can find 17 things on your list, spend $300 and be out of the store in 20 minutes. Like leaving the parking lot in 20 mins!
If you open a carton of eggs and there is a broken one, close the carton completely and securely so that the next person doesn’t end up with 8 broken eggs all over their $500 Manolo Blahniks. If I find out it was you, it is sooooo on and I am bringing the other 16 that didn’t break. And for God’s sake close the freaking refrigerator door! What is this, a frat house?
I swear by everything holy that if you decide to walk 3 carriages wide in some crazed attempt to make me try to pick up my carriage and move it sideways to avoid a head on collision, we are never going to be friends. In fact I will use the fact that I am so familiar with my store that I can multitask, to plan my revenge. You are not Danny Zuko, this is not Thunder Road. Fall back! Before it gets ugly.
If you don’t know how to use the self-checkout, DON’T EVEN THINK ABOUT TRYING IT WHEN IT’S BUSY! Those registers aren’t toys. If I have to leave my cart 3 spots back to explain to you what it means to “scan your membership card”, it’s not going to be an example of my highest and best self. And friends if you go the route of the conventional cashier occupied checkout, have your card and credit card out and on top of your first item. You should not be using a check or cash in this day and age and if you need to make a return and trust me they take everything back, you will want to have used a credit card.
Remember that bit a while back when we were talking about the aisles and where to leave your cart… Guess what? It applies here too! If you need special services to get an item for you that you have paid for, don’t leave your cart in the middle of the exit or yourself in the middle of the exit. Want a churro or a hot dog? Great! Don’t you dare leave your cart out while you get it!
So now it’s time to leave the store and pack up your purchases, if indeed you actually purchased something and didn’t sample everything in the store and call it lunch. This is very important now, so pay attention. Move down to the edge of the sidewalk and think about your exit plan. Where did you park? Where are your keys? Is there anything on your cart that is going to go ass over teacup before you get to the car? Once you have your exit plan firmly in place LOOK BOTH WAYS for crying out loud. The people who leave their cart in the middle of the aisles in the store are the same people looking for a parking spot and they are more than content to run your behind over. Is it all clear? Good then what are you waiting for? No lolly gagging, move expeditiously to your vehicle. Load up quickly with your cart tucked all the way to your vehicle…. Don’t leave it in the aisle… Notice a pattern yet?
Now this is where it gets tricky because the parking lot is a shit show, all day, every day. Don’t back up without looking behind you and continue to watch behind you. And if you are waiting to pass and someone is backing up, wait and let them move out of the way because if I have to be late because I have to render first aid to your impatient ass or stand around to wait to give a witness statement because you decided to play chicken with an 80 yr old driving a 17ft Crown Victoria, I am going to petition Costco to revoke your membership when you get out of recovery.
If you can abide by these rules, we will get along famously. If not please stay out of my Costco. Better yet I will pay for your membership to BJ’s. Unless of course the executives at Costco would like to give me my own shopping hours and then disregard the above and 8:30am works perfect for me.